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Video game console - Nintendo 64 (N64)

    Nintendo 64 (commonly abbreviated as N64) was Nintendo's third home video game console designed not only for Japanese but also for international market. It received its name according to the 64-bit processor it was equipped with, although it actually used only a 32-bit bus, so it ranks into a 32-bit console era. N64 was first launched in Japan on June 23, 1996. Only three months later, it appeared on markets in the USA or Brazil. European customers could buy this console for the first time in March 1997. The Nintendo 64 was the last video game console using cartridges to distribute the games. It has remained on the world markets until 2003, when it was definitively pushed out by its successor and more advanced console GameCube.
     At the beginning of the 1990s, Nintendo clearly dominated the world market of video game consoles, namely thanks to the legendary console Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), which sold more than 60 million units. Sales of NES began to decline during the Japanese economic recession. Nintendo's position as a world leader has kept by NES successor - famous Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) console. In the mid-1990s, in Japan, serious Nintendo competitors began to grow: long-time rival Sega and a relatively young, but dynamic company Sony. If Nintendo did not want to risk losing its dominant position, it had to develop a successor to SNES, capable of competing with the fifth-generation consoles of Sega Saturn and Sony PlayStation that were available since the end of 1994.
     Nintendo planned to release a new console for Japanese market in Christmas in 1995. But due to unexpected chips problems, the official release date has been shifted to June next year. The console's launch price was planned to be about 250 USD, but as a result of lower prices of competitive consoles Sega Saturn and Sony PlayStation, launch price of Nintendo 64 was set to 200 USD. During the first day of sales, all 300,000 consoles, which were shipped to Japanese shops, were sold out and three days later the second delivery of 200,000 pieces disappeared as quickly as possible. Also, in the United States, the console sold very well and 350,000 units disappeared in US households during the first three days. In total, Nintendo has sold 33 million units worldwide, which is only half against NES, on the other hand, Nintendo 64 has been on the market for only 7 years, while NES almost 20!
     Nintendo 64 was launched with just two game titles: Super Mario 64 and Pilotwings 64. The announced game Cruis'n USA was at the last minute withdrawn from the list of starting titles because did not meet Nintendo’s quality criteria. It should be noted that Nintendo 64 received generally positive reviews right from its launch. Critics appreciated realistic movement and gameplay provided by the combination of fast graphics processing and pressure-sensitive controller. For the console, a number of titles have emerged, which later experts have described as games with historically the greatest influence on the further development of the video game industry. Among the most influential games belong 'The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time' or 'GoldenEye 007'. On the other hand, Nintendo continued to apply its strict policy of minimal violence, blood and sex, which resulted in fact that many video game companies publishing their titles rather on competitive consoles, especially on the PlayStation. Thanks to that, Nintendo has lost its position as a leader in world markets.
     For Nintendo 64, a total of 388 games were created. Just for comparison, the main competitors of Sega Saturn and Sony PlayStation had an approximate number of 600 or 1100 titles respectively. Even so, Nintendo 64 gave birth to a number of legendary series. Their life began here such series as 'Banjo-Kazooie' or 'Turok: Dinosaur Hunter'. The maximum size of game ROM for the N64 was limited by the storage capacity of used cartridges 64 MB, which was a another drawback compared to the competitive consoles that could host games up to 650 MB large. The console itself used the 93.75 MHz 64-bit NEC VR 4300 processor and the 62.5 MHz SGI RCP graphics chip. The RAM was limited to 4 MB, which was not enough for many games. This was solved by the so-called Expansion Pack, which helped expand the memory to 8 MB. The great advantage of the N64 was the ability to connect up to 4 gamepads simultaneously.
     To date (March 2018), almost 22 years have passed since this legendary console Nintendo 64 was released. During that time, the whole generation of players who grew up with it become adult and many of them already have their own children playing with the latest versions of the eighth-generation consoles. For those that N64 has been accompanying their adolescence, Nintendo 64 will remain forever Console No. 1.

Alphabetical list of the games for N64 hosted at RetroGames.cz:

Name Released Number of hits User rating
Banjo-Kazooie 1998 8719x 53%
Castlevania 64 1999 2274x 64%
Cruis’n USA 1994 17175x 55%
Doom 64 1997 19076x 56%
Excitebike 64 2000 1938x 29%
GoldenEye 007 1997 54892x 63%
Killer Instinct Gold 1996 5618x 48%
Mario Kart 64 1996 74816x 48%
Mega Man Legends 1997 1093x 62%
Mortal Kombat 4 1997 12242x 50%
Paper Mario 2000 31944x 72%
Pilotwings 64 1996 2941x 50%
Pokémon Snap 1999 3730x 58%
Super Mario 64 1996 506075x 60%
Super Smash Bros. 1999 24565x 64%
Virtual Chess 64 1998 2230x 78%
WG's 3D Hockey 1996 2780x 54%
Zelda: Majora's Mask 2000 14454x 64%
Zelda: Ocarina of Time 1998 87981x 64%

All information in this article are taken from Wikipedia: http://wikipedia.org/.

Nintendo 64
Console Nintendo 64 with cartridge
and grey controller from 1996.
 

Technical data:
Manufacturer: Nintendo
Generation: Fifth
Retail availability: June 1996 (Japan)
September 1996 (USA)
March 1997 (Europe and Australia)
Discontinued: 2002 (Japan)
2003 (EU, AU, USA)
Units sold: 33 million (As of 2010)
Media: ROM cartridge
Processor (CPU): 64-bit NEC VR4300
@ 93.75 MHz
Screen resolution: from 320 × 240 pixels
up to 640 × 480 pixels
Colors: 16.8 million
Controller input: Nintendo 64 controller
Best-selling game: Super Mario 64
(12 million)
Predecessor: Super Nintendo Entertainment System (1990)
Successor: GameCube (2001)

Most popular N64 games:

N64: Super Mario 64 Super Mario 64

N64: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

N64: GoldenEye 007 GoldenEye 007


 

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