Playdate Playnote Studio 1
Image: Damien McFerran / Nintendo Life

Lovers of portable gaming and cool gadgets will no doubt have seen the reviews of Playdate go live last week. Panic's cute throwback console is a celebration of simpler gaming times and we were lucky enough to get our hands on one early — we found it to be a delightful little yellow system, one that sends us back "to a time when handheld video gaming was a simpler, more innocent pastime, and every new experience felt fresh and exciting".

Beyond the new games it comes loaded with, Playdate is also an open platform with developers of all sizes able to create and distribute easily-loaded software for it. One such piece of software is Playnote Studio, a neat little app for anyone who misses Nintendo DSi's brilliantly simple animation tool, Flipnote Studio.

While Nintendo's animation app might be unavailable to download these days, the short flipbook-style masterpieces created using Flipnote Studio can be viewed on Playdate using developer James Daniel's software. The app is based on a previous web-based player, and it uses the console's crank to let you wind forward and back through the animation frames.

Playnote Studio

Nintendo's Flipnote apps attracted a dedicated, passionate following and still stir feelings to this day. An April Fools' Day prank back in 2020 which 'leaked' a Switch version led to copious amounts of fan ire directed at the pranksters. That same year, one fan revealed an incredible 34-minute animation painstakingly created in Flipnote Studio 3D, the 3DS version. Yep, that's some dedication, right there!

You can head to for more information on how to download the app to your Playdate and enjoy Flipnotes to your heart's content.

"Download the app to our Playdate? What if you're not in distribution group 1?" Ah, while we might have a single Playdate in Nintendo Lite Towers, some of us on Team NL have quite some wait until our personal Playdates are dispatched. In the meantime we'll download the app and get it prepped, ready and waiting to crank through some choice flipnotes.

Playdate Playnote Studio 2
Image: Damien McFerran / Nintendo Life