It was the computer that brought programming home for the masses in the 1980s – and it was a kick-arse games machine to boot. Now the Commodore 64 is making a return with the slightly oddly titled TheC64 Mini.

The first wave of this second coming will be in the form of a smallerised design. Much like the NES and SNES Mini releases from Nintendo, it takes the original “breadbox” form of the C64 and shrinks it down, stuffing a bunch of games into it in the process and packaging it with a joystick – in this case one that looks suspiciously similar to the legendary Competition Pro 5000.

This one will house a very appropriate 64 games, most of which are classics – plus, no crazy loading times! Boulder Dash, California Games, Impossible Mission, Jumpman, Paradroid, Speedball 2, Uridium and one of our all time faves, Nebulus, are just a few of the titles to be included. They’ll all have the ability to be saved at wherever you’re up to, too.

TheC64 mini

As for the hardware, as well as two USB ports for joysticks or a keyboard (the one here is for show – you’d need baby fingers to use it anyway) there’s an HDMI output for video – hooray for technology!

Regarding that keyboard mention back there, you’ll actually be able to program this officially licenced product just like an original Commodore 64. Spend hours typing in BASIC magazine listings, spend more hours debugging and then play what is usually a pretty sh-t game. Ah, memories!

Or you could keep it simple:

10 PRINT “STACK ROCKS!”
20 GOTO 10

Meanwhile, a larger, fully-functional reborn C64 is promised for later in 2018.

TheC64 Mini will be released on the March 29. Don’t want to miss out? Pre-order from JB Hi-Fi here.

For those of you with fond memories of the original Commodore 64, here’s a bit of an appropriately low-res trip…