News - Updated on April 19, 2022

A batch of experimental Playdate consoles was unlucky with components, which is why the release of the devices was postponed to the beginning of 2022. Company Panic prepared Surprise: pre-orders will start shipping today. At the same time, Playdate reviews began to appear on the Web.

Recall, Playdate is a small portable console, the hallmark of which is the crank handle. It is used not to generate a charge, as someone might think, but to control. For manipulations, two keys (A and B) with a cross are also useful. Also, the device was equipped with a black and white screen, a speaker and even an accelerometer.

We collected the impressions of some journalists about an unusual device:

  • The IGN writer (8/10) called Playdate a niche product for a narrow audience, but nevertheless he was delighted with it. The handle rotates with slight resistance in both directions, but it is not used in all games. Some developers still came up with original applications for it. For example, in the fun about surfing Whitewater Wipeout the handle allows you to control the rotation on the wave and in the air. The reviewer was also impressed with the sound quality. It turns out that the Playdate is capable of playing high-quality tunes without slipping into eight-bit sound.
    • As cons, the author singled out a couple of points: the form factor, from which the hands get tired, and the screen. The display is not equipped with a backlight, and it also has a small viewing angle – you need to keep the console strictly straight.

  • A Game Informer journalist (B -) noted an interesting detail in the user interface of Playdate – a friendly assistant robot. He meets the user at the first start and conducts a short briefing. When new games arrive on the device, they appear as wrapped gifts, and the robot pulls on a ribbon to open them.
    • The critic also scolds the “hurdy-gurdy” for the screen and the lack of backlight, but the impression is compensated by the battery life, solid construction and a good starter set of entertainment.

  • According to VGC (3/5), the Playdate’s display is similar to an e-reader, but with a higher refresh rate. However, there are problems with this too: there is a “strange flicker” when scrolling too quickly between dark and light areas. It does not break the game in any way, but it can be slightly distracting. Contrary to IGN’s review, the VGC writer felt there was not enough resistance in the handle, so he would have preferred something more expressive in the manner of a fishing reel.

We are very excited about the arrival of Playdate. The gaming industry needs more curious little things like this to spur creativity and make sure we don’t fall into a world of formulaic predictability.

The price of a miracle device is $179. If someone is on fire with a purchase just now, they will have to stand in line, because pre-orders are scheduled months in advance. Author Return of the Obra Dinn i Papers, Please Lucas Pope is preparing his next game exclusively for the barrel organ console. She will become Mars After Midnight – something very similar to a simplified Papers, Please. And also launched on Playdate Doom!

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