Introduction: Arduino Based Handheld Game Console (now With Open Source Modular Engine)

About: Just a beginner.

I made this handheld a year ago. Now I want to share this project if someone else would like to build it.


I started coding a new, much more modular engine based on the handheld project. I moved to Visual Studio 2017 and it's just so much better. You can find the code here:

Step 1: Hardware

First step is to build the hardware. This design is really simple. All you need is an Arduino, screen and 9 buttons. Here's the list of all parts:

  • prototyping PCB (with dotted copper)
  • Arduino Nano
  • SSD1306 OLED-screen with SPI-interface
  • 9 pcs of 6x6x6 mm buttons
  • Female headers if you want to reuse the Arduino and OLED
  • Wires to connect the pins
  • Soldering stuff for soldering (obviously)
  • Rechargeable battery (If you want, it isn't necessary. I recommend using JST XH 2.5-2 pin connector for the battery. Also you might want to use the TP4056 charging and protection circuit.

How to connect the pins:

Connect the buttons like this:

  • Up = A4
  • Left = D3
  • Down = D5
  • Right = D4
  • X = A2
  • Y = A3
  • B = A0
  • A = A1
  • Q = D2

Connect the OLED like this

  • GND -> GND
  • VCC -> 3,3 V
  • D0 -> D13 (clock)
  • D1 -> D11 (data)
  • RES -> D8
  • DC -> D6
  • CS -> D7

Step 2: Software

I coded some pretty crappy games for the console. If you want, you can check the old code from my GitHub:

The new engine project can be found here:

Mushroom_mcp_continued_v10_converted is the one with these six games. There's also a tilengine_demo; I tried to make the tile-engine modular but it got a bit over my knowledge. I managed to make the drawing algorithms work, but I'm pretty sure I can't finish it by myself. I'll just share it to all of you if you want to try your skills with it.