Evercade Handheld Review – Cartridge Nostalgia

The Evercade retro handheld maxes out on nostalgic value that takes you straight back to the Nintendo 3DS days. This is because it uses the classic cartridges for video games which are sold separately. This also removes any potential question marks of legality over free video game ROMs.  

The handheld console costs only $70 and takes on some heavy competition from other Chinese brands that offer impressive quality for cheap, such as Anbernic and LDK devices.  

The $70 is only for the handheld and you will have to pay about $20 separately for game cartridges that contain 6 to 20 games. The affordable price combined with the console’s nostalgic value make for an attractive combination to those who are looking to relive their childhood days with the Nintendo 3DS, Atari, Nintendo 64, etc.  

The console only falls short with its limited variety of game cartridges available, an average build quality, and a cartridge slot that is the opposite of smooth.  


  • Display: 4.3-inch LCD, 480×272 pixels resolution, 16:9 aspect ratio  
  • CPU: 1.2GHz Cortex-A7 
  • Battery: 2,000 mAh (lasts 4 to 5 hours) 
  • Ports: mini-HDMI, 3.5mm headphone jack, micro-USB, cartridge slot 
  • Price: $70 


  • Great nostalgic value 
  • Affordable  
  • Cartridges  


  • Average build quality  
  • Cartridge slot feels awful  
  • Limited selection of games  


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The display is a wide 4.5-inch LCD with 480p resolution and an unusual 16:9 aspect ratio. This aspect ratio is too wide for most retro games, but thankfully you can switch to 4:4 for any game through the settings to avoid thick black bars.  

However, the screen size is quite nice and does help with immersion.  

The 480p resolution is more than enough for classical games, but a higher resolution panel would have made everything look more crisp and detailed. 720p resolution is not unheard of at this price range either.  

The screen quality is just okay. It does not blow you away with its quality, but nor is it a bad-looking screen since there is enough saturation. It does, however, feel cheap since it’s a plastic screen instead of glass. The viewing angles are unremarkable, so it is only suitable for single-player games.  

Design and Build  

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Evercade has cut corners to keep the console affordable and it is quite visible with the build quality. As mentioned earlier, the screen is covered with plastic, which feels cheap to use and look at. The buttons next to the screen work great and the plastic build does not feel cheap, but not great either. Metal buttons and a glass screen would have significantly improved the console’s feel, but the $70 price tag justifies the lack of build quality.  

The cartridge slot is not smooth at all and does not give you the satisfaction of quick inserts or the sweet “shlock” sound. This is only a trivial problem, but sometimes the slot can be so stiff that you have to force the cartridge in. Pulling the games out of the slot feels just as worse.  

On the contrary, the two shoulder buttons feel great to use and even have an indent so your fingers can fit nicely without slipping around. The headphone jack is conveniently placed on the bottom of the handheld which saves the hassle of wrapping your headphone wire around the device.  


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As with every other console, the most important aspect is its performance, and the Evercade handheld does not disappoint. In fact, its game performance is one of its strongest attributes.  

This is because the company has the license to run all these games and doesn’t have to rely on low-quality ROMs or emulators. Evercade gets legitimate games straight from the developers. As a result, the console is able to play all games incredibly well with no frame drops, screen tearing, or any other problems. Every cartridge will run flawlessly on this machine. 

Coming from a Chinese console that emulates games through ROMs, you can easily tell the difference in performance and it feels like you’re playing the games on their original consoles.  

Software and UI  

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Since it is a cartridge-based console that runs legitimate games, there is no set up required. Unlike other Chinese handhelds, you don’t have to find the right emulators and ROMs for games and then hope that they run properly. There is no need to download any launchers or frontends to make it user-friendly.  

The Evercade is ready to go straight out of the box. Simply pop a cartridge in, select a game, and start playing. It’s as simple as that. There is no button mapping required either as all of them are already set up.  

While playing a game, the “menu” button on the console will open the in-game menu for any title. This will allow you to save states, load states, and explore settings. You can save games directly from the menu and load up the exact frame when you come back to it. No more skipping dinner to get to a save point.  

The settings menu includes options to adjust the aspect ratio in case a game does not fit in the frame properly.  

The Evercade is ideal for those who want to start playing straight away without any effort.  


The Evercade Handheld is not the most powerful retro console. It does not have a vast variety of games and nor does it have the best build quality. But it is still nothing short of amazing.  

It maximizes nostalgic value like no other Chinese console since you can collect cartridges and exchange them with your friends just like the good old days. It’s an extremely affordable device that welcomes all retro gamers, techy or not, since there is no extra set up required after purchase. You pop a cartridge in and you’re ready to go.  

All of its games run flawlessly and they are a treat to play on the large screen. Yes, it’s not perfect, but for a $60 handheld with $20 for dozens of games, it is a great deal.


Is Evercade any good?  

The Evercade is a great console that can run all its games flawlessly for cheap. It lacks in build quality but that is justifiable for a $70 price tag.  

Is Evercade legal?  

Evercade is completely legal since it holds the license to all its games. All the titles are taken straight from the developers.  

How many cartridges does it have? 

At the time of writing, Evercade has 28 game cartridges available with about 297 titles in total.  

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