Playdate, the quirky handheld console that was announced more than two years ago, is finally gearing up for pre-orders at the end of July.
Panic, a developer known for macOS and iOS apps like Transmit and Coda, has announced that pre-orders for the Playdate handheld gaming system will begin July 29 at 1:00 PM ET / 10:00 AM Pacific Time. .
Playdate was originally announced in May 2019 and quickly attracted attention for its unique design. It features a retro-futuristic 2.7-inch reflective 400-by-240-pixel black-and-white display joined by more modern components like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth communications and a USB-C port.
A headphone jack and speaker are built into the small square-shaped yellow device that measures less than three inches on each side.
It also features something totally unique to the device: a small crank with a handle that fits into a hole in the chassis shell.
Once you receive Playdate, you will get two new games every week for twelve weeks, which means that the device will provide 24 free games. The developers note that individual games will vary in length, and the game catalog will span many genres.
The developers also plan to release more games per “season,” suggesting that the developers expect users to subscribe to a game service. There is no information on what a potential season pass could cost.
The Playdate team will release the SDK, allowing enterprising users to develop their own Playdate games. They will also provide users with the Pulp game creator, which only requires a web browser. According to the website, side loading of games directly on the game date is easy too.
Two accessories for Playdate are also announced. The first is called the Playdate Cover, a $ 29 cover that magnetically attaches to the Playdate to protect the screen when it is transported.
Playdate stereo dock
The second is the Playdate Stereo Dock, a desktop Bluetooth speaker that charges the Playdate. It also has two places to hold pens, including a pen provided by Playdate. There is no word on pricing or when the Playdate stereo dock will be released.
If you are interested in ordering your own Playdate, pre-orders will begin on July 29. You can go to the Playdate website and sign up to be notified when pre-orders are posted.