Playdate is an innovative new handheld gaming console with a crank

About time
23 May 2019 / 11:34BST

Between the increasingly wonderful Nintendo Switch and whatever smartphone is currently occupying your pocket, you’d be forgiven for thinking that there’s no need for another handheld gaming machine. That is, until you meet Playdate, an indie console with a 2.7in black and white display, a D-pad, a few face buttons and, most importantly, a little flip-out crank handle on the side that can be used as a controller. In fact, some games on the system will be exclusively crank-controlled. Playdate is made by Panic, publishers of gems like Firewatch and the upcoming Untitled Goose Game, and has apparently been development for years (it’s worth taking a look at its journey on Panic’s official Twitter account). Just as interesting as the design (YELLOW!) is Panic’s plan for distributing games to the console. You don’t buy physical games or download them from a store. Instead, titles will be drip fed to the system each week for a few months, so every new release is a surprise. Pre-orders for Playdate will begin later this year, before it ships in (hopefully early) 2020.