Tons of retro game cartridges nowadays are just the game with no box. Or if they’re in a box, it’s a cardboard one that is slowly disintegrating. Or maybe it’s a plastic box from 25 years ago that is slowly crumbling to bits. Naturally, you’ll want to protect your game carts, but you’re left in a scenario where you can only buy official boxes online for exorbitant prices. Well, not anymore my friend! Today, we’re reviewing a new option for your cartridges, BitBox!
Here is the BitBox description:
‘These are game cases specifically designed for (its respective) game cart(s). If quality matters to you then there is no better way to protect, store and show off your NES game collection. These are high quality cases that hold the cart snugly, but also allow for easy removal.’
- ‘High quality and durability
- Fits all known carts snugly
- Optional documentation pouch to hold manuals. Many manuals will also fit in front or behind the cartrdge in the case without pouch.
- Bottom sealed clear insert pocket
- EverDrive compatible (has area to accommodate SD card sticking out from top)
- Height: 7 11⁄16“, Width: 6″, Thickness: 1” (19.53cm x 15.24cm x 2.54cm)
- Made in the U.S.A’
As Stone Age Gamer writes on their descriptions for the BitBox cases, ” If quality matters to you then there is no better way to protect, store and show off your N64 game collection. These are high quality cases…” And man, they just weren’t lying. When I first was asked if I wanted to review some of these, I was unsure as to what even a BitBox was. I naturally said yes to getting my hands on them, but I did some research first on the Stone Age Gamer site. I thought that certainly all of what they put in the BitBox description was just good ol’ marketing of talking up the product. But they were 100% correct.
Everything down to them mentioning that the carts fit snugly but are easy to remove. It’s just genuinely true here, they have finger grooves so that you can get the carts out. This helps us avoid having to do the old turning the case sort of inside out or turning it upside down and slapping the back to drop it out. I also rather enjoy the fact that the carts in some scenarios can be rotated and placed in the box in the orientation of your choice. Further more, some BitBox cases, like the Genesis/Mega-drive boxes, have the ability to hold different cases. And all of the boxes can account for the Everdrive carts that have SD Card protrusions.
Speaking of Everdrives, you can always buy the Deluxe version of any Everdrive on the Stone Age Gamer site and when you do, you’ll get a BitBox with custom Everdrive box art as well as documentation in the left inside of the box. This holds true with their Powerbase mini and Powerbase miniFM products (and I’m sure a few others I’m forgetting about right now).
I just simply love how thick and durable they feel in your hands. I do sort of wish there were color options for them, but I understand that black probably looks the best with colorful box art. We will talk about all of the customization options in the next section though.
As you can see across the pictures throughout this article, there are a few options to choose from when ordering BitBox cases. Obviously you can choose the console or handheld cartridge box that you need. When you’re in there, you’ll have a handful of options to sift through. Don’t worry, it isn’t even remotely daunting, they’ve made the process simple for you. They do want you to actually buy some product after all.
The first thing that you’ll choose is how many BitBox cases you’re intending to buy. This matters as the more you buy the cheaper the individual boxes will be. Yes, shipping goes up for more boxes, don’t think of them as small lightweight things. If you order a lot, it weights a lot more (go figure). After you’ve chosen the quantity, you look down a little further and it asks you how many, if any, document straps you want. This is a strap on the inside left door that will hold manuals, stickers, coupons, you name it, in place. You can choose NONE across all BitBoxes and that will be the least expensive way. Couple that with bulk ordering and you’ve got very inexpensive boxes. If you want to order 100 BitBoxes but only want 50 documentation straps, you can do that too. It really just depends on how many of your loose carts have any manuals with them.
The last option that you have will be if you want to buy any box art. That will be on a separate purchasing page for a separate entry into your cart. But you can still pay for it all at once. This streamlines the process and you can have it all delivered in one box (this part may vary depending on quantities and other variables).
Look and Feel:
These things look absolutely amazing. As you may imagine, if you order them blank, they’re not much to look at at first. They have a black gloss sheen to them. On the inside right door of the box you’ll have the spot for the cartridge and above that will be the BitBox logo and the Stone Age Gamer info embedded into the plastic. The only enhancement I saw was on the Nintendo 64 BitBox. Underneath the cartridge slot was a bit empty space. I’m not sure if this is there so that it can reinforce the cartridge since it’s a larger and heavier cart than others. My thought was that it was maybe a spot to store a Memory Pak or Rumble Pak or 2. Upon having this thought I immediately took to the product page for this item and saw that I was indeed correct.
These things display so well on a shelf that anyone that sees them will do one of two things. They’ll either see how fantastic they look, admire, and congratulate you on such groovy looking boxes. Or, they may just not even notice them at all, but in the best way imaginable. By that I just mean that they look so authentic that to the untrained eye, you have a product that looks like the real thing. I just know now that when I get my complete Nintendo 64 collection, I’m buying a BitBox for all of them. In the mean time, I’m looking to box my limited quantities of my Sega Genesis, Gameboy, Gameboy Color, NES, and SNES carts and these will be perfect.
First of all, I love that they sell bit boxes for practically every cartridge type that exists. I also really respect the fact that they’re blank, black boxes. The fact that you can just buy however many boxes you need for the games you happen to have is great. This saves you from having to find specific boxes for the specific games you have. This can be time consuming and of course, expensive. I also love that they have unique box art inserts that you can order. But if you happen to have a high quality printer and paper at home or a printing shop nearby then you can simply download from their site and print them. They even give you the details of how it should be printed so you aren’t guessing and printing, wasting time and money. Their cover art is supplied by The Cover Project, so we’re talking high quality. And if the cover that you see for the game you want doesn’t tickle your fancy, you can always make your own following the dimensions laid out on their page.
I further think it’s great that Stone Age Gamer supplies a wide range of bulk pricing options. Of course the shipping increases the more you buy as these things are actually thicker and heavier than you might think. However, it’s still cheaper than buying individual ones one at a time to equal that same amount in the long run. If you intend on getting full collections of cart only games and you want to have cases as you go, buy 100 pack of these and pay the shipping. It’s absolutely worth it and you can download and print the covers as you collect your respective carts.
The quality of plastic on the outside that holds the cover in place is nice and thick, very reminiscent of old VHS rental boxes. How they were durable every time the rental store would have to take out an old cover and put a new one in. That plastic would remain tight, glued in place, would barely stretch or tear. And those old rental boxes were used hundreds of times. In this instance, you’re only inserting a cover once. If you choose to get the plastic on the inside left door to hold manuals in place, it’s the same kind of plastic, but there is a bit more room.
As for the whole box, it’s clearly made of some type of PVC or harder plastic. I took one and hit it against another one to simulate what might happen if you tossed them in a box and moved. The results were exactly as you expected. These things are tremendously sturdy when they’re closed. If you leave a box open on the floor, it’s half thick, and only half as strong. Be smart, when you’re done with the BitBox, return it to the shelf. Boxes are meant to be shelf enhancers. They’re not meant to be traveling protectors. I can’t imagine they’d last in a backpack for too long.
My only gripe, and it’s the smallest one in the whole wide world, is the color choice. I strongly believe that there should be more than just black. But I thoroughly understand that there is most likely a good reason for it. Whether it be to keep costs low for the consumer or because they’ve already experimented and black looks better. Or maybe it’s just because primary colors are hard to keep as structurally sound as black. Who knows, but I get it and I still highly recommend these boxes.
You’ll find all of the box options to buy on Stone Age Gamer by clicking here.
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