The hotly anticipated Retro VGS, a console that plays brand new retro-style cartridge games, has today launched a crowdfunding campaign via Indiegogo.
With a design repurposed from the 64-bit Atari Jaguar (the console’s developers have secured the original tooling and design rights), the Retro VGS promises to take gamers back to the simpler days of yesteryear, when titles were available to play instantly without the need to wait on HDD installation or inevitable downloadable patches.
The console was built with a combination of an ARM CPU and an FPGA, giving it plenty of power to run modern retro-inspired titles along the lines of Shovel Knight and others, while also being configurable to allow developers to replicate other old-school architectures, such as Neo Geo, Atari 2600, and many others. The system will eventually support existing retro games, too, in the form of a number of optional adapters.
The Retro VGS uses its own controller, developed by InterWORKS Unlimited and based on a third-party Wii U joypad, and will also include a pair of 9-pin plugs to enable support for retro Genesis and Atari controllers.
The system costs $299.99 for an ‘early bird’ special black base unit, while models retailing for up to $499.99 are also available to backers. It has 10 announced launch titles, which will retail for between $30 and $60 each.
Mike Kennedy, founder and president of the RETRO Media Network, the company responsible for the Retro VGS, said:
“We are gamers, and seasoned industry professionals who have dedicated our careers to making great video games. … Together, we can create a great new video game system built on the old ideas that games should start playing quickly, never need to update the system or patch games, and be playable for as many years as we like.”
With a target of $1.95 million to raise over 46 days, at the time of going to press the system has already secured over 100 backers for a total of $42,000.