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This Japanese console can play games from 9 different retro machines

by Eric Frederiksen | May 20, 2015May 20, 2015 4:30 pm PST

The bizarre, port-imbued device above is known as the Retro Freak. The Retro Freak is a newly announced retro gaming console in the works from Japanese company Cyber Gadget, and it plays enough different kinds of games to make even Hyperkin’s Retron consoles jealous. Here’s the list of compatible cartridges:

  • Famicom (NES games should work with a NES-Famicom cartridge adapter)
  • Super Famicom/SNES
  • MegaDrive/Genesis
  • Game Boy
  • Game Boy Color
  • Game Boy Advance
  • PC Engine
  • Turbo Grafx-16
  • Supergrafx

The consoles toward the bottom were either never released or just not terribly successful in the U.S., but this is an impressive line-up none the less. The system has another feature that will be of interest to gamers: You can pop an SD card into the device and install games from cartridges.

Interestingly, the console comes in two pieces. The tiny part does all the heavy lifting, and the big part is merely an adapter. My guess is that this has something to do with circumventing Japanese copy protection or proprietary technology laws, but has the added benefit of allowing you to potentially swap in a new model of adapter later without losing your collection of installed cartridges and system preferences or even to swap in a new version of the same model if the pins wear out from too many cartridge swaps as we saw with NES consoles.

There are tons of controller options, as well. The system includes a controller that mimics the standard SNES controller – it probably sucks, if other consoles like this are any indication, but at least it’s wired. Additionally, PlayStation 3 and 4 controllers can be used via USB, or a controller adapter can be purchased separately to plug in Famicom, Super Famicom, Sega Genesis, and TurboGrafx controllers.

This is a Japanese-only device, but hardcore retro gamers may find it worth importing once it hits. We can always hope the system gets a U.S. release, too.


Eric Frederiksen

Eric Frederiksen has been a gamer since someone made the mistake of letting him play their Nintendo many years ago, pushing him to beg for his own,...