Review: A500 Mini – an upgrade to the NES and SNES Classic Editions

Image: Nintendo Life / Damien McPheron

When you talk about video game history, memories are dominated by consoles like NES, SNES, Mega Drive / Genesis, N64, GameCube and many more – but those who lived in the 80s for a time, arcaded home computers like the C64, Atari ST, ZX Spectrum and Commodore Amiga. Keep in mind that this is the perfect way to play outside games.

It is pertinent to note that in line with the recent burst of interest in plug-and-play ‘micro consoles’ such as the NES Classic and the Sega Mega Drive Mini, we have seen some new features in the simple home micro; Retro Games Ltd., a UK company, has already produced a smaller version of the C64, and how it came back with Amika’s pint-sized fax – which was very popular in Europe, in the late’s and early ’80s. 90s.

Similar to the NES Classic version mentioned above, the A500 Mini (due to the complex legal issues surrounding Commodore brand ownership, that name is nowhere to be found on the unit or packaging) uses the modern off-the-shelf components and software prototype. Re-create the vintage base. The device is many times smaller than the actual deal, with some compromises; The miniature keyboard is purely for display and does not actually work, for example. However, it is Will do Providing some biological facilities that do not fit into the original system in its unaltered form; Support for HDMI-out and USB devices (so you can use the USB keyboard if you wish, but on the screen, the pop-up keyboard works just fine). Overall, the A500 Mini is on par with the SNES Classic and PC Engine Mini. The red and green LEDs also flash as real to indicate power-on and drive access.

The A500 Mini is bundled with the Joypad and Mouse, the two primary forms of input when it comes to Amiga software. The controller is based on what was sent with the bad Amiga CD32 – a classic and genuine choice, given the system’s legacy, we would not say it was particularly brilliant. Controller, when A little The CD32 is better than the original, even worse, and the D-Pad is particularly complex, especially if you are targeting diagonal input. There seems to be no way to use third-party USB controllers (PS Classic Pad disables UI, while the retro-bit Sega 6-button USB controller does not register), but it may be replaced with a future firmware update (Stick shipped with C64 Mini Will do Work, we said). For now, you’re wood with a pad Just Works about, but it’s much better.

The mouse is very successful; It is based on the original two-button ‘Tank’ mouse that came with the Amiga, but has been upgraded to an optical technology feature rather than the trackball used in the original. It is worth noting that this is not the most convenient mouse in the world, but if you have an Amiga, it will feel OK. If you want something else, you can use any USB mouse.

The A500 Mini comes with 25 games, many of which will definitely be on your average fan’s ‘must’ list. Speedball II, Jules, The Sentinel, Simon the Sorcerer, Stunt Car Racer, Another World, Super Cars II, Worms, Alien Breed, The Chaos Engine… these are really classic titles, some of which were very popular in the 90s, and later they were converted to consoles like SNES and MegaDrive. In fact, since tracking IP holders for many of Amika’s best titles can be a daunting task these days, we can argue that the ones included here are solid games, as you can trust.

The good news is, if your favorite game isn’t cut for any reason, you can mount it sideways using a USB stick. The A500 Mini supports the ‘WHDLoad’ system, which allows Amiga games to be compiled into a single file (multiple games can be sent to multiple floppy disks, you see) and easily loaded. Fill in the USB stick with your favorite Amiga titles (including CD32 and CDTV releases) and run on the A500 mini with little hassle.

The A500 Mini's UI is clean and functional, though not as viable as other micro-console menus.
The A500 Mini’s UI is clean and functional, though not as viable as other micro-console menus. (Image: Retro Games Limited.)

The A500 Mini uses the same UI as the C64 Mini and supports components such as Save States (four per game) and CRT screen filter – one of the best applications we’ve ever seen on one of these devices. . Emulation is better (A1200 games are also supported, the latter benefiting from the ‘Advanced Graphics Architecture’ platform), although Amiga is more popular in Europe than in the US and is designed to run most games. At 50hz TV quality slower than 60hz, this is what American TVs use.

Micro-consoles like SNES Classic, Neo Geo Mini and Egret II Mini offer a Japanese perspective on gaming, so it’s nice to see a Western system get the same treatment – and it’s interesting to see some of the most popular features of gaming. Before being sent to the Japanese consoles of the era, in their original form. Amiga will never be a “traditional” games console and its focus will never be 100% on gaming, but its legacy is substantial – owners like Worms and Speedball find their business footprint on the platform and remain so to this day.

Therefore, it is an intriguing device for anyone with a distant interest in monitoring the growth of the gaming industry – and its £ 120 price tag makes it more expensive than many of its micro-console competitors. The game is very welcome.

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Thanks to Koch Media and Retro Games Ltd. for providing the unit used in this review.

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