maio 21, 2024

Borrowing from Teenage Engineering’s visual DNA, the PocketMan P1 has a metal-first design language that oozes sleekness along with industrial details like exposed screws. Ergonomics be damned, the PocketMan P1 is a console for your eyes and your soul. Its design sports all the controls you need, featuring a D-pad, action buttons, multiple joysticks, and even four shoulder buttons. From the looks of its interface, it probably houses a black and white screen that eschews fancy graphics for a hardcore retro experience, and there’s even support for ‘apps’.

Designer: Grzegorz Rozwadowski (Twig Studio)

Functionally, the PocketMan P1 follows the vertical handheld style of the Game Boy Classic (with a monochrome display to match). Unlike the GB Classic, this console boasts an all-metal design with a seemingly edge-to-edge display, tight corners, industrial detailing, and a slick form factor that tapers off at the screen; effectively giving you a chunky console that’s nice to hold in your palms, but doesn’t have a hefty upper half that would throw its center of gravity out of whack. The product’s cyberpunk-ish design feels highly sophisticated, elevating the status of a game console to something that’s more than just a ‘toy’.

The PocketMan P1 comes with all the bells and whistles of a great controller. It’s got every conceivable control apart from probably a touchscreen (though I wouldn’t be surprised if it did). There’s a USB-C port on the bottom alongside a 3.5mm aux jack for headphones. Strangely enough, the console has card readers on both the left as well as the right side, presumably allowing you to load multiple cards with different games.

The controls on the PocketMan P1 resemble the kinds seen on modern handheld gaming devices, although the black-and-white screen definitely gives the console a retro touch. That being said, we don’t really know whether the P1 has an LED, LCD, or e-ink screen, so it’s entirely conceivable that the PocketMan P1 could be running a color display but with a black and white OS, helping keep its software as minimal-looking as its hardware. The presence of an Apps icon confirms the latter too, although without a traditional keyboard, it’s probably hinting at an App store or the ability to side-load different emulators to play your favorite games.

Although currently just a concept (yeah, I know), the P1 is a masterclass in minimalist metallic design. Its form language and detailing resemble some of Teenage Engineering’s handheld gadgets rather well (especially the TP-7 Field Recorder), and in doing so, rejects the idea that gaming hardware needs to be hyper-ergonomic and covered from head to toe in RGB lighting. The P1’s design language blends consumer tech’s aluminum obsession with great gaming hardware, creating a console with truly universal appeal… and with a ‘meant for serious gamers’ attitude.

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