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Alternate history: N64 goes with CDs instead of cartridges

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What do you think would've been the outcome?

N64 would've won the gen 40 62.50%
 
PS1 still would've won 24 37.50%
 
Total:64
d21lewis said:
DonFerrari said:

That is strange, porn movie cds on PS1 run very well. But well, they were codded for PS1.

I actually didn't know the PS1 and other CD based consoles could even run VCDs until about five years ago. In fact I didn't even know what a VCD was. I missed out. ☹️

Those were the time. To buy old and cheap porn magazines in newspaper stands, download for 2h to see a hentai Picture of lara croft, and watch Rocco Siegfried porn movie made for PS1.

Sony Always wining or losing with the help or conflict with porn industry.



duduspace11 "Well, since we are estimating costs, Pokemon Red/Blue did cost Nintendo about $50m to make back in 1996"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=8808363

Mr Puggsly: "Hehe, I said good profit. You said big profit. Frankly, not losing money is what I meant by good. Don't get hung up on semantics"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=9008994

Azelover said:

A CD drive at the time would have costed about $100 more. Nintendo ain't losing money on hardware.

So, maybe they would have gotten more market share, but ultimately Sony would still win I think.

Prior to the PS1 no console had crossed the hundred million mark. Including Nintendo's systems with all that third party support. The success of the PlayStation wasn't only about third parties. They made the system happen with a lot of great marketing and momentum. Even with a CD drive, Nintendo would still run into other problems, like their youth focused image and so forth. Sony expanded the industry back then.

No console ever crossed the 100M mark prior to the PS1 because in the 8-bit & 16-bit eras Europe largely ignored consoles in favor of home computers like the Amiga and Atari ST. The NES, SNES, Master System, and Mega Drive combined sold only about 32 million units in Europe, vs. at least 70M in the U.S. and 41M in Japan. Overall, Europe was only about 20% of the global console market, far smaller than they are now (about 37% or so since Gen 6).

The PS1 sold 100M because it had dominant market share in every region, including Europe which finally decided to adopt consoles en masse after the home computer market collapsed in the mid 90s. If the N64 had been CD-based, it could very well have been the first to sell over 100M. Or maybe no system would have ever sold over 100M.

PortisheadBiscuit said:
curl-6 said:

He refers to the "expansion" of the industry, but I hardly think an N64 victory using CDs would have somehow crippled the growth of the industry. Third parties would still have made the games they wanted to make, they just may not necessarily have been on the same platforms.

Sony not dominating the 5th gen would've stunted the growth of the industry IMO. They took gaming to a whole 'nother level Nintendo wouldn't have IMO. 

Sony didn't so much push gaming forward as pick up the ball and score when Nintendo dropped it. Sony's own first-party efforts were severely lacking at the time, with Gran Turismo being the only real blockbuster IP they had, and the PS1 almost totally depended on third parties. Sony's only real contribution was having the foresight to realize that discs were the format of the future, and the competence to not completely screw everything up like Sega did with the Saturn. After that, it was all because Nintendo decided to go with cartridges, causing many major Japanese publishers to put their full support behind the PS1.

Had the N64 been CD-based, the console market would have continued growing as it already was beforehand. Nintendo would have seen the value in continuing to make conventional hardware with sufficient power and the latest mainstream format. PlayStation would have survived and simply filled the role Sega once did. The U.S. market would have likely been reasonably competitive in following generations. Japan... maybe not, but PlayStation as a Japanese console brand would still have at least a somewhat healthy presence. And Europe would have mass-adopted consoles anyway, with the only likely difference being that PlayStation wouldn't be the utterly dominant brand there. MS may or may not have made Xbox, and even if they didn't whatever market share they'd have cannibalized would simply be dispersed back to Nintendo and Sony for the most part, leaving us with a "Big Two" situation where the two HD giants were Nintendo and PlayStation, with no unconventional systems like the Wii, Wii U, and Switch having ever come to pass as a result. Over time, I think Sony might have eroded Nintendo's market share as the systems' capabilities likely would have started to reach greater parity and more and more third-party series become multiplatform, as they did starting in Gen 6 in our reality.

I think we could have very well seen a situation like this:

I'm assuming Sega follows the same trajectory, Xbox never comes into being, and the Japanese market still shrinks in Gen 7.

Quodam_Diem said:
d21lewis said:

Why do you think that so many companies that were exclusively on the PS1/PS2 jumped ship to the Xbox 360 early on? Why did so many exclusive Xbox 360 franchises jump ship to the PS4? Companies go where the money is.

The SNES lost ground to the Genesis (Sega's second home console) because the Genesis had a huge headstart. People mostly bought one console back then.

The PS3 lost ground to the Xbox 360 (Microsoft's second console) because it had a huge headstart.

With the PS1, Sony was unproven in the home console market and lackluster as a third party company. People actually waited until the N64 came out and initially it was on fire...then, new games started taking forever to come out. PS1 versions had more content. PS1 got tons of exclusives. 

The PS1 was simply the only viable console that could produce the kind of experience that developers wanted to make at the time. Cutscenes, symphony quality music, large worlds, tons of voice acting.

If the N64 could deliver that, and was still twice as powerful, and still only $199 at launch, I just don't see how developers could ignore it. The N64 was a powerful powerful console. More powerful that PCs when it launched (if I'm not mistaken). The Nintendo name was still strong. We can't change history but I think things would have been drastically different.

What I said was clear, but I don't have any problem to repeat it. The basic problem was about Nintendo, not a console which mistakenly was decided to have cartridges. We had already seen a generation before that Nintendo was losing ground and this had to do with their policies. Monopoly, high prices, big compromises and restrictions for the 3 parties. So, this is why many developers moved to genesis, because their product would have a much better support and sales to this console, when Nintendo for one more time,would somehow sabotage them. And what happened with the Playstation is the natural evolution to this story. Even with the defeat of N64, Nintendo didn't seem to change their mind. They continued the same strategy. We promote our image for our customers and not for a widen audience. It's not strange that the second console of Nintendo lost its ground despite its win over Genesis, while the PS2 not only had a much bigger impact in the industry, than  its predecessor but also established Sony as the No1 brand in gaming.

It's not about the format, it's not about the power. There are many other factors that determine if a console will win. Obviously, with a CD format, N64 wouldn't have lost FF, but who tells me that Sony in the end wouldn't have succeeded to bring it to its own console too. But, that would only have effect in Japan. Not in Europe where Nintendo was nonexistent, not in ROTW. Even in America Nintendo had lost about 10 million customers (It's a miracle how N64 achieved the same numbers as SNES).

As for the examples you mentioned I want to make some comments. Because a console has a headstart that doesn't mean it's going to be a victory for it. PS3 had been losing ground the first year due to its high price and hard development for the developers. But, in the end it achieved to make the same numbers (even a little more). Wii U had also a headstart but we know how it ended.

But, one more thing. We can't compare Sony and Nintendo. Two completely different ways of thinking. Sony despite the fact that was losing a generation achieved  a come back. While Nintendo since 1991 where they started losing momentum untill today, continue to stick with their old and out dated methods. So, yeah I still have many reasons to not only believe, but to be sure that N64 would have lost. 

And of course, many developers would have really liked to bring their games to N64, but Nintendo would have kicked them out with their logic for one more time.

Nobody has yet to prove that Nintendo's policies, which had already been relaxed when the SNES debuted, was the primary factor driving third parties to jump ship PlayStation. Meanwhile, we have sufficient evidence to establish that Nintendo lost key support because of the N64's cartridge format. It's really that simple.



Shadow1980 said:
Azelover said:

A CD drive at the time would have costed about $100 more. Nintendo ain't losing money on hardware.

So, maybe they would have gotten more market share, but ultimately Sony would still win I think.

Prior to the PS1 no console had crossed the hundred million mark. Including Nintendo's systems with all that third party support. The success of the PlayStation wasn't only about third parties. They made the system happen with a lot of great marketing and momentum. Even with a CD drive, Nintendo would still run into other problems, like their youth focused image and so forth. Sony expanded the industry back then.

No console ever crossed the 100M mark prior to the PS1 because in the 8-bit & 16-bit eras Europe largely ignored consoles in favor of home computers like the Amiga and Atari ST. The NES, SNES, Master System, and Mega Drive combined sold only about 32 million units in Europe, vs. at least 70M in the U.S. and 41M in Japan. Overall, Europe was only about 20% of the global console market, far smaller than they are now (about 37% or so since Gen 6).

The PS1 sold 100M because it had dominant market share in every region, including Europe which finally decided to adopt consoles en masse after the home computer market collapsed in the mid 90s. If the N64 had been CD-based, it could very well have been the first to sell over 100M. Or maybe no system would have ever sold over 100M.

PortisheadBiscuit said:

Sony not dominating the 5th gen would've stunted the growth of the industry IMO. They took gaming to a whole 'nother level Nintendo wouldn't have IMO. 

Sony didn't so much push gaming forward as pick up the ball and score when Nintendo dropped it. Sony's own first-party efforts were severely lacking at the time, with Gran Turismo being the only real blockbuster IP they had, and the PS1 almost totally depended on third parties. Sony's only real contribution was having the foresight to realize that discs were the format of the future, and the competence to not completely screw everything up like Sega did with the Saturn. After that, it was all because Nintendo decided to go with cartridges, causing many major Japanese publishers to put their full support behind the PS1.

Had the N64 been CD-based, the console market would have continued growing as it already was beforehand. Nintendo would have seen the value in continuing to make conventional hardware with sufficient power and the latest mainstream format. PlayStation would have survived and simply filled the role Sega once did. The U.S. market would have likely been reasonably competitive in following generations. Japan... maybe not, but PlayStation as a Japanese console brand would still have at least a somewhat healthy presence. And Europe would have mass-adopted consoles anyway, with the only likely difference being that PlayStation wouldn't be the utterly dominant brand there. MS may or may not have made Xbox, and even if they didn't whatever market share they'd have cannibalized would simply be dispersed back to Nintendo and Sony for the most part, leaving us with a "Big Two" situation where the two HD giants were Nintendo and PlayStation, with no unconventional systems like the Wii, Wii U, and Switch having ever come to pass as a result. Over time, I think Sony might have eroded Nintendo's market share as the systems' capabilities likely would have started to reach greater parity and more and more third-party series become multiplatform, as they did starting in Gen 6 in our reality.

I think we could have very well seen a situation like this:

I'm assuming Sega follows the same trajectory, Xbox never comes into being, and the Japanese market still shrinks in Gen 7.

Quodam_Diem said:

What I said was clear, but I don't have any problem to repeat it. The basic problem was about Nintendo, not a console which mistakenly was decided to have cartridges. We had already seen a generation before that Nintendo was losing ground and this had to do with their policies. Monopoly, high prices, big compromises and restrictions for the 3 parties. So, this is why many developers moved to genesis, because their product would have a much better support and sales to this console, when Nintendo for one more time,would somehow sabotage them. And what happened with the Playstation is the natural evolution to this story. Even with the defeat of N64, Nintendo didn't seem to change their mind. They continued the same strategy. We promote our image for our customers and not for a widen audience. It's not strange that the second console of Nintendo lost its ground despite its win over Genesis, while the PS2 not only had a much bigger impact in the industry, than  its predecessor but also established Sony as the No1 brand in gaming.

It's not about the format, it's not about the power. There are many other factors that determine if a console will win. Obviously, with a CD format, N64 wouldn't have lost FF, but who tells me that Sony in the end wouldn't have succeeded to bring it to its own console too. But, that would only have effect in Japan. Not in Europe where Nintendo was nonexistent, not in ROTW. Even in America Nintendo had lost about 10 million customers (It's a miracle how N64 achieved the same numbers as SNES).

As for the examples you mentioned I want to make some comments. Because a console has a headstart that doesn't mean it's going to be a victory for it. PS3 had been losing ground the first year due to its high price and hard development for the developers. But, in the end it achieved to make the same numbers (even a little more). Wii U had also a headstart but we know how it ended.

But, one more thing. We can't compare Sony and Nintendo. Two completely different ways of thinking. Sony despite the fact that was losing a generation achieved  a come back. While Nintendo since 1991 where they started losing momentum untill today, continue to stick with their old and out dated methods. So, yeah I still have many reasons to not only believe, but to be sure that N64 would have lost. 

And of course, many developers would have really liked to bring their games to N64, but Nintendo would have kicked them out with their logic for one more time.

Nobody has yet to prove that Nintendo's policies, which had already been relaxed when the SNES debuted, was the primary factor driving third parties to jump ship PlayStation. Meanwhile, we have sufficient evidence to establish that Nintendo lost key support because of the N64's cartridge format. It's really that simple.

Except we have the very big evidence that even during SNES era they lost a lot of exclusiviness and some even jumped ship to Genesis. So it isn't far fetched to imagine that Nintendo would still have lost majorly even with CD. Just look how much fuck they gave to third parties in N64, GC and Wii.

We keep pretending Nintendo sole mistake was to chose a format while Sega made a lot of mistakes and Sony was dumb luck, but that is being reducionist.



duduspace11 "Well, since we are estimating costs, Pokemon Red/Blue did cost Nintendo about $50m to make back in 1996"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=8808363

Mr Puggsly: "Hehe, I said good profit. You said big profit. Frankly, not losing money is what I meant by good. Don't get hung up on semantics"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=9008994

DonFerrari said:

Except we have the very big evidence that even during SNES era they lost a lot of exclusiviness and some even jumped ship to Genesis. So it isn't far fetched to imagine that Nintendo would still have lost majorly even with CD. Just look how much fuck they gave to third parties in N64, GC and Wii.

We keep pretending Nintendo sole mistake was to chose a format while Sega made a lot of mistakes and Sony was dumb luck, but that is being reducionist.

Actually, Nintendo did not lose a ton of support to Sega. Arguably the four biggest third parties of the late 80s/early 90s were Capcom, Konami, Square, and Enix. The latter two stuck exclusively with Sega, with Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest remaining the most popular third-party IPs in the Japanese market (and the former having decent popularity in America as well). Capcom and Konami did support Sega, but they had more games exclusive to the SNES than to the Genesis.

Capcom's support of the Genesis was rather token, with ports of Street Fighter II as well as a 16-bit remastered collection of the first three NES Mega Man games, and there was also a Genesis port of the Ghouls & Ghosts arcade game released in 1989, but was developed in-house by Sega under license from Capcom. Meanwhile, Capcom released UN Squadron, Final Fight 1-3, Super Ghouls & Ghosts, Mega Man X 1-3, Mega Man 7, Breath of Fire, The Magical Quest starring Mickey Mouse, Demon's Crest, and X-Men: Mutant Apocalypse (among other lower-profile games) exclusively for the SNES.

Konami's support of the Genesis was somewhat better, but still not as good as their support of the SNES. They released Zombies Ate My Neighbors, Tiny Toon Adventures, and Animaniacs for the Genesis, but those games had SNES ports as well. They made TMNT: The Hyperstone Heist, but that was very similar to the SNES Turtles in Time game, sharing the same basic gameplay and many of the same levels. As for actual total exclusives, they released Contra Hard Corps and Castlevania Bloodlines late in the generation, and Rocket Knight Adventures and its sequel Sparkster, though in regards to the latter they did release a Sparkster game for the SNES, too (though it was largely a different game). Meanwhile, they released Gradius III, Castlevania IV, Contra III, the Ganbare Goemon/Legend of the Mystical Ninja games, a Batman Returns game (there was a Genesis version, but it was a first-party Sega title), Axelay, and a few Japan-only titles exclusively for the SNES.

So, the major Japanese third parties weren't exactly chomping at the bit to flee Nintendo in the 16-bit era.

What about Western publishers?

Electronic Arts, Acclaim, and Activision supported the SNES and Genesis pretty much equally. Multiplatform games were quite common for Western titles. By far the biggest Western titles released that generation were the first three Mortal Kombat games and NBA Jam (Japan still ruled the day back then). Sega got the better deal for MK1 since the SNES version was sanitized and bloodless, but that wasn't a factor for MK2 and MK3, and violence was never a factor for NBA Jam. But even with less popular titles the largest Western developers usually made versions of them for both systems. They never showed any clear preference to either Nintendo or Sega. And in the previous generation they had negligible presence anyway, with the 16-bit era being the time when Western third parties started to reassert themselves on consoles after the Crash of '83 moved the focus to Japan.

Third parties had ample opportunity to ditch Nintendo in the 16-bit era. They chose not to. They even continued supporting the SNES to an extent after the PS1 was released, and continued supporting Nintendo's handhelds. But in Gen 5, the big Japanese their parties started putting all their biggest and best games on the PS1 and neglecting the N64 (with Capcom and Konami giving it only token support). We have evidence showing that the CD format was what compelled them to switch. We have no evidence that Nintendo drove them away because of some licensing policy or anything like that.



Shadow1980 said:
DonFerrari said:

Except we have the very big evidence that even during SNES era they lost a lot of exclusiviness and some even jumped ship to Genesis. So it isn't far fetched to imagine that Nintendo would still have lost majorly even with CD. Just look how much fuck they gave to third parties in N64, GC and Wii.

We keep pretending Nintendo sole mistake was to chose a format while Sega made a lot of mistakes and Sony was dumb luck, but that is being reducionist.

Actually, Nintendo did not lose a ton of support to Sega. Arguably the four biggest third parties of the late 80s/early 90s were Capcom, Konami, Square, and Enix. The latter two stuck exclusively with Sega, with Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest remaining the most popular third-party IPs in the Japanese market (and the former having decent popularity in America as well). Capcom and Konami did support Sega, but they had more games exclusive to the SNES than to the Genesis.

Capcom's support of the Genesis was rather token, with ports of Street Fighter II as well as a 16-bit remastered collection of the first three NES Mega Man games, and there was also a Genesis port of the Ghouls & Ghosts arcade game released in 1989, but was developed in-house by Sega under license from Capcom. Meanwhile, Capcom released UN Squadron, Final Fight 1-3, Super Ghouls & Ghosts, Mega Man X 1-3, Mega Man 7, Breath of Fire, The Magical Quest starring Mickey Mouse, Demon's Crest, and X-Men: Mutant Apocalypse (among other lower-profile games) exclusively for the SNES.

Konami's support of the Genesis was somewhat better, but still not as good as their support of the SNES. They released Zombies Ate My Neighbors, Tiny Toon Adventures, and Animaniacs for the Genesis, but those games had SNES ports as well. They made TMNT: The Hyperstone Heist, but that was very similar to the SNES Turtles in Time game, sharing the same basic gameplay and many of the same levels. As for actual total exclusives, they released Contra Hard Corps and Castlevania Bloodlines late in the generation, and Rocket Knight Adventures and its sequel Sparkster, though in regards to the latter they did release a Sparkster game for the SNES, too (though it was largely a different game). Meanwhile, they released Gradius III, Castlevania IV, Contra III, the Ganbare Goemon/Legend of the Mystical Ninja games, a Batman Returns game (there was a Genesis version, but it was a first-party Sega title), Axelay, and a few Japan-only titles exclusively for the SNES.

So, the major Japanese third parties weren't exactly chomping at the bit to flee Nintendo in the 16-bit era.

What about Western publishers?

Electronic Arts, Acclaim, and Activision supported the SNES and Genesis pretty much equally. Multiplatform games were quite common for Western titles. By far the biggest Western titles released that generation were the first three Mortal Kombat games and NBA Jam (Japan still ruled the day back then). Sega got the better deal for MK1 since the SNES version was sanitized and bloodless, but that wasn't a factor for MK2 and MK3, and violence was never a factor for NBA Jam. But even with less popular titles the largest Western developers usually made versions of them for both systems. They never showed any clear preference to either Nintendo or Sega. And in the previous generation they had negligible presence anyway, with the 16-bit era being the time when Western third parties started to reassert themselves on consoles after the Crash of '83 moved the focus to Japan.

Third parties had ample opportunity to ditch Nintendo in the 16-bit era. They chose not to. They even continued supporting the SNES to an extent after the PS1 was released, and continued supporting Nintendo's handhelds. But in Gen 5, the big Japanese their parties started putting all their biggest and best games on the PS1 and neglecting the N64 (with Capcom and Konami giving it only token support). We have evidence showing that the CD format was what compelled them to switch. We have no evidence that Nintendo drove them away because of some licensing policy or anything like that.

You are aware that because of Nintendo clauses for exclusivity (even after laxed) several "ports" ended up being different games developed by different studios, right?

Also as posted by an user Konami was already using Sony chip for their árcades, and that had nothing to do with CD.

Your post direct that most of the third parties favored Nintendo or stay exclusive, most on VGC will claim that Nintendo 1st parties were the best in the gen, and yet Nintendo wouldn't have won that gen without Sega moving on to Sega CD and 32X (besides Saturn). So using the claim that because Nintendo first party was better on the 5th gen and wouldn't lose so much of the 3rd party but would anyway I see little reason to see why N64CD would do better than SNES with not one but 2 big competitors.

Plus many of the games didn't need CDs, including we have some best versions on N64 because of it, while others even without CGI scenes benefited from CD.

So I keep my instance that you understimate Sony and overestimate Nintendo on your projection.



duduspace11 "Well, since we are estimating costs, Pokemon Red/Blue did cost Nintendo about $50m to make back in 1996"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=8808363

Mr Puggsly: "Hehe, I said good profit. You said big profit. Frankly, not losing money is what I meant by good. Don't get hung up on semantics"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=9008994

I will not quote because I don't think it will be usefull. To make the thread easier, I will comment on a certain opinion, in which some tend to believe that 1)N64 was a failure due to the choise of cartridge format and 2) it wouldn't be a failure if It had CD-Format.

First of all, as the history already has proved if N64 was about to be with CD, it wouldn't be a regular CD, but a mini disc, as Nintendo chose to do with their first non cartidge console. Secondly, if they had decided to use a normal CD, I still believe that this kind of CD format, would be a Nintendo patent, which would once again have many many restrictions (for example, lower capacity, or more cost due to a development which would prevent it to be copied).

We know that even from the NES days Nintendo was very rigorous against 3D parties. You have seen the documentaries I will not add anything to that. So, we have a strategy where Nintendo always finds ways to utilize their business to satisfy their strategy, a strategy that unfortunately doesn't seem to be very popular among the developers. So, this is the first step to starting weaken your brand name, among game developers and the public. This is something you see untill today. Even when Nintendo decided to make a console with a regular CD-format, this ended up to be a highly underpower machine, compared with what developers really needed that time to make their games. And not only that, they decided it to be a family machine, in which you can play golf or tennis. So, when me as a developer know that this company has this history behind them, why do I have to feel obligated to bring my games to their machine?

Guys, I know that everyone here would like to see Nintendo's consoles to be way more popular. I feel very dissapointed that the majority of the gamers, decided not to support N64 or NGC. But, that's the reality and we can't change it. It's a wishful-thinking to say that just with a CD format, N64 would be the winner of this generation. How many consoles does Nintendo have with sales over that 100 million? Only one and not cause of the format and with many games absent. With the CD format, N64 would have been for sure a winner in Japan. But, the other regions would be a risk, because they are not dedicated to Nintendo, as much as Japan is.

I would easily begin another comparison to prove that format is really pointless to discuss for a console victory. DS vs PSP. PSP with a cd format had way more good looking games and could handle heavier graphics and generally more content. But, it lost. On the other hand, PSV used also cartridges but it lost again. So, what I say, is that we have to think more deeply and more carefully all the factors, that can contribute to a victory for a console. Even with CDs, if Nintendo had promoted N64 as a kid machine in which you can play Mario, Kirby and Pokemon, I really don't see any chance of victory against a fresh machine, where you can play as an adult and don't feel ashame for this. You can understand what I mean. It's not strange that the NGC was in the third position, even for 2 millions to Xbox.

One last thing. When Sony decided to enter the console business they had one target. To bring a whole new experience to the gaming community which untill that day was not existent and wide the community of the players. And they achieved. Nintendo always had one target. To promote their contend, their product to the community, especially their fans. And they achieved too.



DonFerrari said:

You are aware that because of Nintendo clauses for exclusivity (even after laxed) several "ports" ended up being different games developed by different studios, right?

Also as posted by an user Konami was already using Sony chip for their árcades, and that had nothing to do with CD.

Your post direct that most of the third parties favored Nintendo or stay exclusive, most on VGC will claim that Nintendo 1st parties were the best in the gen, and yet Nintendo wouldn't have won that gen without Sega moving on to Sega CD and 32X (besides Saturn). So using the claim that because Nintendo first party was better on the 5th gen and wouldn't lose so much of the 3rd party but would anyway I see little reason to see why N64CD would do better than SNES with not one but 2 big competitors.

Plus many of the games didn't need CDs, including we have some best versions on N64 because of it, while others even without CGI scenes benefited from CD.

So I keep my instance that you understimate Sony and overestimate Nintendo on your projection.

"You are aware that because of Nintendo clauses for exclusivity (even after laxed) several "ports" ended up being different games developed by different studios, right?"

Please cite specific examples.

"Konami was already using Sony chip for their árcades."

Not relevant to support of a specific console.

"Nintendo wouldn't have won that gen without Sega moving on to Sega CD and 32X."

Based on available data, the Genesis was only competitive in the U.S. and Europe, and the latter barely counts because of how small the European console market was back then. In the U.S., the Genesis was the top-selling system in 1991 (only a partial year for the SNES), 1993, and 1994. By the end of 1994, it appears that the Genesis had the lead, but only a relatively slight one, and the final lifetime tally according to the NPD was 20M for the SNES and 18.5M for the Genesis. The Genesis was doing fine even with the Sega CD around, and the 32X was released less than six months before the Saturn came out, at which point Sega was already focused on next-gen. The data I do have indicates that the Genesis had weaker legs than the SNES, which may have been a factor, but even if Sega didn't bother with any peripherals and didn't abandon the Genesis as quickly as they did once the Saturn was released, I fail to see how the Genesis would have conclusively won in the U.S. or significantly widened its narrow lead in Europe.

In Japan it was totally lopsided in Nintendo's favor. Like, not even close. The Super Famicom beat the Mega Drive by a 4.8-to-1 ratio. And it wasn't purely on the basis of the strength of Nintendo's first-party titles, either. Based on data from this site, the Top 20 best-selling Super Famicom games were:

Super Mario Kart 3.820.000 Nintendo
Super Mario World 3.550.000 Nintendo
Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Revelation 3.200.000 Enix
Donkey Kong Country 3.000.000 Nintendo
Street Fighter II: The World Warrior 2.900.000 Capcom
Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride 2.800.000 Enix
Final Fantasy VI 2.550.000 Square
Final Fantasy V 2.450.000 Square
Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest 2.210.000 Nintendo
Super Mario All-Stars 2.120.000 Nintendo
Street Fighter II Turbo 2.100.000 Capcom
Chrono Trigger 2.030.000 Square
Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble! 1.770.000 Nintendo
Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island 1.770.000 Nintendo
Super Puyo Puyo 1.690.000 Banpresto
Secret of Mana 1.500.000 Square
Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars 1.470.000 Nintendo
Dragon Ball Z: Super Butoden 1.450.000 Bandai
Final Fantasy IV 1.440.000 Square
Dragon Quest III: The Seeds of Salvation 1.400.000 Enix


Less than half of those were Nintendo titles. Japanese gamers by and large didn't give a rat's ass for the Mega Drive (and Sega as a console brand in general was never successful there to begin with). It didn't have a single million-seller in Japan, and the system itself ran ended in third place, having also been beaten by the PC Engine. There wasn't a damn thing Sega could have done to be competitive in Japan. Without being competitive in Japan, the Genesis had no chance of closing the gap in global sales with the SNES.

"So using the claim that because Nintendo first party was better on the 5th gen and wouldn't lose so much of the 3rd party but would anyway I see little reason to see why N64CD would do better than SNES with not one but 2 big competitors."

That... wasn't the point I was trying to make. In fact, it took me a while to realize you were addressing my post prior to the one you quoted. The point was that Sony was initially almost entirely dependent on the support of third parties. Had they not had the degree of third-party support they had, the PS1 would have struggled as their first-party output was severely lacking at the time. In terms of exclusives, the only thing major they had going for them early on was Tekken, Crash, Resident Evil, and maybe also Namco Museum, and none of those were first-party. They were also clearly not enough to generate interest in the system, since as was mentioned much earlier in the thread the PS1 was not an instant hit, and it didn't hit the big time for real until Final Fantasy VII was released. Sony didn't have a huge first-party hit until Gran Turismo, which wasn't released until Dec. 1997 in Japan and May 1998 in the West, and I doubt a racing sim, even a damn good one, would have been as huge or important had the PS1 not already started taking off before that point.

Without FFVII, the PS1 loses its biggest killer app of the first half of its life. While even if the N64 was CD-based the PS1 would still likely have had Tekken, Crash Bandicoot, and Spyro as notable third-party exclusives, and Gran Turismo and the output of 989 Studios for first-party content, Nintendo would likely have retained exclusivity with Square and Enix, and most other major third-party titles from Capcom, Konami, Eidos, EA, etc., would be multiplatform. In such an event, Nintendo would have almost certainly won in the U.S. without FFVII to spur the PS1 ahead of it, and in Japan it would be no contest, seeing as how critical third-party Japanese titles, especially Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest, were to the PS1's success. Europe is harder to predict, but with the overall balance of game libraries almost certainly favoring the N64 had it been CD-based, it's likely the N64 would have came out on top. I think Sony would have taken Sega's place, perhaps becoming more competitive with Nintendo in another generation or two in the West but still running a somewhat distant second in Japan.

"Plus many of the games didn't need CDs."

But some did, at least in the eyes of their developers, and those were some of the most important games of the generation. The CD format was absolutely the deciding factor for Square and Enix leaving for the PS1, and thus turning the tide of that generation. The importance of Final Fantasy to the PS1's success cannot be overestimated. It was also almost certainly the reason Capcom and Konami moved the bulk of their support to the PS1. Developers want to develop games on platforms that best facilitate the development of the kind of games they want to make. The N64 didn't meet that criteria for the major third parties because of the format. That was less of an issue for the GameCube, but still an issue. The Wii and Wii U meanwhile had a proper format, but were underpowered, and the Switch has both issues, which is why third parties haven't been putting their biggest and best games on those systems (the Wii was a dumping ground for shovelware, the Wii U's third-party standouts were ports of older 7th-gen games, and the Switch's AAA third-party releases can be counted on your fingers with digits to spare, with Doom, Wolfenstein, Mortal Kombat 11, and The Witcher 3 being the only real standouts). A CD-based N64 would have met the requirements for what many major third parties were looking for at the start of Gen 5. The format had the capacity they wanted, and provided it at a tenth the cost.

Based on the available evidence, I can see no other conclusion. The N64 being cartridge-based was the single biggest deciding factor of the outcome of Gen 5, and produced perhaps the single biggest sea change in the industry since the Crash of 1983. Had the N64 been CD-based, things would have turned out a lot different, and I simply cannot agree with people who think the outcome of Gen 5 would have still been roughly the same.

Last edited by Shadow1980 - on 25 August 2019

Your list is fairly accurate, yes it wasn't loyalty to Sony, but several of them were already tired of Nintendo. And if MS could moneyhat most of them to make multiplats even during Xbox original years I don't see why Sony wouldn't have done it to secure those titles.

It isn't really a case of just the CD made everything change, Saturn had CD and was a bomb worse than N64, so what is there to assure that Nintendo couldn't do even worse if they had gone with CD. Like a system that ended up worse and the Mario 64 and Zelda ended up being much worse game. It would be possible that their first year that was great became bad.

The Saturn was an absolute clusterfuck from both a technical and a marketing perspective. Expensive to program for, since companies had to spend a lot of time and money just fighting with the architecture, and it cost the then outrageous price of $400 USD. And most of its games looked like SNES games with FMV. The Saturn was doomed from the word go thanks to Sega of Japan's incredible arrogance and failure to listen to their American branch. Nintendo couldn't possibly have done worse short of pricing the N64 at $500 USD or Hiroshi Yamauchi publicly badmouthing the Emperor of Japan and the President of the United States. 



Shadow1980 said:
DonFerrari said:

You are aware that because of Nintendo clauses for exclusivity (even after laxed) several "ports" ended up being different games developed by different studios, right?

Also as posted by an user Konami was already using Sony chip for their árcades, and that had nothing to do with CD.

Your post direct that most of the third parties favored Nintendo or stay exclusive, most on VGC will claim that Nintendo 1st parties were the best in the gen, and yet Nintendo wouldn't have won that gen without Sega moving on to Sega CD and 32X (besides Saturn). So using the claim that because Nintendo first party was better on the 5th gen and wouldn't lose so much of the 3rd party but would anyway I see little reason to see why N64CD would do better than SNES with not one but 2 big competitors.

Plus many of the games didn't need CDs, including we have some best versions on N64 because of it, while others even without CGI scenes benefited from CD.

So I keep my instance that you understimate Sony and overestimate Nintendo on your projection.

"You are aware that because of Nintendo clauses for exclusivity (even after laxed) several "ports" ended up being different games developed by different studios, right?"

Please cite specific examples.

Alladin from Genesis and SNES, na other licensed games.

A link for you to read if yiu want https://forum.digitpress.com/forum/showthread.php?135147-Different-games-with-the-same-name-(Genesis-and-SNES)

"Konami was already using Sony chip for their árcades."

Not relevant to support of a specific console.

Shows they were already working together and easy port of árcade to console.

"Nintendo wouldn't have won that gen without Sega moving on to Sega CD and 32X."

Based on available data, the Genesis was only competitive in the U.S. and Europe, and the latter barely counts because of how small the European console market was back then. In the U.S., the Genesis was the top-selling system in 1991 (only a partial year for the SNES), 1993, and 1994. By the end of 1994, it appears that the Genesis had the lead, but only a relatively slight one, and the final lifetime tally according to the NPD was 20M for the SNES and 18.5M for the Genesis. The Genesis was doing fine even with the Sega CD around, and the 32X was released less than six months before the Saturn came out, at which point Sega was already focused on next-gen. The data I do have indicates that the Genesis had weaker legs than the SNES, which may have been a factor, but even if Sega didn't bother with any peripherals and didn't abandon the Genesis as quickly as they did once the Saturn was released, I fail to see how the Genesis would have conclusively won in the U.S. or significantly widened its narrow lead in Europe.

You may have the tracking, and the information I heard here may be false, but until Sega decided to go to CD and 32X they were leading against SNES, and if I'm not wrong like a year ago someone posted a link from one exec of sega or Tectoy (their partner in Brazil). The legs were dying out because they lost focus, same is said about Wii and that were fast death.

In Japan it was totally lopsided in Nintendo's favor. Like, not even close. The Super Famicom beat the Mega Drive by a 4.8-to-1 ratio. And it wasn't purely on the basis of the strength of Nintendo's first-party titles, either. Based on data from this site, the Top 10 best-selling Super Famicom games were:

Super Mario Kart 3.820.000 Nintendo
Super Mario World 3.550.000 Nintendo
Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Revelation 3.200.000 Enix
Donkey Kong Country 3.000.000 Nintendo
Street Fighter II: The World Warrior 2.900.000 Capcom
Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride 2.800.000 Enix
Final Fantasy VI 2.550.000 Square
Final Fantasy V 2.450.000 Square
Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest 2.210.000 Nintendo
Super Mario All-Stars 2.120.000 Nintendo
Street Fighter II Turbo 2.100.000 Capcom
Chrono Trigger 2.030.000 Square
Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble! 1.770.000 Nintendo
Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island 1.770.000 Nintendo
Super Puyo Puyo 1.690.000 Banpresto
Secret of Mana 1.500.000 Square
Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars 1.470.000 Nintendo
Dragon Ball Z: Super Butoden 1.450.000 Bandai
Final Fantasy IV 1.440.000 Square
Dragon Quest III: The Seeds of Salvation 1.400.000 Enix


Less than half of those were Nintendo titles. Japanese gamers by and large didn't give a rat's ass for the Mega Drive (and Sega as a console brand in general was never successful there to begin with). It didn't have a single million-seller in Japan, and the system itself ran ended in third place, having also been beaten by the PC Engine. There wasn't a damn thing Sega could have done to be competitive in Japan. Without being competitive in Japan, the Genesis had no chance of closing the gap in global sales with the SNES.

May very well be true, but consider the increase it have from Master System and decline of NES to SNES. I see it very clear that Nintendo was losing power worldwide and would continue against Sony that was a much better structured company than Sega.

"So using the claim that because Nintendo first party was better on the 5th gen and wouldn't lose so much of the 3rd party but would anyway I see little reason to see why N64CD would do better than SNES with not one but 2 big competitors."

That... wasn't the point I was trying to make. In fact, it took me a while to realize you were addressing my post prior to the one you quoted. The point was that Sony was initially almost entirely dependent on the support of third parties. Had they not had the degree of third-party support they had, the PS1 would have struggled as their first-party output was severely lacking at the time. In terms of exclusives, the only thing major they had going for them early on was Tekken, Crash, Resident Evil, and maybe also Namco Museum, and none of those were first-party. They were also clearly not enough to generate interest in the system, since as was mentioned much earlier in the thread the PS1 was not an instant hit, and it didn't hit the big time for real until Final Fantasy VII was released. Sony didn't have a huge first-party hit until Gran Turismo, which wasn't released until Dec. 1997 in Japan and May 1998 in the West, and I doubt a racing sim, even a damn good one, would have been as huge or important had the PS1 not already started taking off before that point.

Very much true, but those games didn't need CD to work and that already show that even if Nintendo had CD Sony would still have snatched a lot of support. We do have some devs interviews showing they left Nintendo because of CD (but funny enough didn't go to Sega which was the consolidated brand, they gone Sony). I'm pretty sure Sony would have used their financial power to bring the devs because they were even less developed as developers than Sega so their dependence on 3rd parties would push them to it and Nintendo would still think they had the game won. Just look at they keep not caring about getting support until Switch really and how people claim several companies still hold a grudge.

Without FFVII, the PS1 loses its biggest killer app of the first half of its life. While even if the N64 was CD-based the PS1 would still likely have had Tekken, Crash Bandicoot, and Spyro as notable third-party exclusives, and Gran Turismo and the output of 989 Studios for first-party content, Nintendo would likely have retained exclusivity with Square and Enix, and most other major third-party titles from Capcom, Konami, Eidos, EA, etc., would be multiplatform. In such an event, Nintendo would have almost certainly won in the U.S. without FFVII to spur the PS1 ahead of it, and in Japan it would be no contest, seeing as how critical third-party Japanese titles, especially Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest, were to the PS1's success. Europe is harder to predict, but with the overall balance of game libraries almost certainly favoring the N64 had it been CD-based, it's likely the N64 would have came out on top. I think Sony would have taken Sega's place, perhaps becoming more competitive with Nintendo in another generation or two in the West but still running a somewhat distant second in Japan.

The key here is likely, you are considering inertia would have caried all that support to Nintendo if they hadn't left CD behind. Like if they cared so much to have that support they wouldn't have kept away from CD like they did. The newcomer would have targeted exactly those companies (perhaps even purchasing them if necessary). You yourself said they had no loyalty to Sony so there is no reason to believe they would have any for Nintendo that ignored their inputs.

"Plus many of the games didn't need CDs."

But some did, at least in the eyes of their developers, and those were some of the most important games of the generation. The CD format was absolutely the deciding factor for Square and Enix leaving for the PS1, and thus turning the tide of that generation. The importance of Final Fantasy to the PS1's success cannot be overestimated. It was also almost certainly the reason Capcom and Konami moved the bulk of their support to the PS1. Developers want to develop games on platforms that best facilitate the development of the kind of games they want to make. The N64 didn't meet that criteria for the major third parties because of the format. That was less of an issue for the GameCube, but still an issue. The Wii and Wii U meanwhile had a proper format, but were underpowered, and the Switch has both issues, which is why third parties haven't been putting their biggest and best games on those systems (the Wii was a dumping ground for shovelware, the Wii U's third-party standouts were ports of older 7th-gen games, and the Switch's AAA third-party releases can be counted on your fingers with digits to spare, with Doom, Wolfenstein, Mortal Kombat 11, and The Witcher 3 being the only real standouts). A CD-based N64 would have met the requirements for what many major third parties were looking for at the start of Gen 5. The format had the capacity they wanted, and provided it at a tenth the cost.

You may say otherwise but you most agree with me than disagree (GC could have any game PS2 had, multiples discs weren't a problem in the gen prior, GC gen or even next gen). Nintendo simply didn't care about the needs of third parties, to make them happy or even have they on their platform for multiple gens. So I fail to see why in this alternative universe just by having CD they would start caring.

Based on the available evidence, I can see no other conclusion. The N64 being cartridge-based was the single biggest deciding factor of the outcome of Gen 5, and produced perhaps the single biggest sea change in the industry since the Crash of 1983. Had the N64 been CD-based, things would have turned out a lot different, and I simply cannot agree with people who think the outcome of Gen 5 would have still been roughly the same.



duduspace11 "Well, since we are estimating costs, Pokemon Red/Blue did cost Nintendo about $50m to make back in 1996"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=8808363

Mr Puggsly: "Hehe, I said good profit. You said big profit. Frankly, not losing money is what I meant by good. Don't get hung up on semantics"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=9008994

DonFerrari said:

what is your explanation that Nintendo having all advantages during SNES weren't able to significantly outsell Sega

I'd say they were able to, and that they did; SNES beat the Megadrive 49 million to 29.5 million, so by over 60% more consoles sold. (http://www.vgchartz.com/analysis/platform_totals/)

And Nintendo didn't have "all the advantages" either; Megadrive had a headstart which they fully capitalized on by advertising how much more capable their system was over the ageing NES. The Megadrive was certainly not a weak opponent; Sega were at the top of their game in the late 80s and early 90s, don't let their dismal performance later on fool you as to how formidable they were in their prime.

Last edited by curl-6 - on 24 August 2019