Photo: Wikimedia Commons
The Atari 2600 was unarguably iconic. But by no means was it the first home gaming system.Few people know that there was a console called the Odyssey that came a full three years before it.
Video game history is riddled with little oddities like the Odyssey. Forgotten gaming systems that were too expensive or weird for their times to be successfully adopted by the masses.
What follows are 12 quirky systems that failed to gain traction and were ultimately discontinued. They live on in eBay auctions and yardsales.
Sure, you might have some of the following systems laying around your house right now. But you’re in the minority.
In 1995, Nintendo's Virtual Boy was the first video game system capable of displaying 3D graphics right out of the box using the same parallax barrier display we're seeing now in phones like the LG Thrill and the HTC EVO 3D.
Popular games included Red Alert and Mario Tennis.
Panasonic launched this device in 1993. It was groundbreaking at the time, earning Time Magazine's Product of the Year award in 1994, but its $700 price tag and numerous competitors ultimately turned this promising console into a flop.
The Sega CD was an add-on for the Sega Genesis that gave the console the ability to play CD-based games and play music off of CDs.
This is the world's first video game console. Released in 1972, it predates Atari Pong by three years.
Furthermore, it supported peripherals that were unheard of at the time -- it used a Nintendo-style light gun, obviously well before Nintendo did.
The full title of this system was 'TurboGrafx-16 Entertainment SuperSystem.' It appeared in North America in 1989 and was capable of displaying 482 colours simultaneously, unheard of at the time.
On top of this, it holds the Guinness World Record for being the smallest video game system ever made (measuring 5.5in × 5.5in × 1.5in).
A home computing classic, the Commodore 64 was a huge commercial success when it debuted in 1982. It retailed for $595 and sold somewhere between 12.5 million and 17 million units.
Its popularity has held sway to the point that there are online communities revolving around maintaining and using them to this day.
When the Sega Saturn was released in the US in 1995, it just failed to gain traction against the Nintendo 64 and the Sony Playstation. Despite its lack of success, IGN named it the 18th best console ever made.
It was discontinued in 2001, making it Sega's final console. Bernie Stolar, ex-President and CEO of Sega of America, said they discontinued it so that the company could focus on software.
This console boasts some much-loved games, such as Phantasy Star Online and ChuChu Rocket!
Before Texas Instruments became intrinsically linked to calculators, in 1982 they produced the TI-99/4A, an early home computer comparable to the Commodore 64.
A number of games were available for it, and many of them could be forced into 'cheat mode' by holding the shift key and pressing 838.
Not a console, really, but the Power Glove was a quirky peripheral for the NES that used your entire hand. It wasn't popular and was harshly criticised for its difficult controls.