Commodore 64GS

I have been wanting to get a copy of the Commodore 64 Game System (C64GS) for quite some time now. However, getting one online is usually expensive (insanely expensive!!) and only very few cartidge game titles can actually be played on the system. A few weeks ago, a colleague asked me to repair a breadbox for him and in exchange for my efforts I would get another C64 machine that he had not seen before. The other machine was this C64 Game System and I replied: ‘Well, OK then. I’ll see what I can do…’. How lucky can one be?

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The C64GS is basically a Commodore 64C PCB (Assy 250469 Rev. B) with a modifed case without a keyboard. The game system was sold as a competitor to Sega and Nintendo’s game consoles but ended up being a commercial failure. It was only released in Europe and about 5-10.000 units were produced before the machine was taken off the market.

About 28 game titles were originally released for the system in which only 9 were cartridge-exclusive titles. More recently, all new cartridge game releases by rgcd.co.uk, can be used on the C64GS as no keyboard input is needed for any of their games. Thus, a much larger number of cartidge games can now be played on the system.

The biggest difference is the lack of a keyboard and the expansion port has been rotated by 90 degrees to alow vertical insertion of cartridges.

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The inside of the system is in excellent condition while the case has taken some hits. Nevertheless, this is an awesome addition to my C64 collection. Loads of images of my Commodore 64 GS can be found here.

© breadbox64.com 2015

2 comments on “Commodore 64GS

  1. How about cutting some holes in the case to uncover the user and expansion ports of the system so you can use it for printing stuff and even connect a hard drive to it? I don’t know if there’s a way to get an external keyboard to work on the system? Maybe by tracking down those pins and make a PS2 connection cable to connect the keyboard to it. The OS software should also be formatted with the original C64 OS program so that you can give it input commands for other stuff like cassette tape games. A special interface adaptor should be made to emulate/replicate the cassette player through the harddisk port, to ensure fully compatibility with tape games.
    If Commodore had just left the slots accessible, enabled the keyboard inputs and used the same OS as the standard C64 machines, the C64GS system would’ve sold so much better with less frustrated users.

  2. I think what you describe would be a very interesting project – modding a C64GS back to a standard Commodore 64 machine 🙂 I have not seen that done before! On the other hand, it would be a shame, regardless of the GS being a commercial failure, to start cutting holes in the original case. However, it may make sense to make the machine backwards compatible with all cartridge games instead of the shortlist of approximately 30 original C64GS game titles. If a keyboard could somehow be hooked up to the system and swap the Kernal/Basic ROM chip at U4 with an original one, the user would have the option to actually start all cartridge games available to the Commodore 64.
    A much easier solution may be to just swap the C64GS motherboard with a standard Version E short board which has the Expansion port replaced with a vertical version.

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