Wow. Last round went by so fast! And we had record votes too! Congratulations to the victor of our round 2 bracket: the Atari 2600. May you live on in our hearts, and dreams. So, here's a quick recap of the rules: Warning: Spoilers inside! Ea Warning: Spoilers inside! ch week, video game history will be put to the test to see which console or handheld is the greatest. There can only be one! Vote for your favourite and follow it through to the end as we try to determine GBATemp's favourite console/handheld! Consoles and handhelds will face off in brackets comprised of their generation. Because there can only be one, in the event of a tie I will cast a tie-breaking vote. Once a winner has been declared for each generation, the console winners and the handheld winners will face off in individual brackets. Once an ultimate console and ultimate handheld have been chosen, they will face off against each other to see who is the greatest! For a concrete example of the brackets, see the image at the bottom of this post. So... With the North American console market still reeling over the disaster of the video game market crash of '83, which resulted in a lot of bankruptcy and selling off of companies, people were wary to enter into the market. There's no question as to who ruled the industry at this time. But will it last? Tune in next week to find out! In the meantime... This week's challengers are: The Atari 7800 A dubious history, my friends! After the video game crash Atari came under new management. The 7800 saw a small and limited release in June of '84, but the new bosses decided to shelve it to focus on a home computer. When they saw the growing success that Nintendo was enjoying they scrambled in January of '86 to get the 7800 back out there! … Too bad it was really old tech by the time they rereleased it. The 7800 was unique in that it was fully backwards compatible with Atari 2600 cartridges! It launched at a price of $140US and sold an estimated 3.77 million units. The Casio PV-1000 Casio made their entry into the Japanese gaming market in October of 1983. By then the FAMICOM was flying off the shelves, so people took little notice of the little console. So much so that it was pulled from shelves weeks after its release. Good luck finding one of these! The Family Computer/Nintendo Entertainment System In the wake of the crash a small Japanese Arcade company is trying to get their console sold in the States, and no one is buying (not even Atari). They eventually manage to make a deal with Mattel, and through some really aggressive marketing and sales campaigns, the Nintendo Entertainment System is released to much success in 1985. Nintendo's strict quality and quantity control (referred to at the time as the Nintendo Seal of Quality) effectively secures the company from some of the problems that rocked the last generation. Of course, there were those who circumvented the restrictions. Konami created a shadow company, Ultra Games, to release more games in North America, while Wisdom Tree (biblical themed games) and some others simply reverse engineered the NES’ lockout chip and made their own unlicensed games. The NES sold an estimated 61.91 million (combined with FAMICOM sales) and initially sold for $199.99US for the 'Deluxe Set', $99.99US for the Super Mario Bros. version, and $89.99US for the vanilla Control Deck. It's best-selling non-bundled game was, of course, Super Mario Bros. 3, with 18 million sold. The Family Computer (FAMICOM) was released in Japan in 1983 to much success and fervour! It was so widely successful that Nintendo only stopped supporting it in 2003! 20 years after its initial release! The Sega SG-1000 The Sega Game 1000 was released too little fanfare to Japanese, New Zealand (ian?) and Australian audiences. It also saw a small release in some European countries and South Africa. The console line eventually morphed into a home computer, and was forgotten by most of the world in the wake of the FAMICOM/NES The Sega Master System Sega had its sights set on Nintendo form the very beginning! Despite having hardware that was touted as more versatile than the NES/FAMICOM, the Master System (SMS) had a limiting controller (D-pad and two buttons!) and, due to Nintendo's strict third party "you can't release your NES games on other consoles" policy, it saw little third party support. The console failed to make much of an impact in Japan and North America where it had its most aggressive campaigns. In North America it approached toy company Tonka to help make sales. Unlike Mattel, Tonka had no idea how to handle such a task and released a 'Mark II' of the console that had built-in games, but dropped other features. It launched at $100US and its best-selling game was a game starring their pre-Sonic mascot: Alex Kidd in Miracle World. Housekeeping!! Woo! And there's our challengers! What a rowdy and exciting bunch, but in the end, there can only be on! T'were I a betting man, I bet I could guess who is going to win this week. I'm not going to go out and say it, but it probably rhymes with Blintendo Blentertainment Blystem... Don't forget to vote, and join us next week as we tackle a MYSTERY ROUND! *theramin music* Upcoming brackets are as follows: Who will win? It could be you!* *Note: It can't be you.