Nintendo might not have been the first company to dream up the notion of the ‘mini’ console, but it has arguably been the most successful, thanks to its massively popular NES and SNES Classic Editions.
Since then, we’ve seen the likes of Sega, SNK, Konami and Taito join the micro-console club, but there have also been some mini-systems based on home computers, like the ZX Spectrum and C64. The latter, made by UK-based company Retro Games, is about to get a successor, proving that there’s still some mileage left in the micro-console market.
The A500 Mini is due for release early next year and will bring with it 25 classic Commodore Amiga titles (the copyright minefield surrounding both Commodore and the Amiga brand means that neither of those names can be officially used in the machine’s title). Koch Media is handling the distribution.
12 of the included games have been confirmed so far. Alien Breed 3D, Another World, ATR: All Terrain Racing, Battle Chess, Cadaver, Kick Off 2, Pinball Dreams, Simon The Sorcerer, Speedball 2: Brutal Deluxe, The Chaos Engine, Worms: The Director’s Cut and Zool: Ninja Of The ”Nth” Dimension will all ship on the A500 Mini, and the remaining games will be confirmed at a later date. Interestingly, you’ll be able to side-load more titles using a USB drive.
All of the usual features are included, such as save states and screen filters, and the machine even ships with a mouse and joypad (the latter is based on the utterly horrendous CD32 controller, so let’s hope they’ve made some improvements). The unit outputs in 720p via HDMI.
The original Commodore Amiga launched in 1985 and was one of the first home platforms to feature a 16-bit CPU. Competing with the similarly-specced Atari ST, the Amiga became one of the most popular home computers of its era and was widely supported by western studios; many of its more popular games – such as Lemmings, Sensible Soccer
While other companies still see the value in micro-consoles, Nintendo hasn’t produced any new products in this sector of the market since the SNES Classic Edition – although rumours of Game Boy and N64 versions got fans dreaming a while back.
The A500 Mini is expected to sell for £119.99 / EUR$129.99 / USD$139.99 / AUD$199.99 when it launches in early 2022.
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