Consoles of the '90s

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

By this point, Game Boy had fended off two major competitors with relative ease, even without something as simple as an internal light. That's where this re-release comes in, packing a watch-like light inside the screen. Makes you wonder why neither the Game Boy Color nor Game Boy Advance launched with lights (making Circle of the Moon damn near impossible to play in the process).

Console: Super NES 2
Manufacturer: Nintendo
Discontinued in: 2000

A smaller Super NES/Super Famicom, now with no eject button or expansion slot.

Manufacturer: Tiger
Discontinued in: 2000

An ugly black and white handheld with rudimentary touch screen controls and a stylus. It claimed to target an older audience with these PDA features as well as limited internet support, but again, why would anyone go through all that hassle when Game Boy is cheaper, easier to use, smaller and loaded with exclusive games? Though we do wish it would have lived long enough to see the alleged Symphony of the Night port.

Console: Genesis 3
Manufacturer: Majesco
Discontinued in: 1998

A third, even tinier alt of the Genesis released at a huge discount (nearing $20 at its end) that stripped everything but the most basic cart-playing functionality. And yes, it was indeed released by Majesco, who also trotted out the Game Gear well after its prime.

Console: Game Boy Color
Manufacturer: Nintendo
Discontinued in: 2002

After 10 years of blurry black and white gaming, we finally got a slightly more powerful Game Boy with blessed color. It could play most of the old games and served as a total moneymaking ruse to earn Nintendo some extra cash while they finished the actual successor, Game Boy Advance, which was released three years later. GBC hit right as Pokemon insanity first gripped North America.

Console: NeoGeo Pocket
Manufacturer: SNK
Discontinued in: 1999

A decent attempt at attacking Game Boy, but lack of color and dismal software support meant this one was dead within a year. It was quickly replaced by the Pocket Color in 1999, which played all the B&W games too. Mostly known for its surprisingly fun fighting games (Match of the Millennium) and a not-too-shabby Sonic game. All it took was the suggestion that a new, more powerful Game Boy was on its way to put both regular and Color out of the race.

Console: Dreamcast
Manufacturer: Sega
Discontinued in: 2001

Though officially dead two years after its memorable 9-9-99 US launch, the 'Cast lived on for many more thanks to ongoing Japanese and homebrew support. It came with a modem, fancy memory cards with their own controls (VMUs) and a bad ass launch lineup. Too bad it instantly caved in the face of the PS2, never even battling GameCube or Xbox. For a brief while it looked like Sega had made a console comeback, but it was short lived. Dreamcast has been heavily romanticized since its quick death, which makes us wonder - where were all of you people when Sega needed you most?

Console: WonderSwan
Manufacturer: Bandai
Discontinued in: ~2003

What began as a strange "hold it sideways or regular" handheld slowly changed over the years into a color competitor to the Game Boy. Despite ports of Final Fantasy games and having been designed by the Game Boy's own creator, it barely made a dent in Nintendo's handheld universe. Credits to Malcolm Tyrrell for the image.

Jun 19, 2008


  • 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! 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 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...

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