DuinoDrive: A Crowdfunded Retro Game Console for Makers and DIYers

Currently looking for backers on Kickstarter, DuinoDrive is a fascinating little project kit that lets you build your own retro console. Pleasingly 8-bit, the aim of the project is to “crack open the technology behind the video game.” It does this by letting you build the console, program your own games, and develop new skills. Accompanying this is an online ecosystem where creations can be shared, free games downloaded, and online tutorials found. There’s also the chance to connect with other DuinoDrive owners.

The idea is simple: you build the DuinoDrive, connect it to your TV, retro fashion, learn to solder, and program games. Programming should be simple to achieve; the “Duino” in the DIY console’s name refers to the fact that DuinoDrive uses the same programming language and software as the Arduino, thanks to a custom Arduino library.

In the box, you’ll find the various components of the DuinoDrive, ready to be assembled. Accompanying those are a USB FTDI data/power cable to link the DuinoDrive to your PC, and an RCA cable to hook it up to your TV.

Featuring composite video/audio out, support for two controllers, and retro-style 128×96 black/white resolution, and compatibility with NTSC and PAL displays, the launch price of the DuinoDrive is $75.00, although early backers can grab a basic unit for $60.

Beyond this, you can pledge $85 for a two-player DuinoDrive, or buy a pre-assembled kit for the same. Two DuinoDrives can be picked up with a $145 pledge, while $370 will bag you five kits. Following launch, free games will be available to download, including Space Invaders and other retro clones.

Interested in building your own 8-bit programmable games console? Head to Kickstarter to back the DuinoDrive today, and help it reach the rather modest $6000 goal.

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