If you’re like me and many others that grew up in the 1980s, you’ve wanted your own arcade cabinet since nearly the first time you saw one. Sure, you could make the argument that modern consoles are much better than anything in that era, or that sitting on your couch is superior to standing up while pumping quarters into a Street Fighter II game, but there’s just something awesome about these systems that goes beyond pure functionality.
If you do decide to actually take the plunge and obtain a cabinet, there are lots of options out there, from building one from scratch out of MDF and electrical components, to refurbishing a used arcade machine, to simply buying a kit or ready-made device. If you’d like some inspiration, here are several awesome and unique builds on Make, including one that cleverly integrates a refrigerator.
There is, however, one problem with all of these machines: they take up a huge amount of space. They are also quite opaque, which isn’t a problem for most, but prevents you from seeing what’s going on inside. For those people, may I present the Tiny Arcade Clear DIY Kit. These little devices can easily fit between your thumb and index finger, and are made out of clear acrylic. It’s loaded with several classic arcade-style games, and you can add more games or even video via a micro SD card (that you’ll need to supply).
I got to see these at the World Maker Faire in New York last year, and to be honest, pictures don’t really do their diminutive size justice. It’s great to see something I’ve gotten to play with pop up on Tindie!