TRS-80 Model III Emulation & Gaming!

Shawn Delahunty's picture

We here at Armchair Arcade are very pleased to offer you a unique in-browser retro-gaming and emulation experience. Thanks to the dedicated efforts of George Phillips and Peter Phillips, you now have the option of playing TRS-80 games directly inside your browser window!

NOTE 1: Games written purely in Z-80 Assembly will be *FAST*. Games like Retro-ZAP! which are written in BASIC are going to be SLOWER. This is simply the nature of interpreted BASIC.
NOTE 2: All games marked with an asterisk '*' were released into the public domain in 1995 by Wayne Westmoreland, one of the game's authors.

Some Important Emulation Notes:

  1. The TRS-80 emulator is written entirely in JavaScript. This means that the speed of emulation depends heavily on several factors.
    1. The speed of your computer. A dual-core machine should have zero problems. For a single-core CPU, you'll want a 2GHz or better machine.
    2. Which browser you use. This is the BIGGY. The best speed observed so far has been using Google's Chrome browser. Opera seems to work well, along with Safari. However Firefox, and Internet Explorer tend to drag noticeably--though they should improve with time.
  2. In order to work on your modern PC, the JavaScript emulator 'hijacks' some of the normal keypresses you might ordinarily use for browser navigation. There are some details on the keyboard mappings further down on this page.
  3. To the left of the emulator window, there are several "Quick Load" buttons. From these, you can run any of the sample programs, including the brand-new Retro-ZAP! game written by Shawn Delahunty. Click on any button to 'auto-magically' load and run the program.
  4. If you wish to play around on the emulated machine, perhaps to write a BASIC program of your own, simply click inside the emulator window on the RESET button. When you see the "Cass?" prompt, press the ENTER key twice. You will then be faced with the ever-so-helpful "READY" prompt of the venerable BASIC interpreter. At that point you are free to code away! (Please note though, there is NO method for saving your program!! You will have to download a native TRS-80 emulator to obtain that capability. George Phillips offers a fantastic one for free on his website.)

    Most TRS-80 games produced sound effects by using the cassette port. However this emulator doesn't offer any sound effects because there is no portable way to play dynamically generated sound in Javascript.

To anyone who has written a TRS-80 game of your own: If you would like to see your game or program hosted here on Armchair Arcade, please contact me at: For those of you who are the more technical "under the hood" sort of power-geeks, I recommend perusing the TRS-80 emulation websites of George and Peter Phillips:

George Phillips' Home Page on TRS-80 Emulation
Peter Phillips' Page - With several other TRS-80 games!

Detailed Keyboard Info:

  • The escape-key (ESC) is the TRS-80 Break key. Press this to stop the BASIC interpreter running the current program, and return you to a "READY" prompt. (This does NOT work if the program is in Assembly!)
  • The backslash (\) key is the TRS-80 Clear key.
  • Pressing SHIFT-Zero toggles between upper-case-only/upper+lower-case character input on a real TRS-80. For this emulator, use SHIFT-underscore on your PC keyboard to toggle upper-case/lower-case display function.
  • SHIFT-Right Arrow switches to 32 character wide mode.
  • The Backspace button won't leave this web-page because it is used for deleting characters inside the emulator. In fact, most browser short-cut keys will NOT work as the emulator needs to intercept most key presses.

If you find this emulator or the games of value, please consider supporting us by clicking on one of the advertisements, or checking out our special offers.