Arduboy: credit card sized gaming


We’ve already had one retro console story this week, but when this story passed under my nose, I just had to post it. Not only is it a cool concept, it’s a Kickstarter success story. Meet Arduboy, a credit card size portable gaming system that is the Gameboy you wished you had when you were 10. I’m not even posting this to get you to fund them. They don’t really need your money since they’ve already raised over 650% of the $25,000 they asked for (just over $163,000 as I write this) and there’s still 27 days to go.

As the name suggests, the Arduboy is powered by the highly flexible and completely open source Arduino programmable kits. All the games available for it will be free and open source, and since the software is open, anyone can develop for it. There are educational kits available that let you bulk buy to get classes interested in programming using free online coursework to teach C++.

The features are impressive, with a really nice OLED screen:

  • Brilliant OLED Display
  • 6 Soft-Touch Tactile Buttons
  • 2 Channel Piezo Speaker
  • Durable Metal & Polycarbonate Construction
  • 8+ Hour Battery Life & Rechargable
  • Fully Programmable with Arduino!

For a bit of a geek-out, here are some specs to get you going:

  • Processor: ATmega32u4 (same as Arduino Leonardo & Micro)
  • Memory: 32KB Flash, 2.5KB RAM, 1KB EEPROM
  • Connectivity: USB 2.0 w/ built in HID profile
  • Inputs: 6 momentary tactile buttons
  • Outputs: 128×64 1Bit OLED, 2 Ch. Piezo Speaker & Blinky LED
  • Battery: 180 mAh Thin-Film Lithium Polymer
  • Programming: Arduino IDE, Codebender, GCC & AVRDude


You know what the Arduboy reminds me of? The very nice Game Boy micro, a revision of the Game Boy Advance SP and the very last in the lineage. I’ve always had my eye on getting one of these, but the only ones that seem to be affordable are the pink ones, which I don’t think are as nice. Perhaps i’d be better off with one of these instead?


The even betterest bit about this mini hand-held? It’s supposed to cost $39 when it launches. Check out the Kickstarter page, support if you want to.


About Dan Morse

From the Atari 2600 right through to bleeding fast PCs, Dan's played on them all. One thing that's never changed is an unwavering passion for video games. Twitter: @happydan | Steam: happydan | GOG: happydan