Playdate preorders begin next month, and here are the first games

Panic has announced that the Playdate, its $179 handheld console with a crank and a black-and-white screen, will be available to preorder in July with shipping starting later in the year. The company doesn’t have a specific date lined up just yet, but says it’ll provide at least a week’s notice before orders open.

Panic is doing its best to avoid a PS5/RTX 3080-type stock situation by implementing its own ordering system. “The sooner you order, the sooner you’ll get one, but we’re not going to close the door on you,” says co-founder Cabel Sasser in a video update.

The company is also announcing an adorable stereo dock accessory for the Playdate, which makes it look like an old TV and works as both a Bluetooth speaker and a pen holder. Panic hasn’t given pricing or release information for the dock yet.

Finally, Panic has announced 21 out of the 24 titles that will feature in the Playdate’s first “season.” Details are intentionally being kept secret until each game is automatically downloaded onto the device; owners will get two games a week over 12 weeks.

And here’s the list of games and their developers:

Crankin’s Time Travel Adventure by uvula (Keita Takahashi, Ryan Mohler), Matthew Grimm, and Shaun Inman
Battleship Godios by TPM.Co Soft Works.
Casual Birder by Diego Garcia with music by Max Coburn
DemonQuest 85 by Alex Ashby, Lawrence Bishop, Duncan Fyfe, Belinda Leung, and Jared Emerson-Johnson
Echoic Memory by Samantha Kalman, Everest Pipkin, Carol Mertz, and Rachelle Viola
Executive Golf DX by davemakes
Flipper Lifter by Serenity Forge
Forrest Byrnes: Up in Smoke by Nels Anderson and Christina “castpixel” Neofotistou
Hyper Meteor by Vertex Pop (Mobeen Fikree, Robby Duguay, and h heron)
Lost Your Marbles by Sweet Baby Inc. & Friends
Omaze by Gregory Kogos
Pick Pack Pup by Nic Magnier and Arthur Hamer with music by Logan Gabriel
Questy Chess by Dadako
Ratcheteer by Shaun Inman, Matthew Grimm, and Charlie Davis
Sasquatchers by Chuck Jordan with music and sound by Jared Emerson-Johnson
Snak by Zach Gage with art by Neven Mrgan
Spellcorked! by Jada Gibbs, Nick Splendorr, Ryan Splendorr, and Tony Ghostbrite with music by A Shell in the Pit (Em Halberstadt)
Zipper by Bennett Foddy
Saturday Edition by Chris Makris with music by A Shell in the Pit (Gord McGladdery, Alfonso Salinas)
Whitewater Wipeout by Chuhai Labs (Giles Goddard, Mark Lentz, Peter Traylor, Hero Liao, Remy Thor, Charlie March, Kensaku Nakata, Zach Aikman, Mihoko Terao, and Kinsey Burke)

The Playdate has had a long road to market. It was first announced in May 2019, and we got our first look at the console itself the following month.