If you close your eyes and think hard enough about your teenage days hanging out at the arcade, I bet you’d be able to hear the pings of the arcade games and the relentless banging of buttons on the game consoles. If you were an arcade rat and miss the flashing lights, gaming sounds and being in zone, the Pong zone that is, the iCade may just be the iPad accessory for you.
iCade is a clever accessory that instantly turns your iPad into a mini arcade system, complete with the joystick, plastic buttons and retro design. The pieces are made of composite wood and come disassembled. It was a bit onerous putting together, but only because the version I got has mismatched pre-drilled holes. In any regard, after what should be a simple build, the iCade is ready to go. You place your iPad in the holder, turn on the Bluetooth to sync the device to the console and your iPad is ready to go.
The games that sync to the iCade come in the Atari’s Greatest Hits app for iPad. The app itself is free to download, but all the games (18 in total) can either be purchased separately in $0.99 game packs or altogether for $14.99. Each game/game pack actually includes at least four games within, so you’re actually getting much more than just 18 games. In any regard, the app includes classics like Pong, Super Breakout, Asteroid, Hangman, Star Raiders, but to my disappointment, no Pac-Man.
Despite the sheer lack of graphics and sounds my kids are accustomed to with their current games, they were intrigued with the joystick, controls and black and white graphics of the iCade. It certainly brings retro back into style and is a really fun accessory that any iPad user would have fun with.
The iCade can be purchased from ThinkGeek for $99.99.
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