How to buy a Playdate in Australia

Crank it!

Fergus Halliday
Digital Content Editor
Read More
March 22, 2022
2 min read

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The Playdate might not be able to compete with Steam Deck when it comes to specs, but getting your hands on a Playdate in Australia can be just as tricky.

To help, here’s a quick round-up of everything you need to know before you buy a Playdate in Australia.

What is the Playdate?

The Playdate is a handheld gaming console designed and produced by a company called Panic. The device boasts a Gameboy-inspired form-factor with a 400 × 240 resolution screen and a nifty crank-based interface. 

Due to the limited specs and unique hardware setup, the Playdate only runs games that have been exclusively developed for it. All Playdate owners receive a “season” of games for no additional cost, with new titles dropping each week.

"Playdate is not just a platform, it’s a complete experience: brand new games, delivered over time, directly to the device. These games have been created by some of today’s most exciting indie developers—some you’ve heard of, and some you haven’t."

Playdate Australian launch details

According to the Panic website, the Playdate will begin shipping out in late 2022 to early adopters based in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland. 

According to the Playdate website, availability for additional countries (such as Malaysia) may be added over time.

Playdate Australian availability

Panic is currently taking preorders for the Playdate from select regions ahead of a wider release. 

Fortunately for Aussies, this shortlist includes Australia. Rather than have to wait as with the Steam Deck, Sydneysiders and Melbournians have the chance to be in the first wave of consumers to get their hands on the Panic’s crank-based console. 

Aussies looking to get their hands on a Playdate can preorder one via the official website right now. However, if you’re considering ordering a unit, it’s worth keeping in mind that it might take a while to arrive.

Panic is shipping out Playdate devices as they arrive from the factory, and a preorder made today might not be fulfilled until as late as the second half of 2022.

As for whether the Playdate will be available via other channels, like local retailers or resellers, the odds don’t look good. Given the device’s niche appeal, it’s hard to imagine JB Hi-Fi or EB Games rushing out to range the unit locally. 

For now and for the foreseeable future, Playdate is probably going to remain one of those gadgets you can only get by buying direct.

How to buy a Playdate in Australia

If you’re ready to jump on the retro gaming bandwagon and pick up a Playdate for yourself, the process of buying a Playdate in Australia is fairly straightforward. 

Step 1. Visit https://shop.play.date

Step 2. Click on the preorder button

Step 3. Scroll down and add the Playdate (and any accessories) to your shopping cart

Step 4. Proceed to checkout and fill out your payment and shipping details

Playdate Australian prices

While the Playdate is currently available to preorder in Australia, it doesn’t have a local price-point to speak of. Early adopters will have to pay for their device in US dollars. At the time of writing, the Playdate console would cost Australians roughly $240 by itself, or $266 for the console and cover case bundle.

Here’s what pricing for the Playdate looks like:

  • US$179 for the Playdate
  • US$199 for the Playdate and a cover case 
  • US$29 for the cover case
Fergus Halliday
Written by
Fergus Halliday
Fergus Halliday is a Digital Content Editor for Reviews.org who specialises in technology, entertainment, gaming and pop culture. His work has been published in Gizmodo, Kotaku, Press Start Australia, The AU Review, Screen Rant, Superjump and more. You can follow him on Twitter.

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