A kickstarter project aimed at creating a “truly open source” Linux-based video game handheld recently achieved nearly double its funding goal. Game Console Worldwide (GCW), the enterprise formed to build and market the GCW Zero game console, says its preparing to mass-produce the device.
Justin Barwick, who created the GCW Zero, says he did so because he was “fed up” with video game handhelds that were “incapable of accurately emulating classic gaming experiences.” In order to tap into an avid community of software developers and beta testers, he used Linux and other open-source software components and applications as the basis for the device’s operation.
GCW Zero game console
(click image to enlarge)
Barwick plans to set up a GCW Zero software repository, from which users can browse, download, and install open-source apps and games onto their devices. Commercial and Indie games and apps will also be available there, for purchase, says Barwick.
Key features of the GCW Zero’s hardware include:
- 1GHz Ingenic JZ4770 MIPS processor
- Vivante GC860 GPU
- 512MB DDR2 RAM and 16GB internal flash memory
- Mini HDMI A/V out
- Analog video out
- Analog controls interface
The device measures 143 x 70 x 18 mm, weighs 8 oz, and has a 3.5-inch, 320x240px LCD with 4:3 aspect ratio.
GCW Zero connectors and controls
(click images to enlarge)
The GCW Zero’s operating system is OpenDingux, a Linux distribution developed for the China-manufactured Dingoo A320/A330 gaming handheld (shown to the right; click to enlarge). Development of apps and games games for the GCW Zero will be supported with a GCW Zero Toolchain, which comprises typical C/C++ development tools, such as the GCC compiler, oprofile profiler, and gdb remote debugger.
According to Barwick, the GCW Zero is “powerful enough to run classic PC games, emulate the game consoles we grew up with, and run homebrew games seamlessly at high frame rates.”
“Too many devices today are walled gardens, designed solely for consumption,” he adds. “The GCW Zero gives you full control of your handheld. Install any application you want to run, change the operating system in any way you want. We won’t fight you; in fact we’ll encourage you.”
Here’s the GCW Zero’s Kickstarter project video:
For further information on the GCW Zero open-source video game handheld, visit its website here.