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PAX West 2016: O.U.R. System

O.U.R. System is the ultimate in nextgen console platform experence with unheard of graphics and interdeplayability! 4k audio! VR motion feedback! With O.U.R. System, the future is a thing of the past!

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O.U.R. System was a pastiche on a few gaming console related idioms, including demoing without a booth guerrilla marketing, the race for higher graphical resolution, and bombastic press releases filled with breathless superlatives.  In actuality, it was a Raspberry Pi running RetroPie inside of a cardboard box.  We had a few classic 8-bit multiplayer games on it which we had people play while we pointed out the amazing visual fidelity, incredible real-time communication, cutting edge cardboard engineering, and all other manner of nonsense with the goal of directing people to our website to pre-order (now defunct, but was https://our-system.com/).

We had a lot of positive feedback, both from people who thought we were actually trying to sell the thing and from people who got the joke.  Everyone seemed to get a lot of enjoyment out of playing the games themselves, and curious onlookers were entertained by our running commentary on the features of the console.

On a technical level, we legitimately achieved some surprising technical feats.  The box itself, while engineered from cardboard, was structured to hold a Raspberry Pi, microprojector, usb hub, and rechargeable battery pack all in a compact form factor that still afforded access to the components for on the spot technical issue resolution.  The software was laboriously customized both to stay on brand and to limit the console functions available to potential demoees (link to github fork https://github.com/peetsnack/EmulationStation).