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British Company Attempt to Bring Commodore 64 Back to Life

Originally released in 1982, the Commodore 64 (or the CBM 64, if you like) was likely a lot of people’s first experience with video games – it certainly was mine.

According to the Guinness Book of Records, it still holds the title for the highest-selling computer of all time, with sales figures of somewhere between 10 and 17 million. Considering that even 34 years ago, the Commodore 64 would have set you back $595 USD (that’s around $1500 in today’s equivalent), those sales figures are no small feat.

Without a doubt, the Commodore 64 holds a place in many people’s hearts for its nostalgic value and early gaming joys. A lot of the games are still available today, by means of emulation, but it’s just not the same. And so a British company has decided to do something about it: by remaking the whole system.

Known as The 64, it will come in two forms – a modern version of the classic desktop version, and a newly imagined handheld version. The desktop version will feature a full QWERTY keyboard and a design much like the original, and will accept both classic games cartridges and digitised versions of the games via download and a built-in SD slot. The handheld version will play digital versions of games. Both will apparently come pre-loaded with a range of classic (and new!) games.

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The 64 is being crowdfunded via IndieGoGo, and the campaign has just gone live today, despite the team being well underway with development. Led by Darren Melbourne, a world-class software and hardware engineer with over 30 years’ experience, the team hope to have the desktop version of The 64 ready to ship by December this year, with the handheld to follow in early 2017.

For $150 you can back the project to receive your own desktop version of The 64, and the handheld version for $170. Considering the original retail price of the Commodore 64 back in 1982, it’s quite a steal if you ask me!

It’s an exciting project, and we’ll certainly be keeping an eye on it.

You can check out The 64’s official crowdfunding page here.
Editor in chief // Kim's been into video games since playing Dizzy on her brother's Commodore 64 as a nipper. She'll give just about anything a go, but she's got a particular soft spot for indie adventures. If she's not gaming, she'll be building Lego, reading a thriller, watching something spooky or... asleep. She does love to sleep.