consoles hero

As we all know, Microsoft and Sony are now in a feverishness of battle. Will a PS4 or a Xbox One win this epoch of a console war? At a time of writing, a PS4 has sole roughly 40m units, compared to around 10m Xbox Ones – suggesting that things are a small bit one-sided.

But is 40m PS4s impressive? How does that review to other consoles from history? Will a PS4 be remembered by history? To find out, here’s a run-down of a best offered consoles of all time.

Nintendo Entertainment System

Released: 1983

Sold: 61m

At array 10 is a strange Nintendo Entertainment System. Over a whole lifetime it sole 61m units – so Sony is already dual thirds of a approach there if it wants to kick it with a PS4. But a allure of a NES should not be underestimated.

Though a console looks old-fashioned by 21st century standard, it was a initial genuine worldwide success for a home console. It introduced to a universe a guy called Mario – that in spin fundamentally invented a whole genre of height gaming.

Many other gaming staples got their initial tour on a NES too – including a Legend of Zelda, Final Fantasy and Castlevania.

In Japan, a NES was famous as a Famicom – a “Family Computer”. This competence seem an peculiar name as we tend to associate consoles with gaming fun rather than a critical business of computing yet trust it or not, a NES could not usually entrance a internet yet it could also be used to viewpoint batch trade information and continue forecasts. Seriously.

All we indispensable was a Family Computer Network System – an appendage that plugged on tip of a console like a face-hugger, that would bond your console adult to a rest of a world, roughly a decade before a World Wide Web was recognised of. There was even proto-Downloadable Content accessible regulating a system.

Game Boy Advance

Released: 2001

Sold: 81m

By a time a GBA was released, a strange Game Boy handheld was an implausible 12 years old. With a new console, Nintendo motionless to get absolved of a mural course and instead go for something in landscape.

Though there’s no directly allied home console in terms of power, it was a initial handheld that could unequivocally hoop SNES-era character games, such as a remastered chronicle of Super Mario 2, giving a diversion a visible overhaul. It could even hoop quasi-3D titles like Tony Hawks 2, that took a environment of a console pretension and presented it from a fixed, isometric perspective, or even initial chairman shooters like Doom or film tie in Ecks vs Sever.

The GBA wasn’t perfect, however – a shade was frustratingly dark, to a border that gamers would emanate homebrew front-lights and fist them into a hardware.

This was remedied in 2003 with a launch of a GBA SP – that brought behind a classical mural shape, yet combined a hinge so it could be folded up. And even then, Nintendo wasn’t finished – in 2006 rising a little Game Boy Micro, that squeezed a GBA innards into a device not many incomparable than a palm of your hand.

PlayStation Portable

Released: 2004

Sold: 82m

The PSP was a unequivocally propitious console – generally to sell so many. It arrived usually before a emergence of smartphones, so adults still had a reason to wish to buy a handheld console, and it was particularly some-more absolute than a Nintendo DS with a incomparable shade and some-more terrible battery life.

What done it propitious was that, well, there simply weren’t that many games accessible compared to other devices. Where it competence have found an interest yet is after in life, as it was detected to be an uncommonly hackable device, that bedroom coders were means to make play classical 16-bit and 8-bit games, and even some strange PlayStation titles. While not particularly legal, this positively gave some gamers an forgive to buy one.

Perhaps many comical about a PSP is a fact that Sony called a discs a games were stored on “Universal Media Discs”. These were visual discs stored in cosmetic casing, and Sony also hoped that people would use their PSP to watch films stored on these discs and that other home party inclination would support UMD too. Needless to say, UMD cinema are now cramped to landfill alongside HD-DVDs and Betamax of old. Even Sony gave adult on them too – releasing a hardware rider called a “PSP Go”, that had a slip out shade and relied on digital downloads instead.

PlayStation 3

Released: 2006

Sold: 83.8m

Sony contingency have not wanted a before epoch to finish with a PS2 roving so high (read on to find out usually how successful it was). But alas, record changed on so Sony had to respond. Microsoft kick it to marketplace with a Xbox 360, and a PS3 was primarily criticised for being tough to rise for… yet Sony had one pretence adult a sleeve.

Following a PS1’s pioneering use of CDs, and a PS2’s pioneering use of DVDs, a PS3 was one of a initial Blu-Ray players on a marketplace – and one of a cheapest. This meant that there was an combined interest for gamers – they can watch HD films too – yet also crossover interest for consumers merely wanting a inexpensive Blu-Ray player.

This enabled a console to play catch-up, and in a finish it drew impossibly tighten to it’s Microsoft rival. This is mostly due to success in Sony’s home domain of Japan – where a Xbox 360 hardly done a dent.

Xbox 360

Released: 2005

Sold: 84m

The strange Xbox was expelled in 2001, as Microsoft’s initial incursion into consoles. But usually 4 years after it was already aged news as a association transposed it with a 360 in late 2005. This follow-up had an surprising prolonged life – with a prolongation lines usually shutting down a few months ago.

The strange console introduced many things we now understand as standard, such as a tough front and internet connectivity – yet it was a 360 that done these things essential to a complicated gaming experience.

As we competence suppose though, over a prolonged life there were many opposite hardware configurations, from a “Arcade” package that didn’t even embody a tough disc, to a S model, that was smaller and contained 320GB of storage… to a many new “E” model, that took a pattern cues from a Xbox One.

The usually genuine misstep for a 360 was a Kinect – Microsoft’s initial cursed try to sell us on suit tracking cameras, that suffered from a high cost and miss of support from third parties.

But what about a games? Over a console’s life, it saw a premiere of many of gaming’s biggest IPs – including Assassin’s Creed, Bioshock, and Mass Effect. Frankly, it is unfit to suppose complicated gaming yet it.

But what’s maybe many conspicuous is what developers were means to fist out of a console by a end. Compare a graphics on Call of Duty 2 – a launch pretension on a console – with a graphics on Call of Duty Black Ops 3, and notwithstanding using on a same hardware it is like they are from opposite eras.

Nintendo Wii

Released: 2006

Sold: 101m

When Nintendo initial announced a Wii, gamers were understandably sceptical. The controller… is usually a TV remote? Motion controls? How will that work? And because did Nintendo have to collect – in standard Nintendo conform – such a damn uncanny name?

But afterwards as shortly as we had a go, we were won over. Smartly, before to a console’s launch Nintendo setup demo units in shops to win over distrustful consumers. It turns out that personification tennis by fluttering your arms as yet you’re indeed personification tennis is unequivocally fun.

So for a start of a life, a Wii sole like hotcakes – and reached distant over a standard gaming demographics. The Wii became a warn strike in nursing homes worldwide.


Released: 1994

Sold: 102m

The strange PlayStation was innate out of an attempted tie-up between Sony and Nintendo. Nintendo wanted a CD-drive for a SNES, to compare Sega’s MegaCD, yet family between a companies pennyless down when a dual argued over who controls a platform. So Sony motionless to go a possess approach instead.

It was with a PS1 – or PSX as we called it during a time – that Sony realised that gamers aren’t usually kids – so positioned a console towards comparison teenagers and adults. This is because some of a biggest games on a complement were a likes of Tomb Raider, Metal Gear Solid and Gran Turismo – that were a prolonged approach from a cuddly worlds of Nintendo and Sega (though a PS1 did also deliver us to a many missed Crash Bandicoot too).

In hardware terms, a complement was innovative for a time, as it used CDs rather than cartridges. This diversion an generally large advantage in terms of diversion song – that was unexpected no longer limited to a bleeps and bloops that can be generated by microchips, yet could be scrupulously constructed in a recording studio. One early strike to take advantage of this was unconventional space racer Wipeout, that was scored by some of a trendiest dance song producers of a time.

Game Boy / Game Boy Color

Released: 1989 and 1998

Sold: 118m

This is maybe a argumentative entry, as it lumps together dual graphic pieces of hardware: The strange Game Boy, expelled in 1989, and a Game Boy Color, expelled in 1998. While a GBC was behind compatible, there were some games, such as Wario Land II and Pokémon Crystal, that were GBC-only. (It also lumps in a Game Boy Pocket, yet given that was a same as a strange handheld yet squashed, that get’s a pass). Annoyingly, Nintendo won’t recover apart figures. But taken together – or even individually, both were pound hits and definitely dominated handheld gaming for over a decade.

In further to personification horde to tonnes of pioneering and objectively good games, like Tetris, Pokémon and A Link to a Past, a Game Boy had one brilliantly uncanny accessory: The Game Boy Camera.

This was a digital camera before digital cameras were a thing, and let players take and store adult to 20 four-colour photos. It also pre-empted a likes of Snapchat by vouchsafing we loll on photos and post “stamps” of Nintendo characters on tip – as good as let we put your face into a array of mini games. Throw in some brilliantly uncanny animations and a whole apart Game Boy Printer appendage to imitation photos out and we had a truly uncanny strike product.

Nintendo DS

Released: 2004

Sold: 154m

Say what we will about Nintendo, yet it doesn’t simply do a unclothed minimum. Sure, it could have followed adult a extravagantly successful Game Boy with another, somewhat some-more absolute device, yet instead it motionless to tag dual screens together, supplement a touchscreen (which was surprising during a time) and wish for a best. And amazingly, a gamble paid off even yet it was adult opposite a many sleeker PSP.

This success was maybe partially down to an early, somewhat uncanny hit. Just as Wii Sports had introduced a new assembly to a Wii, a DS had Brain Training – a pseudo-scientific set of exercises that would presumably urge your mind. But frankly, many hardcore gamers were substantially bustling personification a true pier of Super Mario 64, that had been shrunk down for a system.

Over a lifetime, a DS has also been by not usually a array of hardware divisions, yet hardware upgrades too. The DSi done a console some-more absolute and combined a camera, and a 3DS combined a whole additional dimension to a shade during a tip – with churned results.

PlayStation 2

Released: 2000

Sold: More than 155m

And during array one? What else than a PS2, that definitely dominated a epoch of console gaming. Over a 12 year lifespan, it managed to overcome all of a rivals: The Dreamcast from Sega, a Xbox from Microsoft and a Gamecube from Nintendo, all of that had insignificant marketplace shares in comparison with Sony’s beast.

Like a PS3 used Blu-Ray to a selling advantage, a PS2 was one of a initial consumer inclination accessible that could play DVDs – handily doubling a functionality of a console.

Perhaps a dermatitis star of a PS2 epoch was a Grand Theft Auto series, that with a third installment went 3D for a initial time and singlehandedly invented a sandbox game. But a console was also home to a array of other noted games, such as Ratchet and Clank, Silent Hill 2 (widely regarded as a best in a series), Devil May Cry, God of War, Guitar Hero and Kingdom Hearts.

Ultimately though, a PS2 was usually a good machine, with a outrageous library of games. There was something for everybody on a console – that is maybe because it was so successful.

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