Factory Default and Default Settings

Once upon a time games weren't that complex and rules could be made which were in essence "just play the game." Such games were added to the scoreboard with rules indicating "Factory Defaults" or "Default Settings."

Over time (decades) it became obvious that some more precision would be needed for many games and by the mid 2000s sets of complex rules were the norm. Unfortunately, there were still the odd lazy-created tracks which still used either of these terms.

So what does "Factory Default" and "Default Settings" actually mean?

Factory Default

Originating in the arcade days, Factory Default intends to mean whatever configuration the machine came out of the factory with. For Arcade machines, there are often a plethora of options available through hardware dip switches or software BIOS backed up with NVRAM.

It does not take much imagination to see that it is possible that some machines would leave the Factory with a different configuration after they've been through some testing. Thus Factory Default should not be used but the idea of what it should mean is "how it came out of the factory."

Default Settings

Very similar to the Factory Default, Default Settings are the settings of a game - especially those on consoles - which are there when a game is loaded for the very first time. Imagine removing the shrink wrap, putting the game in a console which has never had the game inserted before, firing it up the game for the very first time before any DLC is ever released. The settings at this point in the game are the intended settings for "Default Settings."

Things to consider in this state: the game will never have been played so there will be no saved game. There will be no unlocked content. This is the state of a "Default Settings" game.

New Tracks

Nobody should be using these terms as a basis to create new track rules. There are still many legacy games where the are no settings or options for the player to make. Factory Default and Default Settings should not be used.

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