This fully functional Xbox Series X console stands at over six feet tall

Microsoft knows its craft when it comes to marketing its gaming consoles. And it’s clear, they’ve got a real affection for the current generation Xbox Series X and Series S. The Redmond-based tech giant ignited interest with their one-off Xbox Series X fridge revealed at the E3 2021 event, and then they joined forces with premium luggage maker July to create limited-edition Xbox Series S suitcase for hardcore nerds.

No, this one is not the official Microsoft build, but a DIY project by engineer and Youtuber Michael Pick who’s lately obsessed with crafting the world’s biggest gadgets. He teamed up with ZHC to build the world’s largest Xbox Series X gaming console for a good cause. The size of a big refrigerator you’d come across, the DIY project stands towering at 6.82 feet and 3.41 feet wide. If you ever thought the retail version was a bit on the bulkier, this one should bury all your apprehensions for good.

Designer: Michael Pick

Behind the perfect look, there is a real Xbox Series X fitted inside the wooden rig. All the fancy inputs right from the Microsoft logo and the connection ports at the rear are actuated by the Arduino microcontrollers. For instance, pressing the button on the bigger console triggers an input on the hidden console inside courtesy of a motor. Pick invested a lot of time and energy into crafting the curved top using 3D printing technique, and it took him almost two weeks to finish the piece. Even though the top isn’t visible due to the height, according to Pick it brings the build to life. Once the basic crafting of the console got completed, it was passed over to ZHC in Texas where it got a cool custom paint job in a cartoonish sci-fi theme.

Compared to the mini Xbox X fridge which cools down beers, this one is fully functional as a gaming console, its primary intended purpose. By the way, this huge console is well over 600 percent bigger than the real one, and unsurprisingly has a Guinness World Record to its name too. Behind its highly detailed emulated look, the DIY project was ultimately gifted to the Youth and Teen Development Center in Atlanta, GA. The kids were elated to see this cool creation and then, later on, try out the games loaded onto the console. Truly a build worthwhile all the effort!

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Apple game console concept poised to inch Nintendo Switch out of contention

For everyone who wants to move past the Nintendo Switch and Android-based gaming smartphones, the Apple gaming console could bring a fresh breath of air and likeability.

Handheld gaming consoles like the Nintendo Switch offer gamers entry into high-end graphics-intensive games as well as addictive arcade titles at the convenience of their pocket. In a way, gaming phones and even normal flagships give smartphone users another reason to enjoy high-end games on their smart devices. Apple is also in the mix of things with its industry-leading A15 Bionic chip that makes the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 and MediaTek 9000 processor sweat in one-on-one performance.

Designer: Konstantin Milenin

This makes for a compelling case to have an Apple handheld console with the backing of Apple’s microprocessor technology powering the high-end graphics, highest frame rates, and multiplayer capabilities. Built for peak gaming performance along with tactically placed joystick, buttons, and shoulder triggers; the handheld comes with complimentary photography and video shooting capabilities. It’s loaded with a rear camera sensor and a front camera as well. The latter will come in handy for live game streaming on the fly. The front-facing speakers are positioned on the top left and right corners for surround sound effects while identifying the muffled enemy’s footsteps.

Just like other handheld gaming consoles, Apple’s gadget will also have the ability to connect to Apple TV, Apple Music, iCloud on the go when you’ve had enough of the gaming adrenaline rush. Going with Apple’s minimal design philosophy highlighted by the use of premium body materials, this gaming console is for serious gamers to say the least. The Prussian blue colorway of the gaming machine goes perfectly with the aesthetics reflected in the buttons. Though, the selfie camera could be a distraction in first-person shooter games if you’ve to spot the enemy in that particular area.

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The Apple Arcade Pro is an iPhone-inspired handheld gaming device with two notches and controls

The Apple Arcade app/service may seem like a half-baked effort on Apple’s part to enter the gaming industry. One could argue that Apple doesn’t even care about gamers or gaming beyond the odd Monument Valley or AR-based game that they’ve showcased at their keynotes. However, the Apple Arcade Pro changes ALL of that. Designed as a hardware concept that rivals the Nintendo Switch, Steam Deck, or any of the Android-based gaming phones, the Apple Arcade Pro is a handheld console modeled on the iPhone, however with not one but TWO notches that allow the console to have its own button layouts.

The Apple Arcade Pro is exactly what the company needs to blitz right into the gaming industry. Google Stadia is on life-support, Microsoft Xbox Game Pass hasn’t quite picked up yet, the Steam Deck hasn’t rolled out to many people yet, and literally the only handheld gaming device that’s really got a stranglehold on the market is the Nintendo Switch… the Arcade Pro has the ability to massively tilt the scales by doing a couple of things – A. Championing mobile-based AAA gaming, B. Putting Apple’s A15 Bionic chip to even better use, and C. Allowing Apple’s Arcade service to expand rapidly in a way that would probably even threaten Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass. Sadly though, there’s no way Fortnite is coming back to the Apple gaming ecosystem anytime soon…

The Apple Arcade Pro models itself on the successful iPhone format. It comes with a Stainless Steel body in four different finishes, and sports the same flat-edge design as the iPhone. On the front, however, things are a bit different. There’s no front-facing camera, but the notch is still there. In fact, there are two notches on either side of the device, allowing for the Arcade Pro to have its controls – an ambidextrous set of D-pads that change function depending on what game you’re playing. On the rim, the volume buttons are replaced by left and right shoulder buttons, and the speaker modules now go all the way from one corner to the other, immersing you in audio as you game.

Move over to the back and there’s a bit of a throwback in terms of the camera layout. Instead of equipping the Arcade Pro with the best-quality camera as you’d find in the iPhone, the Arcade Pro instead has an iPhone X-inspired dual-lens system that sits further to the corner, so it doesn’t get obstructed by your hands as you game. In between the two cameras, however, sits a LiDAR sensor that turns the Arcade Pro into the world’s first AR-based dedicated handheld gaming console.

Other noteworthy features of the Arcade Pro are its upgraded Taptic Engine that allows for better haptic gaming, the Magic Joy buttons that mimic the ones seen on the Apple TV remote, 95W MagSafe charging on the back, and a new Game OS, designed specifically to highlight the new gaming experience. The Arcade Pro doesn’t just tap into the Apple Arcade service, it redefines it completely and spins the arcade service into its own standalone service, giving it a dedicated operating system that prioritizes games first, while also offering other features/apps like Netflix, YouTube, Apple TV, Safari, etc. Want to take a break from gaming and just use the Arcade Pro to watch content? There’s a Pro Stand-inspired Gravity Stand that lets you prop your device on it and easily enjoy watching stuff online. The concept doesn’t detail whether the Arcade Pro has cellular services (there isn’t a SIM tray anywhere to be seen), although we could go on a limb and say that it’ll still have Messages, although, with a front-facing camera, Memoji and FaceTime seem out of the picture.

Obviously, this is a concept and it’s practically guaranteed that Apple won’t release a gaming console any time soon (although it definitely should, considering how incredibly lucrative the industry is), but for the people who think having an iPhone-inspired gaming device is an illogical idea, let’s not forget that for the longest time Apple did have its own iPhone-shaped device that catered to a specific category – music. The iPod Touch, for years, was an iPhone-lite that did a limited set of tasks focused primarily on music and browsing the internet… so it’s fairly within the bounds of an alternate reality to envision the Arcade Pro as a gaming-specific iPhone.

Is the Arcade Pro a great idea? On paper, it definitely is, given how the gaming industry is bigger than Hollywood, the music industry, the NBA, NFL, and MLB all combined. Apple’s had a long history of sidestepping gaming, but just purely from a revenue standpoint, it makes a world of sense considering Apple can’t even claim it’s a monopoly business here. Moneytalk aside, the Arcade Pro sounds like the PERFECT device for kids… an iPhone Lite, if you will. Apple will have to develop the OS in a way that enables incredibly rigid parental controls for youngsters, but the Arcade Pro has the potential of not just being a gaming device – it also becomes the communication device parents feel comfortable giving their kids and allowing them to keep in touch… without splurging the big bucks on buying a kid an iPhone.

Designers: Junwoo Kim & Joonho Sung

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SEGA Genesis Plush Console: Genesis Does What Nintendon’t!

Made and sold by Kidrobot (which has been responsible for taking hundreds if not thousands of my dollars over the years), this $30 SEGA Genesis Gaming Console 12″ Interactive Plush features a soft likeness of the 1988 gaming system, complete with a detachable controller and removable Sonic the Hedgehog game cartridge. How about that! Now all I need is a plush television to complete my make-believe gaming session.

Can you use it as a pillow? Sure! Can you use it as a kid’s booster seat in the car? No. Now I’m not sure who needs to hear this, but you also shouldn’t use it as a hot plate because my soup is still cold. Maybe if I take out the cartridge and try blowing on it first…

I have fond memories of playing SEGA Genesis growing up. I also have unfond memories of accidentally plugging the SEGA CD’s power supply into the wrong port and killing it. Of course, I never told my parents that; I just pretended it stopped working, and they eventually bought a new one. Whew — thanks for letting me finally get that off my chest; it’s really been weighing on me the past 30 years.

SEGA Genesis plushie lets you throw your controller without feeling guilty

Gamer tantrums are well-known, especially when they get destructive, but this plush toy recreation of a popular console offers a safer outlet when lashing out.

Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo might be the last remaining contenders in the console wars, but there was a time when they weren’t the only ones in that arena. Before Sega was reduced to being a game publisher, it was also making consoles that eventually became icons in gaming history. The SEGA Genesis is one of those historical gaming machines, and one shop is creating a lovable and huggable version that recreates more than just the console’s form.

Designer: kidrobot

You probably wouldn’t be hugging this console-shaped plush toy in bed or on the couch. Or probably you would if you were feeling a bit melancholic and pining for the good old days of gaming. Or you might want this soft and cushy SEGA Genesis beside you when you’re mashing buttons on your Xbox, PlayStation, or Switch. That way, when you get the urge to throw the controller in frustration, you can simply grab this plush and throw that instead. It’s therapeutic and safe to boot!

This SEGA Genesis Interactive Plush tries to recreate the iconic console faithfully in both shape and size, though it’s admittedly a bit larger than the actual machine. That does mean it’s not exactly fit for comfy hugging, but it won’t take up too much space on your couch or bed either. The plushie also tries to be as faithful to the small design details, from the buttons and indicators to the warning labels at the bottom.

The “interactive” part comes from the pieces that you can remove or “plug” into the console. Rather than just a single plushie, this SEGA Genesis comfort toy is actually made up of three parts. There’s a game cartridge that has Sonic the Hedgehog’s face emblazoned on it. There’s also a controller that can connect and disconnect at will. That could come in handy when you want to throw the controller without the console flying along with it.

This 12-inch SEGA Genesis Interactive Plush is a cute and fun nod to an age long gone. Of course, even those who never even held a SEGA Genesis might still appreciate having something of a reminder of that past, especially one that you only have to wash to keep it clean and usable.

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PS5 concept in white is a minimalist lover’s dream

The PlayStation 5 design has probably been one of the console’s most polarizing designs, so it’s no surprise that designers and gamers alike have come up with alternatives that show how Sony could have done better.

Gaming consoles are no longer just pieces of equipment taking up space in the living room. Just like TVs and entertainment systems, they have become a sort of symbol of a specific lifestyle. For some gamers, they have even become sources of pride, displaying their affinity for a particular gaming system or title. For some, the PS5 has become a source of embarrassment, however, which is ironic given how it was designed to look like a trophy. There have been a few “redesign” suggestions floated around the Internet, but this one, in particular, keeps one foot in the past and the other foot proudly in the future.

Designer: Alexandre Touget

The PlayStation 4’s boxy design admittedly feels dated by now. Its boxy form and sharp edges feel almost clinical and mechanical. It almost plays to the stereotype of gamers setting themselves apart from the rest of humanity, an image that the PS5 “trophy” tried to improve but in an almost ineffective way.

The PlayStation 5 looks futuristic and almost trendy, something that seems to have been given more design thought than other consoles. For some, however, it went to the opposite extreme and called too much attention to itself. Plus, its gigantic size didn’t really sit well beside other objects in the room.

Alexandre Touguet reimagined the PS5 as something that blended those two worlds together in harmony. It retained a more muted shape, a flat box that tapers down on two edges. It isn’t all sharp lines, though, with some curves that also give it a gentler look without going overboard.

This white variant is similar to the black console the designer created when the PS5 first came out. White is admittedly a controversial color for objects that sit around exposed to dust and dirt all day, but it’s hard to argue that it has an unmistakable minimalist vibe to it as well. More importantly, it helps this PS5 design blend in better with other objects in a room, suggesting that gaming is more an integrated part of the owner’s life rather than something that just awkwardly crash-landed like an alien spaceship.

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Steam Deck is giving PC Gaming a makeover

Valve wants to encourage anywhere you want to, but is it encouraging the right lifestyle?

Portable gaming devices are nothing new, with the likes of the Game Boy and the PSP or PlayStation Portable becoming household names in that area. Smartphones have also given birth to a multi-billion dollar mobile gaming industry that promotes gaming anywhere, any time. Throughout all these changes, however, PC gaming has still been limited to mostly stationary devices like laptops and desktops. Valve, best known for the Steam games marketplace, wants to change that status quo, and it’s taking a small chapter out of Nintendo’s book to make it happen.

Designer: Valve

The Nintendo Switch can be credited for reinvigorating the portable gaming market. Its unique combination of features, including the ability to be used with a larger screen, made it look like the only gaming console you’ll need, whether you’re out and about or just at home. In contrast, PC gamers still have the stereotype of being locked down to their desks or any other table unless they want to fry their thighs while using their heavy gaming laptops on their, well, laps. The Steam Deck, which is finally launching later this February, aims to bring that spirit of adventure to PC gamers by letting them take their favorite hobby along with them anyway.

Nintendo Switch it is not, though, with the Steam Deck easily dwarfing Nintendo’s current darling in size. Of course, that’s because the Steam Deck needs to pack in more hardware to support games that would make the Switch cry in pain. That, however, also means that it might be more uncomfortable to hold this device up for longer periods of time. And unlike the Switch, you can’t exactly detach the controllers to lighten up the load.

You can, however, put it down on any surface and use a Bluetooth controller, similar to the Switch. It’s still a lot more convenient than needing a lot of space for a laptop, not to mention extra space for a mouse. What the Steam Deck can do that the Nintendo Switch can’t is to be used as a regular PC, at least a Linux-based one. That last technical detail might worry some about compatibility with some Steam games that run only on Windows, but that situation is a lot better these days. Plus, installing Windows on the device is also technically possible.

This sounds great for PC users, especially Linux users, but there are naturally some limits to this proposition. More like a laptop and less like a desktop, the Steam Deck isn’t upgradable, and you’re stuck with the hardware you paid for. You can’t even expand the storage with an SSD and will have to make do with super slow SD cards. Unsurprisingly, there isn’t any commitment from Valve regarding repairability or sustainability, though as a first-gen device, that might happen in succeeding models, presuming it has succeeding models.

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This tiny gaming console lets you relive all your nostalgic GameBoy titles in a modern compact design

With a name as mysterious as OBJKT-2, this little gizmo from the mind of designer Sushant Kumar lets you relive all your golden GameBoy memories. Styled to be even smaller than the Analogue Pocket, OBJKT-2 makes classic gaming even more portable, letting you load all your popular GameBoy titles via an SD card, and even add modules that enhance your gaming experience. The little device is roughly the size of a GameBoy Color cartridge but sports a vivid color display that measures roughly 2.2-inch diagonally, and two thumbsticks on the bottom that can independently be used as a D-pad and XYAB keys, as well as two shoulder keys on the upper left and right corner. For good measure, the OBJKT-2 even has a USB-C and 3.5mm port crammed into its base, making it the most feature-dense console for its incredibly compact size.

The compact little gaming console can be used independently, as shown above, but also supports a nifty set of modules that enhance the gaming experience. The first two modules fit right into the two tiny joysticks, giving them much more surface area and making them a lot more comfortable to rest your thumbs on for long gameplays. As an added bonus, the USB-C port on the bottom lets you plug in an extra battery pack so you can go for hours without worrying about losing progress to a low battery. The battery pack even supports pass-through charging in case you plan on stretching your gameplay to the maximum limits. (that Super Mario speed run record isn’t going to beat itself)

The name OBJKT-2 begs the question – where’s OBJKT-1? Well, the console is a part of Sushant’s experimental TINY OBJECTS series (OBJKT-1 is a retromodern speaker about the size of a keycap, with a gear-shaped volume ring on the side). For now, the TINY OBJECTS series is just a 3D modeling and rendering exercise within Blender (Sushant is also selling NFTs on the side), although who said we can’t be optimistic about a prototype in the near future? You can follow Sushant aka SooshiPasta on Instagram for more.

Designer: Sushant Kumar

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This PlayStation 6 concept is a minimalistic gaming console Sony could design in the near future

Sony PlayStation 6 is still a long way away from release but it could take a detour from the stylized look of the PlayStation 5, and go for a minimalistic design language tracing back to the roots!

When it comes to hotness, the current generation PlayStation ranks way high up above the Xbox Series X and Series S. The flowing design with those futuristic cues, makes the PS5 a staple for hardcore gamers who are particular about how their gadgets look. The sales number also suggests that Sony’s gaming console is ahead by almost 5.4 million units with total sales in the last 13 months to be 15.28 million. The Xbox Series S sold 9.84 million units globally during this period.

It is obvious we look forward to the release of the next winning gaming console by Sony which is speculated for a 2026 release date. The development of the PlayStation 5 started off in 2015 and then was released in November 2020. So, it is safe to assume, the PlayStation 6 is already in development and it is going to be another winner on our hands. While nobody knows how the gaming console from Sony will look, this concept by She Yin gives us an idea. The designer deems it as a PlayStation 5 console concept design practice, but this is the perfect opportunity to assume the design of the PS6 console.

Looking more like a turntable, the concept design has a semblance of the old PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3 design aesthetics. Going back to the more geometric form factor with profoundly bigger vents attributed to the better thermal cooling system. The game disk slots in right at the top just like the first PlayStation, adding that nostalgic feel to the gaming console in the near future when it is released. Minimalism seems to take precedence here as the console bears an all-white or black form factor – having elements only the elements that are required. The connecting ports and the power toggle button is on the front to get going with the gaming action without moving away from the cozy comforts of the couch.

Designer: She Yin

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Next-gen PlayStation Portable is bad news for Nintendo Switch

I cannot forget the countless hours of gaming on the PSP when hours seemed to pass like minutes. The mere idea of playing high-end games like Killzone: Liberation or Gran Turismo on a portable handheld console was like a dream come true back then. The PSP-1000 and the last version PSP Street – both got discontinued after the holiday season of 2014. It was the end of a glorious era for Sony who has taken a strong grip on the gaming market with the bigger PlayStation consoles. The PlayStation 5 being the current generation, and one of the most powerful and good-looking in the entire line-up.

When my creative bits are churning up in my head, the odd time or two I wondered about a modern handheld PSP that could level up on the performance being offered by the gaming phones like Asus ROG Phone 5, Red Magic 6S Pro and the just-released IQOO 9 Pro. A dedicated Nintendo Switch-like Sony handheld, which I have so many fond memories of from the yesteryears. Designer Andrea Gallarini and Nicola Pezzotti have just made my wish come true in the form of a 2022 PlayStation Portable that elevates to the new era of portable gaming in style. They’ve preserved the classic features of the popular gadget, and mashed up the sharp lines and shapes to appeal to Generation Z users.

As per the designers, they’ve preserved elegance as the key element without overshadowing the ergonomics, functionality and aesthetics. The gadget gets an ultra-HD OLED screen for immersive visual gameplay elements and the thermal management is taken care of via the front grid ventilation. The overall design bears the PlayStation 5 and Dualsense resemblance in the buttons, directional pad and the right and left sticks. To keep up the overall user experience, there are dual surround sound speakers and volume toggle buttons.

The wireless charging pad sandwiches the PSP in profound style and has the obvious PlayStation 5 inspiration that I absolutely vouch for. Since we are talking of a 2022 gadget, online gameplay is given precedence. The PSP concept gets full PlayStation Connect compatibility – opening up a wide library of playable titles that can be enjoyed with other PSP users or even a buddy who’s on the bigger PS5 console and DualSense controller. The option to use the handheld console as a controller while the visuals are outputted to a big TV screen is also possible.

Would I go for a handheld gaming console like this one if it becomes a reality someday – if Sony is already considering one? Of course, with both hands – that combo of black and off-white on the front and rear of the gadget is an invitation enough!

Designer: Andrea Gallarini and Nicola Pezzotti

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