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The Ugliest Looking Game System Ever!

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I was talking about the various European licences cloesn if systems, and one nightmare came to haunt me :

 

itt-telematch-processor-fairchild-channe

This is a Channel F clone.. and also the death of design.

Ther eis simply no imagination put into that, or heart, or feelings.

Il looks like ITT took the shell from a digital alarm clock and shoehorned a console in it.

 

 

It looks like an 8 track player to me. I totally understand what you are saying, but I get a very classic feel from it and kinda like it.

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But it's SO inedaquate :D 8 tracks players were only briefly popular in Europe, and in many countries, there weren't even any home players.

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In this case, I dislike the joysticks more than the console. The original Fairchild joysticks have something quirky but stylish in them, the ITT ones look like the handle you use for a Scalextric car track.

Edited by carlsson
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I may be in the minority, but I love the ridiculousness of the SuperGrafx. That thing looked SERIOUS BUSINESS for the time!

 

yes, looks like they took a Tg16 and just suped the crap out of it.

 

Genesis model 1, i can't believe people think is ugly. Thats one of the top 10 if not greatest of all time.

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Seen a lot of mention of the original ds and I got to agree. Not only did it look bad but it always felt cheap to me almost like a mass production prototype although I didn't realize that at the time. I actually realized that when the first generation 3ds released. I specifically remember thinking "this reminds me of the ds gen 1 they still got some work to do to get this right." To a much lesser extent I feel it with the switch also.

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In this case, I dislike the joysticks more than the console. The original Fairchild joysticks have something quirky but stylish in them, the ITT ones look like the handle you use for a Scalextric car track.

 

Again - you are 100% correct, but I kinda LIKE that about it.

 

"Remember when we used to listen to 8 tracks and play with slot cars? That was awesome bro!"

 

Ya know -- stuff like that

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It looks like an 8 track player to me. I totally understand what you are saying, but I get a very classic feel from it and kinda like it.

 

The only way this thing could be any more 70s would be if you played it while wearing a leisure suit under a disco ball.

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The FM Towns Marty has that nice generic quintessential 90's CD console look. Nothing stands out but it's not poorly designed either. It harkens back to a time I feel very familiar with. I love that, and that's why the console is the background of our logo for our Youtube channel and Twitter feed.

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I'm surprised how different people's opinions are. Personally, I love the design of the toaster NES, 64GS, SMS, Genesis Model 1, and PS1, but apparentlý, a lot of people think they look hideous. Personally, I hate the looks of the SNES and the top loader NES, as well as the original XBox. SNES is too boxy and has a terrible color scheme. Top loader looks weird. XBox is just plain fat.

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11 hours ago, 0078265317 said:

50% of those are beautiful, like the Intellivision, which I mentioned in my new thread about beautiful consoles and boxes. The other 70s consoles are also great aside from the Odyssey2, which wouldn't look out of place on the original Star Trek, but isn't repulsive. Pippin isn't so bad. If you told your ignorant friends that it's a modem, they'd believe you as long as they don't notice the disc drive or controller. Genesis 2 set is ugly.

 

The Telstar Arcade, though, is what I had in mind the moment I saw this topic. Man that thing is hideous.

 

Also the Pikachu N64 is super atrocious.

Edited by Steven Pendleton

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As soon as I saw this title I knew what to expect and yeaaaahh.. some 16 years old scrolling through the "second gen" page of wikipedia and sprinkling it with the Pipp!n for pretending he didn't like the 70's look.

Where is the Saturn? the monstruous Xbox original? The PSOne? The Xbox 360 redesign that looks like a Chinese fake? Tastes and colors are subjective alright, but that post is really just a filler. No analysis, no trend, no effort just "This is ugly. This is ugly too, and this looks out of Star Trek (as if it was a bad point?)"

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13 minutes ago, CatPix said:

As soon as I saw this title I knew what to expect and yeaaaahh.. some 16 years old scrolling through the "second gen" page of wikipedia and sprinkling it with the Pipp!n for pretending he didn't like the 70's look.

Where is the Saturn? the monstruous Xbox original? The PSOne? The Xbox 360 redesign that looks like a Chinese fake? Tastes and colors are subjective alright, but that post is really just a filler. No analysis, no trend, no effort just "This is ugly. This is ugly too, and this looks out of Star Trek (as if it was a bad point?)"

Yeah, 70s consoles are super damn awesome, and after watching all of Star Trek a few times, I kind of like the fact that it's super no-budget 60s. I will admit to watching the new effects versions on the BD since Nimoy (still can't believe he's gone) changed his mind about them after seeing them, though. I did also see a few of those episodes in the theater in 2007 or 2008 though and it was awesome. Will eventually watch the original effects versions after I finish watching the TNG BDs for the 5th time. Just under halfway through now.

 

I can't bring myself to call anything on that list ugly except the Telstar Arcade and the Genesis 2 set. Individually, the Genesis 2 is pretty good looking, but adding more stuff to it makes it looks not so great. Pikachu N64 is the absolute worst, though. Intellivision is super beautiful.

 

Oops, forgot the Jag. Yeah, even that isn't ugly until you add the CD toilet, though.

Edited by Steven Pendleton

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3 minutes ago, roots.genoa said:

To me the ugliest, or rather the weirdest, is still this one:

 

I can't hate the ViewMaster Interactive Vision because it looks like Legos + Rubix cube weirdness.

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39 minutes ago, CatPix said:

As soon as I saw this title I knew what to expect and yeaaaahh.. some 16 years old scrolling through the "second gen" page of wikipedia and sprinkling it with the Pipp!n for pretending he didn't like the 70's look.

Where is the Saturn? the monstruous Xbox original? The PSOne? The Xbox 360 redesign that looks like a Chinese fake? Tastes and colors are subjective alright, but that post is really just a filler. No analysis, no trend, no effort just "This is ugly. This is ugly too, and this looks out of Star Trek (as if it was a bad point?)"

Last week I saw the 360 slim for the first time and I asked myself is it supposed to bent like that? Not sure what they were thinking about with that one.

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I can see why, but on the other hand, that system is so painfully 80's it's rad :D

1200px-ViewMaster-Interactive-Vision-wCo

 

For me the biggest sin in design, regardless of era, is going for the safe "bland" design.

 

This thing for example is a mess of design, mismatched shapes and colors... but on the other hand, they tried hard to be cool. And failed. But they failed hard.

The Pipp!n and Saturn (some models) fail into this category for they have simply no special taste or effort put in it. They are competent designs, not bad (well in fact the Saturn is bad)... but the blandless of the 90's is not the blandness of the 2020 and so their design appears dated, without anything the eye can catch and appreciate.

 

If we compare with similar blocky consoles, the 3DO FZ1 have those touches of gold on the buttons, the flashy red and green notches, and those Greek pillars at each angle. Oh and that faux marble effect on the top.

81L6mEMbc-L._AC_SL1500_.jpg

It sure falls now into the "kitsch" look of things, but at least they tried.

 

The Playstation is often named as the worst and ugliest design (and I like the irony that the same people say that the Saturn looks better... Really?)

I can understand why, tho, efforts were made to make a competent and clever, if not pretty, design.

console-playstation-1-3-jeux.jpg

The design is simple but also (to me) neat,, if not pretty. The console is quasi symetrical on both sides but also, from this top down view, back and front. The CD tray is "invisible" as it's that big round shape; and the hinges are hidden too in that big large part that goes to the back, and that design is mirrored on the front of the system. If you look at the buttons, even without indications on them you could tell what they are for! the Open button has a notch going from it to the CD tray, where the power switch has a small notch leading to the power LED.

Simple but elegant.

Also the vents are noteworthy; those triangular shapes are highly unusual and certain cost-intensive. But they have the merit of venting the system while hiding the vents from the eye and also still bring air if you were to block the sides of the console. It's both functionnal and design. It may not be pretty but clever.

 

And now, the ugly :

1280px-Sega-Saturn-Console-Set-Mk1.jpg

 

At first glance you wanna say "well it's more or less like the PS. A featureless box." But it's worse.

 

I don't even know where to start with. But let's start with the assembly. Both PS1 and Saturn have rather large, by modern standards, "assembly gaps" that is, the part between the upper and lower shell. But Sony took care to hide it and put it at the bottom of the console. On the Saturn, you can see is going up and down around all the system, giving it a clumsy and unfinished look. Some parts of the bottom case are recessed, like pseudo-pillars, but not the upper parts. The only design efforts are that cut in the top part that looks like a giant lid... and which to me only make the console looks bigger than it already is. The other one is the cleverly-blended window to see the CD spinning You may not even see it on that picture if you don't know where to look. Else it's a mess. Look on the side; there are weird ridges on the bottom part, not on the top. There are very utilitarian vents. Fair enough, but thy are on the side.

The front of the console is featureless. Why not doing like Nintendo and put your brand or logo here? Especially since you slapped your Sega brand on the corner of the console, all cramped and not pretty.

The buttons are slanted... Why not, but there is no reson for it. And the button to open the CD lid isn't slanted! Have consistency! The left button is named "Power" which is fine, but the other is "Access" No! Access have been used to say that the console was accessing the CD. Not for the user to access the CD. And it's next to the RESET button! What a terrible mistake. I assume the labels are here for the LED indication, but then, don't put those near buttons that have other functions!

That console is a mess, design-wise (and I don't mean the electronic parts). It's really an insult to the people who bough it. It's barely better than a prototype!

Edited by CatPix
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Lol yeah the original PS1 is just a big grey box.

 

The Skeleton Saturn is cool. In fact, it's so cool that it tells you that it's cool!

 

B8F023231001.jpg&f=1&nofb=1

 

Looks better in person, though.

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40 minutes ago, Steven Pendleton said:

Lol yeah the original PS1 is just a big grey box.

 

The Skeleton Saturn is cool. In fact, it's so cool that it tells you that it's cool!

 

B8F023231001.jpg&f=1&nofb=1

 

Looks better in person, though.

Gotta say it does. I'm not a huge fan of skeleton cases usually because most consoles are just huge hunks of metal, but the Saturn isn't. And it's not hollow either, there is stuff everywhere. So that's a good point to it, and yeah, the "This is cool" Tetris-like shaped text is the kind of cheesy design thing my brains goes "Awwww that is cute, they tried".

Also, that's the second version with the round button. Much better :D

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3 minutes ago, CatPix said:

Gotta say it does. I'm not a huge fan of skeleton cases usually because most consoles are just huge hunks of metal, but the Saturn isn't. And it's not hollow either, there is stuff everywhere. So that's a good point to it, and yeah, the "This is cool" Tetris-like shaped text is the kind of cheesy design thing my brains goes "Awwww that is cute, they tried".

Also, that's the second version with the round button. Much better :D

I have held one, but never used it. I saw a video of it playing a game on Youtube. Its transparency looks really cool with the disc spinning really fast! Too bad you can't really see through the PC Engine's CD ROM2 very well or the same would apply.

Edited by Steven Pendleton

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