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Most used tools

This list of tools is meant to serve as a quick reference for newcomers and oldschoolers who returned to the scene and are wondering what the current state of tools is and what most people use. It's not meant to be a comprehensive or complete list, so don't add more than a handful essential and notable tools to each category. Also please don't link directly to binaries in cases where a proper homepage for a tool is available.

In the past, most people used Turbo Assembler to code on the C64 itself, whereas in these days almost everyone uses some form of cross assembler at a PC instead.

For a more comprehensive list of links to tools, check the links section instead.


Assemblers and compilers

More assemblers are listed at the assemblers section on the links page, and it should be made clear that some people prefer other assemblers than those listed here.

  • DreamAss - by Doc Bacardi / The Dreams. Basic cross-assembler, does the job.
  • ca65 - A complete cross-developing suite with assembler, c-compiler, linker, and more.
  • Kick Assembler - by Slammer/Camelot. Assembler with extensive Java-style scripting. Runs anywhere with Java. Find tips & tricks here.
  • ACME - Cross assembler with a lot of nice features, without being bloated. Includes macro support.
  • 64TASS - A very tiny TASM compatible macro assembler.
  • TMPx - Cross assembler that is source compatible with Turbo Macro Pro


  • ByteBoozer - Fast(er), ok results. Made for demos, also integrated decruncher with loader.
  • Pucrunch - Faster, good results. (Sometimes bugs out on very small binaries.)
  • Exomizer - Slower, better results

Character Sets and sprites





  • VICE - Official homepage for the most widely used C64 Emulator
  • HOXS64 - Also aiming at cycle exact Commodore 64 emulation.

Transfer your stuff to a real C64

  • Final replay and Codenet - by Graham/Oxyron. Requires a Retro Replay cartridge with RR-net. Also check “Warpcopy”.

Transfer your stuff from a real C64

  • TMPView 1.3 - by Style. Convert your TASM source to PC, for crossassember environment.

Native development






  • JCH Editor - By JCH. Most used editor ever(?).
  • SDI - By SHAPE ..for best sound quality(?).
  • DMC V5.0+ by Graffity, Improved by CreaMD
  • DMC V4.0 by Graffity
  • ATMDS v3.2 by St0fF / Neoplasia, AcidTrackMusicDevelopmentSystem - an Editor for coders, style based on the DMC-series.
  • NinjaTracker by Cadaver, a converter from GoatTracker is available, too.
tools/start.txt · Last modified: 2023-02-08 11:50 by bepp