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Consoles of the '90s

Console: PlayStation
Manufacturer: Sony
Discontinued in: 2006

One of the most popular and best-selling consoles of all time, the PlayStation began as a CD add-on for the Super NES. It's a well documented event that forever changed the industry and caused the effortless dethroning of Nintendo, who had enjoyed victory the past two generations. Several key franchises saw new life here (Final Fantasy, Castlevania, Metal Gear) and many more began (Tekken, Resident Evil, Gran Turismo). If you didn't have one, someone you know did.

Console: Jaguar CD
Manufacturer: Atari
Discontinued in: 1996
As a game machine, the Jaguar CD performed about as well as what it was constantly compared to - a toilet bowl. It's been kept alive to some degree thanks to an lively homebrew audience, much like its cart-only predecessor. When one of your key games is based on an animated Highlander show, you know things are looking grim. Another image from vidgame.net.

Console: Nomad
Manufacturer: Sega
Discontinued in: 1998

A handheld Genesis/Mega Drive with built-in 6 button controller and output to TVs. It devoured batteries, was heavy and barely portable, yet still went on to sell a million units. Sounds nice, except Game Boy was still powering through with little decline and many more millions of users, games and developers.

Console: Satellaview
Manufacturer: Nintendo
Discontinued in: 2000

A... satellite add-on for the Super Famicom? Apparently so, and it featured upgraded remakes of key NES games, namely the first Zelda. If you played during set hours, a narrator would actually walk you through certain parts of levels via voice chat. Not too different from Sega's "Sega Channel," though never released in the US.

Console: Nintendo 64
Manufacturer: Nintendo
Discontinued in: 2002
Even though it brought analog control to the mainstream and housed some of the most popular and best-selling games of its day (Ocarina of Time, GoldenEye 007, Mario 64), the N64 was the first Nintendo console to clearly lose. It used expensive carts that had limited memory, while PlayStation's CDs could store vast amounts of data and produced in great numbers for far less publisher investment. By the time it was replaced by GameCube in 2001, the N64 was barely alive at all, still coasting on the success of its early hits - a fate that would also befall the Cube when it made way for Wii in 2006.

Console: Game Boy Pocket
Manufacturer: Nintendo
Discontinued in: 1999

The first major change Game Boy saw since its 1989 debut. With no rival to speak of (Game Gear was way gone by now) it didn't even need a change, but people loved it anyway and bought enough to warrant even more variants in the coming years. This one featured a sharper screen (true black and white now), a more compact design and ran on AAA batteries instead of AA. Compatible games kept coming until 1999, when the Game Boy Color took the reigns.

Console: Pippin
Manufacturer: Bandai/Apple
Discontinued in: 1997

Also called the Atmark (or @), no one was quite sure what the Pippin was supposed to be. It had some computer elements, some console elements and some edutainment bullcrap, but none of those made any difference when pitted against the PlayStation and N64. Yet another strange multimedia monster that came and went in the mid '90s. Don't worry, they won't try this multitasking madness again until 360 and PS3.

14 comments

  • PatHan-bHai - April 13, 2013 9:55 a.m.

    The SNES was my first console and the only thing that I played on it was DKC! THEN CAME THE PSOne!!!!! :3
  • garfunkling - February 5, 2011 8:54 a.m.

    I had that exact gameboy color. Loved the look of that see-thru case.
  • barrage7667 - October 15, 2008 12:06 a.m.

    lol im bout to go play my nintendo and genisis tht i havent played in 8 or 9 years
  • goombaisawesome - November 9, 2008 4:23 a.m.

    I think that you forgot the halycon laserdisc system. But there were only two games, and VERY few sold at the $1000+ Pricetag, so it doesn't matter.
  • Sukururu - September 24, 2008 10:32 p.m.

    I still remember...I had a Super NES
  • abovedefault - September 14, 2008 10:41 a.m.

    holy crap, i had a game.com! i wonder what happened to it...
  • spiderking2009 - July 8, 2009 3:15 a.m.

    wow the PlayStation series is the same age as my
  • dougle - January 22, 2009 8:29 a.m.

    i miss the 90s lol
  • AA95mp - January 7, 2009 7:37 p.m.

    i remember my psone i still have it. it was my 1st console
  • Taxtm - January 3, 2009 9:41 p.m.

    Ahh, the Sega Genesis... my first game system at the age of 4, and my first game being Sonic 3. Man, those were the days...
  • arcwulf - September 14, 2009 2:31 p.m.

    You neglected to mention that the Tiger Game.com had the absolute worst display of any video game system ever. The graphics were only visable in direct light, and the refresh rate was so bad that any motion graphics whatsoever became blurry green. Also a note about Sega's Genesis and Game Gear: Sega was notorious in the 90s for changing the hardware (which all successful consoles do eventually) to less-than 100% compatibility and not telling anyone (which no one else does - heck even Microsoft released a list of compatible Xbox games for the 360). This is why some earlier games do not work with later releases of the hardware. The Pioneer Laseractive Player (which I am happy to say that I own) also plays "Mega LD" games, only one of which I know of to exist, and sadly I do not own it.
  • Fallenangle - January 7, 2009 9:07 a.m.

    Wow, the Master System II was my very first console ( i still have it somewhere) it does have the alex kidd game built in, which was cool to think you could just turn it on and play without taking the Cartridge out and blowing on it. Also is it wrong to have own at least half of these?
  • Taxtm - January 3, 2009 9:39 p.m.

    Dude, I actually had a Gamegear way back when! That thing used up so much juice, every time I took it in the car, we'd have to bring a brand new 8 pack of AAs!
  • hardcore_gamer1990 - January 1, 2009 11:56 p.m.

    Does anyone else think that the TurboDuo looks like a PS2 slimline with a "quirky" controller? no? just me then...

Showing 1-14 of 14 comments

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