Portable Kits?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Gonjona, Jan 8, 2018.


Should this become a thing?

  1. Portablizers should learn all on their own

    8 vote(s)
  2. This is cool

    5 vote(s)
  1. Gonjona .

    May 7, 2017
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    So I thought of this today, but wouldn't it be interesting to make full kits for portables? Some sort of semi-mass produced case, buttons, etc. It would be a great way for new portablizers to start out, and to understand how all the parts work and what they do. I'd like to hear what the community thinks.
  2. GingerOfOz send waluigi memes Staff Member . . .

    Dec 16, 2016
    Likes Received:
    The Oregon Wildlands
    This idea has been brought up and discussed on a couple of occasions, and there are a few reasons why this isn't something anyone has done.

    First of all, one of the beautiful parts of portablizing is the uniqueness of everything. While Gman can crank out 4 of the same portable over the course of a couple of weeks, there are virtually no identical portables between people. The only one I can think of is Gman's and Shank's Pwii pockets. It's really awesome to see people design their own cases and esign things on their own, but this element would be completely lost with portable kits.

    Secondly, a universal portable kits wouldn't be all that great because everyone wants their own different tweaks. GameCube buttons? DS buttons? Wii U gamepad buttons? 5 inch screen? 4 inch scree? 7 inch screen? 3DS sliders? Real joysticks? Everyone is going to want everything g just a little bit differently, and designing 50 different cases for a person to choose from is pretty impractical. Even if you restricted it down to say three different options, you'd still probably end up perfectly accommodating no one.

    Additionally, no one in the community is really in a great spot to do this. You'd need to build up a decent amount of capital and interest from other people in order to make this a reality, and then you'd have the same issue with people wanting different things.

    And lastly, I'm not sure how much this would actually help new members of the community. They'd have to make this big, single purchase, which generally people don't want to do, and then there's still a decent amount of skill that goes into just assembling a portable. Odds are that some people would kill a motherboard, or melt a part of their case with their soldering iron, or be using a $10 RadioShack iron and be mad that nothing goes together like it should. This would mean that the person running the rodeo would have to take orders for replacement parts, get money from whoever is having problems, and likely have to answer a lot of questions. And also, learning skills like case design and fine soldering is really great! When I first started, I really, really wished there was a portablizing kit like what you're suggesting. But now, I'm very glad that there wasn't a ready made kit for me to buy when I started, because I've gotten to learn all of these things, make mistakes, and grow all on my own. If I had been handed a ready-to-go kit, I would have broken so many things, and wasted so much money. By doing it piece by piece, I saved myself a lot of frustration.

    Now this isn't to say that such an event is impossible. Downing has hinted at what I believe is a trial run of something like you're suggesting, where he gave N64P kits to some people and they are building their portables off of what he has given them. I just don't feel like anyone here has the resources or interest in undertaking such a large scale project in making portable kits, but I do understand where you're coming from.
    Madmorda, Gman, Stitches and 2 others like this.
  3. Doom Modelrater Staff Member . . Estmemed Member .

    Feb 17, 2016
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    Always 1/2
    We can hardly get new users to buy recommended parts from the BOM over cheaper parts we already know are inferior so I doubt kits would do all that well ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  4. Downing .

    Apr 5, 2016
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    Very valid points across the board guys and it may very well explain why it's taken over 5 years to even get to the point of a pilot program for the idea. But in a couple months, we'll see where the idea stands and if it'll take another 5 to make it work.

    But in all seriousness, the idea of a kit is for someone who is cutting their teeth on a project such as this. These do require skill to make for sure, but if you make a kit that allows for learning that skill on a curve that doesn't frustrate the builder but still challenges them, I think that makes for a much stronger impression and will keep a stronger hold to the builder on the hobby.

    And honestly, if they are just learning than they really aren't going to give a shit about their own "different tweaks" or experimenting with complicated components and such. They want something that is going to work if they put it together right and if those parts are all inclusive and with a decent guide to help and they know that it has worked in the past, they're going to go into the project with a great deal more confidence and use what they were sent to do so.

    Individuality can come later once they get a grasp on the basics and if you don't give them suggestions, just give them the parts you supply, they are going to use them. That's the beauty of a kit really.
    Mistermark likes this.
  5. The Save State Gamer . .

    Jul 9, 2016
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    There are already kit portables coming out in the Raspberry Pi world. Take your Zero, and your DMG case, get this board, solder it, woo you're done.

    But the Pi is already something much less complex unless you try to make it complex. Examples: Using a Teensy and writing extensive code, directly soldering a HDMI screen to the Pi (yes, I did that), USB booting, removing all ports, trimming the board, etc. But it seems to me that most in the Pi portable world don't really care. They just want something quick that will let them play the classics all in a small form factor with some nostalgia crispies added. That's why everyone uses a Zero and a DMG or Advance Gameboy case. Additionally, Pi portables are already substantially cheaper than Wii portables. So easy build, combined with low cost and sameness equals feasible kits.

    And these kits are great for noobs. If you don't understand the basics, pick up one of those kits, and it will definitely teach you something. But Wii portables are just not suited to be in kit format. People want different things with their Wii portables, the cost is higher, and the build is much more complex.

    And that's why there are no Wii kits.

    There is a certain base skill level required for building a Wii portable, and this base is above kits. If people think they need kits to start out, they should go check out the Pi kits. And once that kit portable is complete, then they can come a build a Wii portable with confidence, and save money by destroying fewer components.

    TL;DR: U want kit? U get Pi kit. U want Wii portable? U no get kit.
    Naimlessone and nobble like this.

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