View Full Version : Will Euro Vic-20, Commodore 16, Dragon & Atari 8-Bit software work with US machines?

Michael Thomasson
01-06-2012, 12:02 AM

I have come across a substantial amount of retro-computer software that I am considering buying for my collection. Does anyone know if European Vic-20, Commodore 16, Dragon & Atari 8-Bit software work with US machines?

Thanks for your help!


01-08-2012, 09:41 PM
I believe so, but can't swear to it. I'm most confident that the VIC and Atari ones will; less so about the C-16 and Dragon ones, but I'm pretty sure they will (though you might need to play with the vertical hold, same as Euro/PAL 2600 games).

Michael Thomasson
01-09-2012, 11:17 AM
Thanks Russ. I suppose I'll get them and find out...

blue lander
01-09-2012, 01:40 PM
I tried playing Euro C16 games on an American Commodore Plus/4, and only some of them worked. I don't know if it's because it was a US machine or if it was because it's a Plus/4, though.

I don't have a Dragon, but I did once try playing a Dragon game on a US Tandy Color Computer II. It didn't work.

01-09-2012, 01:44 PM
The Vic20 software should work (load), however because the PAL and NTSC machines use different screen position locations, any software specifically written here could likely be off-centre on a US TV. Some games allow you to position the screen, so you'd be okay there, but the rest, you'd have trouble with.

01-10-2012, 01:01 PM
Unlike the Commodore 64, when you place a Plus/4, C16 or 116 into 'PAL' mode, the screen will go completely blank on an NTSC system. Since the majority of software written for the system is PAL based, it's best to get a real PAL computer. Most modern TVs (especially those by Vizio) will display a PAL signal, and that's what my PAL systems are hooked up to.

The TED (I believe) that's in the systems are hardcoded to the region, and even swapping them from one system to another doesn't work without modifying the circuitry (already tried that before).

01-10-2012, 10:44 PM
Some games don't work properly due to internal timing differences and such like that. Others may have graphical glitches. I specifically remember playing Uridium, and the screen would flicker a lot, supposedly because it was the PAL version.

In any case, if you're concerned about any specific games, I recommend trying them out in an emulator like VICE to make sure it works.