How Emulate Commodore 64 Works

One of the best memories I have of my childhood were the hours lost in front of the legendary Commodore 64. I remember the days spent waiting for the endless loading of the games and the hours spent by newsagents sifting through cassettes full of games. If you are of my generation too then you will understand when I tell you that emulating Commodore 64 is more nostalgic than looking at childhood photos.

You will have several possibilities to emulate the Commodore 64 and relive the magic of the 80’s games. In this guide I will show you the best ways to emulate the Commodore 64 directly from your computer.


  • Emulate Commodore 64
    • Commodore 64 Online emulator
    • Vice
    • CC64
    • Other commodore 64 emulators
    • Download Commodore 64 Games

Emulate Commodore 64

There are tons of Commodore 64 emulators that have been developed over the years and today it is also possible to emulate Commodore 64 directly online from any web browser without having to download software and games.

Commodore 64 Online emulator

I have already talked about the Internet Archive explaining how it is possible to play DOS games from this immense portal; what I did not say is that from the Internet Archive it is also possible to play Commodore 64 games online ; Just connect to this page and search for the one you like most among the over 17,000 games and click on its cover. to start the emulator; at this point press on the round power button above the screen to load the game; in the game card then you will find a complete description of the game and the links to download the game (the link to the torrent of the rom in .d64 format).

This fantastic online commodore 64 emulator is based on the Vice system and works from any platform and allows you to use your PC keyboard as if it were the C64 keyboard. Game controllers are fully supported and if you don’t have a joystick or joypad you can use the keyboard via the numeric keys and 0 as a fire key. On the internet archive you will find all Commodore 64 games, starting with the great classics like wizard of war and ending with the la ninja 2, Turrican 2 and Maniac Mansion.

Pressing the F12 key will open the emulator settings where you can, among other things, configure different keys for the game.

On the internet you can find other commodore 64 emulators online all based on Vice that allow you to emulate Commodore 64 via web and to play Commodore 64 games without having to download any software; one of the most famous is Virtual Console which allows you to emulate Commodore 64 from any web browser via Vice.

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Vice is the most famous and widely used Commodore 64 emulator; this emulator is available for many platforms (including obviously windows, mac, linux) and thanks to the Vice.js port it has also been made available in an online version and for mobile devices (for example PSP, GP2X).

Vice is able to perfectly emulate all Commodore 8-bit computers (the most famous C64, the Commodore Vic 20 and the Commodore 128).

To install this Commodore 64 emulator on PC from this page look for the most recent version (at the time of writing this article 3.4) and click on the item next to the download. A 7-z archive will be downloaded which you will need to unzip wherever you prefer.

Inside the folder, double click on the x64sc file to start the Commodore 64 emulator and you will find yourself in front of the glorious Commodore 64 screen

As I told you the Vice is not only able to emulate the Commodore 64 but can also emulate the other Commodore computers, in fact inside its folder there are the executable files of the other computers, the files to open to start the emulators I’m :

  • Commodore CBM2: xcbm2.exe file
  • Commodore PET: xpet.exe file
  • Commodore VIC 20: xvic.exe file
  • Commodore 16 / PLUS 4: xplus4.exe file
  • Commodore 64: x64.exe file
  • Commodore 128: x128.exe file

To play Commodore 64 games with Vice you can use the keyboard or any controller connected to the computer; you can set the game controls by selecting from the menu Setting the voice Joystick setting .

To load a game or a Commodore 64 program, you have to select from the menu File the item Attach Tape image and in the window that opens go to select the game file (with extension .tap, .d64 or t64). At this point the Commodore 64 program or game will load.


If you want to play Commodore 64 on PC but don’t want to use the Vice emulator then you can try the Commodore 64 CC64 emulator which is just as good but hasn’t been updated for years now. You can download it from this page, scrolling down and pressing the Download item . Make sure you download version V3.9.2. Once downloaded and installed, just double click on the ccs.exe file to start the emulator.

Once you open this Commodore 64 emulator you can set the configuration (game controller, screen etc.) by pressing the F9 key.

To load Commodore 64 programs and games, press the F9 key and select the item 1541 Device 0 ; then select the directory that contains the games for commodore 64 and press on the game or program you want to load.

Other commodore 64 emulators

Vice and CC64 are the most famous and used commodore 64 emulators but there are others; I do not recommend using other Commodore 64 emulators due to compatibility problems with Commodore 64 programs and games but for the sake of completeness I list them:

Frodo : a cross platform C64 emulator; it is widely used on Android and had some success in the past. It hasn’t received updates for years.

Hoxs64 : is a C64 emulator currently available in beta version also compatible with Windows 10

Power64 : is a C64 emulator available for Mac; initially developed for the old PowerPCs it also works on the latest generation Macs.

The C64 Microswitch Joystick – Not Machine Specific

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Thec64 joystick with micro-switch Cable 1,5m

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Download Commodore 64 Games

Now that you have installed the Commodore 64 emulator on your PC, you just have to download the games. Commodore 64 games and programs are usually composed of one file (usually called rom) which can have several extensions. tap o. t64 (they are the image of a cassette). d64 (they are a disk image).

Normally you prefer to download a romset directly from the internet (ie a zipped file containing thousands of games) and then decompress it into a specific folder on your PC.

There are two sites on the internet from which you can download all but all the games and programs for Commodore 64:  – from here you will have to click on the word Games in the left menu and write the name of the game you are looking for. Then from the right pane press the word Download Now to load the game. The games are in .d64 format and contained in zip files.

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In conclusion, there are several possibilities for Emulating Commodore 64 from a computer; in a simpler and faster way is to use the online commodore 64 emulators (and in particular the Internet Archive C64 emulator) while the best program to emulate Commodore 64 from the PC is definitely Vice.


by Abdullah Sam
I’m a teacher, researcher and writer. I write about study subjects to improve the learning of college and university students. I write top Quality study notes Mostly, Tech, Games, Education, And Solutions/Tips and Tricks. I am a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue.

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