Imagine if the Nintendo Game Boy of your 8-bit past went off to college to return looking sleeker and distinguishably modern, fluent in all varieties of Game Boy cartridges, and was now also a very capable synth music composition tool. That’s the gist of the Analogue Pocket, a “built from scratch” gaming system compatible with yesterday’s memories, but specced out for today’s leisure.
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Keeping to roots of its 8-bit past, the Pocket isn’t a mere emulator; equipped with a physical cartridge slot and designed solely to play legacy game cartridges without resorting to software emulation, the tactile pleasure of sliding in a gaming cartridge is kept intact. While some details are kept true to its past, the Pocket has some significant upgrades, most notably its 3.5″ LTPS LCD with 1600×1440 resolution. Game Boy, Game Boy Color, and Game Boy Advance can be enjoyed with 615ppi clarity, quite the upgrade from the Game Boy Advance’s paltry 240×160 pixels screen. Additionally, all of the Pocket’s buttons are mappable.
Other specs include a rechargeable lithium ion battery with USB-C charging, stereo speakers, a microSD slot, 3.5mm headphone output, and a link plug.
Analogue engineered the Pocket to work out of the box with over 2,780 Game Boy, Game Boy Color, and Game Boy Advance game cartridge library. If that’s not enough to satiate your retro-gaming desires, the Pocket’s library can be further expanded with the use of cartridge adapters to play Game Gear, Neo Geo Pocket Color, Atari Lynx, and other portable gaming systems.
And if the nostalgia of playing all of your favorite portable video games isn’t enough, the Pocket also distinguishes itself as its own portable digital audio workstation. “Shape, stretch and morph sounds” using the built-in Nanoloop synthesizer and sequencer, with the option to output compositions to play live.
Analogue’s tribute to portable gaming will set you back $199, with the Pocket shipping out sometime in 2020 – a little too late for our holiday hopes, but promising a great start to the new year.