They’re back: handheld game consoles get trendy again in Vietnam

By Bao Nam   October 25, 2018 | 10:15 pm PT
The compact consoles with built-in games are a hot item again, avidly sought online by many Vietnamese youth and others.

Sup, like Sup X Game Box, Sup Mini Game Player, Sup Game Box... these and other consoles are back on the rack, their popularity spreading through social media networks as well as e-commerce sites in Vietnam.

Handhel game consoles Sup are being sought after by many in Vietnam

Handheld game consoles like Sup are popular again in Vietnam.

Sup, with its 3-inch colour screen, allows users to play classic Nintendo games like Contra, Mario, Tank and Pacman.

The device features basic control systems including volume control wheel, power button, D-pad, ABXY buttons, “Select”, “Start” and “Reset” buttons. A complete set includes a console, Lithium battery, a USB cable and an AV cable. It comes in variety of colors like green, red and yellow.

The number of built-in games range from 168 to 1,000. However, many of the games might overlap. The number of built-in games varies depending on packages offered by the manufacturer or the originally installed memory card.

The Sup consoles have become popular among young people, as well as those born in 80s or 70s who are nostalgic about them. Many people say the device reminds them of their childhood, playing games on NES, Playstation and Nintendo DS.

Lam, a 30-year-old HCMC resident, said he had ordered the device as soon as he saw it advertised on Facebook.

“It’s compact, and you can play all the classic games whenever you want. However, the buttons are a little hard, and the screen is small, so it feels uncomfortable when used for a long time. Also, the small details are harder to see than when you play on big TV screen.”

Hanoian Hoang Anh, 25, has bought two consoles, one for himself and one for his girlfriend. He said: “It reminds me of when I used to skip school to play games at the arcade. The device is small so it’s easy to carry around, and can be played at any time.”

There are different version of Sup available with differnet design and the number of built- in games. 

Different versions of Sup with different designs and number of built-in games are available in the market.

All of the devices are from China, with prices ranging from VND300,000 ($12.85) to VND500,000 ($21.41), depending on the type of screen (TFT or LCD) and battery (700mAh or 1.020mAh).

A few models of Sup released recently, selling at VND777,000 ($33.29), come with external memory cards that allow users to add games, music, movies and e-books.

The built-in games collection in these consoles include those played on Playstation, like Chocobo Racing, Contra Rambo, or those on Nintendo DS, like Pokemon. Although these games have been “revised” to suit the handheld console, they still retain the original content.

A new version of Sup which have not only games from Nintendo but also from Playstation and Nintendo DS

A new version of Sup that has games from Nintendo, Playstation and Nintendo DS

Tuan, a shop owner who’s also selling Sup on Facebook, said users need to carefully check the device to avoid paying too much for a poor quality product. Screen, battery life and the sensitivity of buttons are three things that users need to pay attention to when buying, he said.

People should also be careful while charging the device. In particular, users should not play on the device while charging, since the lithium battery is prone to flaring up or exploding, especially when it is manufactured in China, he said.

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