PDA

View Full Version : No love for the CoCo!?!?



thedevilbunny
22-12-10, 09:52
I've noticed the RGR boys have been killing the TRS-80 Color Computer...Trash 80 this and Trash 80 that...I've never understood why this computer is singled out for harsh treatment. I had a COCO 2 and a COCO 3 back when I was a kid, and I thought these were FINE systems in their day. Solid IO with a easy disk drive setup, cart stuff, tape stuff, all the peripherals that you would expect, plus some you wouldn't (Voice cart for example). I used my Coco plus a 300 baud modem to do all my bbs stuff back then, and I was the first kid in the school to bring in papers printed with a printer and made on a work processor. The Coco also had MS Basic built in, so it was a great primer for learning to program.

Alot of people kill the Coco over games...I disagree. I had a ton of really fun Coco games. I think the Coco is vastly underrated in terms of arcade ports. In many instances while my buddies were jacking around with subpar c64 or atari 800 ports, I had a vastly superior clone on the coco that drew them to play at my house. Coco clones of popeye and bagman and the dk series crushed most all other official ports. Another area the Coco excelled was graphics plus text adventures. I enjoyed a bunch of these like Black Sanctum, Trekboer, and Sands of Egypt.

The Coco has been an easy target for too damn long..I challenge ya'll to get a copy of MESS and grab some COCO games and give it a shot...I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

GameGavel
22-12-10, 09:56
I've noticed the RGR boys have been killing the TRS-80 Color Computer...Trash 80 this and Trash 80 that...I've never understood why this computer is singled out for harsh treatment. I had a COCO 2 and a COCO 3 back when I was a kid, and I thought these were FINE systems in their day. Solid IO with a easy disk drive setup, cart stuff, tape stuff, all the peripherals that you would expect, plus some you wouldn't (Voice cart for example). I used my Coco plus a 300 baud modem to do all my bbs stuff back then, and I was the first kid in the school to bring in papers printed with a printer and made on a work processor. The Coco also had MS Basic built in, so it was a great primer for learning to program.

Alot of people kill the Coco over games...I disagree. I had a ton of really fun Coco games. I think the Coco is vastly underrated in terms of arcade ports. In many instances while my buddies were jacking around with subpar c64 or atari 800 ports, I had a vastly superior clone on the coco that drew them to play at my house. Coco clones of popeye and bagman and the dk series crushed most all other official ports. Another area the Coco excelled was graphics plus text adventures. I enjoyed a bunch of these like Black Sanctum, Trekboer, and Sands of Egypt.

The Coco has been an easy target for too damn long..I challenge ya'll to get a copy of MESS and grab some COCO games and give it a shot...I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

I don't recall when we've really trashed the coco. I had a Timex Sinclair 1000 for heavens sake which paled in comparison to the coco. It's just not a computer I nor any of my friends had so I haven't had any personal experience with them. I do find them somewhat frequently at the swap meets so next one I find I will hook it up and play some games. Can you recommend some to keep an eye out for? And I should point out my first experience with "real" computers was on the various TRS-80's Model III's my Jr. High was fortunate enough to have in their computer labs, although they were really light on games and most were educational. I have a mint condition Model III in my collection now, in fact.

thedevilbunny
22-12-10, 10:15
Sorry, the several references to the "Trash 80" always get me....if you're a CoCo owner you know that is a cutting comment indeed..heh.

BydoEmpire73
22-12-10, 11:55
Honestly I never knew anyone that had one. Based on your passionate post I'm going to have to check out some of those games on an emulator.

I *think* I remember playing Scramble (or some clone) on a TRS-80 in the lab my mom worked at once, but I might be misremembering the model. I think it was this:
http://www.pc-history.org/TRS80mod3.gif

thedevilbunny
23-12-10, 12:28
Ha..well I never considered myself super passionate really...and I didn't wanna come off as some wacky nutjob holding up the Radio Shack banner or anything...i'm more of an Amiga crazy then a TRS-80 crazy. And for the record, I LOVE RGR...i've been around the whole way AND back in the video days of Shane R Monroes show...I eat this stuff up with a spoon. That said, I was listening to a show at work and after hearing the "Trash 80" comment again, I thought to myself "Why does the CoCo have such a bad rep?". I mean if you think about it it was a VERY well selling machine..not c64 levels but still a winner in the marketplace. Yet even then, at it's peak, it still got slammed..and I honestly do not know why. Another thing I can't understand is why NO ONE covers the CoCo at all...despite the fact that it was a big hit in the states AND europe (as the Dragon and other names). I've never heard a single person give a history of or top 10 or any coverage on any Podcast. I mean i'm not beggin' here, but doesn't that seem odd? I don't know sales figures, but i'd bet cash money the Coco racked up sales comparable to say the Amiga or Atari ST, yet its a forgotten machine.

miner2049er
23-12-10, 12:38
I use Trash80 as a colloquial term not a derogatory one. I thought everyone did?

That's not to be confused with calling the Spectrum the Rectum. There is a reason for that..............

SubaruBrat
23-12-10, 01:51
I actually had a COCOIII for a while, it just didn't have the utility that my nearly 10 year old Apple IIs did for BBS serving and other workhorse type of tasks. I did find a few really good games on it, Dungeons of Daggeroth was a big favorite of mine. In HS we had some of the older TRS80s, mainly ran an Asteroids port, Star Trek, and some text adventures on it. It was certainly present on the scene, back when Ratshack was actually a leader in personal computers but for some reason it was never quite center stage. And now despite its significant numbers and market share at the time it just doesn't come up in the same conversation as Apple or C64, which is something I can't really explain. In terms of technology it was a pretty cool system, it had pretty much the same peripherals as the other major lines, and pretty good software support. What really killed the TRS80 was that despite having a good CPU (Z80) was its lower RAM of 16k with some early models having 4k. The graphics chip was also a real hack job, it couldn't even display anything on par with Apple II and certainly not the brilliant VICII of the C64. Granted we are talking about a generational gap though, the TRS80 came out about 5 years before the C64 and the Apple II was expandable with better graphics cards, memory etc. so they could keep up. It would be more fair to compare the TRS80 to the VIC20.

What you have to also remember is that while they were on the shelf side by side and are often considered the same line, the TRS80 and COCO series used different hardware. The COCO used the 6809 cpu which actually out performed the C64 and Apple II cpus. It had comparable RAM and IO to the C64. The catch is that while it had a real nice CPU they let the CPU do allot of the work that he IO, graphics, and sound chips should have done, they also cheaped out on the graphics and sound ICs to get the price down to be competitive.

Duke.Togo
23-12-10, 02:08
I only knew one friend that had a TRS-80 growing up, so I never got much gaming exposure on it. I know that Trash80 is a derogatory term, but it seems to have always stuck.

I understand the desire to defend the machines of our youth. I will probably be waiting longer than you for a TI-99/4A top ten.

GameGavel
23-12-10, 02:19
Honestly I never knew anyone that had one. Based on your passionate post I'm going to have to check out some of those games on an emulator.

I *think* I remember playing Scramble (or some clone) on a TRS-80 in the lab my mom worked at once, but I might be misremembering the model. I think it was this:
http://www.pc-history.org/TRS80mod3.gif

Yep, that is what my Jr. High had. A dozen or so in 1983-84. I have one now and love it although I can't use it for much as I can never find any software for it :(

Dhalamar
23-12-10, 02:32
The only reason I ever personally said "Trash 80" was over the same laziness and temporary mental retardation that causes people to say "NEhSS" or SNEsSS" instead of "N.E.S." or "S.N.E.S.".

A hell of lot quicker for the slower crowd like me to say "Trash" than "T.R.S." :P

SubaruBrat
23-12-10, 02:33
Yeah, I never considered it a term of derision, it was just a silly name like snez or nes.

thedevilbunny
23-12-10, 03:46
I understand the desire to defend the machines of our youth. I will probably be waiting longer than you for a TI-99/4A top ten.

Ha, the TI 99/4a is another machine that sorta fell off a cliff. I had many friends with TI's and while I didn't think it was the match of the Coco, it had some interesting stuff. I played the hell outta "Hunt the Wompus"...more hours then I cared to admit.

jhart711
24-12-10, 07:35
I know how you feel. I love the TRS-80 line but I often call them Trash 80s. My college had a computer room in the library that was full of TRS-80 Model III's. Since I worked in the the library I got plenty of time on them. This is what drove me to purchase a CoCo as my first computer. I now have have five CoCo's, 2 CoCo IIs, and a CoCo III.

I just bought a copy of Priming the Pump: How TRS-80 Enthusiasts Helped Spark the PC Revolution (http://www.microcomputerpioneers.com/). I haven't read it yet but I'm looking forward to it.

John

thedevilbunny
27-12-10, 09:47
Wow, that's a helluva collection of CoCo's... Book sounds like an interesting read...let me know if it's worth a look!

DragoonMog
16-03-11, 10:09
I was at a yard sale a few years back and saw a computer over away from the rest of the items near the the curb. I asked the guy about it and he look confused and said that stuff was not for sale. That was the trash pile. I could take it if I wanted. So I saved a Radio Shack Tandy TSR-80 Color Computer 2 from going to the dump. It's just the main unit, no joysticks, games, or drives. I hooked it up to a TV and it does work. Always meant to track some stuff down for it, but never did. Can find stuff on eBay, but it always expensive. But I guess mine really is a TRaSh 80.