4 consoles that will let you experience the retro gaming rush

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Even though we live in an age of advanced consoles, where games have never looked better, there’s something about retro gaming that we still find irresistible. There’s just something about the slamming of arcade buttons and 16-bit graphics that looks so appealing (not to mention all the great games from those older eras).

If you’re looking to embrace retro gaming, here are some options that will let you feel that nostalgia rush.

The Legend of Zelda game and watch

Image: Nintendo

Released last year to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the The Legend of Zelda series, this handheld console packs a lot of punch into a pocket-sized package. Inspired by Nintendo’s retro Game & Watch, it comes with three games, the original Zelda, Zelda II: Link’s Adventure and the underrated The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening.

While the Nintendo Switch‘s portability is part of its charm, it’s not something you can easily slip into a jacket pocket. This Game & Watch lets you play three classics Zelda games on the go without taking up a lot of space in your backpack or bag. It also includes fun, time-specific events, modes, and secrets, so even if you’ve played these games a hundred times before, there’s something new for you to discover. Plus, it looks really cool.

Where to buy the The Legend of Zelda game and watch

Amazon Australia ($59.95) | eBay ($79) | Players ($59.95)


Neo Geo Mini

retro game consoles
Image: SNK

Do you dream of owning an arcade machine but you don’t have the space to install one? The Neo Geo Mini truly lives up to the latter part of its name, giving you a retro gaming experience that fits in the palm of your hand. This scaled-down replica of a Neo Geo cabinet stands approximately 20cm tall with a 3.5-inch LCD screen and includes 40 SNK games, including several series titles like king of fighters, Samurai showdown, Fatal Fury and metal slug.

Where to buy the Neo Geo Mini

Amazon Australia ($99.99)


Capcom Home Arcade

retro game consoles
Picture: Capcom

The Capcom name is synonymous with classic arcade gaming, and this fighting stick lets you bring the golden age of arcade gaming right into your living room. This plug-and-play arcade cabinet comes pre-installed with 16 of Capcom’s top titles, including final fight, Ghouls and ghosts and Super Street Fight II Turbo.

To ensure that your gaming experience is as authentic as playing on an original cabinet, the Capcom Home Arcade uses original CPS1 and CPS2 arcade ROMs. The pad also includes inputs for two games, so you can get one-on-one with friends and relive those childhood memories of searing change at your local arcade.

Where to buy the Capcom Home Arcade

Amazon Australia ($198) | eBay ($267.95) | The Gamesmen ($249.95)


Arcade1Up Cabinet

Image: Arcade1Up

Speaking of scorching change at your local arcade, the best way to capture the feel of playing an arcade is to buy a cabinet. Arcade1Up is a brand that specializes in replica classic game cabinets – the ones you’d end up feeding a week’s allowance or had to queue to play because they were always full.

While you can buy dedicated cabinets for classics like NBA jam and The simpsons, if you want bang for your buck, there are Capcom and Bandai Namco cabinets that each include 12 classic games. You just can’t beat the retro charm of an arcade game, especially a free game with no wait times. Just make sure you have enough space for one of these big guys.

Where to Buy Arcade1Up Capcom Legacy 12-in-1 Cabinet

Dick Smith ($749) | JB Hi-Fi ($799)

Where to Buy the Arcade1Up Bandai Namco 12-in-1 Legacy Cabinet

Take ($749) | Dick Smith ($749) | Kogan ($749)

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