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Thread: Does anyone else collect fail consoles?

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    Apple (Level 5)
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    Default Does anyone else collect fail consoles?

    I have a penchant for oddball and fail consoles. It started a few years ago when I bought a 3DO. The only game they had was The Need for Speed. It wasn't bad for the time that it came out but definately hasn't aged well. Unfortunately I was hard up for cash and there weren't that many games I could find, so I sold it.

    More recently I picked up a Jaguar. Only game I played was Cybermorph and I actually liked it. again... hard to find games for these systems though.

    Last year I bought a 32x. my Genesis is pretty finicky but I believe I managed to get Doom to work. not a bad system. I mostly wanted it to eventually play Kolibri and Corpse Killer.

    I've been looking at an N-Gage and a Game.com and it's extraordinary how expensive these handhelds sell for.

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    Not because they were commercial flops, but yeah. I just buy whatever has games that interest me (or whatever I find dirt cheap; I probably never would've bothered to buy a 3DO if not for the fact that I came across one for like 7 bucks). I do like underdogs, so some commercial flops I genuinely like. I'm a big fan of the Virtual Boy, PC-FX, and Neo Geo Pocket Color. Vita is my favorite current gen system, despite that it's the least successful out of all of them.

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    Strawberry (Level 2) AdamAnt316's Avatar
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    I have a number of consoles which are considered failures. Atari 5200 (and, to a lesser extent, the 7800), Atari Jaguar (and Lynx), Bentley Compu-Vision, GCE Vectrex, the Nintendo Virtual Boy, and others that some consider failures, including the original Magnavox Odyssey. If you also count computers, I have a few of those that count, including the Apple Lisa, the Atari 1200XL, the Coleco Adam, the Commodore Plus/4 and 16, the IBM PCjr, the Mattel Aquarius, and perhaps some others depending on perception. Not all of them are failures for the same reason, of course; some, like the 5200, were lemons due to less-than-great hardware design, while others, like the Vectrex, were more a victim of bad timing than anything.
    -Adam


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    Great Puma (Level 12) Steve W's Avatar
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    I tend to stick mostly to 'underdog' consoles, the idea is that I can pick up the popular systems at any time in the future whereas I doubt I could find GameWave game DVDs and extra remotes if they're not still relatively fresh off the market. I don't do eBay or anything, I've only ever done wild finds in thrift stores or flea markets. Getting systems and games tend to be far cheaper right after their shot at glory has passed and everybody's dumping them. As far as non-thrift finds go... Xavix GamePort, Gizmondo, Nokia N-Gage QD, Tapwave Zodiac, Jaguar, Lynx, Neo•Geo Pocket Color, Atari 7800, Atari XEGS, these are all consoles and games I bought when they first hit the market and I supported them as they were starting out. I'm pretty much an underdog myself, I really identify with these kinds of things.
    Last edited by Steve W; 02-26-2018 at 12:50 AM.

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    Default I have a couple

    I have a 7800 because I like early the early 80's arcade games and the backwards compatibility with the 2600 library. I also have a 32x for Afterburner and Space Harrier ( so awesome ). A lot of people complain about the 32x but just those two game make it worth it for me. With that said I find most consoles interesting failed it not.

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    I wouldn't say the Vectrex was a failure, it was selling pretty well overall, and died mostly due to the videogame crash, not because of poor sales for what it was.

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    Great Puma (Level 12) jb143's Avatar
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    I'm a collector of opportunity. If I come across something and it's cheap enough then I'll get it, but I rarely ever go out of my way looking for something in particular. I rarely ever see anything these days though...although just last week I ran across a CD-i(with a NEO-GEO sitting on top of it) but it was way more than I'd be willing to pay. If it was in the $20 range I probably would have gotten it.

    But I do like collecting the "underdog" systems, having something that most people aren't familiar with or even knew existed, learning about their history, etc... even if I rarely ever play them.
    "Game programmers are generally lazy individuals. That's right. It's true. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. Since the dawn of computer games, game programmers have looked for shortcuts to coolness." Kurt Arnlund - Game programmer for Activision, Accolade...

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    Strawberry (Level 2) AdamAnt316's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mayhem View Post
    I wouldn't say the Vectrex was a failure, it was selling pretty well overall, and died mostly due to the videogame crash, not because of poor sales for what it was.
    I'm aware of that. The crash cut down on the lifespan of several systems, including the Colecovision (which still managed to be commercially successful) and the Atari 5200 (which also failed for other reasons). It also caused the 7800's release to be shelved for three years (though, supposedly, there were also legal reasons for the delay); I think the 7800 would've done fairly well if it'd been released in 1984 as originally intended, though it's hard to say for sure.

    Anyway, I've just discovered that Wikipedia has a list of commercial failures in video gaming. According to it, both the Bally Astrocade, Sega Nomad and Sega Saturn qualify. However, it doesn't list the Atari 7800, which I believe managed to turn a bit of a profit in spite of the release delay and the onslaught of Nintendo and Sega.
    -Adam

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    I am sure most of us who've been doing this a while have their fail share of consoles.

    i'd be curious what was your first failure console.

    Mine would have to be the jaguar, with a tiger game.com as a close seccond

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    My first failure was also one of the first consoles I came across when I started collecting in earnest: the Bentley Compu-Vision. Released in 1983, making this Pong clone at least six or seven years out-of-date, and yet just in time for the big crash. According to this page, it sold for a paltry $25 when new, and given that it can't have cost much more than a few bucks to make, they probably still managed to turn a profit..........
    -Adam
    Last edited by AdamAnt316; 02-27-2018 at 11:48 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mayhem View Post
    I wouldn't say the Vectrex was a failure, it was selling pretty well overall, and died mostly due to the videogame crash, not because of poor sales for what it was.
    Wasn't there a limited supply of monitors for the Vectrex though? I'd heard that the guy behind the console got a bunch of those monitors from a failed medical equipment company.

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    Strawberry (Level 2) AdamAnt316's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gamevet View Post
    Wasn't there a limited supply of monitors for the Vectrex though? I'd heard that the guy behind the console got a bunch of those monitors from a failed medical equipment company.
    I don't think that was the case. CRTs with that odd aspect ratio were uncommon, but not impossible to source in those days. And given the fact that there was a color Vectrex in the works with the same style of CRT, it's a good bet that GCE had a solid source for them, including custom jobs like a multi-phosphor tube.
    -Adam

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    Quote Originally Posted by AdamAnt316 View Post
    I don't think that was the case. CRTs with that odd aspect ratio were uncommon, but not impossible to source in those days. And given the fact that there was a color Vectrex in the works with the same style of CRT, it's a good bet that GCE had a solid source for them, including custom jobs like a multi-phosphor tube.
    -Adam
    I'm asking the question, because you'd think that if they did happen to get a large supply of monitors on the cheap, that they could afford to sell the console for the $199 they were selling it for. Once that cheap supply ran dry, you'd think that the profits would dry up.

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    Not really but I kind of did because how history played out.

    I have owned the Virtual Boy, the Dreamcast counts as a fail too as did the Master System, and I have had the Turbo Duo too, plus also the NGPC.

    I still have the NGPC but not the others, and I do own a Core Grafx II now which being a PC Engine was anything but a failure in Japan so that skirts that loss.

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    I always thought the cheap used Vectrex monitors were small ones that they ultimately decided not to use, they went with the bigger ones that ended up in the retail consoles. It was probably almost two decades since I read that, so my memory might be more than a little fuzzy.

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    I have a number of failed consoles. The Casio Loopy is probably my biggest flop, it was sold only for weeks in Japan. I have a Sega 32X and Atari Jaguar as well, a Vectrex, an Atari 5200, a Nintendo Virtual Boy, a Sega Nomad, and more consoles that weren't that successful but I wouldn't call them failures.
    Real collectors drive Hondas, Toyotas, Chevys, Fords, etc... not Rolls Royces.

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    Strawberry (Level 2) AdamAnt316's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve W View Post
    I always thought the cheap used Vectrex monitors were small ones that they ultimately decided not to use, they went with the bigger ones that ended up in the retail consoles. It was probably almost two decades since I read that, so my memory might be more than a little fuzzy.
    You would appear to be correct. According to Wikipedia, the surplus CRT which inspired the creation of the Vectrex had a mere 1" screen. Possibly something along the lines of this pre-WWII relic:



    Maybe the 1" CRT they found was newer and had a rectangular screen, but it'd still be a lot more tiny than the 9" CRT which was used in the production Vectrex. More info on tiny CRTs and other displays can be found here.
    -Adam
    Last edited by AdamAnt316; 03-08-2018 at 12:51 PM.

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    I could swear that the original CRTs for the Vectrex were supposed to be 5" screens before they shifted to something you wouldn't have to squint your eyes at to see.

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