Raspberry Pi announced their entry into the microcontroller chip and dev board market today with the Raspberry Pi Pico, a $4 board with interesting IO and a couple of ARM Cortex-M0 cores. As part of the announcement of this new ecosystem, fellow UK company Pimoroni announced a game dev board based on it, the PicoSystem. I’m not sure if the almost 60 GBP price is a placeholder, as that seems quite expensive compared with similar systems. The physical design looks pretty good, with a 240x240 color screen, four-way pad, and four buttons.
I know nothing about gaming but if they expect a community to contribute any significant proportion of the games software to this “system” I hope they have made it easy to “do” colour displays.
The Raspberry Pi Pico looks very interesting especially for it’s price. I also like it’s 1.8-5.5V power range which makes it easy to power from different types of batteries.
Pimoroni’s PicoSystem a bit less. It’s kind of a PyGamer / PyBadge but a bit beefier.
Maximum is 3.63V (which is a bit to low for LiPo batteries with a 4.2V full charge voltage).
Edit: Sorry, I’ve been looking at the datasheet for the processor, not the board. 1.8V - 5.5V is correct. However, the I/O pins are limited to the lesser of 3.63V and the supply voltage. Or maybe the supply regulator has boost capabilities (in which case I/O is still limited to max. 3.63V)?
Edit 2: Yes, it does have a buck/boost regulator to provide a constant 3.3V to the circuitry. Very nice
Yah as noted in a tweet I sent out this is exactly the reason why I didn’t want to build out a new version because its only a small matter of time before some big dawg comes in and eats my lunch.
Perhaps more importantly, they’d better have actually set up a place for a ‘community’ to actually form. Even a meek ‘subreddit’ is better than expecting people to organise themselves, though personally I think a proper forum is always best. Even if something is easy to program, you need somewhere to herd the cats.
Good documentation is also paramount.
There is a nice getting started page. I’ve become even more enthusiastic browsing through some of the docs and preordered a couple of boards.
So lets trash that Raspberi Pi Compu Mod idea and talk Arduboy
This is bound to have a wide range of adoption. Adafruit is planning on having it in feather form so this makes an arduboy feather wing even more viable.
If it’s possible to get the chip by itself I’d probably even be keen to just straight up swap out the 32u4 and use the current hardware… and I guess a usb-c port?
I dunno, feather wing sounds solid idea.
I’ve got my hands full trying to deal with the trademark issue in china and get the production finished before that causes any issues for exporting.
I ordered 5 today pico chips today, quite keen to give getting Arduboy running on this a go