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SeanR

Another ZX Spectrum device indiegogo fundraiser

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I've asked them who they have on board so far but they're not saying who they have so far. They are waiting for their final list... They're also being very vague about how they are getting around the keyboard issues.

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Spoke to a developer on Facebook - although he is happy there is a new Spectrum, he is not happy that they are not paying for the rights. It's not about denying the charity, it's rewarding the people who created something.

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Bottom line is, will there be any profit going back into the parent company? Because if so then surely the whole charity thing is a crock anyway?

'Oh we're making this expensive TV games controller. We'll pocket the hardware sales from it but all the games profits will be for charity..!'

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Cynicism aside, it is possibly the "neatest" way to deal with it. Cynicism enabled, it's probably the cheapest way for them to deal with it too as a mass donation to charity could equal any amount, unless they explicitly state an amount when getting people to agree.

It's also possibly the "only" way to deal with it, in reality. Setting up licensing and payment arrangements with all those devs, some of who can't even be traced probably, would just not be a practical possibility.

These sort of devices have been around for ages in one form or another and no one has managed to pull it off in a 100% legit manner. It's too difficult.

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It kind of feels like, with the SD card slot, that they're saying "hey, don't worry, if we don't get permission to use a game you like, you can still download it off the internet and use our device to play it".

It's quite concerning that they raised so much money so quickly with so many vague details and promises.

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From what I can tell, this project started a few years ago as a 'spectrum in a joystick' - it seems they've just run with that concept. I think it would be hugely more appealing if it was basically a replica of the original speccy with the full keyboard.

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What I find strange is that they managed to get Clive himself to 'kinda' validate it? Imo that is what has driven the interest and success of the project. Why would he have done it? By all accounts he's a bit of an eccentric, shrewd character, with a high opinion of himself. I don't understand why he would involve himself with something like this. Maybe he's been taken in by the 'charity' stuff too?

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What I find strange is that they managed to get Clive himself to 'kinda' validate it? Imo that is what has driven the interest and success of the project. Why would he have done it? By all accounts he's a bit of an eccentric, shrewd character, with a high opinion of himself. I don't understand why he would involve himself with something like this. Maybe he's been taken in by the 'charity' stuff too?

He's run out of money or is looking to fund some crazy electric car/scooter/bike hybrid - the C6?

Or if it's successful, the second model would be the fabled "Super Spectrum" - the Loki

Hey, I remember reading the preview of that in Sinclair User and thinking it sounded amazing. An Amiga but for only £125. Except it also used a tape recorder, which would have been shit...

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What I find strange is that they managed to get Clive himself to 'kinda' validate it? Imo that is what has driven the interest and success of the project. Why would he have done it? By all accounts he's a bit of an eccentric, shrewd character, with a high opinion of himself. I don't understand why he would involve himself with something like this. Maybe he's been taken in by the 'charity' stuff too?

Sinclair Research Ltd is a shareholder in the company behind it. It's in his interest for them to make money off of people looking for a fix of nostalgia. :P

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Won't this be going up against those Atari or Sega controller shaped multi-game things that used to sell in Argos for twenty quid? I think that the majority of people who will buy one already have, hence the quick funding.

Fair play to them though for ensuring that they have the funds up front, although it could cost more than £100k to get it to market properly. I'm not happy with the charity blackmail angle though.

On the subject of suspect licensing for Spectrum retro devices, whatever happened with that other one that hadn't got clearance for the games it was going to ship with and looked generally dodgy?

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It is still live apparently. I've just been reading the kickstarter, 6 days ago they posted a picture of the first pre-production unit which they reckon will be assembled in January 2015.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/952953995/bluetooth-zx-spectrum-recreating-the-sinclair-zx-s/posts

The photo shows the side of the housing, but there's no way that that's an injection molded part.

It looks suspiciously like a 3d print that has been sanded down and gloss painted, this would imply that they are probably nowhere near actually getting these into production.

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I'm amazed this is doing so well when it's clear they don't have any rights currently in place. There's nothing worse than products being sold when you don't actually own what you're selling. i won't be backing it.

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Has no one else noticed that the screen shot for the one game shown is Skyway, which was a game developed by Chris Smith (the guy developing the Vega) which was due to be released by Microgen but never saw the light of day.

4E740448-D33A-43BF-BCC4-0FE0C619249D_zps

So I wouldn't be surprised if it comes with a 1000 games that no one has ever heard of before. Cassette 50 for 2015.

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Well, possibly.

But it does make sense that he would include his own games, whatever the situation was, as they are the ones he definitely has the right to distribute.

This reminds me of a while back when someone announced that they were going to be bringing hundreds of classic Amiga games to Android. Everyone immediately started wondering how they had completed the logistical marathon of securing rights for that many games. I haven't heard from that project for a long time so I assume they didn't.

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It looks as if this is going ahead as it's popped up on the BBC news site :

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-nottinghamshire-30810148

This quotes are quite strange :

"The Spectrum Vega has been designed to run all 14,000 of the original games." - impossible surely?

"If it sells anywhere near as well as the original ZX Spectrum that could bring massive employment opportunities for us here." They don't honestly believe this is going to happen do they?

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It might be able to run them but that doesn't mean you can actually play them.

Still no solid word on the games either. Still looks a bloody daft design as well.

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It's a hefty claim, but then so is saying it coming with 1,000 games when it appears they're no nearer to actually sorting that out other than saying it was still being "finalised". If they had anything decent on board at this point they'd presumably be mentioning it. They'd probably test it with the more popular games, and if anything more obscure turned up that didn't run they could probably fix it with a firmware update or something.

Also, as Goose says, running and playing are different things. It still hasn't been addressed exactly how the pad will handle games that involve more than five buttons (9 if you include the D-pad, 13 if diagonals count). There is an on-screen keyboard, but you're not going to want to keep bringing that up during gameplay, and you certainly wouldn't want to bother with a text adventure.

Edit: The "massive employment opportunities" sounds complete bollocks, but sounds nice in a BBC article to anyone that wasn't already aware of the thing. Even if they get more sales out of it from this report it's still going to be a niche item, especially at the current price point.

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It's on Sky as well ...

http://news.sky.com/story/1407829/new-zx-spectrum-goes-on-sale-in-april

They are labeling it a "new ZX Spectrum" and I guess with the branding in place, it technically is...

One weird thing is they use a stock pic of an old 48k , why didn't they use an image of that stupid controller-looking thing? Hopefully they've ditched that idea (although I see nothing on the indiegogo site to support that hope).

If they have honestly got this in the bag - a legit deal to distribute it, with the Sinclair ZX Spectrum branding in place and endorsement from Sir Clive, then they are STUPID STUPID STUPID for not making it a full-size, fully functioning replica.

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I think they're just using a stock image to illustrate what the ZX Spectrum was rather than a change of heart from the current developers. The article incorrectly refers to the ZX Spectrum as a "console" twice so I wouldn't say the writer of the piece has a huge grasp of what they're writing about.

The only logical reasons I can think of why they wouldn't go down the full keyboard recreation route is because of whatever license Elite Systems had to recreate the keyboard in full form for their project, or cost as the controller version would be cheaper and easier to assemble. Otherwise I'd say they're chasing a market that doesn't exist as anyone who really wants to play Spectrum games would preferably have the full experience given the choice.

There's a quote that wasn't in the BBC article that says "The graphics these consoles deliver may require you to buy a new TV but what about the huge market for Joe Bloggs who just wants to play Pac-Man?". If there really are people out there wanting to do that I would guess they'd either be playing Pac-Man on their phone or would have bought one of those Pac-Man joystick things, and not paying £100 for a mediocre port of it.

controller_namco.jpg

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I'm amazed this is doing so well when it's clear they don't have any rights currently in place. There's nothing worse than products being sold when you don't actually own what you're selling. i won't be backing it.

I think we have all under estimated how many people have/will get all nostalgic about the release of the Vega. People who do not currently play retro games.

As you know, a lot of news story's were published yesterday about the company who will be making these on behalf of Retro Computers and the fact that it's being produced in the UK. Well yesterday also saw Retro Asylum reaching number 4 in the I tunes charts. I checked our stats this morning and the majority of downloads were for our Spectrum related episodes.

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Not really understanding the hype surrounding what is essentially a Spectrum DTV. There have been loads of these things down the years and you hear nothing. There's something about the ZX Spectrum that lends itself to easy feel-good nostalgia for sites like BBC News and Sky.

It is easy for us here to take old systems like the Spectrum for granted. I'm sure most people here either own one or have some sort of emulator set up for a quick blast of 3D Deathchase. But the public at large only really get the bug when mainstream news covers it. It's like when Street Fighter 4 came out, for some weird reason it was big news outside gaming, with people who were kids in the early 90s going "oh I used to love SF2 when I was a kid". It was like all the variants and semi-sequels didn't exist.

As for 1,000 games, following the drama between Elite Systems and the large group of Spectrum developers, any other company is going to have to tread very carefully before slinging any old games on there.

I really don't want to be a snob and say this is rubbish and won't sell, but it's rubbish and won't sell. There are cheaper and easier ways for Joe Bloggs to get a ZX Spectrum nostalgia hit, websites that let you play Speccy games in your browser for instance. As has been said hardcore Spectrum fans will have a machine or know how to emulate it. I wouldn't buy it for my kids, they'd just laugh at it. Maybe I'm seeing this all wrong and there is a market for this, but I can't see one from here.

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I really don't want to be a snob and say this is rubbish and won't sell, but it's rubbish and won't sell. There are cheaper and easier ways for Joe Bloggs to get a ZX Spectrum nostalgia hit, websites that let you play Speccy games in your browser for instance. As has been said hardcore Spectrum fans will have a machine or know how to emulate it. I wouldn't buy it for my kids, they'd just laugh at it. Maybe I'm seeing this all wrong and there is a market for this, but I can't see one from here.

I think you're right. It may have ignited some interest in the Spectrum with some people, but I can't imagine a load of people willing to part with 100 smackers just for a short nostalgia trip. In it's current form it would need to be around £30 for the mass-market to take it seriously (IMO). I don't expect them to deliver anywhere near the 1,000 games included they're promising either.

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Well, after comments on Twitter it seems the new policy is this

They will pay royalties OR the developer can let the money go to charity.

It feels like a very bad business practice to me.

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