ABOVE COUNTERCLOCKWISE FROM CENTER : At the heart of every Zeroid is the same "Quick Change Motor" that powered Ideal's line of Motorific Cars. Ideal used full page advertisements to promote the Motorific line sold from 1964 through 1970.    Ideal Motorific 1964 Buick Riviera was just one of an extensive lineup of cars available when the line was launched.    1968 Zeroids logo and Zintar the Silver Explorer, one of the initial group of three robots offered in the Zeroid lineup.

ABOVE CENTER: Obscure early promotional materials aimed to entice dealers with elaborate artwork.    ABOVE RIGHT: Final production version of Zobor, one of the initial group of three Zeroids offered.   •   ABOVE: Copy from early dealer promotional flyer describes the entire lineup as well as providing an in-depth description of each Zeroid. Zerak, Zobor, and Zintar could be ordered by toy delaers in quanties of 6 or 12 each or in an assorted group of 12 Zeroids, 3 of each style.

ABOVE LEFT: Zerak the Blue Destroyer, one of the inital three Zeroids, shown here with "throwing hand" installed. In the Zeriod comic the projectiles are dramatically referred as "Lazer Bombs" while most packaging describes these as "satellites." ABOVE RIGHT: Elaborate artwork from an early dealer flyer shows some interesting detail differences before the production designs were finalized. Zintar in particular has several details that would be later changed including fared in headlights, chrome, or possibly gray hands, and a completely different antenna design. In contrast the illustration shows a Zobor that is nearly identical to the final production toy. Zerak is rendered in what was close to the final form with the only major change being the antenna.

ABOVE: Additional artwork from early dealer promotional materials is fascinating not only for the details which vary from production but also because apparently the robots duties were not yet finalized at the time this illustration was commissioned. Accompanying descriptions however (see above) in the flyer were accurate.

ABOVE FIGURES 1-4 : 1968 Zeroids Introduction Commercial.   FIGURE 1: Elaborately staged commercial opens with Zerak, Zobor, and Zintar emerging from the mist.   FIGURE 2: Close up shot of Zerak in his case shows production details were not yet finalized at the time the commercial was filmed.   FIGURE 3-4: Although details of Zobor were complete his case and Cosmobile were not yet in their final forms.

ABOVE FIGURES 5-9 : 1968 Zeroids Introduction Commercial. •  FIGURE 5: Final designs for packaging of all three Zeroids was not finalized when the commercial was filmed. •  FIGURE 5-6: Most of the commercial uses a crude pre-production mockup as a stand in for Zintar. •  FIGURE 7: A nearly correct close to final version of Zintar is spliced into one scene of the commercial. Note this Zintar'sproduction version antenna and fully molded head with recessed mouth missing from the crude mockup head shown in Figure 5. Despite correct shapes many color details were still in flux. •  FIGURE 8: A Magnetic Hand, shown here installed on Zintar, was included with every Zeroid. • FIGURE 9: Dramatic closing sequence shows the Zeroids breaking through a block wall adorned with the Ideal logo.

ABOVE: LEFT: Like the Motorific line that preceded the Zeroids, full page comic book ads helped sell the Zeroids. Note this early artwork still shows silver hands for Zintar and the Satellites for the throwing arms are dramatically described as Lazer Bombs. ABOVE RIGHT: Zintar the Silver Explorer aboard his Lunar Sled poses in front of comic book counterpart.

ABOVE LEFT: The Zeroids were advertised extensively and made it into countless Christmas Catalogs including Speigel who featured the trio at $4.98 each. Western Auto also featured the Zeroids in 1968 priced at 4.44.

ABOVE: Ideal added excitement to the Zeroids lineup with a new robot, Zogg, in 1969. The three station Commander Action Set was sold by Gamble Aldens for $12.92 and by Sears for $13.99. Initially Zogg could only be purchased as part of this set but would later be offered separately.

ABOVE: As part of Gamble Alden's full color page of "Robust Robots" two Zeroids playsets were offered. Zogg set included the newest Zeroid while the less expensive Zeroid Set with two stations would have been shipped with either Zerak, Zintar, or Zobor.

ABOVE: Three full-color pages were devoted to the Zeroids line in Ideal's 1969 product catalog. Original deluxe packaging for the robots was carried over intact from 1968. A new Zeroid, Zogg, was introduced and sold exclusively in sets (see below).

ABOVE TOP: Sears Christmas Book 1969 offered the original Zeroid trio separately for $4.99 or the deluxe Zogg set at $13.99.   Sears Christmas Book 1969 cover.  Sears Christmas Book 1969.   •  Although snow was unlikely this Costa Mesa Sears store built in 1966 always looked just right at Christmas time thanks to the liberal use of green neon. Instead of enforcing a "corporate look" Sears stores employed a wide array of architectural styles for its new stores built throughout the 1950s and 1960s allowing each to better appeal to the region it would be serving.

ABOVE LEFT: By 1970 Zeroids, at least for some retailers, were being shipped in less expensive packaging. These more generic white and blue boxes always featured line art depicting Zerak on all sides. A cellophane window on the opposite side allowed the shopper to see which Zeroid was in the package. Still an Ideal product at this point, this is the first time the word "robot" had been used in connection with the toys.  •  ABOVE RIGHT: The rarest Zeroid of them all was Zemo. Very few examples have ever surfaced by known colors to date are an exclusive bright red used only for Zemo as well as the same peacock blue used on Zerak and the bronze metallic used on Zobor. In 1970 production was still based in Japan.

ABOVE: Another 1970 release, and considerably less rare than Zemo, was Zeroid Alien. Showcased in the 1970 Montogmery Ward Christmas Catalog, Ward's renamed the toy Alien Invader. Zeroid Alien enjoyed all the intricate detailing of the earlier robots but added a unique new action, operation via 4 pre-programmed memory cogs that allowed the robot to navigate set paths or execute a dramatic self-destruct sequence.

ABOVE AND BELOW: The toys originally sold as Zeroids by Ideal and manufactured in Japan were later marketed as "Robots" by OK Toys of Hong Kong. Until this time the word "robot" had only been associated with Zerak, Zintar, Zobor, or Zogg when shipped in the generic blue and white boxes circa 1970, otherwise the word would never appear in any of Ideal's advertising or promotional materials. For the Hong Kong production the elaborate original plastic cases that transformed into an accessory for the toy were jettisoned in favor of much more cost effective paper packaging that showed color photos of each style and the corresponding model number on the sides. A cello window showed which robot was in the box. Styling of the toy was unchanged with the exception of Zerak who was now molded in royal blue instead of the original peacock blue shade.