Keep­ing an eye on the coin-op gam­ing scene


If you haven’t yet seen enough ar­cade ma­chines built for the home, here’s an­other – this time from a team with lin­eage be­hind it. Poly­cade is the cre­ation of Tyler and Dy­lan Bush­nell – sons of Atari co-founder Nolan – and Charles Car­den, and rep­re­sents their so­lu­tion to the awk­ward is­sue of how to fit au­then­ticfeel­ing ar­cade play into a lim­ited space. The wall-mounted en­clo­sure is just 17 inches deep at its most prom­i­nent point, and 30 inches wide, and comes with 80 vin­tage games – in­clud­ing Atari’s first big suc­cess, Pong, along with Pac-Man and sev­eral Street Fighter II vari­ants – loaded onto an 8GB SD card. The hard­ware is built around a Rasp­berry Pi 2 Model B board, run­ning RetroPie em­u­la­tion be­hind a cus­tom UI, the fruits from which are viewed on a 28-inch LED screen. Poly­cade is avail­able in white, red, black or blue, and in a printed vinyl wrap for a more au­then­tic ar­cade feel.

It’s been built to be highly cus­tomis­able, too, with a re­mov­able con­trol board. You can choose from Clas­sic, with two eight-way Happ joy­sticks and six but­tons per player; a fight­inggame-fo­cused Show­down ar­ray that uses eight-way Sanwa JLF joy­sticks; and Tech, which hich of­fers eight con­vex Happ app but­tons per player and d two Ul­ti­marc Mag-Stikk Plus joy­sticks. The first t two op­tions sport an ad­di­tional joystick and d two ex­tra but­tons be­tween the main con­trol banks, while the Tech model’s ar­rays are sep­a­rated by a track­ball. Start­ing at $1,750, the first units will be­gin ship­ping in March.

Hard­ware Poly­cade Man­u­fac­turer In-house

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