iCade iPad arcade cabinet gets reviewed [video]

We told you that it was coming and now the guys at touch Arcade have got their hands on one to test. The iCade arcade cabinet is an accessory for your iPad; which turns it into a retro arcade machine complete with joystick, six buttons and a glowing coin slot.

The review is very positive right from the build quality down to the actual game play. The iCade is designed predominately for use with Atari’s recent Greatest Hits app and it wasn’t found wanting!

I found tearing through these classic games on the iCade to be everything I'd hoped it to be. On the whole, it's just an awesome experience. Holding the stick in your hand, hearing the switches click open and shut, and mashing the fire buttons is absolutely the way these classic games were meant to be played. A proper stick in your hand beats a virtual D-pad every time.

The device is designed for gaming in portrait mode. If any game needs to be in landscape you do have to take the iPad out of the iCade. It does have a place to sit externally so it is still usable in this way. There is also an API on the way to allow other game developers to use the iCade; developer Manomio has already confirmed support will be coming for its C64 emulator app. Getting other developers onboard is critical for this accessory to really succeed.

The iCade is still available for pre-order at a price of $99. Shipping is currently quoted as June 9th. Take a look at the video after the break. Are any of our readers planning on picking one of these up? Let us know in the comments!

[touchArcade, Think Geek]

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UK editor at iMore, mobile technology lover and air conditioning design engineer.

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Reader comments

iCade iPad arcade cabinet gets reviewed [video]


Put mine together last night. Fantastic build quality. Great weight. Love that there is a slot for the charger if you're running low on juice. A little too much travel on the joystick but that's a nitpick. Looking forward to some more developers getting on board. Hear me Namco!?

I can't recommend this one enough. Played for an hour last night. If you were born in the 70's it's a no brainer.......Bring on the other game makers like Namco, Sega, etc......

Yup. The dock is just a plastic cradle, so it can really fit just about any modern tablet (SDK seems to be iOS only, though). If you play a landscape game with the iPad 2, be sure to remove the Smart Cover first. The orientation doesn't always flip properly and the flimsy cover can cause it to fall out of its groove.

Sounds like fun. Also sounds too expensive.
Finally, where did poster #1 get one when it's still in preorder time?

Thinkgeek.com started taking pre-orders over a month ago so the early folks had theirs start shipping late last week.

Dam tempest. Wow now I feel old now. I ordered mine in april still have not received it. I'm getting everything else I order from thinkgeek but this. Let's get hot GEEK.

"It does have a place to sit externally so it is still usable in this way."
Whaaaaat???!? Does this mean you CAN use it in landscape mode?