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Another Top 10 Worst Video Game Consoles

VO: Dan Paradis
Script written by Kurt Hvorp Some consoles are popular and beloved – and then there are the flops. Join WatchMojo.com as we countdown our picks for Another Top 10 Worst Video Game Consoles. We'll be taking a look at more consoles that showed up, attempted to sell us on their respective qualities, and ultimately failed to succeed for any number of reasons. Whether it was the cost, the design, or the marketing, these systems didn't quite stick the landing. We're leaving pirated and cloned consoles off this list as a general rule – so products like the Intec InterAct won't be mentioned further. If there’s a terrible console you though should be on this list, be sure to check out our first clip of the Top 10 Worst Videogame consoles. Special Thanks to our users "MateusHonrado" & "Lee Angelo Guevara" for suggesting this topic on our Suggestion Tool at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Script written by Kurt Hvorp

Another Top 10 Worst Video Game Consoles


Some consoles are popular and beloved – and then there are the flops. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’ll be counting down our picks for Another Top 10 Worst Video Game Consoles.

We'll be taking a look at more consoles that showed up, attempted to sell us on their respective qualities, and ultimately failed to succeed for any number of reasons. Whether it was the cost, the design, or the marketing, these systems didn't quite stick the landing. We're leaving pirated and cloned consoles off this list as a general rule – so products like the Intec InterAct won't be mentioned further. If there’s a terrible console you though should be on this list, be sure to check out our first clip of the Top 10 Worst Videogame consoles.

#10: Ouya (2013)

Talk about missing the mark when it came to expectations. Funded through an immensely successful kick-starter campaign, this micro-console, running its own version of the Android operating system, was meant to be a low-cost alternative to other eighth-generation consoles. Sadly, the console's promise of accessible developer tools and free-to-play launch titles couldn't make up for a poorly-constructed controller, spotty Internet connectivity, and a general lack of compelling games – especially when you consider the strong indie titles readily available elsewhere. We're not surprised that the manufacturer Ouya Incorporated is trying to sell, at this point.

#9: Sega Saturn (1995)

Such follies and misjudgment, the gaming world sees all too often. Back in 1995, the idea of a console sporting the latest in 3D video processing technology was a dream come true – that was the promise of the Saturn, Sega's fourth home console. However, it was rushed to market to get a headstart on the upcoming Playstation and was found to be too difficult to develop for; as a result, Sega had a deficit of third-party games and a console infamous for being more complex than it needed to be. Plus, a Sega console with no Sonic? Very unfortunate…

#8: HyperScan (2006)

Interesting ideas do not instantly equate to success – execution is key. That's a lesson Mattel had to learn the hard way, with the release of the HyperScan. The console's gimmick was that its games were compatible with special RFID-enabled cards that would unlock in-game content and act as a means of saving data. Unfortunately, the console, games, and cards were derided for their universally poor quality, and lackluster sales ensured the system would be discontinued in 2007. It probably didn't help that Mattel only released five games for the HyperScan – 3 of which were Marvel titles.

#7: Coleco Telstar Arcade (1977)

Of all the variants of the Telstar console, this one is possibly the most bizarre. Released in 1977 as part of Coleco's Telstar line, this contraption features three different peripherals: a light gun for shooting games; a steering wheel for racing; and a paddle, for... pong. The Telstar Arcade had a pack-in game and several other cartridges were released, but ultimately it – and other Telstar consoles – would be discontinued in 1978 amid the decline of Pong machines.

#6: RCA Studio II (1977)

It's hard to break into the games industry, especially when time is against you. But the electronics company RCA made a bold effort with the Studio II, a system sporting twin keypads built into the console and five packed-in games. Only problem was, the Studio II's technology was obsolete before it hit shelves. It had black-and-white graphics when its competitors had colour, only used buttons when other systems relied on joysticks. By the time the far-superior Atari 2600 hit store shelves, the writing was on the wall.

#5: Game.com (1997)

Some things just can't catch a break. In 1997, Tiger Electronics began pitching a handheld system aimed at hip-and-happening young adults – the idea being that the promise of adult-skewing games would draw in a crowd. The resulting Game.com even sounds promising: a handheld that has PDA functionality, the ability to connect to the Internet, and a touchscreen interface well before the Nintendo DS. Yet the system flopped for various reasons – it didn't catch on with the media, it lacked quality games, and had a really poor screen with severe ghosting issues. As you might expect, it did not sell very well.

#4: Action Max (1987)

We feel like this failure should have been predictable. This VHS-based system by the toy company Worlds of Wonder required gamers to have a VCR, and came with a light gun... which ended up being integral to each of its five games. Two factors held the system back: every game for the Action Max was a shooting game, and there was no way to win or lose any given game. In the end, the Action Max quietly disappeared from the market, leaving little in the way of a lasting impact.

#3: RDI Halcyon (1985)

In the world of vaporware, this is the stuff of legends. Designed by RDI Video Systems, the company responsible for classic games like “Dragon's Lair” and “Space Ace”, the Halcyon was pitched as a voice-activated system with an AI as advanced as HAL-9000. There was just one caveat – you had to pay $2500 for the console. The obscene asking price, combined with investors skeptical of the concept, meant the Halcyon was doomed before it could launch. If you’re really dedicated, you can still find the few remaining prototypes in the hands of collectors.

#2: R-Zone (1995)

Remember those really cheap Tiger LCD Handheld games? Well the company responsible for those pieces of crap thought that’s they’d sell well as a handheld console. Didn’t think they could get worse could you? The R-Zone would begin as a visor-like accessory worn on a player's head, with more traditional handheld variants released later. All well and good, except it had to compete with Nintendo's Game Boy and Sega's Game Gear, and was techinically rushed to market to compete the with equally doomed virtual boy. Add to that a lack of expected features, like the ability to save game data or adjust audio levels, and you're left with a product that didn't last long in the market. And that’s no even mentioning the fact that you had to close one eye to view the screen properly.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few dishonourable mentions:

TurboExpress (1990)
Nuon (2000)
Amiga CD 32 (1993)
Gakken TV Boy (1983)

#1: Atari 5200 (1982)

This is the big one, literally and figuratively. As Atari's next console after the largely-successful 2600, the 5200 SuperSystem was touted as having more advanced graphics and a better joystick controller than its predecessor. What buyers got instead was a console with a shoddily-made controller that broke down easily, a line-up of games that were mostly updated 2600 titles, and a high asking price for the time. On top of that, the timing of the console's release meant it contributed to the video game crash of 1983 – sealing its own fate in the process.

Do you agree with our list? What game consoles left you fuming? For more technologically-savvy Top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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