Most cities have small, local game stores where you can often find deeply discounted – albeit used – consoles and games. If that doesn’t bother you, it’s a wonderful way to save money. You can also save a ton by buying used accessories. By shopping at these local retailers, not only are you helping out a small business, but you’re also connecting with your local gaming scene – a value that’s too great to pass up. Most of the time, the people running these stores are avid gamers as well and can give you recommendations and keep you notified of upcoming releases, sales and in-store events.


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Meanwhile, the commercial failure of the Virtual Boy reportedly did little to alter Nintendo's development approach and focus on innovation.[31] According to Game Over, Nintendo laid blame for the machine's faults directly on its creator, Gunpei Yokoi.[39] The commercial failure of the Virtual Boy was said by members of the video game press to be a contributing factor to Yokoi's withdrawal from Nintendo, although he had planned to retire years prior and finished another more successful project for the company, the Game Boy Pocket, which was released shortly before his departure.[40]
Sony's flagship, the PS4 Pro is a powerhouse system in its own right, allowing gamers to play their games in dynamic 4K (resolutions can upscale up to 4K with some tech wizardry) and with HDR enabled, too. The latest revision of the console is also quieter than ever (CUH-7200), which fixed one of the more minor issues some reviewers found with the launch model.

"While I was certainly skeptical of the Jaguar, my appreciation for the Lynx led me to at least give the system polite consideration. That was until I played Trevor McFur in the Crescent Galaxy on a demo Jaguar at an Incredible Universe. (Oh man, remember those stores?) It had a lion in military dress barking orders at me prior to one of the blandest side-scrolling shooter stages ever. The console got better with games like Alien vs. Predator, but that first impression was tough to overcome. However, the homebrew Jag scene is pretty cool."


The hardware was undeniably more advanced than the Atari 2600, with the ability to display higher resolution graphics and a more versatile color palette. The gamepads also showed how more advanced the system was over the "simple" Atari: these controllers featured a unique disc input system that predates the Nintendo thumb pad innovation, and offered a versatile telephone-like keypad as well as four action buttons, two on each side. Games made for the Intellivision featured specific overlays with artwork that slipped right on top of these 12 buttons to make it easy to understand which button does what.
The Nintendo Switch is the first Nintendo console to utilize a paid online system instead of a free one. The new service is necessary to play online, and allows users to play emulated games from the Virtual Console service. The paid service was officially launched in 2018, although a free trial of many of its features had been available up until then. The system offers digital software downloads through the Nintendo eShop directly from the console, cloud save backups, and facilitates voice chat and party matching in multiplayer online titles such as Splatoon 2, through use of an external smartphone application.

Whether you want to play games online or watch Netflix, you need to connect your game system to the internet. The Xbox One uses Xbox Live, and the PlayStation 4 uses the PlayStation Network to access online services. In both cases, you need to purchase the premium subscription plan (Xbox Live Gold for Xbox Live, PS Plus for PlayStation Network) to play games online. Both services cost $9.99 per month or $59.99 per year (the better deal by far), and include additional benefits like free games every month.
You'd also be doing yourself an injustice as a gamer if you were to ignore Nintendo's 3DS and 2DS family of portable consoles as well, and under no circumstances should you completely rule out Sony's largely forgotten portable, the PlayStation Vita. All these handhelds now have sizeable libraries of games and, due to their age and current dominance by the Nintendo Switch, are going cheaper than ever before, making  them a savvy choice for gamers looking for big portable bang for their buck.

First released in Japan on October 21, 1998, the Game Boy Color (abbreviated as GBC) added a (slightly smaller) color screen to a form factor similar in size to the Game Boy Pocket. It also has double the processor speed, three times as much memory,[44] and an infrared communications port. Technologically, it was likened to the 8-bit NES video game console from the 1980s although the Game Boy Color has a much larger color palette (56 simultaneous colors out of 32,768 possible) which had some classical NES ports and newer titles. It comes in seven different colors; Clear purple, purple, red, blue, green, yellow and silver for the Pokémon edition. Like the Game Boy Light, the Game Boy Color takes on two AA batteries. It was the final handheld to have 8-bit graphics.
Mattel excelled at marketing the device against Atari to show just how advanced it was, going so far as to hire author George Plimpton as the voice of Intellivision for its advertising campaign. The company also pushed for licenses in its games to strengthen the brand: the company offered MLB, NHL, NFL, and NBA licensed sports games, and even locked down the Tron franchise for a series of games in time for the potentially blockbuster film.

The video game console realm is much bigger than you think, ranging from insanely powerful offerings for 4K HDR and virtual reality gaming, through ultra portable picks, all the way to options designed to take you decades down the memory lane. Check out the best picks available on the market at the moment from the likes of Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo, and get ready to get your gaming on!
Surf the Web: The PS3 includes a cool Web browser (developed by Sony) that lets you surf the Web right out of the box. The Wii has an optional Web browser called the Internet Channel that you can download from the online Wii store for about $5. The Internet Channel is actually a special version of the Opera browser, and it works really well — a number of Web sites (such as Google’s Google Reader RSS reader program) have been optimized for the Wii Internet Channel and the Wii Remote (which acts just like a computer mouse when you’re surfing the Web). Unfortunately, the Xbox 360 doesn’t have a Web browser.
PS4 controller is the first one to introduce a light function. This function can show different colours that serve different purposes, depending on the game you play. For example, they can notify the player about critical messages like not having a lot of life left in the game. These lights also ensure that the position of the controller in relation to the console is read even more precisely than before.
The PlayStation 3 got a bad rep when it was originally released. But Sony re-released a slimmed down version of the PS 3 with a more affordable price tag later. PS 3 is still a great console to own when you want more juice than what the PS 2 offers, but cannot really afford the PS 4. You can get a PS 3 new for less than $300 these days. That’s a major bargain considering all the games you will be able to play on this console. It’s backward compatible with PS 2 and original PS titles.

Sony decided that its PS2 console was going to be an entertainment system, but not just for video games. DVDs were huge in the early 2000s, and PlayStation 2 brought to the foray a multimedia system that doubled as a DVD player. The data format allowed for bigger games, too, making humungous series that looked like cinematic masterpieces, including Metal Gear Solid 2 and 3, God of War, Shadow of the Colossus and Grand Theft Auto III.
Ralph Baer's original Odyssey is the machine that started the home videogame industry. Others may have popularized it beyond measure, such as the Atari 2600 and NES, but the Odyssey series is truly the genesis. The Odyssey was limited, though (all games were onboard, the paddle-like controller was clumsy compared to the joystick), and so Magnavox, the manufacturer of the console, pressed forward with the Odyssey 2. It aped the blockbuster Atari 2600 -- now its chief rival in 1978 -- in many ways, such as using the then-traditional one-button joystick and interchangeable cartridges. While the Odyssey 2's resolution is lower than the 2600, the console surpassed Atari’s in a handful of technical areas -- such as the out-of-the-box inclusion of a full keyboard for easy programming and edutainment software and the availability of an optional speech synthesizer.
If you ever wondered why we have ESRB ratings, you can blame the Sega Genesis. The console was marketed more towards the big boys and can be seen in the subtle differences in cross platform games; Mortal Kombat for Genesis has blood compared to the SNES. Sega’s games carried a different tonality to the market, too – Sonic The Hedgehog brought faster game play; Streets of Rage gave players nitty-gritty beat ‘em ups; and multiple sports games series with leagues like the NHL, NFL, NBA and FIFA. Sega would later introduce the well-received six-button control pad that’d replicate the arcade button scheme joysticks for gaming familiarity.
Currently, the PS4 has the better library of exclusives between the two, though this will obviously depend on your taste. Fantastic games like God of War, Spider-Man, and Tetris Effect came out last year on the PS4 (and only the PS4), along with several other excellent console exclusives since launch like Bloodbourne, Horizon: Zero Dawn, and Until Dawn.
Want extras? We've got those, too! Gear up with all the accessories that bring your Nintendo games—or any additional ones in your collection—to life. Transform your space into a gaming headquarters with headphones and other equipment that help you interact with anyone else at the controls. Immerse yourself in the moment—there's no better time than now.
T3 has reviewed all the best video game consoles going, from Microsoft's 4K powerhouse the Xbox One X, through to Sony's rival PS4 Pro, and onto Nintendo's hot hybrid, the Nintendo Switch, and we've tucked hundreds of hours under our belt playing their best games, too. As such, our tech experts are perfectly positioned to help you find your perfect gaming console.
Nintendo has come along way from its eight-bit handheld Gameboy system to its now robust and powerful face-tracking, 3D-capable, Wi-Fi-enabled Nintendo 3DS XL system. It can play local and online multiplayer, so you and other 3DS owners around the world or in the neighborhood can play games such as Super Smash Bros and Mario Kart 7. The Nintendo 3DS XL measures 1.5 x 7.1 x 5.1 inches, weighs 1.1 pounds and comes in a variety of unique colors.
"I remember being the first of the game magazines to get a demo of the 3DO "Interactive Multiplayer" from Trip Hawkins for VideoGames & Computer Entertainment magazine. Trip is a great marketing guy, and I was fascinated by his presentation. However, despite the cool concept and some decent games, it was clear an $800 game system was never going to compete."
Currently, the PS4 has the better library of exclusives between the two, though this will obviously depend on your taste. Fantastic games like God of War, Spider-Man, and Tetris Effect came out last year on the PS4 (and only the PS4), along with several other excellent console exclusives since launch like Bloodbourne, Horizon: Zero Dawn, and Until Dawn.
The Xbox One X came highly recommended by our testers for serious gamers looking for incredible display quality, tons of storage, and the added bonus of being able to use the device for streaming TV and video. “This console is able to process a massive open world video game worth ~40 GB of space,” explained one of our reviewers. “With such a huge game, graphics are still displayed in 4K and looks phenomenal.” Our testers didn’t like that downloading a game could be quite time consuming, and one of our reviewers wished the controller came with a USB wire for charging. Bottom line: “For the retail price, this 1TB device with 4K display, that is capable of multitasking on many different things is incredible,” gushed one of our reviewers.
^ Pereira, Joseph (November 16, 1992). "Technology (A Special Report): At Our Leisure --- (Not So) Great Expectations: Hand-held Video Games Will Get Better, But Big Improvements May Take a While". The Wall Street Journal. p. R10. ISSN 0099-9660. Meanwhile, Nintendo, the first on the market with its black-and-white Game Boy, has sold approximately 7.5 million portable systems, analysts estimate. Sega has sold about 1.6 million units of its color Game Gear system, while Atari Inc. has sold about one million units of its $99 Lynx color portable system.

Despite its narrow mass audience, the Master System had -- and still has -- a very loyal fan base. Thankfully, the thumping SEGA received with the Master System did not daunt its quest for the living room, leading to the Genesis, which corrected most of the Master System's mistakes and gave Nintendo a run for its money for the majority of the 16-bit generation.


With over 725 games in its library, the SNES was one of the best consoles that came into the market with third-party support. Due to its previous promising history and savvy business deals, Nintendo got an early public relations advantage with third-party developer Capcom, giving them the first console port of Street Fighter II. Nintendo went above and beyond with the SNES by developing the Super FX chip, allowing 3D capabilities with titles like Starfox and Doom without adding on any unnecessary hardware. For anyone wanting to relive the definitive early 90s gaming experience, the SNES wins hands down. 

Playing games is about entertainment and company, fun and adventure. It is about an escape from reality. With a game from Coolshop you can be exactly who you want to be. You can save the world in the past, future and present – and destroy it again. Explore habitable planets, underground caves and abandoned buildings. Save princesses and fight monsters.
The Big N had even bigger plans for the once-codenamed 'Ultra 64,' including revolutionary control mechanisms, cutting-edge graphical processing power and an exclusive list of handpicked third-parties (known as the “Dream Team”), and it certainly started the system off with a bang. Not only did legendary designer Shigeru Miyamoto unveil the N64 controller complete with the uber-sensitive analog stick and rumble pak, but he also showed off the genre-shaping platformer Super Mario 64, considered to this day to be one of the greatest and most important videogames ever made. And yet, even with a string of hits, some of them monumental, N64 never came close to matching rival PlayStation in popularity. In fact, Sony's disc-based platform outsold Nintendo's by a margin of more than three to one.
"I'll always credit the NES for getting me back into gaming – for good. As a kid, I was addicted to escaping from blocky cats on my brother's Fairchild Channel F, worked my way through various Atari machines to the C64... and suddenly fell out of love with gaming altogether. The NES brought it all back. As much as I tried, there was no escaping the power of Mario! The NES made me a gamer for life."
There’s never been a more exciting time to be a gamer. The range of experiences offered by today’s games is unprecedented, and knowing what you want is the first step in creating your dream gaming getup. Do you want cutting-edge graphics and gameplay that only 4K and HDR provide? Prefer to take your game worlds on-the-go? Enjoy revisiting amazing retro games from yesteryear? Think of Best Buy as your well-stocked gaming quartermaster, ready at a moment's notice with all of the best video game deals, gadgets, games, and high-powered consoles to elevate your gaming to the highest level.

With over 725 games in its library, the SNES was one of the best consoles that came into the market with third-party support. Due to its previous promising history and savvy business deals, Nintendo got an early public relations advantage with third-party developer Capcom, giving them the first console port of Street Fighter II. Nintendo went above and beyond with the SNES by developing the Super FX chip, allowing 3D capabilities with titles like Starfox and Doom without adding on any unnecessary hardware. For anyone wanting to relive the definitive early 90s gaming experience, the SNES wins hands down. 
Action games was one of the first popular genres. These games include a number of challenges: it is a mix of fighting and exploration. Many of them focus on narratives and online part. What is most appealing in these games is the constant challenge.  Games that cause emotions – and sometimes that emotion is anger – are the best games. It is those we remember – and that is what makes them a unique gaming experience.

The PlayStation 3 may still be coming into its own, but it has already had a great number of titles see their release on the system and, along with the Xbox 360, it has helped completely redefine what people think about gaming in terms of online accessibility and functionality. Gone are the days when everything you played on a console was burned onto a disc. Online systems like the PlayStation Network have introduced the ability to buy and play complete games without having to leave your couch, not to mention the advent of downloadable content that can expand games exponentially.
"I actually liked the Atari 5200, primarily because of the games I had for it, such as Pengo, Mountain King, The Dreadnaught Factor, and one of my favorite games of all-time, Pitfall II: The Lost Caverns. Now, was the machine an over-sized mess with controllers that broke way too easy? Yes. But if consoles are defined by their games, then on a personal level, the 5200 remains near and dear for not only these titles, but for being a part of my discovery of videogames in the early eighties."

As its second disc-based console, SEGA sought to learn from the mistakes it made with the Saturn with the Dreamcast. The Dreamcast marked a comprehensive overhaul of SEGA's marketing and design strategy, aiming for a more diverse audience with quality software and a number of technological innovations. The Dreamcast was the first console to incorporate a built-in modem for online play, and while the networking lacked the polish and refinement of its successors, it was the first time users could seamlessly power on and play with users around the globe. Additionally, the Dreamcast also launched its own proprietary disc format, GD-ROM, which boasted an extra 500 MBs of data capacity over CDs.
But beyond its hardware innovations, the Xbox 360 marked a huge software push in terms of creating an all encompassing media and gaming platform. The Xbox 360 launched with a completely revised Xbox Live online networking system, which enabled new and unprecedented ways of accessing video, audio, and game content, as well as connecting with friends. Xbox Live has since grown to be one of the most successful console-based online gaming networks ever created, with over 17 million members as of January, 2009. Through its extensive online-integration, which allows for practically boundless optimization, feature additions, and improvements, the Xbox 360 has drastically extended the lasting appeal and life expectancy of the average console.
Nintendo's GameCube was released in Japan on September 15, 2001, in North America on November 18, 2001, in Europe on May 3, 2002, and in Australia on May 17, 2002. It was Nintendo's fourth home video game console and the first console by the company to use optical media instead of cartridges. The GameCube did not play standard 12 cm DVDs, instead it employed smaller 8 cm optical discs. With the release of the GameCube Game Boy Player, all Game Boy, Game Boy Color, and Game Boy Advance cartridges could be played on the platform. The GameCube was discontinued in 2007 with the release of Wii.
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