Gaming Acorn – A World in Pixels Book Announced

Acorn – A World in Pixels Book Announced


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Any iPhone picked up today contains powerful chips developed directly using ARM-based chips, most notably developed originally on the BBC Micro by UK’s Acorn Computers, sometimes referred to as “British Apple”. 130 billion devices later, ARM technology helped to revolutionise technology as we know it today.

Acorn Computers created the BBC Micro in the late 1980s in a tie-up with the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and went on to sell over 1.5 million units. The computer created a gold standard for at-home gameplay, education and even use in the world of business.

In a new book published by idesine, the entire legacy and games history of the BBC Micro and Acorn Electron is compiled into a single, timeless volume.

Synopsis of ‘Acorn – A World in Pixels’

Celebrate the visual games history of the BBC Micro and Acorn Electron with this case bound book, contained within a beautiful slip case. 

Spread over 476 pages, with a foreword by Richard Hanson (Superior Software) and Life of an Acorn Gamer by TV’s Iain Lee, it features over 150 classic games, with exclusive interviews with key figures in the industry at the time – from the likes of David Braben and Ian Bell (Elite); Geoff Crammond (Revs/Aviator); Peter Irvin (Exile); Tim Tyler (Repton); Nick Pelling (Frak!); Peter Scott (Sim City/The Last Ninja); Gary Partis (Dr Who); Chris Roberts (Stryker’s Run); Steve Furber (Acorn) and many, many more – and features on subjects such as key publishers, cover art and classic magazines. 

The book showcases the computers’ inimitable graphic style and is packed full with memories and anecdotes from programmers, artists, publishers, reviewers and enthusiasts. Remember Elite, Chuckie Egg, Repton, Exile, Starship Command, Thrust, Citadel, Revs, Imogen, Codename:Droid, Firetrack, Arcadians, Mr Ee!, Zalaga, Castle Quest, Galaforce, Snapper and many more. 

An unmissable publication for anyone who grew up with an Acorn 8-bit machine.

“Elements of the games industry as we know it today grew up around, and because of these machines,” explains the publisher. “We wanted to compile the comprehensive history into one book, and make it something boasting extremely high quality – so it becomes a part of gaming history itself. It’s amazing to think that it began in a back alley office behind a British Gas showroom in Cambridge. It might have boasted just 22 kilobytes of memory (about enough to send an email today!), but it changed the computing world forever.”

Continuing, “Acorn Computers was founded by Hermann Hauser and Chris Curry. History should think of these two mavericks in the same realm as Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, in terms of their impact on the world today. This book is a great gift for any fans of gaming, computer history or electronics.”

Reviews have been extremely positive. Retrogamer Magazine writes, “From the moment you gaze at Ste Pickford’s excellent cover and read Iain Lee’s intro you know a lot of love has been poured into this book. Its real strength comes once you get to the extensive game section … the entire book is rammed with developers who supported the machine in its halcyon days, from Tim Dobson (Monsters) to Mat Newman (Fortress) and Ian Bell (Free Fall). Every notable game is covered, including a great piece on Elite from both Ian Bell and David Braben.”

‘Acorn – A World in Pixels’ is available November 23rd 2020 from:

Waterstones –

Foyles –

Amazon –

Andrew Edney
I am the owner and editor of this site. I have been interested in gadgets and tech since I was a little kid. I have also written a number of books on various tech subjects. I also blog for The Huffington Post and for FHM. And I am honoured to be a Microsoft MVP since January 2008 - again this year as an Xbox MVP.


  1. Hey, this book looks great. I was a BIG fan of the late 80’s gaming scene and this looks like a terrific book to bring those memories back. Thanks for the preview, a definite must-buy for Christmas!


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