Our best retro handhelds list could be getting bigger and bigger by the day due to the Game Kiddy 350H handheld being officially available on AliExpress. This is a handheld created by Game Kiddy, a well known brand in China who create toys and electronics and is a competitors to Bittboy and Retro Game. It’s available here for $80.
Before we get into the juicy details of the Game Kiddy 350H we need to mention that this handheld is currently incredibly hard to get hold of, with a small amount of units available in its first batch, so be quick if you want one! Just like the Retro Game 350 the company has only made a handful of units at the current time of this article, this is just to get a taste of the market, and to see if there’s actual demand. We are certain many will pick up the GKD 350H but unfortunately they’ve missed the Christmas surge, so sales might be lower than anticipated.
The handheld starts at $79.99 which is towards the higher and of the spectrum seeing as it can do exactly what other cheaper handhelds can do. It’s running OpenDingux OS and has the same menus and settings as other retro handhelds that you’ve probably seen or used.
The design of the GKD 350H is incredibly basic, and resembles that of the new Bittboy Pocket Go V2 just with two shoulder buttons and a little on the thick side. The face of the GKD 350H is plain, but we love that, and respect them for not splashing their logo on the face of it for promotion. It has a D-Pad, an analogue slider, ABXY buttons, start/select, a speaker grill and some LED’s on the front. It comes in a number of different variants too, yellow, blue, grey and our favourite, transparent. The colours make the handheld look like something you find in an arcade machine and for us, actually makes the handheld look incredibly cheap.
On the top of the GKD 350H you have your two shoulder buttons which look quite comfortable, a headphone jack which will most likely double up as an AV out, a SD card slot, your on/off button and… a micro USB port, no USB-C port which goes to show the corners they’ve cut and how slightly outdated this handheld already is. But in reality this isn’t a problem, it just as a retro gaming critic we respect these companies moving forward with the latest technology. We have about a million Micro USB cables in our flat, so we’ll be fine!
You can also see the the designers of the GKD 350H has gone for a curved aesthetic for the shell. It shows on the top around the shoulder buttons, this will certainly increase comfortability and play time, unlike the Gameboy 1UP XL which will give you paper cuts. If anything, it’s a very clean looking handheld, one that you minimalists will love, but the coloured variants are putting us off. Many will moan about the lack of another analogue stick, but as we mention in most of our reviews, you’ll rarely use it, and the loss of one is barely noticeable. But, it would’ve been nice to have four shoulder buttons, perhaps that will come in the next edition.
Game Kiddy 350 Specifications
The Game Kiddy 350H is slightly more powerful than its similar friends, such as the upcoming Bittboy Pocket Go V2. It comes with a 3.5″ IPS LCD display with a resolution of 320×240 pixels and an aspect ration of 4:3. It has a MIPS 1.5GHZ processor which is known for high performance and low power consumption, so the battery life should be more than enough for your average retro gamer. Obviously it comes with a SD/TF card slot for your gameboy emulator and more.
Because it has a 1.5GHZ processor it actually makes it one of the most powerful “under $100” retro handhelds on the market, and this is why most people will pick it up. Others in this price range play PS1 ROM’s “ok”, but where the GKD 350H might prevail is playing Playstation 1 ROMs perfectly. It has the power, and the 128MB of RAM will help too, so hopefully when we get hold of it for our review, it will smash the Retro Game 350 out of the park, but who knows, until then we can only dream.
Inside you are greeted with a 2300MAH battery life, which will get you a 5+ hours of game time on one charge, enough to keep you going on a rainy day. The screen sits into the shell which we also like, and because of that and the slim, sliding analogue stick you can put this in your pocket without snagging parts of the handheld, which is something a lot of content creators fail to mention.
It’s coming to the market at a brilliant time, just as the RG 350 and the Pocket Go V2 has landed, even though it’s the same size as them both, it’s much more powerful meaning even more fluid gameplay, it will be good to see how well this sells, do customers really want a few extra frames on their PS1 emulation? Will it prevail over the incredible build quality of the RF350? Who knows.
From the picture above you can see most of the emulators it can play, such as GB, GBA, MD, NES, SENS, MAME, PS1, SMS and a lot more. We can’t discuss how well it performs because we have yet to review this retro handheld, but we can imagine it can play most it can chuck at it apart from your N64 and Dreamcast because well, those need a much better CPU.
All that we can say at the moment is this is most certainly a competitor to Retro Game and Bittboy, but appearance wise it’s not our favourite, and this is where Game Kiddy might lose a few customers. You can be sure we’ll have a full review and more information here once we get hold of the unit. Are you interested in this handheld, or is the Game Kiddy 350H not tickling your taste buds, then perhaps the Digi Dock might? Let us know on Twitter @retro_dodo!
You can buy the GKD 350H here on AliExpress for $79.99.