The PICO-8 is a fantasy console featuring a huge library of free games and a robust demoscene. It can be played on a wide variety of devices, and has built-in game development tools. So, just what the heck is a “fantasy console?” Think of it like an emulator for a system that never existed – developers create fully-featured games using a specific set of hardware limitations, and offer their products to the world at no charge. Many of these games have short but very pleasing soundtracks reminiscent of the Sega Master System or ZX Spectrum.
Joining Ed to discuss this little marvel and its music is The Diad! They’ve picked some of their favorite titles with impressive soundtracks, and you can play along as you listen! The links in the tracklist on our website will take you directly to each game, playable in your web browser. We hope you enjoy this introduction to an amazing little piece of tech!
Check out these YouTube tutorials if you’d like to get started making your own PICO-8 games!
Let’s Make Breakout in PICO-8 – Lazy Devs Academy
Making a Roguelike #1: Overview – Lazy Devs Academy
A huge thank you to Indira J (The Misadventures of Buddy and Friend, Sacrimony) for the amazing VGMbassy artwork and design, and to Trevin Hughes (aka chiptune composer Jredd) for the podcast theme song!
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Thanks to our supporting Patreon patrons, who help make this show possible: Muddle MADness, Ryan Steel, Bedroth, Chris Murray, Cameron Chiles, David Parrish, Michael Bridgewater, Chris Myers, Donovan Orofino, Voltz Supreme, Harold Howard, Ben “The Diad” Dishman, Chris Steenerson, Dan Laughton, Jordan Werme, Cameron Werme, Kung Fu Carlito, Scott McElhone, and Alex “The Messenger” Messenger.
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