A new day, a new handheld. It’s amazing how they are still so popular, especially with smartphones that are as powerful as they are.
Okay, you got me. I’m still using a 5 year old Huawei, but nevertheless- It’s an ORANGE handheld. Or is it? In all honesty, it’s the same colour as a capsule from the inside of a Kinder Egg, and on the surface, it looks incredible plain and bare.
But who cares, right? Well- many do apparently! Especially when you hear the cries of the masses of RP2+ owners screaming “It’s the SAME!”… We can say without a doubt, that they are completely incorrect with that assumption. This one sports a higher resolution (750×1334), wider screen (16:9), different buttons, absolutely zero charm, and to top it off the yellow of a Kinder Egg Capsule… But is it worth it’s cost over the RP2+? YES!
The RP3 uses Android 11, and with the unit we bought (3GB), it is really snappy. Unfortunately this unit requires quite a bit of setting up. The Retroid Pocket 3 arrives blank, with only Android 11- and on first boot it helps you choose and install some preinstalled apk files. Much like if you got a computer with a clean install of Windows, then a buddy installs some programs and then yells, “There you go, catch you later!” whilst running out of the front door. Uh… Thanks… I guess? An Emulation Station style build where you could just pop in your roms from the get-go would be much more simpler.
So what systems CAN it run? Pretty much anything up to a PSP! We did have issues with upscaling re: Capcom Vs. SNK 2 on Dreamcast / Naomi, but for the most part- it was smooth sailing. We had Nine Fingers (Amiga) running at 100% speed, and even a Wii game worked fine!
To top it off, streaming from a computer also worked REALLY well. The 16:9 highish resolution display helped us stream pretty much any PC game we had in our Steam library.
Outside of “Time setting up” being a major issue, there was another minor annoyance. As this system uses Android, it has a little more system latency than normal. Luckily for most, this is barely noticeable on this handheld, but it is definitely present.
To conclude, this handheld is actually really decent for the price. The major tipping point is if you want to spend a few hours in setting it all up. It’s not that it’s difficult, but more of an annoyance, and in our opinion, the handheld should be in a more “ready state” as soon as it hits the door.
Video review @ https://youtu.be/vhKhki2GWlk