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Turning an old toy into a new game system.
You may remember receiving Game Boy Color toys in your Burger King meals back in the early 2000s. They were plastic and, like most fast food toys, pretty much useless with sparse analog content.
Thanks to some clever engineering with Raspberry Pi, that Burger King toy could now be turned into a playable handheld game system.
Reddit user ChaseLambeth shared photos of his recently acquired vintage Burger King Game Boy Color that now does more than just switch between game characters. It’s built with a Raspberry Pi Zero, a two-inch LCD screen you can get on Adafruit, and the RetroPie game emulator.
ChaseLambeth said he snagged the updated Game Boy for $250 from someone he met on Instagram. But he’s been working on a prototype of something similar for the last couple of months.
In a comment, ChaseLambeth his own project remains unfinished because the back of the device was too small to fit everything inside, but he did manage to get a working prototype with the technical guts spilling out the back.
There are a ton of gaming mods that use Raspberry Pi; one man used the Pi Zero to modify his Game Boy with a customized cartridge pack and modern game emulator. He documented it all for other makers to try out themselves.
But ChaseLambeth’s purchase might be the first one that successfully uses the tiny computer to bring an old plastic toy to life, and fits all the pieces together nicely.
Selena Larson is a technology reporter based in San Francisco who writes about the intersection of technology and culture. Her work explores new technologies and the way they impact industries, human behavior, and security and privacy. Since leaving the Daily Dot, she's reported for CNN Money and done technical writing for cybersecurity firm Dragos.