Nintendo 64 (Nintendo)
1996 - 2003
Often referred to as the N64, the Nintendo 64 launched in September of 1996 in the US with just two launch games - Pilotwings 64 and Super Mario Bros. 64. To date, it has been Nintendo's last ROM cartridge based system.
Much like every other Nintendo console, there were various releases of the system itself which featured various packed in games/themes, such as Donkey Kong, Goldeneye, etc, and as a result, varying colors to the system. The standard console was dark gray, almost black in color, while other releases featured colors such as fire orange, jungle green and more.
Multiplayer functionality was definitely a big part of the N64, as realized by the four controller ports built into the front of the console. As a result, this gave Nintendo an opportunity to exploit (for lack of a better word) consumers with as wide a variety of colored controllers as there were consoles.
The standard controller was a light gray color, which was soon followed by a yellow, red, blue, green and black. However, Nintendo didn't stop there. Throughout the life of the console even more colors were produced and released such as, but not limited to, Ice Blue, Atomic Purple, Grape Purple, Clear, Gold, Extreme Green, Fire Orange, Jungle Green, and even a newly designed controller, the Shark Pad - Which was also available in numerous colors.
Accessories were also a large part of the console, and Nintendo made sure to offer some very unique ones that were invaluable to the players experience. Three worth noting are the Expansion Pak, Controller Pak and Rumble Pak.
The Expansion Pak increased the 4 MB RAM to 8 MB which allowed developers to produce larger, but more importantly, visually appealing games. As a result, some games in the 64's library require you to have the Pak installed in order to play them.
The Controller Pak gave gamers the much needed, much appreciated ability to save their games - Though only some games allowed for this option. Though the Nintendo brand Pak was limited to only 32 KB, and up to sixteen game files, many third party released Paks included much more space, and as a result were much more desirable to gamers.
Finally, the Rumble Pak was a feature that offered players the ability to have their controller's rumble during certain parts of games. This feature is fairly standard these days, and as a result built in to most controllers, but back in the day it was that all new gimmick that was supposed to help submerge gamers into the game even more.
Nintendo also produced a handful of storage cases that were designed for the exact purpose one would think - Store games, and in the larger containers instance - The console too.
Though popular at first, the price of the containers themselves really didn't help sales out in the long run. Many gamers had already amassed such large collections of games that the limited storage space didn't justify the price.
Of course none of the above really means anything if you don't have the games themselves, so without further delay, we present to you ever US released game for the Nintendo 64!
We hope you've enjoyed our look at the Nintendo 64. No, we didn't miss the games starting with U's or Z's. Sadly there were no games released in the US that started with those letters.
Join us next time when we take a look at G.I. Joe: The Real American Hero - Not to be mistaken with G.I. Joe: "A" Real American Hero!
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