, known for the upcoming Untitled Goose Game
and publishing the critically acclaimed Firewatch
, is behind the fascinating new handheld called Playdate
. A black and white display and funky yellow design that also comes with it's own crank and a full season of planned indie games from veteran and well-known designers.
Which, on paper at least, means that it wont be in direct competition with anything. Unless of course the original Game Boy from the late 1980s attempts a market comeback. The Playdate is also quite small, tiny in-fact, measuring in at 74x76x9mm. But, also something packed with features including a d-pad, two buttons, a 2.7-inch black and white high-res display, the aforementioned crank. Plus, Wi-fi, Bluetooth, USB-C, a rechargeable battery slot, and headphone jack.
As per the official announcement,
Playdate isn’t trying to compete with the other devices that we already play and love. It’s designed to be complementary. It’s designed to deliver a jolt of fun in-between the times you spend with your phone and your home console; something to fill the moments when you just want a game you can pick-up and play.
We think — hope — that there are enough people in the world for whom the spirit and joyousness of this device will resonate clearly and loudly.
To further bolster this ideal, the Playdate will launch with a single game when it makes its debut in 2020 and will see 12 titles released free for all owners as part of Playdate's Season One.
Panic has revealed that one of the first games to be released for the Playdate will be Crankin’s Time Travel Adventure from Keita Takahashi, the creator of Namco’s Katamari Damacy. A game that will make full use of the crank - to control time. Additional titles from Zach Gage (SpellTower, Really Bad Chess), Bennett Foddy (Getting Over It), and Shaun Inman (The Last Rocket) are planned.
Pre-orders for the Playdate are expected to open later this year with a planned early 2020 release on the cards. It's also priced at USD $149 which includes the first season of games.