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My Models: [Colecovision]
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Manufacturer CBS
Main-Processor(s) Z-80A
Speed 3.58 MHz
Memory 8K
Co-processor(s) -
Colors 16
Graphics 256x192
Sound 3 tone channels and 1 noise(Texas TMS9928A)
Media Cartridge (8K/16K/24K/32K)
Year 1982
My games 38
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This machine was developed in the United States and was released in 1982 with Donkey Kong as the pack-in. In Europe the colecovision was sold under the CBS name. Coleco had to compete with systems like Atari and Mattel. By 1983 the ColecoVision was beating out both Atari and Mattel in sales. Like the rest in the video game market Coleco suffered heavily from the video game crash in 1984. In 1984 it left the industry. At that time Coleco had sold 6 million units in only two years. If it wasn't for the video game crash of '84 it could have gone through the 80's as the system of choice.

I've purchased this machine for as little as $3 with the game Donkey Kong! I was very happy that day ;-)

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The company Coleco started as a leather company (Coleco is a contraction of COnneticut LEather COmpany).

The ColecoVision not only had better graphics and sound than its competitors, but it also had more expandability. Accessories included a steering wheel (with gas pedal) and a 2600 adapter that let you play Atari 2600 games on your ColecoVision. Atari sued Coleco over the adapter, but Coleco won. Most Coleco games were solid arcade ports, usually almost indistinguishable from the real thing, and ColecoVision quickly became the hardcore videogamers' system of choice.

Only a few people know that the Colecovion features the same hardware as the MSX-1 homecomputer released in Japan and Europe! This is because the MSX computer never was a succes in the states. Although releasing games for both systems couldn't be any easier it didn't happen. Games like Lady Bug and SpyHunter were never released for the MSX. In 1996 Marcel de Kogel made an emulator(Mission) for the MSX which was capable of playing colecovision games on your MSX! The emulation is done by rewriting the colecovision's bios to use the msx-bios. For many games this was enough to get the game going. Games that accessed the hardware directly had to be patched with patch-files. This functionality for patching gamefiles was also included in the mission-emulator.

Interesting footnote: Coleco paid $250,000 for the rights to Donkey Kong. Atari paid an estimated $21 million to license the rights to E.T. videogames. Who do you think got the better deal?

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BootScreen Donkey Kong level 1 Donkey Kong level 3 Q-bert Popeye Lady Bug

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©1999-2001 by Da Vince