The latest console to get miniaturized is the Neo Geo, a cartridge-based arcade system by SNK released in 1990.
Officially called the Neo Geo Mini, the console sports an arcade cabinet-like design complete with a joystick and multicolored buttons. It features a 3.5-inch display, two controller ports, and a headphone jack to boot. The screen's resolution is unclear, although users can hook up the console to their TV via the HDMI port if they want a large-screen experience.
Neo Geo Mini: Everything You Need To Know
The system will come preloaded with 40 classic games from the Neo Geo era, although it's not clear if it'll be possible to add more titles. That's highly unlikely, though. Nintendo's NES Classic and SNES Classic, by contrast, doesn't allow gamers to download more titles beyond what's preinstalled.
"The NeoGeo Mini is a video game console, which will include 40 nostalgic titles from the NeoGeo system, which made its debut in 1990," announced SNK in a Facebook post. "The size of the NeoGeo Mini means it fits perfectly in the palm of one's hand."
SNK is remaining tight-lipped about which games are included, but screenshots hint that titles such as Metal Slug, Metal Slug 2, Samurai Shodown II, Samurai Shodown V Special, King of Fighters '97, King of Fighters '98, Real Bout Fatal Fury, and Real Bout Fatal Fury 2: The Newcomers, are part of the roster.
Neo Geo Mini Pricing And Release Date
SNK will sell two versions of the Neo Geo Mini: a red, white, and blue version for Japan, then a blue, white and black for North America plus other regions. Pricing and release date remain uncertain.
The Neo Geo was the most powerful console at the time of its release, any many arcade systems would not surpass it until years later in 1993 when Capcom released the CP System II. The Neo Geo was a huge success in the '90s due to a number of factors, including the cabinet's low cost, its six ROM slots, and its compact size. A number of franchises started their life on the system as well, including Fatal Fury, Metal Slug, The King of Fighters, and a bunch of others.
With the Neo Geo Mini, SNK becomes the latest company to release a mini version of its older consoles. Nintendo started this trend with the NES Classic in 2016, then followed it up with the SNES Classic in 2017. Gamers speculate Nintendo will unveil a classic Nintendo 64 next.