Catalog Store For Playdate’s Retro Handheld Console Launched!

Panic’s Playdate has been offering two options for game installation since it began shipping last spring. The device includes a collection of free seasonal games, which are added to your Playdate’s library at a rate of two per week over 12 weeks, resulting in a total of 24 games during the first season. Additionally, games purchased through marketplaces such as can be sideloaded onto the device.

Panic has now introduced a third method of downloading games for Playdate, called Catalog, which is a curated storefront featuring Playdate content.

At the initial release, Catalog offers 16 games that can be accessed through both the Playdate device and web browsing. Among these titles, 11 are entirely new, and the list includes some highly promising games.

A notable standout is Grand Tour Legends, an arcade racing game that requires players to pedal their bike by turning the Playdate’s unique crank. The game involves more strategy than meets the eye as players must manage their rider’s energy levels.

Another intriguing game in the lineup is Carve Jr, where players use the crank to perform snowboarding stunts. The games available on the storefront are priced at a maximum of $15.

Panic has announced that the price of Playdate will be increased starting April 7th, with the handheld device costing $199, an increase of $20 from its current price of $179. The company cited rising production costs as the reason for the price hike and emphasized that they are providing customers with a month’s notice to ease the impact of the change.

Panic acknowledges that they have always aimed to keep Playdate as affordable as possible and that the decision to raise the price was not taken lightly, but it was necessary due to their already narrow margins.

What the heck is Playdate?

Panic's Playdate. A retro handheld console with a crank. Features a dog wondering how it's suppose to find a job
Is that a crank?

I’m certain that some of you may be curious and asking, “What exactly is a Playdate? Isn’t that something parents arrange for children to play together?” Well, my dear readers, you would be partially correct!

Panic’s Playdate is a handheld game console that features a unique design, including a black-and-white screen and a distinctive crank mechanism that adds a new level of interactivity to gameplay.

It comes with a collection of free seasonal games, and users can also sideload games from marketplaces like or download titles from the curated storefront Catalog.

The device is small and portable, making it easy to take on the go, and its distinctive design and gameplay options make it a standout in the crowded gaming market.

As a gamer from the 8-bit retro era, I will be trying to get a device before the price increase for a couple of reasons. The simple shape just reminds me of my old gameboy colour, the first handheld console I ever had. The unique crank on the side might help with my fidget you addiction. Lastly, my love for retro games will always hold a special place in my heart!


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