Doom Handheld Can Let You Hand Crank The Deadly Chaingun

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Doom Handheld

The 1993 classic Doom will be ported to every console, eventually. You can now add the Playdate, a yet-to-be-released micro-console that will come with a crank.

Nic Magnier, a game developer, posted a new video on Twitter revealing a version of Doom running on the Playdate. In follow-up tweets, Magnier told that his source port was created using the embedded devices fork of Chocolate Doom. In the tweet, showing off black-and-white Doom doing some serious damage with the chaingun, Magnier said this was the first playable version of the famous retro shooter on the Playdate. Considering the handheld console isn’t released yet, and only a few devs have access, that seems quite likely.

Magnier told Kotaku that fixing together this portable version of Doom took about 15 hours. It was a private project of his, something he tweaked whenever he had some free time. Porting went smoothly, he explained, because the Doom engine is very easy to work with. The first idea to port Doom to Playdate came up during discussions he had with other devs working with the handheld gaming device.

“I naturally asked if it would be possible to run Doom. We talked about it but no one really had time to work on it,” Magnier told Kotaku via Twitter DM. He had never worked on a Doom port before and found getting a ‘90s shooter running on such a strange device to be an interesting problem. “[However], the real challenge [was porting] Doom to a black-and-white screen.”

The Playdate was announced in May 2019. It is being produced by publisher and app developer Panic, and on the website, it says it will be shipping sometime this year. The handheld gadget is currently only available to developers, but when it will hit the market it will be easy to mod and tweak, with Panic is saying every Playdate is essentially a dev kit.

Magnier hopes developers don’t just port a lot of things to Playdate, even if it is pretty simple. “I hope to mainly see fresh, fun, and quirky games, not ports,” said Magnier. But because the Playdate will be open to anyone when it releases, not just for devs, Magnier admits that what games get created for the device will be completely based on what people want to make. And that might mean many ports of classic games.


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