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The C64 Mini


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56 minutes ago, Lorfarius said:

 

Have a look at that text review. Has a decent text guide on what to do in the article.

No what I meant was the games dont come with instructions attached so some guesswork needed for some of them.

 

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To clarify exactly what I did i was using a d64 image of sheep in space(renamed to the correct needed name on the usb stick root) and I used virtual keyboard as I didn't have a usb keyboard lying around.

 

1) I did Load "$",8 and then LIST and saw contents of the d64 image disk whichw as the game stuff for Sheep in space

2) I did

 

10 PRINT "HELLO"

RUN

 

and the program worked

 

3) I typed

SAVE "TEST",8

 

4) I did Load "$",8 and then LIST and saw contents of the d64 image disk which was the game stuff for Sheep in space PLUS a file called TEST

 

5) I exited the BASIC game back to main menu then went back in and did step 4 again and sure enough the file was on the disk

 

6) I did LOAD "TEST",8,1 and it loaded that file and ran the program and listing the program shwoed it was intact

 

A fairly basic test as a proof of concept really - not sure how complicated/clever it can be later. Also not sure if games that allow to save to disc will work emulated via usb stick d64 image - I'll dig out my hithchikers guide to the galaxy d64 image and see if that works later (after I get a usb keyboard sorted)

 

Interestingly the date/time modified stamp of the d64 changed to 31/12/1999 23:48 after I had saved the TEST program which makes sense as c64 has no clue about date/time stamps :)

 

 

 

 

 

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17 hours ago, Vimster said:

On a related note, the guy who designed the superb 1541Ultimate II cartridge has a project on the go at the moment, the Ultimate64. It's basically a total replacement board for the original 64 using an FPGA, so essentially you could take a dead C64 and swap it out. There aren't many details at the moment but it's pretty exciting stuff. It's set to have HDMI output, a fully-working cartridge port, the 1541UltimateII+ built in, amongst other features. I suspect it won't be cheap but if you wanted something as near as damn it to original hardware (and it would be partially original) it might be worth keeping an eye on.

 

This sounds great... have a working original breadbox C64 but it would be great to update it a bit.... Suppose it depends on price really. I expect I'll update it and then not use it... :D Maybe I should stick to using emulators.

 

Keep toying with the idea of getting this mini... but... I just know it will get dusty.... :-\ Its a nice bit of kit though....

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Seen people post in a few places elsewhere of their anger for this product existing. I never quite get that - no one is forcing anyone to buy this. If you think it's too expensive, niche or pointless, that's fine too. Same with the SNES mini and the like. What's that about?

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On 3/28/2018 at 09:27, Lorfarius said:

 

Yawn. How many times do people have to come forward, sneer and say "oh just get a rasp Pi".  You can say that for anything. Why bother buying original gear when you can get a Pi? etc. etc. A Pi is cheaper but it's not instant on, its not as convenient, can take ages to setup for most people, needs a keyboard to exit and close down or it corrupts SD cards, and will cost even more if you go down the route of getting a C64 case printed (which look rough compared to this) + controller. The Pi is far from perfect and has its own problems.

 

I've GOT a Rasp Pi 3 and guess what... I'm buying one :wacko: Also this supports a USB keyboard and other controllers too. 

Wasn't sneering @Lorfarius, just saying that it seems expensive for what it is. I have a MiST FPGA and it has a few flaws (Vga output being the worst) but the C64 core on that is great, as is the Amiga 1200 emulation.

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I can understand why some people are doing the whole “just dig out the real hardware or build your own Pi version.”

 

But some people just want that retro quick hit. I’m thinking of getting one for my mum just because she’s a massive fan of the original Boulderdash (no modern version will suffice) and memorising load commands from 30 years ago is too big an obstacle.

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12 hours ago, Goose said:

Seen people post in a few places elsewhere of their anger for this product existing. I never quite get that - no one is forcing anyone to buy this. If you think it's too expensive, niche or pointless, that's fine too. Same with the SNES mini and the like. What's that about?

Anger about what? What kind of issues do people have?

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This product isn't aimed at the people who are commenting negatively anyway.  If you are into emulation you can do all this and plenty more as has already been mentioned, and at a fraction of the price.  This is a product aimed at people who walk into John Lewis and see this for the first time and see a fun toy to relive their youth on for a few hours.  The average man on the street isn't going to hack it, or load from USB.

 

The emulation fans would be disappointed because all the things it looked to offer (a working keyboard, a proper C64 in miniature) are great for the hacker scene, but it's not aimed at those people, so when they realise the product doesn't do anything they have been already doing for years, they shout about it.

 

Personally, I think it's a lovely piece of kit, would sell loads at Xmas, but I have to say, there's a great deal of filler on there, and many 8 bit computer games are only good for quick hit of nostalgia these days.  Try playing Thing on a Spring today - it's uncontrollable, and it reminds you that back in the 80s I used to play that game because I loved the music.  In hindsight I don't think I ever progressed beyond the first few screens at all.   

 

A SNES mini comes with Mario, Actraiser, Contra, all games that are the best examples of their genre.  Since gaming went all 3D we may never see those kinds of games again. Rapid Reload never got a US release on PS1 because it was 2D, so for many people Contra is the pinnacle of that kind of thing.  I loved the spectrum and C64 back in the day, but my experiences of going back to them as an adult has spoiled some of those lovely memories.  

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Is there any rough ETA on the update? I hope we don't have to wait months for it. As you say, the games on there are good but I want to play Buggy Boy and get slaughtered at Last Ninja. Or rather, play them easier.

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16 minutes ago, Goose said:

Is there any rough ETA on the update? I hope we don't have to wait months for it. As you say, the games on there are good but I want to play Buggy Boy and get slaughtered at Last Ninja. Or rather, play them easier.

 

Firmware upgrade version 1.0.6 will be available on 5th April 2018

 

Version 1.0.6 – Changes

– Maps additional functions to joystick buttons for some games
– Makes minor changes to descriptions for some games
– Fixes an occasional scenario where an additional USB joystick is not detected until a restart
– Fixes an intermittent audio click when opening the THEC64 Mini’s MENU in-game

 

Coming Soon!

Firmware upgrade version 1.0.7 will be available here ASAP after version 1.0.6

Version 1.0.7 – Planned Changes:

– Choose from a selection of disks on USB
– Allow multi-disk files/games to be accessed
– Other update features to be confirmed ASAP!

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Picked mine up today,  not added any games yet, but I’ve been enjoying it regardless. I never owned a C64 as we had a Speccy and NES, but used to play loads of C64 at mate’s after school. 

 

My big complaint is the joystick. The circle ⭕️ has come loose after just a couple of hours play, that’s worse than I’d thought this would be.

 

Anyway I’m going to load this thing with C64 versions of the Speccy games I grew up with.

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Voidrunner, Iridis Alpha, Drelbs, Warhawk, Paradroid, IK+, P.O.D, Kikstart 1+2, Super Pipeline 2, Toy Bizarre, Zenji, Paradroid, Salamander, Crazy Comets, Mega Apocalypse, Zone Ranger, Zolyx, Traz, World Class Leaderboard,  Donkey Kong Jr, Micro Hexagon, Bounty Bob Strikes Back, Archon, Nebulus, Mr Do's Castle, Skate Rock, Tutti Fritti, Solomon's Key, Stop the Express, Thrust ... 

 

So many good games. 

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