Retro Gaming Returns 

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Do you remember those days of carrying your game collection in your pocket? Now you can relive the experience.

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Last year I reviewed a Retro Handheld Console developed by Orb Gaming.  This product, designed to fit in a pocket for use in various locations, formed part of the Thumbs Up’s extensive catalogue of novelty and useful offerings.  Since my original review, the Retro Handheld Console has undergone a number of cosmetic changes to its original design appearance. to make playing mire retro like

One immediate and obvious change to this console’s appearance is a switch from a portrait to a landscape orientation.  I feel this one change will certainly make the product more attractive to many users especially those who hanker back to the days of their youth when they held their gaming implement in both hands as they took on all the challenges this virtual world encompassing device could throw at them.  I am, perhaps, not so sure regarding the gold coloured fascia which decorates the front of the console.  I felt this feature was a little too garish for my taste, although others might think differently.  I preferred the original look where the fascia used the same colour as that of the unit’s main body which happened to be red.

Size-wise there is little to distinguish between the original and latest model.  Both units have dimensions of approximately 92 x 56 x 21 mm, with the first two measurements of height and width changing place to reflect the switch from portrait to landscape.  Both consoles feature a display for presenting the game.  This visual display is delivered by a 1.8-inch LCD screen that is centrally mounted.  However, unlike the original model, this latest version features a white and silver coloured bezel rather than the black surrounds of the original version..  Another slight difference is that the screen display is raised by 2 mm from the body of the latest console.

To fit in with the switch from portrait to landscape mode, the unit’s different various controls have been repositioned to take advantage of the space on the console’s front face.  A speaker outlet and 4-way keypad are located on the left front of the console.  Situated on the right side of the screen are buttons for Reset, Volume, Start and controls for the A and B features available for the different games.  Mounted on the right edge of the console is the unit’s Power on/off slider switch.

With regards to the power required to run this console, this facility is provided by three AAA batteries which are housed in a compartment on the rear of the unit.  This battery compartment is concealed behind a cover held in place by a  single Philips-style screw.  You will need to provide the batteries as they do not form part of the package.

The console’s opening main menu lists its 153 titles, (one more than the original version and, no, I have not checked to see which title has been added to the list) in batches of five, allowing the players to scroll through the list to make a selection of what game to play next.  Scrolling through the list is the only option available to you as, even though, the titles are numbered, there is no way to jump straight to a particular number or tag certain favourite titles for quick access.  I found that on the completion of a title, whether due to victory or, more likely, defeat, I would be returned to the head of the list to test my skill at Matchstick Men.  You would almost think this Retro Handheld Console realised that I need plenty of practice with this particular close combat title and you would be correct.

When it comes to working out the controls required for the individual games, you are left to your own devices and what you might be able to dredge up from the depths of your memory from your childhood gaming days.  A certain amount of trial and error experiment, especially in the use of the A and B buttons, will be required as you work out what each game requires in order to gain some success.  In fact many will regard this experimentation as part of the fun and enjoyment delivered by Retro Handheld Console.

With its pocket-sized appearance, lanyard for attaching to the wrist (the lanyard is initially concealed within the battery compartment) and a choice of 153 games, those looking for a trip back in time to the gaming of a previous generation should enjoy this product.  The Retro Handheld Consol, from Thumbs Up is priced at £14.99 which makes the individual games priced at a penny each.

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OverallThumbs Up Retro Game Console rated 72 out of 100

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