ZPG A1 Unicorn handheld aims to play PS2 games perfectly on the go

ZPG A1 Unicorn colour variants

ZPG A1 Unicorn colour variants

The retro handheld market has been growing at an exponential rate, and now the ZPG A1 Unicorn is the latest addition to the crowded space, supposedly capable of PS2 emulation.

There aren’t too many details out in the wild about this intriguing bit of kit, but what we do have to go off is an announcement video from middleman distributor RetroCN stating a bunch of the handheld’s specs.

First off, let’s talk about its emulation capabilities. It is suggested by this video that it will play titles all the way up to the PS2 era. Games such as God of War and Resident Evil 4 are showcased as being playable but there’s no confirmation as to what ballpark frame rates we can expect.

Naturally, what this also means is that systems released prior to the Sony behemoth will also be tackled by the A1 Unicorn. The newer 3DS is also implied to work nicely, with Mario Kart being the poster boy, but at what frame rates is yet to be made clear.

What’s most interesting about this device is the screen. As you can see from the video, it’s a little different from most on the market being square instead of the more rectangular 4:3 or 16:9 aspect ratios.

ZPG A1 Unicorn white console
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Credit: RetroCN

This enables more real estate for dual-screen emulation but it does seem like an odd choice for most other systems. Even the native resolution of the PS1 for example is 4:3, not exactly the 1:1 you’re dealing with here, never mind if you want to enter widescreen format.

As for the battery life, it sports a 4500 mAh battery which is certainly respectable, offering multiple hours of use. Compared to the more powerful Steam Deck or the ASUS ROG Ally, while it won’t be playing AAA titles, you’ll receive more playtime per charge.

Finally, there will be three colours on launch - white, purple, and black, with the latter two appearing to have that nice semi-transparent effect on the shell.

More details are set to be released in late December so stay tuned for more information on this potential mould-breaking retro handheld.

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