Whether you’re an avid collector or happen to have a stack of old cartridges and discs in the loft, the Polymega may pique your interest. Designed as the one retro console to rule them all, this modular system has optional add-ons for NES, SNES, Genesis (Megadrive), or TurboGrafx that can accommodate the original cartridges and controllers from those systems. The large black base unit Polymega also plays Sega Saturn, PlayStation, Sega CD, TurboGrafx-CD, and Neo Geo CDs. The controller most resembles a DualShock pad, but the modules each come with an authentic-feeling version of the original gamepad—they even offer a light gun.
Build quality is excellent, and the software emulation is impressive, with time saves and screen-filtering options. I tested the Super module after dusting off my old Super Mario World and Donkey Kong Country carts, and it has been a blast introducing my kids to these classics. When you first insert a cart or disc, you get the option to run it or install it to the internal storage (it has 32 GB out of the box, but you can expand with an SD card or SSD), which is great for enthusiasts who want to preserve their collections. The carousel menu is slick, with box art, screenshots, and descriptions for each game. Real estate under the TV is at a premium, so replacing multiple systems with a single box is appealing. It comes with a handful of obscure titles preinstalled, but it only makes sense for gamers with large physical game libraries right now.
Developer Playmaji had a tough time realizing this console, and orders can take a while to ship. What’s here already is impressive, and there’s an N64 module coming. If Playmaji can work out a way to offer its library of classic titles to buy and download, this could be the ultimate retro console, but it is certainly not cheap.