Inspired by an enthusiast’s computer render, there is now a Nintendo GameCube that is much easier to carry around.
On Twitter, GingerOfMods wrote that the portable GameCube was based on a fake image that had been circulating on the Internet for fifteen years. So the inspiration came from a fictional machine, although there is a bit of trickery involved. The hardware is not taken from a Nintendo GameCube, but from its successor, the Nintendo Wii, although the Wii’s backwards compatibility has made its ‘guts’ into an easily portable platform.
In the video below, GingerOfOz (different name, we know) explained what motivated him to create the portable GameCube. He had previously made a Wii in a Game Boy’s case, so he has experience. “When I first saw this portable GameCube mockup years and years ago, my immediate thought was ‘I need this’, of course, that was a difficult thing to grapple with because this thing is very fake… I think that’s lame,” he said. So he contacted the image’s creator, but this search was not easy, as in the early to mid-2000s, source attribution was not yet widespread.
He finally found the person: Demond, a designer, had created the image purely for fun, which eventually led to a tangible result. The designer has also worked for Ubisoft, Epic Games and Squanch Games. But why did the modder base it on Wii hardware? It’s simple: it consumes less power than the GameCube, and it’s easier to customise with a simple design, whereas the GC would have required more expensive equipment.
There is one difference: Demond’s picture included an optical drive on the portable GameCube, but this was left out of the modded hardware, which left it much smaller. You can put a disc in, but you can’t run anything from it. But this slight discrepancy can be forgiven, as no one would have thought that someone would create an authentic, workable result…