Today, almost every day we witness the development of different technology. Innovations in everything from health to entertainment make our lives easier and more changing. But when we look at some of the technologies developed today, we see that they are not new. For example, did you know that one of the first examples of VR (virtual reality) headsets we use today entered our lives in 1995?
Known as The Nintendo Virtual Boy, it was the first stereoscopic (depth-illusion) 3D game console in history. So why did Nintendo fail, bringing technology far ahead of its time into our lives in 1995?
First VR set in history Nintendo Virtual Boy
Nintendo Virtual Boy was developed in Japan in 1991. At the time, while all manufacturers were trying to produce 3D consoles, the Japanese company, which always liked to try new and different things, believed that the future was in virtual reality. Nintendo even built a factory in Japan just for the production of this console, slightly overestimating this belief.
The console was released in 1995 after four years of long development. Ahead of its time, Nintendo Virtual Boy was highly impressively equipped with a 32-bit processor, a copy 3D display, and built-in stereo speakers. The company introduced the 32-bit processor and 3D display technology to gamers for the first time with this console.
But as we said, the year was 1995, and the technology of the period was not ready for such a breakthrough. Moreover, the development process, which took longer than planned, made things worse by causing problems. Stuck in a tight calendar due to the release of the company’s mainstream console, the Nintendo 64, Nintendo Virtual Boy was not ready when it was released.
Why did it fail?
This early exit, which brought many problems, caused the device to fail to meet expectations. The most important of the problems were on the screen. The console’s 3D display consisted only of red and black colors. The screen, which had a very low resolution, was making noise and causing headaches due to the technology is used.
Another major problem was the portability part. The console, which came with a design reminiscent of the examination chair of ophthalmologists, required you to stand still on a table and rest your head. This not-so-ergonomic situation killed portability and eliminated the meaning of using VR technology.
As we mentioned, Nintendo Virtual Boy, which debuted early, was also inadequate in terms of games. The productization process has even forced a company that is strong in exclusive games like Nintendo. Therefore, console-specific productions were inadequate and bad Only 14 of these console exclusive games were released outside Japan.
Virtual Boy, which also took the final hit at the price, became a costly console as a result of the long and challenging development process. That’s why he checked out for $180 for that period. But people didn’t want to pay $180 for this device, which they didn’t understand and didn’t hear very good things about. As a result, the first VR game console in history came to an end of its life just 1 year after its release. Nintendo ended the project by discounting the production of all games and consoles.
Fortunately, despite this failure, the company has not stopped trying new things and continues to offer innovative products such as the Nintendo Switch and 3DS today.