€15,816 pledged of €20,000 goal
backers
€15,816 pledged of €20,000 goal
backers

About this project

10 x 15 cm prints of all the game covers with box

Colour prints on thick 350gr paper of all the game covers, as in the book - all the 37 cartridge games produced by Commodore - in a box designed to keep them all in place. For more pictures check this update.

PDF version of the book

You asked for it, so here it is! All the printed editions of the book will include the PDF for free, but if you only want the PDF you can now choose the new €10 reward.

Also, all the backers will have the name listed in the book.

One copy of the book in English + one copy of Chris Wilkins The History of Ocean Software, both signed by the author

If you missed the Ocean book this is your chance to get both! Limited to 10 copies.

One copy of the book in English + one copy of Koen De Brabander's 8-bit Kids - Growing up with the Commodore 64 ("8-BIT STICKY HARDBACKER" reward), both signed by the author

Please note that this reward will be ready by the end of October.
Limited to 5 copies!

if you want one additional box with 10x15 prints of the game covers, just increase your pledge of 19€ + shipping (1€ Italy, 2€ Europe, 3€ rest of the world) and send me a message so I can take note.

Commodore VIC 20: a visual history is a book about the computer that made Commodore enter the home market, with all its early peripherals. The VIC 20 was the first colour home computer to cost less than $300, the first to sell one million units, the first to have a modem for under $100, and the first approach to personal computing for a whole generation.

Many books celebrate the even more successful Commodore 64, but I felt that its little brother deserved some attention too.

“A visual history” doesn't mean that there won't be any text: every chapter will have an introduction, and many pictures will be described with a caption. "Visual" just means that the pictures are what makes this book special.

The book will feature articles written by some of the VIC 20 launch team members, known as the VIC Commandos. Michael Tomczyk, Neil Harris, Jeff Bruette, Sue Mittnacht all agreed to share some memories from their VIC 20 years!

The first half of the book will show all the VIC models and revisions, from the Japanese VIC 1001 to the cost-reduced VIC 20 sold worldwide; there will be pictures of all the peripherals that Commodore released for this computer such as drives, printers, the VICmodem, expansions, joysticks and paddles.

Here's a mock-up of a few pages – content and graphic layout are still work in progress.

The second half of the book will present all the Commodore games on cartridge, with cover scans, descriptions and screenshots.

Text and graphic layout are work in progress
Text and graphic layout are work in progress

The scans will be professionally color corrected to remove the ink fading and the yellowing of the cardboard (all the games are more than 30 years old); every scratch will be removed to present the covers in their original splendour.

A few games will feature a double page image, with all the text patiently removed in Photoshop to reveal the beauty of the original illustration.

This is a rough index of all that you will find in the book.

  • VIC models: Japanese VIC 1001, US (NTSC) VIC 20, European/Australian (PAL) VIC 20, Worldwide cost reduced VIC 20. All the different motherboards; all the cases and keyboards.
  • Expansions: VIC 1010, VIC 1020.
  • The VICmodem
  • Printers: VIC 1515, VIC 1525.
  • Drives: VIC 1540, VIC 1541.
  • Tape recorders (datassette): C2N, 1530.
  • Paddles and joysticks
  • Boxes
  • Printed material: User Manual, Programmer's Reference Guide, Introduction to BASIC.
  • Commodore utility and expansion cartridges
  • Commodore game cartridges

I have 20 years of professional experience in using Photoshop, so you can rest assured that every image will be thoroughly crafted to the best possible quality. I've been using QuarkXpress and then Adobe InDesign – both are professional publishing software – for the same number of years.

All the original RGB scans will be optimized for four-colour process printing, so as an example the original silver ink will be isolated and converted to a neutral gray to avoid colour dominants. The scans will be descreened to minimize the moire effect. Where possible, black elements such as text will be isolated and converted to a real 100% black (RGB conversion to CMYK for printing can't do that automatically).

As for the pictures, I own a Canon DSLR and an external Metz flash. You can see the quality of my shots on my site oldcomputr.com.

The size of the book will be A5: it's 148mm x 210mm, about 5.83in x 8.27in; it's half an A4 sheet or roughly half US letter.

Commodore VIC 20: a visual history è un libro sul computer con cui Commodore esordì nel mercato “casalingo”, e tutte le sue periferiche. Il VIC 20 fu il primo home computer a colori a costare meno di 300$, il primo a vendere un milione di unità, il primo ad avere un modem a un prezzo inferiore ai 100$, e il primo approccio al computer per un'intera generazione.

Molti libri celebrano l'ancor più diffuso Commodore 64, ma ritengo che sia ora di dedicare un po' di attenzione anche al suo fratello minore!

“A visual history” (letteralmente “Una storia visiva”) non significa che non ci sarà alcun testo: ogni capitolo avrà un'introduzione, e la maggior parte delle foto avrà una didascalia. “Visual” significa che le immagini sono ciò che renderà speciale questo libro.

Il libro conterrà articoli scritti da alcuni membri del team che lanciò il VIC 20 sul mercato, conosciuti come VIC Commandos. Michael Tomczyk, Neil Harris, Jeff Bruette, Sue Mittnacht hanno accettato di condividere i loro ricordi sugli anni del VIC 20!

La prima metà del libro mostrerà tutti i modelli e le revisioni del VIC 20, dal VIC 1001 giapponese al VIC 20 “cost reduced” venduto in tutto il mondo; saranno presenti le foto di tutte le periferiche che Commodore commercializzò per questo computer come lettori floppy, stampanti, il VICmodem, espansioni, joystick e paddle.

Ecco le bozze di alcune pagine – il contenuto e l'aspetto grafico non sono definitivi.

La seconda parte del libro presenterà tutti i giochi Commodore su cartuccia, con scansione della copertina, descrizione e schermata.

Testo e impostazione grafica non sono definitivi
Testo e impostazione grafica non sono definitivi

Le scansioni saranno corrette per rimuovere il naturale scolorimento degli inchiostri e l'ingiallimento del cartoncino (tutti i giochi hanno oltre 30 anni); ogni graffio sarà rimosso per presentare le copertine nel loro splendore originale.

Alcuni giochi avranno anche un'immagine a doppia pagina, dove i testi saranno pazientemente rimossi in Photoshop per rivelare la bellezza dell'illustrazione.

Ecco un indice di massima di ciò che troverete nel libro.

  • Modelli di VIC: VIC 1001, VIC 20 USA (NTSC), VIC 20 PAL primo modello, VIC 20 CR. Tutte le schede madri; tutte le scocche e le tastiere.
  • Espansioni: VIC 1010, VIC 1020.
  • VICmodem.
  • Stampanti: VIC 1515, VIC 1525.
  • Lettori floppy: VIC 1540, VIC 1541.
  • Lettori di cassette (datassette): C2N, 1530.
  • Paddle e joystick
  • Scatole
  • Materiale stampato (copertine): User Manual, Programmer's Reference Guide, Introduction to BASIC (versioni in inglese).
  • Cartucce Commodore di utilità ed espansione della memoria.
  • Giochi Commodore su cartuccia.

Ho 20 anni di esperienza nell'uso di Photoshop, quindi potete essere sicuri che ogni immagine sarà attentamente elaborata per ottenere la migliore qualità possibile. Ho usato QuarkXpress e successivamente Adobe InDesign – entrambi sono programmi di impaginazione professionali – per lo stesso numero di anni.

Tutte le scansioni originali in RGB saranno ottimizzate per la stampa in quadricromia, ad esempio il colore argento sarà isolato e convertito in grigio per evitare dominanti di colore. Le scansioni saranno deretinate per minimizzare l'effetto moire. Dove possibile, gli elementi neri (come i testi) saranno isolati e convertiti in 100% di inchiostro nero: la conversione da RGB a quadricromia non può farlo automaticamente.

Per quanto riguarda le foto, utilizzerò una reflex digitale Canon e un flash esterno Metz. Potete farvi un'idea della qualità dei miei scatti sul mio sito oldcomputr.com.

Il libro sarà stampato in formato A5 (148mm x 210mm); in pratica metà di un foglio A4.

Risks and challenges

ENGLISH
Collecting and restoring computers has been my passion since 1994. I possess most of the items that will be in the book, and for the few that I don't have, I have plenty of acquaintances that can lend them to me.

For this project I don't depend on external resources except for the printing, so if the project gets funded there are no foreseeable risks.

ITALIANO
Collezionare e restaurare computer è la mia passione dal 1994. Posseggo la maggior parte degli oggetti presenti nel libro, e per i pochi che non ho, conosco chi me li può prestare.

Per questo progetto non dipendo da risorse esterne oltre alla tipografia, perciò se il progetto verrà finanziato non ci sono rischi prevedibili.

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    PDF edition of the book in English, delivered as soon as the book has gone to print.
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Funding period

- (30 days)