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The fail of NES hardware/gaming video from UK outlook


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#226 zzip OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 3, 2017 1:03 PM

Of course consoles could be computers, and there are plenty of examples going back to the Bally Astrocade and right up to the PS3's ability to officially run Linux (since disabled). The point is, complexity is generally abstracted on a console, whereas it tends to be embraced with a computer, plus there's the whole optimized-for-a-TV and couch experience thing. That's why each always has and likely will continue to have its own place in the home for the foreseeable future for many people. That's also why it was a false, though superficially appealing, premise, when the idea of computers replacing consoles was first proffered by some magazines of the day at the height of the Crash.


As I said before, the microcomputers of the 80s were very console-like. You could literally just plug in a cartridge and play just like on a console. Even with a disk drive, many would autoboot game disks for you. It was only later that home computers became more complex and expensive.

If they had continued to make cheap console-like computers, then I doubt there would have been a place for ordinarly consoles, and the magazines would be correct. But they didn't, and it was only at that point that the NES took off.

Edited by zzip, Wed May 3, 2017 1:04 PM.


#227 Bill Loguidice OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 3, 2017 1:59 PM

As I said before, the microcomputers of the 80s were very console-like. You could literally just plug in a cartridge and play just like on a console. Even with a disk drive, many would autoboot game disks for you. It was only later that home computers became more complex and expensive.

If they had continued to make cheap console-like computers, then I doubt there would have been a place for ordinarly consoles, and the magazines would be correct. But they didn't, and it was only at that point that the NES took off.

 

I disagree. It doesn't matter how simple to use they actually were, they were still computers. Being a computer was still enough to turn lots of people off versus something that's billed as just being able to play games. Psychology is important.

 

And the NES took off because it had the hottest, must-play games. Unless those games would have been available on computers - and for the most part they weren't (or if they were in different, often compromised forms) - there was nothing a computer could have done to steal the NES's thunder. Hooking a console up to the family TV is one thing. Hooking up a computer, even sans some type of storage solution and other peripherals, is something else entirely. 



#228 CatPix OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 3, 2017 2:38 PM

Well depends of the system. It's probably a part of what made Amstrad's success (and it was certainly points they insisted on in the ads) : ONE electric wire. No peripherals. No taking the parental TV.

And for tape games, pressing a two-keys combinaison to load a tape game (none of the C64 LOAD "8.1" BS) - and to load a tape game, it was just LOAD, if I recall right).

I still get your point in that a computer brings you another mindset.

Nintendo had it right in designing the NEs to be part of the TV setup : no need to remove it from the TV when you were done playing, which most other systems, and even more for computers, that required a table or desk to start with, wouldn't really stay hooked to the TV.

 

Now that make me think, in Europe, there is little to no floor TVs. I saw some from the 60's, and even those floors models came with feet so they stood up high :

 

TVfrance_Tevea_Athena_Console.jpg

 

53-3785.JPG

 

So I wonder if that helped introducing computers in Europe, or if that stopped computers to be introduced in the USA?

It's probably next to impossible to guess, but it probably played a role.



#229 zzip OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 3, 2017 2:58 PM

I disagree. It doesn't matter how simple to use they actually were, they were still computers. Being a computer was still enough to turn lots of people off versus something that's billed as just being able to play games. Psychology is important.


And yet C64 sold millions and was widely used for gaming, while the CV/5200 died on the vine.


Hooking a console up to the family TV is one thing. Hooking up a computer, even sans some type of storage solution and other peripherals, is something else entirely.


There is literally no difference! You plug the RF cable to the TV input box in both cases.

#230 empsolo OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 3, 2017 3:06 PM

And yet C64 sold millions and was widely used for gaming, while the CV/5200 died on the vine.



There is literally no difference! You plug the RF cable to the TV input box in both cases.

Except you aren't thinking with the cap of mid 1980's Americana on your head. The American public had just shoveled 200-300 dollars on this hot new cheap C64 after being told by Jack Tremiel that gosh darn it they needed a computer! A computer that really can't do office work and barely plays games better than the rival 8 bit computers.

The American public got burned by the C64. That's why sales ended up slumping as the NES got going because the NES was cheaper to purchase and was dedicated to entertainment but wasn't trying to hook you in on bullshit claims of doing your taxes for you.


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Edited by empsolo, Wed May 3, 2017 3:07 PM.


#231 enoofu OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 3, 2017 3:37 PM

Don't believe Nintendo saved the video game industry 

 

Nintendo did so well in North America because it had it supply chain intact, as the 1983 Crash collapsed a lot of IC suppliers in North America that were also being hit by dumping from Asia especially Taiwan, Korea and Hong Kong

 

One reason that Coleco and the new Atari jumped on the computer wagon as they didn't want to setup a new supply chain after theirs collapsed as their was plenty of computer chips being offered cheaply on the market do to a price war in the microcomputer market

 

Retailers didn't care about R.O.B. just that Nintendo could supply units once the oversupply was clear which Atari wasn't able to do to technical and economical reasons at that time

 

Arcade industry issue was that machines were to complex for easy maintenance, getting more expensive to own, and that they were hit by money inflation which pushed the few major coin up operators out

 

Also the reason for the JAMMA standard was designrf to counter some of those issues and make it easier for more coin up operators



#232 high voltage OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 3, 2017 11:55 PM

But you also have to remember that Nintendo had a hard start-up in US, the AVS flopped twice (CES Jan 1984 and June 1984). June 1985 the NES was shown at the CES, still little enthusiasm from customers placing orders.

Then they did the NYC stunt and that somehow worked.....It was hard work for the old Nintendo guys.



#233 OldSchoolRetroGamer OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 4, 2017 1:02 AM

There is literally no difference! You plug the RF cable to the TV input box in both cases.

 
You say that as if it mattered. It is about perception and marketing. Back in the VCR days a big seller was a gizmo labeled VCR+, Description of the VCR+ " A VCR remote control type device for setting your VCR to record programming. By typing in a multi-digit code into the VCR+, you don’t have to manually program the VCR for each recording." This was a big seller, WHY ? Because it was marketed as a way to simplify that apparently impossible task of manually programming a VCR to record TV. And back in the day it was such a thing that over the years you can find many examples of jokes, skits, parodies all based on how complicated VCR programming was. BUT GUESS WHAT? "Setting up" a VCR+ for one's particular brand of machine and actually using it was certainly NOT any simpler or easier than actually reading the manual and learning to manually program your VCR. But that did not matter as that was public perception, they believed it was easier and so they bought into it. Point being the majority of non techy types instantly equate a computer with being complicated, they would not take the time to learn there was literally no difference in hooking or a console or computer, they have not got time for that! Their perception was computers must be more difficult and therefore it was even if people like you or I knew better  ;)

Edited by OldSchoolRetroGamer, Thu May 4, 2017 1:04 AM.


#234 zzip OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 4, 2017 7:43 AM

You say that as if it mattered. It is about perception and marketing. Back in the VCR days a big seller was a gizmo labeled VCR+, Description of the VCR+ " A VCR remote control type device for setting your VCR to record programming. By typing in a multi-digit code into the VCR+, you don’t have to manually program the VCR for each recording." This was a big seller, WHY ? Because it was marketed as a way to simplify that apparently impossible task of manually programming a VCR to record TV. And back in the day it was such a thing that over the years you can find many examples of jokes, skits, parodies all based on how complicated VCR programming was. BUT GUESS WHAT? "Setting up" a VCR+ for one's particular brand of machine and actually using it was certainly NOT any simpler or easier than actually reading the manual and learning to manually program your VCR. But that did not matter as that was public perception, they believed it was easier and so they bought into it. Point being the majority of non techy types instantly equate a computer with being complicated, they would not take the time to learn there was literally no difference in hooking or a console or computer, they have not got time for that! Their perception was computers must be more difficult and therefore it was even if people like you or I knew better  ;)


I remember VCR+. It was even less reliable than programming the VCR yourself. I don't recall many people actually using though.

Programming a VCR was not actually not that hard, especially not the later ones with on-screen programming. Even the older ones weren't much more complicated than setting an alarm clock.

Edited by zzip, Thu May 4, 2017 7:46 AM.


#235 Bill Loguidice OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 4, 2017 7:59 AM

I remember VCR+. It was even less reliable than programming the VCR yourself. I don't recall many people actually using though.

Programming a VCR was not actually not that hard, especially not the later ones with on-screen programming. Even the older ones weren't much more complicated than setting an alarm clock.

 

It wasn't hard at all if one were sufficiently motivated, but it did tend to be a slow process. Of course, the usual gag wasn't even as advanced as programming to record a show, but to actually program the clock in the first place. The flashing "12:00" gags were endless. These days I get pissed off when a clock doesn't automatically account for daylight savings time, which is mostly relegated to appliances (and at least one good argument for connected appliances).



#236 zzip OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu May 4, 2017 8:28 AM

It wasn't hard at all if one were sufficiently motivated, but it did tend to be a slow process. Of course, the usual gag wasn't even as advanced as programming to record a show, but to actually program the clock in the first place. The flashing "12:00" gags were endless. These days I get pissed off when a clock doesn't automatically account for daylight savings time, which is mostly relegated to appliances (and at least one good argument for connected appliances).


There are some non-internet connected devices that can set themselves and adjust for DST. My Sony under-the-cabinet kitchen radio does this. I think they pick up a radio signal with the time or something.




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