Retro video games are a big hit these days, but while it can certainly be a lot of fun to revisit the early days of the first major console wars, it is not quite the same to play these games using usb Windows controllers or smartphone touch screens.
Well, that might soon be a thing of the past as well. Mobile accessory developer Hyperkin has released a Smart Boy Development Kit which can turn your Android handset into the most beloved portable gaming system of all time: the Nintendo Game Boy (and Game Boy Color). But you won’t have to download any emulators or additional software to do it.
All you will need is an Android phone running KitKat 4.4.4 operating system (or above) and the new phone case, of course; it simply plugs into the handsets existing microUSB port.
And once you plug the handset into the case—which features a fully-functional directional pad and the iconic A and B keys of the Nintendo Entertainment System and Nintendo Game Boy systems—you can then plug your Nintendo Game Boy and Game Boy Color cartridges.
Smart Boy Development Kit
The new $60 case will not ship until later this year—just in time for Christmas—so you have a few months to dig through your storage boxes to find any old portable video game cartridges. At the same time, though, you should also be aware that Smart Boy Development Kit is, actually, still in development. But Hyperkin is hoping that the early release—complete with open source aerial app and firmware—will allow for developers to pick up where they left off and truly finish developing the product into a “retail-ready model,” as described on Hyperkin’s website.
To sweeten the deal, though, Hyperkin is also offering a percentage of retail-ready Smart Boy cases to those freelance developers who can, in fact, improve the app and the firmware so that the device will be ready for a wide-scale, full public release.
If any of this sounds even remotely familiar you might care to know that the Smart Boy was originally expected for release last year. At that time, Hyperkin was actually looking at an iPhone only release; however the recent Android debut at E3, this month, confirms that they have made the switch to their focus towards Google’s Android operating system.