Nomad-like portable gaming machine plays Genesis cartridges

retro gen

Remember the Sega Nomad? If you excitedly shot up out of your chair yelling “YES!” then you may be interested in a newer, more streamlined device called the Retro-Gen Portable that’ll be available for $50 in about a month.

According to the product page on

Bring back the Sega classics! The new Retro-Gen portable gaming system is a must have for an Sega Genesis fan. The Retro Gen is like a newer version of the Sega Nomad plus. This portable Sega system can play Sega Genesis carts plus, Mega Drive carts (Japanese Sega Genesis). It also has an included TV out function so that you can connect this portable to any TV set for full size gameplay. This new unit also features the arcade style button layout plus a built-in rechargable battery via USB so that you never need a set of batteries! All that plus it’s built on the Firebox technology so that you can use development carts to download new future DLC games!

So it doesn’t really play ROMs per se, but there’s that whole part about using development carts and whatnot if you’ve got the time and patience to figure all that out. The real feature, though, is the ability to play your old Genesis cartridges. You can also hook the thing up to your TV set just like in the good old days.

I can’t say I’m crazy about the button layout. Not one bit, actually. Perhaps the buttons can be remapped — otherwise, that’s some awkward A, B, and C placement. Seriously, if you’re going to make a portable machine that plays games from an old console, lay out the buttons like they were on the original controller. There’s too much muscle memory at stake here.

Oh well, time to step down off the soap box. The Retro-Gen Portable is available now for preorder and will ship July 25th.

Retro Gen Sega Genesis & Mega Drive Portable Game Player [ via Kotaku]