Gaming

This is the new handheld console you need to know about

Nintendo has long dominated the 'handheld' market, surviving the threat issued by the unprecedented rise of smartphone games and Sony's underrated PSP. But now there's a new, powerful challenger to the throne - and he's leading a vanguard of over 1,000 PC games. 

The Smach Zero is a handheld PC console - a Steam Machine, built to play titles stored in the the vast library of games on Valve's Steam platform. That means that rather than having to wait for months for new games to get your thumbs on, the Smach Zero will launch in early 2016, ready to play "more than 1,000" existing titles.

More a pocket-PC than anything from the Nintendo stable of handhelds, the Smach Zero packs some serious hardware into its curves: 4GB RAM, 32GB internal memory, a 5-inch touch screen and grumbling graphics card.

Should you wish to plug your game of Half-Life 2 up to a bigger screen, there's an HDMI video output, letting the Zero act as controller and console for your TV. 

With orders set to go live on 10 November, the first Smach Zero consoles will start shipping in "early 2016" for around £220 (it's currently listing at $299 and €299 - we're hoping they don't just swap in the "pound" symbol for £299 and call it a day).

Here's to a future in which morning commutes are even more antisocial.