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GameCube Hardware

Reviewed by Dogg Nintendo has always been known as a video game company who makes rather strange, but relatively good games. While not just games, Nintendo is also known for making systems. These systems include consoles and even hand helds. Let's just face it, Nintendo is perhaps the most popular company in the video game business. Nintendo started in a slow start with their Virtual Boy handheld, but soon recovered with their brand new console the NES, or better known as Nintendo. The NES console provided a different twist in playing games and the NES also developed the biggest franchises of Nintendo's long career. They soon brought the Game Boy handheld and then eventually brought the follow up to the NES, the SNES, or Super Nintendo. The SNES brought even more twists to videogame's and the SNES is known as one of the best consoles of all time. In 1995 however, Nintendo started to work on a new console. This console was called the Nintendo 64. This meant a new Nintendo console in 64 bits. It even had some of the best launch titles any system could have. Some examples are game's like Killer Instinct Gold, Star Fox 64, and Super Mario 64, and all of these games were mostly started on the SNES console. But what was the problem with this N64? The problem was that it used a cartridge back up. This will not only make developing games for the system hard, but it will also mean that the game's might suffer hard too. At that time Sony had just made their first console, which is the Sony Play Station. The Play Station used CD back ups for its games making them easier to make and making the games much better. And since the Nintendo 64 couldn't make good looking titles, companies like Square left Nintendo and started working on games for Sony's system. The Nintendo 64 did get back some power with games like Perfect Dark, Paper Mario, and Banjo- Kazooie, but it just wan't enough. Then Nintendo made an announcement about a new system. This system was called the Dolphin. Yes, I know stupid name! But soon Nintendo changed the name to the Nintendo Game Cube. The Nintendo Game Cube is said to change gaming with sequels to titles like Banjo-Kazooie and Perfect Dark, but most importantly the Nintendo Game Cube gets rid of something. And that my friends is that it loses its cartridge backup. Yes, now Nintendo uses a CD format when making their games. _____________________________ Competitors _____________________________ The Nintendo Game Cube isn't alone by any chance, in fact it has got 2 other competitors. The 1st is the return of Sony and their Play Station console, the Play Station 2. With tons and tons of million units sold the Play Station 2 already got its work cut out for it (and to tell you the truth the Play Station 2 is probably the best system there is right now). The other competitor is a newbie to video game consoles, but an expert on PC games. This company is Microsoft, the richest company there is. Their new console is the Microsoft X-Box. The X-Box is more like a computer than anything. It even has a built in hard drive to make sure that people get the best “kick" out of the X-Box. Sound tough, but hopefully Nintendo can make it throughout the long run. _____________________________ Size and Crazy Numbered Specs _____________________________ The Nintendo Game Cube is a small console. In fact many have even nick named it the lunch box because it is so easy to carry and because of that handle it has in the back of it. Handle, you say? That's right a handle. Now you can carry your new Nintendo system wherever you want. New System, New Controller. To say the truth I never really had a problem with the Nintendo 64's control scheme or its controller for that matter. Well for a reason I have a problem with the Nintendo Game Cube's Controller. Not only is it small, but getting the right buttons at times is just annoying. Ugh, why can't Nintendo just stick to one thing for once. The Game Cube, just like the Nintendo 64 offers up 4 controller slots to plug in your controllers. This is also good because now you can play multiplayer easily. Now all you need to do is get more controllers and then you are ready to go. The Game Cube surprises all with its 485 MHz of pure CPU Speed. The Game Cube is also backed up by its Graphics engine, which is called the Flipper. And its GPU is at a steady 162 MHz. Note that this is more powerful than the Play Station 2 already. The Game Cube's total memory capacity is up to around 40 MB and the Game Cube can perform up to 8 simultaneous textures at a time. Unlike the Microsoft X-Box, the Game Cube has no hard drive, as well as no Built in 3D Audio Support. Nintendo has also mentioned that the Game Cube will go online soon. Well when is it going to go online? Nintendo hasn't almost mentioned a word about online gaming as of yet. But prepare for some announcements soon, because some online games like Phantasy Star Online will need the online support. Since Nintendo is now using CD's to make their games that will obviously mean that loading times will now occur. However, loading times are quickly passive and will stop the loading process by 2-4 seconds. Now you can forget about loading times because they are nothing. Many of you also noticed that video game consoles now allow the gamer to play DVD's and even CD's. Examples are the Play Station 2 and the X-Box. Well bad news to Nintendo fans, the Game Cube doesn't allow you to play either CD's nor DVD's. But hey when you buy a video game console you buy it to play the games, and I think that the Nintendo Game Cube follows that rule closely. The Nintendo Game Cube is also the cheapest of the 3 systems. The Game Cube is sold for around 200 dollars. That's pretty cheap for a console that is stronger than a 300 dollar console, but I guess it is only cheap because it does not include both a DVD player nor a CD player. One more thing, the Nintendo Game Cube shares a relationship with the Nintendo Game Boy Advance. Now Game Boy Advance owners can connect their Game Boy Advance's to the Game Cube and then they can use the Game Boy Advance to show character stats and such. Except I am not sure how it really works. The 2 games that probably take good advantage of this are probably Animal Forest Plus and Kirby's Tilt and Tumble 2. Bottom Line- Nintendo has just gone small. ___________________________ 1st party developers ___________________________ Expect all of the old Nintendo 1st party developers to be backing up the Game Cube. First there is HAL Laboratory, who have just released Super Smash Bros. Melee and are probably working on a future Kirby title right now. Then there is the Western Studio called Retro Studios. Retro Studios are now hard at work on the next Metroid game, which is now called Metroid Prime. Then there is Intelligent Studios. Intelligent Studios made Paper Mario last year and they just finished Advance Wars for the Game Boy Advance as well. I don't know if they are working on any Game Cube titles for now, but if they are then chances are that that game will be a blockbuster title. One of my favorite Nintendo companies is probably Rare, the company which created Donkey Kong and the company which made the 1997 game of the year “Goldeneye." There are also more companies behind the Game Cube and there will probably more 1st party developers in the future. _______________________________ 3rd Party developers _______________________________ Many who left Nintendo because of the Nintendo 64 are back to support the Game Cube. One of the main companies who did this is probably Capcom. Capcom only made around 2 measly titles for the Nintendo 64- Micky's Tetris Challenge and Resident Evil 2. But now Capcom is back and they will change that by giving the Game Cube many blockbuster titles. Most importantly Capcom ripped the Resident Evil franchise away from Sony's console and now are making the games for the Cube. First they will make a brand new version of Resident Evil 1, then they will make Resident Evil 2, then Resident Evil 3, the never released Nintendo 64 game called Resident Evil 0, Resident Evil: Code Veronica (again), and to round it off they will release the anticipated title Resident Evil 4. And they are also planning on doing this in the course of one year. Now that is just amazing. Other companies like Namco will bring fighting and arcade games, while companies like Electronic Arts (EA)and Sega will bring on sports titles. Sega will also bring their popular Sonic the Hedgehog and Phantasy Star series to the Cube. Companies like Midway will release ports to the Cube, while also delivering their own titles exclusive to the Cube. TDK Media Interactive will bring the Robocop series to the Cube, as well as a port for their game "Shrek." Lucasarts will continually release titles based on the Star Wars name and who knows that they might even bring a new series to the Game Cube. Activision will release some sports titles and some new fresh brand titles, the same also goes to companies like Ubi-Soft. Universal Interactive will also bring Crash Bandicoot to the Game Cube as well as maybe the Spyro the Dragon series. The Japanese developer called “Konami" is actually showing little to no support for the Cube. They've only announced some small titles like International Super Star Soccer and that isn't going to do much. People expecting the Metal Gear, Castlevania, or Silent Hill series will probably look away. Some companies like Rockstar are also showing little to no respect for the Cube too. But the company many want to see working on the Cube will probably be the Japanese company Square Soft. Square Soft is mostly known for their RPG's and looking at the Game Cube's selection of RPG's, you'll see little to no RPG's for the system. Hopefully, the coveted franchises of Nintendo's career can probably make an end to that. Well these are some of the companies working on the Game Cube, but exactly what games are they working on for the system. _______________________ Final Opinion _______________________ For now, Nintendo has got a lot of potential, and this potential it can surely not screw up. The Nintendo 64 never could've pleased enough people to actually enjoying the pertainings of its hardware. However, with the Game Cube one can enjoy quality entertainment, while still being pleased at the same time. The Game Cube should also not be avoided thanks to it not having a DVD Player. Gaming has always been Nintendo's strongest suit, and this "legacy" of sorts is continued yet again. If all goes well the Cube should please people of many kinds, and should bring a new type of originality, and likeness to the consumer. The Game Cube is definitely an improvement over the Nintendo 64 in almost every single way. I mean let's just face it Nintendo has just gone small.

Games- 8+ Hardware- 8+ Controller- 5+ Companies behind it- 9- Overall- 8+

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