MacOS and iOS app developer Panic initially said in May 2019 that his Crazy Playdate handheld game console would release in early 2020. Last week he announced that pre-orders would start on July 29 and, hey, c ‘is today. Pre-orders have started.
The original ad looked great due to the gadget’s interesting retro design. It looks like a kid’s toy – in a cool way – with a yellow casing and a black and white screen. But it contains technology.
Panic’s design partner for the Playdate project is Teenage Engineering, which has already built several iPhone-related accessories.
Small but mighty, and it comes with a … hand crank?
The little thing is less than three inches on each side. It has a headphone jack, speaker, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, and a USB-C port. When you’re not using the screen for playing games, it turns into a low-power clock, Panic said.
But the best part is the little crank that you can pull out of a recession on one side.
“Yeah, the crank,” Panic said on the Playdate website. “Is it a gadget? Nope. Does it recharge the Playdate battery? No. Is it really fun? Yes Yes Yes. It’s an analog controller that flips to the side, allowing you to precisely dial in the action.
Panic added that not all games use the crank, but some do. He also mentioned that the screen is not backlit but “super reflective – looks a lot more amazing than you probably imagine”.
Playdate game console comes with free games
Once you have your Playdate console in your dirty little PB&J stained hands, you can expect to receive two new games every week for a dozen or so weeks.
Panic said these 24 tracks will vary in length and cover different genres. You can see basic information about many games on the Playdate site.
The developers also said more games will be released each “season”. This could mean that a subscription service is planned, although there is no information yet on how it works or how much it costs.
Or you can develop your own
Playdate has announced that it will release its software development kit (SDK) so that device owners, or anyone, can truly develop their own Playdate games.
The company has announced that it will also make its game maker Pulp available. It only requires a web browser to be used. Playdate added that sideloading games directly to Playdate is easy to do.
Two accessories: cover and stereo docking station / charger
Panic also announced two accessories to accompany the Playdate console. One is the Playdate Cover, a $ 29 magnetic coating that protects the Playdate screen when you take it with you.
The other accessory is the Playdate Stereo Dock. It is a desktop bluetooth speaker that also charges the console. The dock offers two locations to hold pens, including one that comes with it. The price and the exit date of the dock are not yet known.
If you’re looking to order a Playdate, pre-orders started July 29.
Price: $ 179 for the Playdate game console and the first 24 games; $ 29 for Playdate coverage; Stereo docking station price to be determined
Or buy: Reading date
We first published this article on July 22, and updated it on July 29.