Developed by Simon Que, DuinoCube is described as a portable platform that allows Makers and gamers to develop their own retro titles using the popular open-source Arduino environment.
Essentially, DuinoCube comprises two shields: GFX (audio and graphics) and the Atmel-based UI (file system, extra memory, on-board controller chip). Currently, DuinoCube is compatible with the Arduino Uno, Mega and Esplora.
“When you combine a GFX shield and UI shield with an Arduino board, you get a DuinoCube. The UI Shield goes on top of the Arduino and the GFX Shield goes on top of the UI Shield,” Que explained in a recent Kickstarter post.
“With DuinoCube, your Arduino becomes a retro gaming system with the capabilities of classic game systems like the SNES and Gameboy Advance. DuinoCube is highly portable so you can show your friends the games you’ve made.”
Key platform technical specs include:
- 320×240 VGA graphics (higher resolutions expected soon).
- 256 independent objects (sprites).
- 4 independent tiled layers.
- 18-bit color in four palettes, each with 256 colors.
- Hardware scrolling.
- Hardware collision detection.
- Stereo audio output.
- MicroSD card file system.
- USB gamepad support.
Powered by Atmel’s ATmega328P microcontroller, the UI shield for the Uno/Mega is equipped with an SD card, extra RAM, USB host and controller chip.
Similarly, the UI shield for the Esplora features Atmel’s ATmega328P, SD card, extra RAM, controller chip and Uno-style headers.
“The UI Shields can [also] be used as a generic file system, or as a USB host controller for the Arduino Uno/Mega version,” Que confirmed. “[Plus], the GFX Shield can be used as a generic FPGA shield [by] reprogramming the FPGA with an Altera USB Blaster cable.”
Interested in learning more? You can check out DuinoCube’s official Kickstarter page here.