Retro gaming clone consoles have been a thing for about a decade now, with countless machines from the NES-clone Generation Nex to the new Atari 2600 clone, the Retron 77. But what about games released on disc?
As I predicted way back in January, we're finally going to see a clone console that plays disc-based games! While it's not hitting the market until early next year, preorders for the machine are up now. Its not some phantom Kickstarter project; this is a fully-funded company that will start delivering these machines to us next year.
Polymega is an interesting machine that takes a unique approach to the clone console thing. The core of the system is a disc-based machine that plays games from a variety of consoles. Rather than hosting a bunch of cartridge slots, the console instead uses interchangeable modules to support various cartridge-based systems.
Not only does it upscale all of your games to HD resolution, it allows you to install your games directly on the machine so they're available without the disc or cartridge! You can put your full game library on this console and browse it using the Polymega's slick interface. Not only can you install your own games, the system will have a digital marketplace where you can download retro games to add to your collection.
This is truly tempting for me, since I rarely touch the Sega CD library because setting up the Genesis with the CD attachment is a huge pain. After I've tracked down all the needed cables, I don't have any time left to play. This makes it so much easier -- just slide in the disc and you're good to go!
Here's what you get
The base system supports the following CD-based game consoles:
- Sega CD / Mega CD
- Sega Saturn (US/JP/EU)
- TurboGrafx CD / PC-Engine CD
- Neo Geo CD (NA/JP)
- PS1 (US/JP/EU)
- sadly, no Dreamcast support
Modules can be added to support these cart-based systems:
- NES (US/EU) + NES inspired controller
- SNES (US/EU/JP) + SNES inspired controller
- Genesis/Mega Drive/32X + Genesis inspired controller
- TurboGrafx-16/PC Engine/SuperGrafx + TG16 inspired controller
Each module also includes a handful of built-in games.
The base console sells for $249, each module will be $59 and bundles with extra modules and controllers range from $459-$599. All are available to preorder now at discounted prices, and will be released on April 1, 2019.
They should have picked a different date to release this console.