Panic has been developing software and mobile applications for over 20 years, and in their own words, they’re “frankly, ready to try something new…”
They set to work over four years ago to produce something both new, and creative, eventually introducing Playdate, their brand new handheld gaming system.
Designed in collaboration with Teenage Engineering, the console’s design draws heavily from previous handheld devices while introducing an innovative new input mechanism, the crank, the device’s signature feature.
However, the pocket-sized hardware isn’t the only interesting aspect of the Playdate. Panic has announced that the system will receive new games on a seasonal basis, meaning one new game every week for twelve weeks.
These games will be ‘a surprise’ each week, when a new game light flashes on the device, owners will find a new title installed, and ready to play on their device.
Other than the devices signature crank, the Playdate has a black-and-white screen with high reflectivity, offering a ‘crystal-clear’ image and no backlight, as well as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, USB-C connectivity, and a headphone jack.
“Playdate isn’t just hardware: it’s a complete experience.” – Panic
Panic recently released some stats regarding the devices viral announcement;
Playdate in 24 Hours:
• 70,000+ people on the wait list
• Thousands of interested devs
• Some skeptics (we understand)
• 23k Twitter followers (hi!)
• Most importantly… an overwhelming flood of positivity + excitement from people who also want this weird thing we want (!!!)
— Playdate (@playdate) May 24, 2019
I’m incredibly excited to see what Panic has in store for Playdate, and interested to see how the seasonal release cycle will work in combination with social media coverage.