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Playdate, the black and white hand cranked handheld gaming console, has begun shipping

Playdate, the new black and white handheld gaming console which – yes – includes a hand crank, has begun shipping. You can check out the full press release below:

PORTLAND, APRIL 18th, 2022 – Panic is thrilled to announce that Playdate, their unique video game handheld system (with a crank), will begin shipping to pre-order holders in Group One, today! Panic has also released their second Playdate Update video showcase, mostly serving as a catch-up to all the developer news they announced earlier this year.

The first Playdate systems for customers in Group One will be shipped out gradually today and in the coming weeks. Panic will be reaching out to customers in Group One when their units are shipping, and will also be in communication with any updates on when pre-order holders in other Groups can expect their Playdate systems to ship.

Coinciding with this big milestone, the latest Playdate Update has plenty of information for those interested in developing games for Playdate and other interesting news for soon-to-be Playdate owners. The showcase includes updates on the publicly-available Playdate Software Development Kit (SDK), the web-based game making tool Playdate Pulp, the Playdate capture software Playdate Mirror, and the development announcement of Catalog – a future Playdate app where you’ll be able to easily buy or find curated games for Playdate outside of Season One. For more information, watch the second Playdate Update.

Of course, thanks to Playdate’s flexible and open sideloading, Playdate developers currently can distribute and sell their games however they see fit. One such game launching today alongside the first Playdates is Bloom, developed and self-published by RNG Party Games. Bloom is a real-time narrative-driven social sim about starting up a flower shop that is played over many real-time days, and it’s one of the first commercial third-party games available for Playdate. Playdate owners can learn more about Bloom on its Itch Io page and purchase it for $9.99 USD. Information on Sideloading Playdate games can be found at help.play.date/games/sideloading.

Also launching today is the Playdate Podcast. Created as a companion to Season One, it features interviews with the game developers and designers behind the wonderful games that make up Playdate’s first season of games. The first episode, The Story of Playdate, will be available today and listeners can expect a new episode every two weeks.

About Playdate

Playdate is a brand-new and truly unique gaming handheld system that is a celebration of video games. It’s yellow. It fits in your pocket. It includes brand new games from amazing creators. It has a beautiful black and white screen. And yes, it also has a crank.

Created with great attention to detail and affection by app developer and video game publisher Panic, Playdate hopes to capture the spirit of endless possibility and excitement that games have given us since the beginning. Playdate’s collection of games will delight players with their inventiveness and ingenuity. And in addition to introducing players to brand new games, Playdate also encourages people to create their own imaginative games and interactive software using a suite of easy development tools. In short, Playdate was made just for fun.

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