Polybius; Have you heard of it? In the early 2000s, a mysterious video game urban legend made the rounds in nerd circles. According to rumors, a number of mysterious arcade cabinets appeared in Portland, Oregon in 1981. This arcade game was supposedly created by the United States government as part of some psychological experiment. Gamers would play this mythical game and experience psychosis, anger, and bouts of violence.
To add to the outlandish myth, people claim Men in Black would be seen visiting these arcades cabinets, and collecting their data. What they collected the data for, nobody knows. Despite the story lingering for years, there has been no concrete evidence of an actual Polybius arcade. The legend exploded after it was published in an issue of GamePro.
Here’s the supposed start screen for Polybius:
If you’re truly curious about the Polybius urban legend, you can check out this documentary on YouTube. It’s honestly quite good.
Well, Just Geek officially revealed a charging cabinet, inspired by the fabled Polybius. The charging cabinet features 10 USB 2.0 hubs to power your other Quarter Arcade machines. Here’s their official specs, brought to you by Just Geek:
- Polybius – ¼ scale replica of the mysterious 1980s Polybius cabinet that never existed (or did it?)
- Power to unit – supplied with Universal Power with adaptors for international usage and features 10 USB 2.0 – Universal Serial Bus (USB) standard hubs to power up all your other Quarter Arcades.
- Approx dimensions: 43cm/16.92 inches (Height) x 21cm/8.25 inches (Depth) x 15.7cm/6.3 inches (Width)
- Quarter Arcades – collect them all to build your own miniature arcade!
- Non-playable realistic replica – designed by experts and arcade gaming enthusiasts at Numskull Designs to deliver the closest rendition of retro gaming’s biggest urban legend.
- High quality – made for durability, playability, and portability.
- Comes packaged in mysterious black box packaging, a nod the story behind the conspiracy which makes this really feel like a top-secret suspicious item.
You can pre-order this spooky guy right now for $143.99. The Polybius charging station will officially release sometime in August. Have you heard of the urban legend before? Share your stories below!