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new666uk

Will there ever be an Amiga or Atari ST mini?

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With man + dog getting in on the act resurrecting old systems so we think there will ever be an Amiga or Atari ST mini? I know there is the Mister but that's pretty expensive. I've have one of each as getting Amiga's to run games off a WHDLoad is a poor experience unless you have the extra RAM to cover the overhead of WHD (which I don't).

 

Thoughts?

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You need a mouse and keyboard for a proper ST / Amiga experience. Attempting to make them in to a console style setup like the C64 mini style would be a disaster (...like the C64 mini, if you're feeling uncharitable). I think doing justice to old computers is a much more complex task than consoles, which obviously isn't easy in the first place.

 

The idea of some kind of Amiga NEXT has my salivating, but look at the rolling delays the Spectrum NEXT has gone through.

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There's just a lot of games that haven't dated well or just would look awful on a large flatscreen, especially titles that used dithering or cross-hatching.

 

I find it easier to go back and enjoy C64 games for some reason. I just can't seem to get Amiga emulation feeling right.

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22 minutes ago, Unofficial Who said:

There's just a lot of games that haven't dated well or just would look awful on a large flatscreen, especially titles that used dithering or cross-hatching.

 

To be fair, that can be said of any 8bit 16bit machine. Nothing wrong with dithering nor cross hatching either, especially with a decent scanline filter. I’m using one on my picade that even curves the screen and it looks sensational imo. 

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5 hours ago, Protocol Penguin said:

Getting the rights sorted for the hardware and games software will be a nightmare, and honestly, the Amiga wasn't exactly a big player globally outside the UK and Germany.

 

Ok, I’m nitpicking, but it was very popular in France and Sweden too! 

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You just can't really do plug 'n play computers. Especially for cheap, using emulation on a cheap mobile chipset. You need virtual hard drives, peripherals, modern loaders, low lag scalers for HDMI and a passionate active community to consult when you hit brick walls.

 

You need a MiSTer, basically.

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A Raspberry Pi and one of these would do the job, surely. Retropie plays Amiga games fairly easily, and if you want to do something a bit more technical, you can do a dedicated install of an Amiga emulator. 

 

Obviously, you need a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse. I imagine it’d be a struggle to get a pair that looked the part. 

 

 

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The time I spent with the Amiga was the best era - games, music, demo scene, Amos and Dpaint, I loved the Amiga and the friendships I made through it. But objectively, the Amiga needs a mouse, joystick and keyboard.  That would be impractical in mini form, so I'd imagine that an Amiga mini would not be a computer, but a menu with a list of games , like the other Minis. But If you take away the mouse and keyboard you loose all the games that were specifically Amiga.  All those point and click adventures would be gone, your syndicates, your theme parks, your north and South's. No Command and Conquer.

An Amiga Mini with only a joystick controller would not have the ability to play these games.

 

Much as I loved the Amiga, and I love the nostalgia of these mini consoles, would anyone want to play James Pond, Body Blows,  Turrican, R-type, all held up as excellent Amiga games, but all competing with Mario, Street Fighter, Contra and, um, R-Type from the competing mini consoles.   I had an amazing time of my life with the Amiga, but an Amiga mini would be a non-starter.

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Same for me @dumpster - I go back and play Amiga games via emulation every so often, but it's usually for ten minutes or so, and compared to consoles the Amiga is a bit shit. But back in the day there was nothing to top owning an Amiga (or ST) as a home computer, until the 486 came along, and then the Megadrive and SNES. After that anyone who said the Amiga could hold it's own as a gaming platform was full of it.

The most irritating thing about playing emulated games is knowing that even the CD32 versions still use up to jump! 

 

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I guess the other problem is that Amiga emulation can be iffy if you try to speed up the disc drive speed in my experience and no-one is going to buy a mini to wait 4 minutes for something to load.

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It’s implausible that one would be made anyway, but any notional Amiga mini would be unlikely to use adf files that emulated disks; it’d use whd files (ie disk games that have been reworked to allow them to be installed to a hard drive) that function pretty much like ROMs, in that they don’t require any kind of pretend disk swapping, and load extremely quickly. 

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Yes. The guys behind the C64 Mini were trying to get something sorted behind the scenes and said on Facebook last year they would be pushing towards one once they'd done with the C64.

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Ok, interesting feedback. Thanks all.

 

I could just setup my original hardware but faffing with a huge stack of discs is a pita. For me I prefer original hardware with the modern convenience of an SD card or similar.

 

Emulation, especially the Amiga for some reason just isn't convenient. Getting it configured on the couple of times I've bothered was a real ball ache.

 

Oh, well, let's just see what the future holds...

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6 hours ago, new666uk said:

Ok, interesting feedback. Thanks all.

 

I could just setup my original hardware but faffing with a huge stack of discs is a pita. For me I prefer original hardware with the modern convenience of an SD card or similar.

 

Emulation, especially the Amiga for some reason just isn't convenient. Getting it configured on the couple of times I've bothered was a real ball ache.

 

Oh, well, let's just see what the future holds...

Could you just stick a gotek in it? That gives you the convenience of the original hardware with a slightly more modern storage system. 

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I used to think Amiga emulation was a massive faff, until I discovered how easy it is to use WHDLoad versions with FS-UAE. Now it's pretty much as easy as a SNES/MD emulator -- click a game in the list and it just works. No disk swapping. No crack intros. No copy protection. No problems. The people who made those versions did a wonderful job of making them work just like console roms.

 

If they could find a way to put that kind of emulation into a small box, it would work just fine as a mini retroconsole. The bundled controller could be a CD32 controller, if it doesn't have too much stigma. I understand some of the drawbacks -- only console-style action games would be viable, because anything that needs a mouse and keyboard would need a mouse and keyboard. They'd also want to map "up" to a button like I do in the emulator. 

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1 hour ago, SqueakyG said:

I used to think Amiga emulation was a massive faff, until I discovered how easy it is to use WHDLoad versions with FS-UAE. Now it's pretty much as easy as a SNES/MD emulator -- click a game in the list and it just works. No disk swapping. No crack intros. No copy protection. No problems. The people who made those versions did a wonderful job of making them work just like console roms.

 

If they could find a way to put that kind of emulation into a small box, it would work just fine as a mini retroconsole. The bundled controller could be a CD32 controller, if it doesn't have too much stigma. I understand some of the drawbacks -- only console-style action games would be viable, because anything that needs a mouse and keyboard would need a mouse and keyboard. They'd also want to map "up" to a button like I do in the emulator. 

 

I probably could put together a 20(ish) game list of Amiga games that stand up today and would work in a consolised setup, but the rights issues would inevitably mean half of them wouldn't make the cut.

 

And I wouldn't want to play them with a CD32 pad either.

 

The Amiga doesn't suit being consolised. You lose at least half of the best games in a flash.

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2 hours ago, matt0 said:

 

I probably could put together a 20(ish) game list of Amiga games that stand up today and would work in a consolised setup, but the rights issues would inevitably mean half of them wouldn't make the cut.

 

And I wouldn't want to play them with a CD32 pad either.

 

The Amiga doesn't suit being consolised. You lose at least half of the best games in a flash.

 

You have to try the CD32 optimised versions of the games. There's loads of CD32 compilations where the games have multi button support enabled and they're so much better to play - although it can be a bit of a chore remembering which button does what! 

 

Unfortunately the guy who put the CD32 compilations, Amiga Jay, seems to have removed his website, but there were compilations built around Factor 5 (Turrican etc), Graftgold (Uridium 2, Virocop etc), Bitmap Brothers etc and they are a brilliant to play to play Amiga games. Just stick in a CD and you're done! There are literally dozens of compilation CDs, all of them optimised for multi button CD32 support, some even support the NVRam storage on the CD32 (you need no keyboard or even mouse). 

 

You can find some of the compilations through this link - http://www.indieretronews.com/search/label/AMIGA CD32 and I'm sure you can still get a hold of them somewhere... ;-)

 

I will say that the CD32 pad should never be replicated, but if they did do a replication of the Competition Pro "Honeybee" pad (which go for a fortune now) then that would be ideal.

 

While I think the concept of a CD32 mini wouldn't do very well as a commercial product, there would be no reason why you couldn't make the "Amiga Mini" essentially emulating the CD32 but with a keyboard on it (and even then, you could make it like the C64 mini and have a "pretend" keyboard). 

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On 15/06/2019 at 16:03, Dudley said:

Amiga Forever is pretty good.

 

Just keep in mind that it won't let you record footage if you want it for that.

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I made a mini Amiga of sorts a couple years ago using a Raspberry Pi and Amibian, there was a thread for it somewhere. 

 

It was a bit of a faff to get everything going but nothing too difficult, it has classic workbench and WHDload with a full set of games. 

 

Works pretty well, I still use it today

 

EDIT: Found the post here: 

 

 

Has a video I made of my setup and some instructions

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Seems very doubtful due to all the rights issue. What's concerning is the death rate of Amiga Floppies disks now and the hardware, a lot of game still haven't been correctly backed up and emulated or ROMed yet. It's very worrying for the future of the platform, I got a rare chance to play a Amiga CD32 the other day and playing a game like Banshee felt just as good as any modern shumps. There were some great game on the system when it was in the right hands.

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