The last few years have brought a number of 3rd party consoles for certain cartridge-based consoles, especially popular with collectors who may not want to hold onto (if they even still have) the shells of the old consoles or want to play on their TV instead of a PC. However, there hasn't really been a lot done with CD based consoles, and many people were wondering whether a retro CD console would/could even be made.
What is it?
There is good news: a small crowd-founded device called the "Seedi Retro Gaming System" has been in development for a little over a year and now has a couple working prototypes. It plays some 90s based CD consoles as well as a few other gaming devices.
Here are the consoles it currently supports:
Neo Geo CD
On top of that, there is an accessory, which is sold separately, that supports some cartridge-based consoles like the Sega Genesis and Game Boy.
More impressively, the console can play physical CD's and can auto-detect them. Most of the games look to be running with a frame-rate close to 60 FPS and seem to have very little controller lag, even with a wireless controller. On top of that, there are a number of consoles that are not currently supported but will potentially be playable later such as the SNES and Sega Saturn etc.
Many old gamers worry about controllers with the 3rd party consoles–they are not always well made. There is an option to buy a controller, very reminiscent of a PS3 controller, along with the device. If this doesn't sound appealing, fear not, the Seedi supports a lot of controllers and has Bluetooth. So wireless controllers, original PS1 controllers, and a host of other gamepads are compatible.
CPU: Quad-core ARM H3 @ 1.2GHz
RAM: 512 MB DDR3
The website does say that these specs are not final: it depends on just how much money they can raise, but the device has impressive computing power at this stage of development.
A plethora of cool features have been loaded into the device. It can play CDs and DVDs and certain games will allow for online play. It's HD, has wifi, and it's region free. Old DOS and PC games will also be playable on the device.
Saving can be done internally, and the system comes with a 32GB SD card. Old memory cards will not be supported.
It's important to point out, that for legal reasons, Bios files will have to be downloaded by players if they wish to gain full accessibility out of some of the emulators.
How to get one or help out
To find out more about the Seedi and purchase one, check out their page on indiegogo . There is also an option to donate: the system has prototypes and has come very far since early development, but the console is not guaranteed to be released without enough funding. Offering support will help the console make it to the distribution phase as well as pave the way for gamers to enjoy their old CD-based games.
If you want to see the prototype in action, MetalJesusRocks did an awesome preview of the console: check it out below.
The initial release is slated for December 2017 and Seedi consoles can still be pre-ordered. There are multiple pre-order options, and the price looks to be about $100-$200 USD. Thanks to Seedi Team it's time to wipe the dust from those old CD games and play like it's 1996.
If you are looking for other alternative ways to play retro games, this alternative to downloading Roms might catch your eye.