Build Your Own Handheld Console With This DIY Kit
A London-based company called Technology Will Save Us has created a DIY videogame console.
While Microsoft and Sony are attempting to cram as much power as possible into the Xbox One and PlayStation 4--within reason, of course. These things need to be somewhat affordable--a small, London-based company called Technology Will Save Us is doing the opposite. However, what the company's new console lacks in processing power, it makes up for in elbow grease.
The DIY Gamer Kit is an extremely low tech system that turns the owner into a console manufacturer. After purchasing the package, gamers will need to roll up their sleeves and construct the unit before flipping the power switch.
"We tried to go back to the archetype of a gaming device," said product designer Michail Vanis in a recent interview with Edge. "The screen only has 64 pixels and no colours; the buttons are just the classic up, down, left, right and start; and the sound is a monotone speaker. We were really inspired by those keyring-sized Game & Watches Nintendo used to make, because [they] stripped everything complicated for a really simple gaming experience."
The kit is made up of 40 pieces, and you'll need to be proficient with a soldering iron. But once the project is complete, you should have some understanding about the inner workings of a gaming console. Then it will be time to start programming your first videogame.
The DIY Gamer Kit costs about $82, and U.S. customers should plan on a 14-day turnaround for international shipping.
Source: Technology Will Save Us
I'm curious to see if anyone is willing to Frankenstein this together with a Raspberry Pi or similar device.
Expand the complexity of the programming, and also providing cheap input controls and that cute little speaker (going back to the beeps and boops of the first-gen Game Boy).
The price is a bit steep for a DIY kit. You can get a Gameboy for less than that and just take it apart if you're wanting to learn how a hand-held is put together.
That's a neat little kit and a good way to practice soldering. I have no formal training in electronics, but I like messing with LEDs, resistors, and these solder-it-yourself kits. Too bad I don't have the spending cash right now.
Also, the article is linking to the kit without an Arduino, which is about $48. From what I get from pics/descriptions, the Arduino is the cpu for the whole deal. So get the kit with Arduino unless you got a spare.
Game & Watch had better graphics than a 64 pixel grid can offer, simply because their crude displays were tailored for that game. Seriously, just look at it. What kind of games are possible on such a small, not-at-all-versatile screen? An ultra-crappy tetris knockoff? Can one make so much as a crude calculator with it? The level of detail on this "screen" is outperformed by a small box of black and white legos.
If you're going to sell a DIY handheld console kit, then offer enough pixels to actually do something.