Recreated ZX Spectrum Hits UK Shops for Your Geriatric Gaming Fix

By James O Malley on at

Forget your PS4 and Xbox One: Seriously hardcore gamers will surely be picking up a ZX Spectrum from today.

Wait, what? That's right - the dinky computer first released in 1982 is back... well, sort of, anyway. Elite Systems has licensed the rights to Sir Clive Sinclair's invention and a number of its biggest games and has created a way for you to play them in the 21st century.

The original ZX Spectrum was one of the first truly popular home computers, selling over 5 million units in the 1980s. It had a fierce rivalry with the BBC Micro, but had legions of fans including a young Ed Miliband (!).

Essentially, the "Recreated ZX Spectrum" as it is officially known is a nostalgia-infused bluetooth keyboard for iOS and Android, which you can pair up to your tablet or phone and use to get gaming. Crucially, the makers claim that unlike other bluetooth keyboards, the Recreated Spectrum is the only bluetooth keyboard that comes with "twitch" controls - essentially button presses that will register fast enough for you to play fast paced games without any difficulties.

To play the likes of Chuckie Egg or even write some code in Sinclair BASIC, all you'll need to do is download the app to your device and you're good to go. You can even pair the keyboard with a PC or laptop and use the browser-based web app instead. The app also contains your game library and links to the online store where you can buy and download more games to play. The makers are even suggesting that there could be brand new third party titles to play soon given that development for the system is open. So we could soon be seeing new Spectrum games, 33 years on from the computer's launch. Elite has also said that it will be continuing to offer firmware upgrades for the keyboard and there are plans for a smart "Android TV" app in the future to enabling gaming on your telly too.

Also usefully, the Recreated Spectrum will also work as a normal bluetooth keyboard if you want to just use it to type with whilst looking particularly bad-ass. To enable this you just have to flip a switch on the back of the device to put it into normal keyboard mode. For some reason though, you'll have to "unlock" it using the Spectrum app first, for reasons we can't quite fathom.

The Recreated ZX Spectrum is available now for around £90.