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Posted January 5, 2013 by Julie W in Games
 
 

GameStick, a Portable Game Console For Your TV

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Imagine being able to have a game console with no chords at all.  No chords for power.  No chords for TV hook ups.

Then imagine being able to take that small game console, put it into your pocket, and take it with you.

No, this is not your cell phone that you play Angry Birds on.

PlayJam has launched a Kickstarter campaign, with the plans to bring you a portable console, the size of a controller to your livingroom TV.  This console, named GameStick will run on Android, and plug into your TV just like a flash drive.

The current model of the GameStick’s controller is designed so that the console itself snaps into the controller.

 

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Notice the opening at the bottom of the controller. This is where the GameStick device will snap into, for storage. 

 

This console is set to be only $79.  An early bird special of this Kickstarter had the Gamestick at $69, with the availability of 250, but that has already sold out.  The regular $79 pledge has unlimited amount of availability.

These pledges are estimated to be fulfilled by April of this year.

What I love about this concept is that this is a portable gaming device, yet still keeps gaming on the TV.  There are plenty of handhelds out there, that you can take anywhere.  Yet there really isn’t a home TV console out there that you don’t have to unsnake the cords and compile all the parts into its own bag.  I am curious to see how this will work with co-op, having more than one controller, and if multiple gamer accounts will easily be accessible on one console.

 

Current specs of the GameStick:

  • Processor – Amlogic 8726-MX
  • Memory – 1GB DDR3 / 8GB FLASH
  • Content Download Manager w/ cloud storage for games.
  • WiFi – 802.11 b/g/n
  • Bluetooth – LE 4.0
  • O/S – Android Jelly Bean
  • Controller – Bluetooth, 3 mode controller: gamepad, mouse and keyboard with support for up to 4 controllers.
  • Full 1080p HD video decoding
  • Support for XBMC & DLNA from Sept via optional firmware update.
 

The GameStick Kickstarter campaign only asked for $100,000 to make this device, yet it has already doubled that request.  With 26 days to go, I predict this to be one of the highest funded Kickstarters.  Will they be able to keep up with all the demand of thousands of backers?

There have been some critics out there over the GameStick, particularly on the Youtube videos of this project.  Some are even making anti-GameStick Youtube videos.  Some state this is a “me too” type of project, and there are a lot of developers working on similar projects.  The Ouya is also being mentioned time and time again by these critics.

It’s a good idea in theory, with an appealing price point.

Yes, the Ouya got a lot of games promised at launch, but that also didn’t happen until later in the campaign when they reached an overwhelming support by the public.

The Gamestick is still in its early crowd funding stages, as it only launched January 2nd, 2013.  Though both the Ouya and GameStick run on Android, the difference with GameStick is the portability and how the console itself snaps into the controller.  This is a plug and play, with no chords.  The Ouya, will be very small, but there are still differences between the two.

Do you feel like it’s too early to compare the two?

 

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I like variety of consoles as much as the next person, but there is always that fear that if too many consoles hit the market, the over saturation makes it hard for just one to stand out and be good at what it does.  Part of why I play the consoles that I do is I enjoy being able to be online with my friends.  Lately it seems I’ve been only on my PC nowadays anyway.

The GameStick does have potential with it’s portability, and a price point below $100.  I will be keeping an eye on it to see what happens with it.

With gaming technology becoming more advanced every year, it really makes one wonder what direction it will take.  Would you ever miss having a square console underneath your TV?

Is this something you would consider buying, or do you think most of the games will be low budget titles with little appeal?

If there’s one thing we all know about the gaming, is that the games themselves are a big selling point for any console.

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Julie W

 
Julie W
Editor in Chief / Site Owner - Playing games since the Sega Master System and Atari, Julie has a love for games of all kinds; although her main focus in gaming is RPGs, RTS, and simulation. If she's not writing or playing a video game, Julie is baking nerdy cakes, playing piano, or illustrating.