If you are old, like ancient, you remember the days of the stick on a pad and the game Pong on your grainy television set. Your aim? To stop the bouncing ball from disappearing from your side of the screen. It was no more than a few pixels on a rubbish screen, but it sparked a revolution of games consoles that today has us fully emerged in digital worlds.
Gaming has blown up now more than anyone could have imagined. From starting out as a simple console in the family living room, the gaming industry now covers huge online LAN tournaments, to online slot betting games. There’s something for everyone to enjoy in the gaming industry.
When we dive into the world of retro games consoles however, some obvious things come to mind. These consoles moved the revolution of gaming forward with the biggest strides. Let’s explore these trailblazers of the console world.
Nintendo NES Classic Edition
If you were to point at one console that created the momentum for the world of Sony and Microsoft to battle it out, it was the Nintendo NES. The Atari deserves mention, but it wasn’t until the Nintendo that gaming moved away from basic pixelated games to something more sophisticated with a narrative. This was the birth of classics like Zelda and Super Mario Bros.
The classic was enhanced from a mere 8-bit to a massive (for the time) 16-bit Super NES console, and games became more as we imagine them today.
Sega Genesis Mini
The Genesis took Sega’s meagre attempts at a console and supercharged them. The Dreamcast was a poor relation to the Genesis and did for Sega what the SNES did for Nintendo. Thanks to Sega, we have Sonic the Hedgehog – and the first console that allowed for accessory packs to increase its functionality. Gaming nerds were in heaven.
Neo Geo Mini
The Neo Geo might not have had the global reputation or growth of Sega or Nintendo, but this console sold in the same numbers. For the purest gamers, this was perfect. It was shaped like the arcade games the youth of the day loved to visit – but brought it to your tabletop. You could buy cartridges that changed the game on the in-built screen – though most of these were fighting games.
Sony PlayStation Classic
Any list of gaming consoles would be incomplete without the PlayStation, and the most influential release was the first release. The iconic controller with the square, triangle, circle and cross was born, as were some of the classic games of our time, including Tomb Raider, Final Fantasy, Metal Gear Solid, and Resident Evil. For many, this is where real gaming began.
Less retro but no less influential. We end on a console that will be the next step in the gaming revolution. The Switch is both a handheld console and can be plugged in and played on the big screen. We love the Switch so much because, with a £15 subscription, you can get access to all the NES and SNES games from the past. All those arcade memories can come flooding back onto this newer release.
There are so many consoles not mentioned here – and likely with much controversy. Your choice of games console is like your choice of car, reflecting your personality. What cannot be denied is the power of these consoles to revolutionise the gaming world in the recent decades.