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Portable version of the 1974 computer educational game, The Oregon Trail

The Oregon Trail adventure game, published in 1974, was a classroom favorite, teaching students about managing resources and making good decisions in order successfully cross 2000 miles of rugged terrain with your family in a covered wagon in 1848. You can play it at Archive.org with their online emulator.

Basic Fun has just introduced a handheld version and it looks cool. If you want "The Oregon Trail Hand Held Portable Classic Computer Video Game" for $25 you have to go to a Target store. (Amazon has it but it's $44).

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Charlie Hall of Polygon got the portable version and was impressed:

This little gem is as full-featured as it gets. Onboard is the complete game, in full color and including the original sound effects. You can choose your starting career, name your party of five travellers, load up the wagon and, yes, even hunt for food.

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The most exciting part of this handheld for me, however, isn’t the game itself. I can play The Oregon Trail online or with a laptop pretty easily. No, it’s the way that the game is presented. The little handheld is clearly modeled after the Apple II, big chunky gray buttons and all. To turn it on and off you even have to push the floppy disk into the slot. It’s the same computer on which I first encountered the classic game in grade school.

For twenty-five bucks, it’s a small price to pay for some nice nostalgia. I can’t wait to show it to my seven year-old when she gets home from school.

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