NEW--A Pocket-Sized Arcade Cabinet!


Way back in 2010, I published a post about hand-held and tabletop video games from the 1970s and 80s. Part of that post discussed a series of tabletop games released by Coleco that emulated popular arcade games and looked like much smaller versions of arcade cabinets. At the time I joked, "Given the advancements in micro-computing and compact, high-definition video screens, a really devoted fan could probably gut one of the Coleco emulators and convert it into a tabletop unit--in other words, convert a plastic shell that was originally designed to house a VFD emulation of Donkey Kong into something that could house an actual, playable arcade version of Donkey Kong." Apparently, someone at ThinkGeek either read my post or thinks exactly the same way that I do:


Meet the "Arcadie iPhone and iPod Desktop Arcade". According to ThinkGeek, "The Arcadie Desktop Arcade is designed especially for iPhone and iPod Touch. Slide your device into the wee cabinet, pop it in the 30-pin connector dock, load up an Arcadie-supported app, and you're ready to play. More apps are being added every day, but for now there are games like Blasteroids, Alien Invaders, Ping, Stacker, and more. The 8-way joystick and two buttons will have you pew pew pew-ing the afternoon away, feeling like a jolly geek giant."


I don't have an iPhone or an iPod, but it amuses me to no end that someone remembers the video game arcade era so fondly that he/she is willing to make a teeny tiny version of an arcade cabinet interface for cell phones--even at the risk a causing some crippling new form of carpal tunnel syndrome--so that nostalgic geeks everywhere can relive the glory days of coin-op gaming. Now all they need to do is come out with Arcadie Desktop Arcade units that have marble-sized trackball controllers and action figure-sized light guns so that gamers can also play Centipede and House of the Dead knockoffs.


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