The ColecoVision is a home game console produced by Coleco Industries and released in August 1982. Nintendo’s Donkey Kong was licensed to Coleco to be the official game pack cartridge with all ColecoVision consoles. By the end of 1982, more than 500,000 units were sold. Outside the United States, the console was sold as CBS ColecoVision.

By early 1983 over one million total units were sold; but by the beginning of 1984 sales dramatically declined. By the summer of 1985 Coleco withdrew from the video game industry and officially discontinued the ColecoVision in October 1985.

The rectangle designed unit has a plastic case with a cartridge slot on the right side. An RF jack and power-supply connectors were on the rear of the console. The two controllers plug into the top of the unit.

The controllers had a numeric keypad, side buttons, and a joystick. The keypad is designed for a thin plastic overlay used in certain games.

The unit has a 3.58 Mhz CPU and a Texas Instruments video processor. It has three tone generators and one noise generator for sound. It has 16 KB of VRAM, 1 KB of RAM, and uses either 8 – 16 – 24 – 32 KB storage cartridge.

The ColecoVision also has an expansion module slot on the front of the console.

Expansion module one gave the ColecoVision the largest software library that is available.

Expansion module two was a driving controller with a steering wheel and gas pedal. It comes with the game Turbo and is compatible with Destructor, Bump n Jump, and Dukes of Hazzard.

Expansion module three turns the ColecoVision into a computer. It has a keyboard, a digital data pack, a cassette driver and printer.

The roller controller is a trackball that comes with the game Slither, but it is not compatible with module three. Coleco offers a special adaptor to resolve this issue.

The super action controller is a set of joysticks resembling boxing gloves that comes with the game Super Action Baseball. The joystick has four buttons, a 12 button numeric keypad and a speed roller. These controllers are used with other games like Super Action Football, Rocky Super Action Boxing, and Front Line.

There are hundreds of available games for the ColecoVision. Click here for the full list.

In 1996 Kevin Horton produced a Tetris clone called Kevtris for the ColecoVision. In 1997 Telegames released an arcade pack of ColecoVision games for Microsoft Windows called Personal Arcade Vol. 1, and in 1998 another bundle called Colecovision Hits Volume One.

Image Caption: The classic/vintage ColecoVision console. Credit: Evan-Amos/Wikipedia