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Thread: What is the most obscure released video game title in existence?

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    Apple (Level 5)
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    Default What is the most obscure released video game title in existence?

    ob∑scure
    /əbˈskyo͝or/

    adjective
    1.
    not discovered or known about; uncertain.

    The terms "hidden gem" "obscure" get thrown around a lot but what are some truly obscure games that very few people have actually heard of?

    For a lot of games and systems, people tend to think of the N-Gage or the Game.com when they hear obscure, but I feel that those are so notoriously short-lived and irrelevant that they are famous. What I feel are truly obscure games are ones on systems that are well known but you dont hear anyone talk about them.

    One that I will throw out there is NFL Full Contact for PS1. I had heard of Madden, Blitz, GameDay, but never Full Contact. Konami has a history of making short run, unpopular sports games.

    How many of you have heard of this title?

    I cant think of many others, but likely itd be something on PS1, PS2, or PC just due to the sheer amount of games on those systems.

    I had a PC game growing up called 3D Roller Coaster Factory. Has anyone heard of this?

    There also may be some very limited run games from the 90s that didnt get a wide release.

    I dont know if shareware games count, but theres tons that many people are unfamiliar with. Aldo's Adventure, anyone?

    Other weird shit- games you could download and play on a Texas Instruments calculator. How many of those were made where the only people who played them were the creator and a couple of his friends?
    On a quest to buy every video game magazine- PM if you have any for sale

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    I think game-related merch is a lot more obscure than games themselves. I play and own a lot of obscure games of all ages, and practically everything is at least in a database, if not also reviewed and what have you. I'd say the most obscure games are games that are neither Japanese nor Western, like the Korean games on GP32, and old mobile games that were long ago pulled down and might not have even been backed up in any way. Even in popular series, mobile games tend to get forgotten. I mean, how many people remember or ever played Castlevania: Order of Shadows?

    With merch, there are items where I just plain can't find any record online of them existing. Even with items from something as big and mainstream as the Nintendo Power Supplies Catalog in the 90s, there are tons where there's seemingly no mention of them online and no current or past listings on eBay. I have a bunch of official Donkey Kong Country merch, like a bicycle helmet and stainless steel pens, that I joke only I know exist.

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    Pretzel (Level 4) Gamevet's Avatar
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    The 1st Ultima (Apple II - 1981) was sold in plastic bags with a single instruction card. Itís pretty rare, though it was picked up by a publisher and brought out for other computers in 1986.
    Last edited by Gamevet; 04-09-2019 at 10:12 AM.

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    I am a fan of unlicensed trash, and a lot of those could be considered beyond obscure. Obscure as in nobody even knew it existed until one person came across a copy.

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    Most of those would probably be prototypes, like Tempest for the 2600.

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    Discounting pirates, prototypes, & shareware, I'd vote for the cable boxes which could download karaoke songs & Taito games, tho I'm sure they're less obscure in Japan.

    Other options:

    The Casio PV-1000

    The Super A'Can

    Maybe the Pokemon Mini too. It got a lot of press on Pokemon sites when it was released, but it was only sold at one or two stores.

    Oh! I almost forgot DISCover: https://www.curlie.org/Games/Video_Games/Console_Platforms/DISCover/

    DISCover was a system designed to make installing PC games easier. A couple thousand games were given EZ installation scrips the console could download from a server. Consoles were licensed to Alienware & other manufacturers.
    Last edited by pacman000; 04-09-2019 at 07:01 PM.

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    There are tons of computer games that were commercially released, but no copy is known to exist. Most of these were hobbyist efforts, of course, but they were still sold by mail-order.

    There's a gay-themed RPG called GayBlade that got some attention a while back, for instance, and there are tons of TRS-80 Color Computer games that were advertised and reviewed, but haven't been dumped or documented yet.

    If we're talking licensed, retail, English-language releases for consoles, it's a tougher ask. Probably some PS1 sports game, I'd guess.

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    This may be random and not fit the criteria, but in the early 2000's, Sum41 had a music video flash game for "Fat Lip" on MTV's website. I vividly remember playing over and over again, but can't find any info on it anymore. It's so obscure to me that I question if I didn't dream it up. It was a mashup of different arcade games. One section of the game had one of the band members propped up onto the barrel of a Battlezone tank and puked at enemies. It was a blast, but unfortunately seems to have vanished.

    [update] I went to a web archived version of MTV's site (wayback.com) from 2002 and did find a link to the flash game, but I wasn't able to play it. So either way, it did totally exist!
    Last edited by Genjackson; 04-19-2019 at 08:33 AM.

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    There was a Crash Bandicoot online game made in 1996 as a promotion for the 1st game.

    https://web.archive.org/web/19961222...crash/pursuit/

    Looks like it was part of a contest, but Iíve never heard any thing about it.

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    A couple obscure games I have come across...

    M&M's Blast (GBA) I couldnt find anything on this game besides a short review by Nintendo Power. At one point its working title was M&M's Lost in Time. Basically a Mario Party knock off. Very difficult to pin down any specifics about the game in terms of retail availability

    No Fear: Get Phat (GBA) the title basically says it all. Licensed crap, not sure what stores even carried this
    On a quest to buy every video game magazine- PM if you have any for sale

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    I think about games like Birthday Mania for the Atari 2600. A game with your child's name put into the game, burned into the cartridge ROM, sold through mail-order at the pinnacle of the North American video game crash... I doubt there were more than a couple of handfulls ever made. I doubt any of us will ever see one in real life, even at conventions and museums dedicated to retro gaming. It's that ridiculously rare. I've loved Atari games all my life, and I'd never heard of it until a few years ago, I've only ever seen a photo of the loose cartridge, I have no idea what it plays like.
    Last edited by Steve W; 06-13-2019 at 03:29 AM. Reason: Me ain't spell too gud.

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    Here's obscure, I have some Australian "John Sands" SG-1000 releases with vintage price stickers and receipts from a store in Ohio.
    Apparently some US computer retailers actually imported the SC-3000 and sold the English John Sands distributed products in the US.
    So my vote: Sega SG-1000 and SC-3000 releases sold in the USA.

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    Power Mission for the Game Boy is probably the most obscure that I've actually played. Nobody except the guy who loaned to me ever heard of it, and whenever I brought it up or tried to find it later on I got shrugs or told I was taking about Radar Mission (a very crappy but also faithful Battleship knockoff) and took 20 years to get another copy, though I admit I only looked once in a blue moon and not very hard.

    A lot of the problem with 'obscure' titles now is that we have the internet as it is today. What one random schmo tweets about ten more retweet about fairly quickly, especially about video games. I can still remember when (at least locally) nobody knew what the hell what Tactics Ogre, Vandal Hearts, or Star Ocean: The Second Story. Sure, you could find them at big retailers or rental places, and all three of these had some form of online fandom already at the time (especially with all three being PS1 RPG titles when that was all the rage), but finding a dedicated fan even in 'nerdy' circles could be a challenge. And some games still fall through the cracks, whether they merit it or not.
    RPGs: Proof that one you start done the dork path, forever will it dominate your wallet's destiny.

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