Hey guys! After sucessfully launching Raspiboy on Kickstarter last year, 8BCraft is proud to present you
RetroGaming is constantly gaining in popularity, especially with the developments of single boards computer (raspberry pi, orange pi...) that enabled us to make homemad retrogaming consoles. However those required lot of knowhow on electronics and DIY. You may have seen "Gameboyzero" projects on internet and understand how difficult assembling one can be!
First with Raspiboy I wanted to simplify things for you guys by making an easy kit with no soldering. But now I want to go even further by making RetroStone which come fully assembled!
HDMI output : you can connect RetroStone to your big TV !
4 USB connectors
Play up to 5 players !
Take RetroStone everywhere with it's compact form factor! No more boring flights for you!
Back button configuration has been voted to change (lot of people just complained about it!) I posted new design on "Update 1" of the Kickstarter to ask backers to vote and lot of people vote for new design. New design is this one :
Prototype has been received and confirmed!
Also back buttons color will be voted by the backers after campaign!
Inside you have a RetroStone Pi, this SBC (single board computer) runs a H3 processor which is 4 cores 1.2GHz.
Basic RetroStone will come with 8GB SD card, which can already hold hundred of games.
Upgrade from 8GB to 16GB memory for FREE by sharing RetroStone kickstarter on facebook!
Copy the URL of your facebook post and save it for later. At the end of the Kickstarter I will send you a survey for shipping details, there you will be able to put your URL to get the free memory card upgrade!
But wait! You are saying that we can play any game of our childhood, what does it mean exactly? Does the kit comes with games integrated?
Software : Retrostone Pi is compatible with Retrorangepi (Retropie distribution for H3 boards). Retropie is an awesome emulation station software (super easy installation, it will be explained step-by-step in the tutorial!). You can check them on Youtube for demo ! Those softwares come with a wide range of systems supported : Gameboy, Gameboy Color, Gameboy Advance, Super Nintendo, Megadrive/Genesis, Atari, MaMe and so on. You can have a look here to all the supported systems.
RetroStone Pi is also compatible with most other H3 SBC OS (armbian, android...).
Please note that the software will not be pre-installed because these are open-source softwares and their license forbide it.
Games : To install a game you need it's ROM file. A ROM file is a computer file containing all the game's data. You can legally download ROM of unlicensed games on the internet. For licensed games legality of downloading ROM depend on your country. In some you need to have original copy of the game. In some others it may not be legal at all to download ROMs from internet.
Then to install the ROM you can transfer it with USB stick to RetroStone.
Develop your own game, share them and discover other RetroStone user's games !
I think there's a lot of potential to develop and share your games! A topic will be opened on the forum about game idea, development and sharing.
Joining me on kickstarter is not only about getting a nice game console. It's also about the journey of the project! As you can check on my first Kickstarter campaign Raspiboy I made a point to give good updates (check for yourself HERE). With interesting facts on production.
Here are exemples of what people thought of them!
The main advantages of RetroStone compared with Raspiboy are :
- Easy memory card access
- Assembled and fully tested
- Compact form factor
- More powerful CPU
- Ethernet, more USB connectors and full size HDMI
Size comparaison of RetroStone and Raspiboy
By connecting a screen, keyboard and mouse, your console becomes the perfect living room computer. Write a novel, surf YouTube or watch your movies on your big screen while kicking back on your couch.
If you really like the project don't hesitate to get the Kickstarter Limited Edition!
Limited edition will come with 32GB instead of 8GB (or 16GB if you do the free upgrade)
Limited edition will be CLEAR BLUE color. I can't have picture of RetroStone with clear case because we need the injection mold for that!!
So to illustrate here's a picture of the Raspiboy casing with such a clear case.
But it will be blue rather than purple. Bit like this :
This limited edition will be available only on Kickstarter, so don't miss it ;)
Makers I have not forgotten you! RetroStone may come assembled but we left room for customization!
RetroStone has 26 GPIO available, with built-in pull up resistors
4 of those GPIO have optional buttons built-in the RetroStone Pi
And casing has layout for those optional buttons! So you just have to drill the buttons holes to add those buttons.
EnergySquare is an innovative wireless charger. RetroStone embedded their charging system! (You can still charge with micro-USB of course!)
With the two contact pins it charges by contact directly, so it's faster than induction charging.
That's something I often hear. Lot of kickstarter project are scams and never deliver their promised product. But that is because lot of them are selling ideas that are not ready to industrialize. Sometime you can even see their pictures are just 3D modeling, meaning they don't even have prototypes. Or they can have prototypes that are not ready for industrialized production.
As my first Kickstarter campaign can attest I am as transparant as I can be, my prototypes are really ready for production. And I did delivered all my backers! Ok for this first project I had little bit of delays. Now with experience of the first Kickstarter I have a better estimate of deadlines and I am confident to be on timing!
It can be :
- For yourself to have some good fun with friends.
- To make a gift to a special someone.
- To discover the world of hackerspaces, fablabs and SBC (single board computers).
Future retail price will be 159€, so don't miss the Kickstarter special prices!
119€ : Get the 8/16GB RetroStone at EARLY BIRD price !
129€ : Get the 8/16GB RetroStone at Kickstarter price !
148€ : Get the 32GB RetroStone Limited Edition (Kickstarter Only)
235€ : Get the two RetroStones at EARLY BIRD price !
255€ : Get two RetroStones at Kickstarter price !
575€ : Get the family & friends pack of 5 RetroStones at Kickstarter price !
850€ : RetroStone prototype : Be the first one to get RetroStone by getting a RetroStone prototype with a 3D printed case, as on video. Hand assembled by myself! You will also receive a regular RetroStone when they are ready! Only 5 available.
7350€ : Special retailer pack : 70 RetroStones !
69€ : Get the RetroStone Pi (the electronic board alone).
Help us unlock the stretched goals by sharing the project!
100 000€ - Customization kit
Next strech goal : 150 000€ - We'll add a GPIO button (similar to LCD controls) on the side, you'll be able to run any python script when pressed, such as a softshutdown script. Or you can use it as additional gamepad control!
In order to accelerate development, as soon as we reach our goal we'll start the mold manufacture.
End of March 2018 : End of crowdfunding
April-May 2018 : Production
June 2018 : Product certifications (CE and FCC certifications)
End of June 2018 : Shipping to you guys!
Additional video to see the LCD closer
Lot of people expressed concerns about LCD quality. So here's a little review on LCD.
H3 has 2 video outputs : HDMI and CVBS (= composite/AV) In order to be able to use RetroStone on a TV we need the HDMI out unused, so I use the AV signal for the 3.5" LCD.
Some people asked if picture looked better than on Raspiboy. Answer is yes, because on Raspiboy we used overscan to resize the resolution to fit the LCD size, and this resizing makes it flickers quite a bit in emulationstation (also the AV signal goes through pogo pins in Raspiboy, which does not help).
I had trouble making video showing the LCD from close because everytime I tried to shoot a video I ended up with lot of artifacts. Strange lines/patterns appearing. (try to film your computer screen with your smartphone and you'll see it's not easy !). Also when LCD picture goes from clear to dark the camera has trouble adapting luminosity. Anyhow I made a shot that is not so bad.
Please note that there are still some artifacts on the video such as camera autofocusing.
Risks and challenges
In order to make this kit so affordable we must reach our fundraising goal because:
1- The casing require injection molding. And injection molds are really expensive.
2- PCB : we have to order more than 1000 units if we want to have workable prices. Indeed most of the electronic components of the PCB have minimum order quantities of 1000-5000 pieces!
Therefor we must reach about 1000 orders to make this price possible!
Development is done, everything is ready: 3Dmodels are done, PCB design is done, and manufacturers are ready to get started. The only thing that is missing is a 1000 pieces order! All the project needs now is you guys!
Back us now and help us reach our fundraising goal so that it will become reality !
RetroStone does not come with any software or games pre-installed. You can flash the memory card with the OS of your choice.
RetroStones will ship from ShenZhen in China, to avoid any delivery problems we will declare full value of the products. Please note that there might be taxes applied by your country customs.
Please provide phone number for delivery, failure to do so might prevent delivery to be successful.
Please note that opening the RetroStone (for customization or any other reason) will void the warranty. Sorry, this is because of the risk of damaging the electronic with electrostatics. Unless I give you authorization while discussing by email (for repair for example)Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (38 days)