ZX Spectrum Is… Erm… Back!

The gaming machine of the Werthers generation...

It  had to happen sooner or later.  With the Sega Mega Drive pads that can be packed with games and simply plugged into the TV being big sellers on places like Firebox for years, it was only a matter of time before gaming’s retro back catalogue was further plundered.  It is the choice of machine however, which surprised us.  Wait for it…the ZX Spectrum.  No, we’re not joking.  That rubber keyed piece of eighties sexiness is, apparently, coming back.  We actually checked the date to see if it wasn’t April 1st already, but no, according to the Telegraph of all places, developer Elite games are planning a revival of the classic computer.  The Sinclair ZX  Spectrum to give it its full name, is nearing its 30th birthday (yes, we feel just as old as you now), so what better time for a re-launch than in the middle of a strong, seemingly undiminished wave of nostalgia for the Speccy.

For years, retro fans have stuck by the system via any number of Speccy emulators, making the most of vast online archives of old games, fan-sites, hints and maps loving scanned in from old copies of Crash and Sinclair Abuser, and have generally kept the spirit of the Speccy alive.  This retro-mania has been aided and abetted by the revival of a number of old classics for platforms such as the iPad and iPhone which seem tailor-made for the undemanding games of old.

Elite has a history themselves and was behind a number of original Speccy hits and, aside from the recent mobile device releases, is now the main mover and shaker behind this surprising announcement. The keyboard will apparently be bluetooth, to avoid the squid-like mess of cables that accompany just one more console, retro or otherwise, being plugged in, but aside from that, little is known.  Speculation is currently rife, though it is likely that it will be little more than a shell – modern tech in retro duds.  And the games?  Unknown, though it would seem likely that they could be downloaded or transferred across via another device such as the iPhone, but we’d hope it would come pre-loaded with a few classics at least.  Yes, we could just comb through the loft and actually get a proper one down to plug in, but we’re lazy and R: Tape loading Error may just cause an aneurysm this time around.  In the days of near instant loads, we don’t think that we could handle it just now, although the thought of paying again for something that could be dusted down and plugged in again, should give us pause, especially since screeching tapes were part of the charm.  Regardless, rubber keys FTW, let’s just hope they don’t mess with those.

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  1. Richie rich says:

    Looking deeper into this and it looks like the guy from the Telegraph is an idiot. Still, if this happens I’ll literally cum oil.

  2. Ben Ben says:

    Thinking, this would / could be the first time I ever touch a ZX Spectrum :o

  3. Rook says:

    Must have Bruce Lee on it.

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