PicoPew Is a TinyPICO-Powered 8x8 Gaming Device

This tiny handheld runs on an ESP32 and is capable of displaying 65,536 colors.

Jeremy S. Cook
9 days agoGaming

Today’s games can feature 4K resolution and a wide range of features, but what if you restricted yourself to a tiny portable gaming device with an 8x8 pixel display? The PicoPew does just that, as a console shield for Unexpected Maker’s TinyPICO — a board that we’ve seen here on more than one occasion. The game includes a button-based directional pad on the left, and two buttons on the right, and is so small (at 48.4 x 20 x 18mm thickness) that your fingers may almost dwarf it when in-use.

It's actually the smallest "PewPew" device to date — a format developed by another familiar hacker, Radomir Dopieralski (AKA de∫hipu). It boasts more than just a minute size, however. Its ESP32 core means it can run at 240 MHz and take advantage of 4 MB RAM, which would of course be a massive amount of overkill for 8x8 games. The ESP32 also allows it to communicate via Bluetooth and WiFi, opening up a wide range of possibilities for networked gaming and development. Finally, while other PewPew devices display only four colors, the PicoPew can produce up to 65,536 colors for games or other experimentation.

The system was created by Christian Walther as a fun project for himself, but is now for sale on Tindie for $21 + shipping. You’ll need to provide your own TinyPico and battery, as well as a case if you want your own system. Design files and documentation are linked here, so you could also make one from “scratch,” or simply examine Walther's work for inspiration!

Jeremy S. Cook
Engineer, maker of random contraptions, love learning about tech. Write for various publications, including Hackster!
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