A new Linux-powered retro games console wants to do for the Gameboy, SNES and Genesis, what the NES Classic has done for the NES.

As a retro gamer I (quite naturally) was stoked to see the popularity that greeted the $60 Nintendo NES Classic (which, it turns out, runs Linux) last month.

RetroEngine supports multiple gamepads

But for all its condensed charm the NES Classic is affected by the fact you can’t install extra games on it. You’re limited the 30 (not all) classics that ship on it, flashed to the memory chip.

Doyodo is crowdfunding a new Linux-powered retro games console — the RetroEngine Sigma — that is capable of playing far than just a handful of NES games. It’ll play, through emulators, games form pretty much any 8-bit, 16-bit, 32-bit and 64-bit era console, from Gameboy to SNES, N64 to Master System.

Doyodo say the machine is small but mighty, and will offer a range of ports and expansion capabilities, including support for wireless controllers, USB hubs and even retro game pads!

The console is (rather adorably) shaped like a mini Gen-1 Sega Mega Drive/Genesis. 

But it gets better.

“By adding a wireless keyboard and mouse (you can also just use your smartphone), your console becomes the perfect living room computer. Write a novel, surf YouTube or watch your movies on your big screen while kicking back on your couch.”

“RetroEngine Sigma will ship as a fully-configured desktop computer preloaded with Armbian Linux Distribution and a one-click installer that allows users to easily configure network access over WiFi as well as customize their system setup with the help of their tablet or smartphone,” reads the official pitch.

retroengine sigma specs

The basic configuration includes one controller and 16GB of storage. A ‘deluxe’ model adds in bluetooth, an additional controller and 32GB of storage. Prices start from $69.

I paid far more than double that for a single game cart recently!

What makes this proposition more attractive than, say, buying a Raspberry Pi and rolling your own is the convenience of having a ready-assembled, plug-and-play system that requires minimal input from you.

Rather awesomely the crowdfunded has already passed its original funding goal by 681% — up $135k on a goal of (just) $20k.

The RetroEngine Sigma has an expected shipping date of Q2 2017.

RetroEngine Sigma on IndieGoGo

Remember: crowdfunding a product is not the same as pre-ordering a product. There’s no guarantee that you’ll get anything to show for your pledge.

It’s also important that I note that while you will be able to install emulators on this device it is left to the consumer to find ‘ROMs’ they can play in them.

Thanks Jeffrey T.

crowdfunding indiegogo nintendo