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Nintendo Entertainment System

Nintendo Entertainment System

Nintendo released the NES in two different bundles: one at $249 with the R.O.B. (Robotic Operating Buddy) unit, two controllers, a lightgun, Gyromite (a R.O.B. game), Duck Hunt, and Super Mario Bros., and the other set at $199 with controllers and Super Mario Bros. The NES was a huge success and was soon outselling competing systems (which at the time was only the INTV, the Sega Master System, and the Atari 7800) by a ten-to-one ratio.

Nintendo released the NES 2 in 1993. It was a smaller, cheaper version of the original NES in a more SNESish case with a standard cartridge slot (instead of the "zero insertion force" slot in the original NES which was very dirt-prone and easy to break). Nintendo pushed the system for the upcoming Christmas season for $49.

In the end, the NES had sold over 62 million systems and over 500 million games, making it the most popular videogame system in history, up to that time.

Today, the NES lives on as many of its games are available over the Nintendo Wii's Virtual Console service.

Super Nintendo Entertainment System

Super Nintendo Entertainment System

The release of the Sega Genesis and Turbografix-16 consoles in 1989 meant that Nintendo too had to come up with a 16-bit machine to stay in the game. It did not release the SNES in Japan until November 1990, known there as the Super Famicom, in the US in September 1991 and in the UK in April 1992, simply because the NES was doing well and new games were still being released for it. When it finally hit the market though, it proved to be a powerful and impressive competitor to Sega's Genesis and NEC's Turbografix-16.

The SNES had a much slower processor then the Genesis, but it really excelled when it came to its graphics processor. It could produce 32K colors, 256 of which could be displayed on screen at the same time, and had special hardware modes that allowed for effects such as scaling, rotating and transparency. This was the SNES's strong point.

The SNES retailed for $200 in the US and £150 in the UK. Over 46 million units were sold worldwide.

Nintendo 64

Nintendo 64

Nintendo surprised a lot of people by releasing another cartridge based system, when Sony and Sega had moved on to use CD based systems. Nintendo's reasoning was that CD's had long loading times when compared to cartridges which require no loading at all.

The N64 was released in Japan on 23rd June '96 and sold more than 500,000 units in it's first week. A few months later it was released in the US, on 1st October, and sold as many units in it's first week as the Playstation had sold in it's first 13 weeks! It was finally released in Europe almost 6 months later, on 1st March '97.

Only three games were available on the Japanese release; Mario 64, Pilotwings, and Shogi, a popular Japanese chess game. In the US, only Mario 64 and Pilotwings were available, while the European release saw two extra games; Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire and Turok: Dinosaur Hunter.

Some of the most highly regarded games of all time have been released exclusively for the N64. Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Super Mario 64 and Goldeneye 007, respectively, took the top three spots in Edge Magazine's top 100 games of all time in the January 2000 issue.

Nintendo Game Cube

Nintendo Game Cube

The Nintendo GameCube system is loaded with innovative features. From its fast loading, high capacity optical disk to its four controller ports, Nintendo GameCube was made to provide you with the most entertaining gaming experience possible. One look at the Nintendo GameCube hardware and you know it's different. The compact shape is not only practical - the unique design is symbolic of Nintendo's commitment to focus on creating the world's most original and innovative video games. Nintendo GameCube is focused on fun. With a game library of hundreds of titles in all possible genres, powerful technical specs, and a cast of exclusive characters unrivaled by any other system, players in search of a great gaming experience need look no farther.

Nintendo Wii

Nintendo Wii

Wii makes use of a remarkable motion-sensitive controller called the Wii Remote™, which resembles a TV remote control. It's designed to be more inviting and comfortable for non-gamers to use, unlike button-heavy controllers. It contains a speaker, which makes the experience all the more real. The Wii Remote can be swung like a racket in a tennis game or like a sword in an adventure game. One launch-day game, EXCITE TRUCK™, will have players using the Wii Remote like a steering wheel. The Wii package comes with a Wii Remote, a Nunchuk™ controller, an AC adapter, a sensor bar, a Wii AV (standard composite) cable and Wii Sports™, a collection of five sports games players can understand how to play instantly, even if they've never played a video game.


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