Yes, we all know of the dispute between Nintendo and the Sony Playstation, or, at least, their fans. It’s a dispute that has gone on for more than 10 years, and still remains at its worst today. You don’t know whether you’re with Sony or Nintendo? Or, will you like, or “side,” with both? Let’s have a little background, shall we?
In the late 1970s, the very first public video game, Pong, is created, and becomes a great success, for the simple innovation of being able to control what happens in the given situation, or known as a video game.
Picking up on the idea, a popular trading card company from Japan, Nintendo, tries their hand at gaming. When they finish, they create a small shooting game that surprisingly turns into a huge abomination. In result of this, they fired the director of the games department, and hired what seemed to be a simple fun, guy named Shigeru Miyamoto. What he would do for Nintendo, will completely change their reputation, and drown out their former glory for something much greater…
In 1982, Miyamoto’s game that he worked on was released, and turned around Nintendo’s success with gaming. Miyamoto was praised in Japan, and so the game spread to the Western hemisphere, where his praise only got greater. Nintendo, without any competition, rose as the king of gaming.
Over the years, competition did arise, such as Sega and Sonic, and Atari with their collection of arcade games and a personal system, but Nintendo still beat them down to the bottom, with the success of the NES, SNES, GameBoy, GameBoy Pocket, and GameBoy Color. However, in September of 1995, what will become Nintendo’s greatest rival arises…the Sony PlayStation.
It seemed now as if all companies would get in on gaming when Sony pumped this trick at the world, but it turned out way better than anyone expected. This powerpack of a system had the power to process 3D graphics, have longer games, play CDs, and have you play your games in the CD format. To most gamers, the CD format was a little primitive, due to the need of a memory card to save data, but it will later on work to Sony’s advantage, but not yet. Sony released games such as Spyro and Crash Bandicoot to launch their system, and their innovation with 3D exploration, especially in Spyro, only brought the PlaySation way above Nintendo’s systems. However, while the Nintendo still had some SNES fans, they were dropping rapidly in the ranks. What will be their next move?
With quick thinking, Nintendo didn’t counter the PlayStation, but created a new system, of which they called the N64, which totally boasted its superior graphics on the big screen when it came out in late 1996. To help it beat down the PlayStation, Super Mario 64 came with the N64 at its launch. Its result? The best Nintendo ever got.
Super Mario 64 brought no new dimensions to gaming, but it brought more ideas than ever to Mario, and his character. Mario was redesigned, and his overall look was totally enhanced to impress his fans, which it did. In this new game, Mario flew, dived, punched, fired, and of course, pounded his enemies from above in this new game, giving his fans more advantages of controlling him then ever. Not only that, but just this one game surpassed Spyro and Crash Bandicoot as a whole, mostly due to the PS’s graphical disadvantage. But really, can one game change the course of this new struggle?
In late 1997, one of the biggest betrayals for Nintendo, and one of the biggest successes for PlayStation occurs. Square Enix moves its famous Final Fantasy franchise to the PlayStation, and just at the wrong time for Nintendo, too. Final Fantasy VII was released in August, 1997, and took full advantage of what many thought would be the PS’s disadvantage. Final Fantasy VII was the longest game of all time during that period, so it would take up more than one disc on the PS. Because of this, they had to find a solution to play a three disc game, but using one save data file. Due to the N64’s cartridge format, a game was limited to only one unit of the format. On the PlayStation, however, the memory card system allowed a game to extend as long as it needed to, and only used one save file. Not only was Final Fantasy most convenient on the PS, it was also the most compelling Final Fantasy story, and let alone how great the gameplay was. Everyone was addicted to the game, and it eventually became know as the greatest RPG of all time.
While the success of the new Final fantasy put the PlayStation in a higher spot, Nintendo and Sony PlayStation were running high on each of their trails, in a sort of “rivalry” or so the conflicting fans will come to call it. Because of this, in the middle of all of it, the Dreamcast was released, with simply astounding graphics and new innovations, but was nearly drowned out by the raging fires of the fans. The PlayStation will continue to receive many more from the Final Fantasy franchise, as well as many other that will shape its legend. The N64 got the same with Mario’s expanding variety of genre sports games, and other addicting games, such as Donkey Kong 64, Super Smash Bros., and GoldenEye 007. But how long will the fight last between the PlayStation and the N64? Someone had to take an advancing step.
Sony took this next step in the year 2000, and brought in the PS2, which was more than two PlayStation’s in one. Everyone fell in love with the PlayStation all over again, with the Jak series, The Ratchet and Clank series, and the excellent Final Fantasy X. Nintendo hadn’t lost yet, however, hope still lingered.
In 2001, Nintendo gave their next innovation to the world, the Nintendo GameCube. This tiny cubic thing, smaller than an N64, was more powerful than any system ever made, able to process a little more than the bulky PS2. The GameCube was greatly supported at its release by games like Pikmin, Luigi’s Mansion, and Super Smash Bros. Melee. The fight raged again, and the rivalry of fans intensified.
Soon after, the Xbox was released, and ushered in the widespread idea of online play. Afterwards, Sony tried to push ahead by trying their hand at online play, which was successful, but the race between Nintendo and Sony PlayStation was still hot, despite the Xbox’s success with such games as Halo and the new Oddworld.
Soon, the Revolution will be released, and then the PS3 soon after. And I think by now, the fans of each stick by their decisions, and have no doubts of future innovations by these two great, but rivaling gaming gargantuans.