After embarking on a goal of accruing $130,000, the CGW-Zero Open Source Gaming Handheld has successfully completed its Kickstarter fundraising after totaling $238,498 from 1,680 backers.
This Linux-based retro-gaming handheld has been "built by gamers, for gamers" by Game Consoles Worldwide, with its inception based around running classic PC games, homebrew titles, and emulating your favorite classic consoles. Most of all, though, the GCW-Zero was built to provide freedom to the user, allowing them to do more than just consume content. Because it runs Linux, tons of free, open-source software can be installed, and the GCW-Zero team is working on porting popular applications to the device.
Game Consoles Worldwide will also be working closely with open source and homebrew developers to ensure quality content makes its way to the handheld, with the goal of one day creating an app repository similar to Apple's App Store.
The GCW-Zero runs on 512MB of RAM, upgraded from 256MB thanks to Kickstarter, has 16GB internal storage, a 2800 mAH battery and an Ingenic JZ4770 1 GHz MIPS processor. It also has an accelerometer and vibration sensors.
The initial batches of the GCW-Zero have already started to ship, with more scheduled to come from the factory as of this posting. GCW spoke with Destructoid and hopes to have production for the Kickstarter units in full swing after the Chinese New Year, and pre-orders for retail units are said to take place in the next week or so.
GCW plans on having the retail units available in April, with a "tentative" retail price of $140.00-$145.00.