Spare Change for the Apple II

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Came also out for:

Atari 8-bit
Commodore 64

Game description:

In Spare Change, you are the owner and operator of the Spare Change Arcade, dedicated to making your place of business run as smoothly as possible. Inside the arcade are Token machines, jukeboxes, telephones, movie booths, popcorn machines, and so on. The token machines need to be restocked with money from the cash register when they are out of tokens, but eventually, the register must be replenished with cash from the safe. You must drop the tokens in one of your two storage bins. When you have stored at least ten tokens, the movie booth opens, and you can go inside to proceed to the next level. You are also awarded one bag of money, but if you store more than ten tokens, then more than one bag of money is awarded for each extra token collected. If nine bags of money are obtained, you proceed to the next level.

But the Zerks, two aliens that run around the screen, can steal tokens either from the machines or from the storage bins. Sometimes, a Zerk will toss a token to the other nearest the “piggy bank”. You must touch them in order to get the token back, before they throw it in their piggy bank. Alternatively, you can throw a token into the jukebox, telephone, popcorn machine, etc. and the Zerks will get distracted from their goal, giving you enough time to continue filling the storage bins. If the Zerks insert five tokens in the piggy bank, the game is over.

Between levels, an intermission plays, which are similar to those in Pac-Man. Later in the game, you have the ability to access these intermissions. As you proceed through the levels, the game gets quite difficult.

What I think:

Very fun and addictive game, even if it’s repetitive.

It is also quite humerous.
The Zerks will bring you the one or other smile on your face. 🙂


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  1. @Highretrogamelord89 I played this game in 1985 in Fairbanks, Alaska at a foster home. Second video game where I ever scored above 1,000,000 points. (First was the arcade Pac-Man in 1983…then I split-screened it the same year on Labor Day with some 3,205,XXX points. In Detroit at the Stargate Arcade, which is now long-gone.) Might have broken 1M on Lode Runner (probably with the help of my own "made" levels), but I can't remember if or when.

  2. You can pull a token from the phone if the current row is completed or empty. I would pull from the phone, put it in the jukebox/phone/popcorn (alternate between the applicable), pull phone again (put in box), grab both tokens from machine and put in box, then repeat until filled.

  3. Thanks for sharing this video.  I've been thinking of this game off-and-on for a while, and haven't been able to remember too much about it.  Really neat to relive one of my childhood favorites for a few minutes!

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