If mini consoles like the NES and SNES Classic Edition have proved anything, it's that gaming nostalgia is in full-swing. But while the mini C64 is great if you just want access to a library of classic PC games, its fun-sized keyboard isn't exactly practical.
For those nostalgic for the true PC classic experience, this full-sized C64 keyboard fills the gap. It's a classic PC—complete with a boot to BASIC option and 64 classics like Paradroid and Boulder Dash pre-installed—as well as a fully-functioning C64 keyboard to control those games. It still has the same footprint of the original Commodore 64, too.
You'll be able to switch between three different modes that make it function like the classic Commodore 64, the Commodore Vic 20, or play games via the Game Carousel. In addition, you'll be able to load any C64 or VIC20 ROMS onto the keyboard console via any of the four USB ports—in BASIC syntax of course, because that's how you got games to run back in the day. The C64 also includes an upgraded joystick with new micro switches, so maybe gameplay accuracy will be a bit better compared to the joystick that came with the C64 Mini.
You can connect the C64 to any TV (or any gaming monitor, I'd image) with an HDMI port, but it only supports 50Hz and 60Hz at 720p. It might look at little weird trying to play old Commodore games on a 50-inch, 4k TV, or coding in BASIC, though. Sticking with a smaller, 1080p monitor might be the way to go.
The full-sized C64 will be available December 5, 2019 and is currently available for pre-order in the UK, Italy, Ireland, Germany, Spain, and Australia for £109.99, 114,99 €, and $199.95, respectively.
No word if there will be pre-orders in the US, or if the C64 will be available in the US come December, unfortunately. We've reached out to Retro Games for comment, and will update this article should we hear back. The C64 Mini, however, is available in the US.
For a proper PC deck, check out our best gaming keyboards roundup.
Update 7/8: Retro Games has said that it will make announcements about additional retailers in other territories as soon as it can.