10 Video Game Consoles That Were Never Released Outside Of Japan
New video game consoles are released every few years. New versions of older consoles and brand new consoles hit the market from time to time and although new consoles are slightly less common than they were in the earlier days of gaming, video game fans always get excited about new consoles that come out. While most consoles are released around the world for everyone to enjoy now, that wasn't always the case.
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Over the years, there have been quite a few video game consoles that weren't released everywhere. Although just about everyone knows about consoles like the PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch, a lot of people probably haven't heard of consoles like the Sony PSX and Panasonic Q. Why is that? Because they were only released in Japan.
To see 10 consoles that were never released outside of Japan, keep reading!
10 Nintendo Color TV-Game 6
Nintendo's Color TV-Game consoles were a series of video game consoles that were only released in Japan. The first one, known as the Color TV-Game 6, made its debut in 1977 and was released as a collaboration between Nintendo and Mitsubishi Electronics.
This console was like other consoles at the time in that it only played certain games that were already built-in. This console played six different variations of Pong including tennis, hockey, and volleyball.
9 Sega SG-1000
The Sega SG-1000 is a console that was released in Japan in 1983. The console saw a few different updates over the years and different models of the console were released in other regions like Australia and New Zealand, but this version of the console was only released in Japan.
The console supported two different kinds of games and the library for this console was pretty impressive. The console's library had 76 ROM cartridge games and 29 Sega My Card games. Some of the games released on this console included Girl's Garden, Flicky, and Portrait of Loretta.
8 Panasonic Q
When the GameCube was released, some people were disappointed by the fact that, unlike other gaming consoles released at this time, it couldn't play DVDs. Because the discs were so small, there wasn't enough space to load them into the console and it wasn't capable of playing them anyway.
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But, Japan didn't have that problem. A special version of the GameCube called the Panasonic Q was released in 2001 and was a hybrid GameCube and DVD player in one. This console was released exclusively in Japan and was discontinued in 2003 after only two years on the market, likely due to low sales.
7 Sony PSX
The Sony PSX was released in 2003 in Japan. It had a launch price of just over 79,000 ¥, equivalent to over $700, and was a hybrid video game console and DVR. It was designed to be a full entertainment system for the home because it could play PlayStation 2 games along with its DVR capabilities.
Even though this console could play PlayStation 2 games, it wasn't marketed as a PlayStation. Sony really wanted people to buy this device even if they weren't gamers because of its other features that they thought would appeal to a wider audience, so they marketed it as a general electronic. But, its high price tag stopped it from getting into the hands of a wide audience, meaning that Sony chose to discontinue it after only two years on the market.
6 Dreamcast Divers 2000 CX-1
The Dreamcast Divers 2000 CX-1 was released in 2000, not long before Sega made the sad decision to completely cancel their failing Dreamcast console. This device cost about four times what the Dreamcast by itself cost, so it's not hard to see why this collaboration between Sega and a few Japanese electronics companies didn't fly off the shelves.
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While the Dreamcast itself was simply a video game console, the Dreamcast Divers 2000 CX-1 was so much more. It came with a futuristic-looking, rounded TV set with the console built into it. Along with the console and the 14-inch TV, it came with a keyboard and custom controller, among other accessories. But, because it was only released in Japan and cost around $5,000, it wasn't exactly popular.
5 Bandai WonderSwan
The Bandai WonderSwan is a console that released its first version in 1999. Two more handheld consoles in the line, known as the WonderSwan Color and WonderSwan Crystal, were released in the next few years. This console was released in 2003 as the price of the consoles rose, but the sales dropped.
Even though three different versions of the WonderSwan were released over the years, none of them were released outside of Japan. The games played a variety of games, including quite a few that were unique to the console, as well as some that were licensed to Bandai from other developers.
4 Casio Loopy
The Casio Loopy was a video game console that was released in 1995, in Japan. This console was really unique when it was released because of the fact that it was marketed specifically toward girls. Instead of having a lot of fighting or adventure games, a lot of the games were marketed toward what was considered "girly" in the 1990s, like dating.
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This console has become really interesting to collectors because of the fact that it was so different from other consoles at the time and because it's pretty rare. It was supposedly released worldwide in 1996, but trying to find anything but a Japanese version of the console is basically impossible.
3 Bandai Playdia
The Bandai Playdia was released in 1994 exclusively in Japan. This console was marketed toward a younger audience and was marketed as an educational entertainment system, rather than solely being marketed as a video game console.
The console had a launch price of just over 24,000¥, the equivalent of over $200. This console played games via the CD-ROM drive and most of the games released for the console had some kind of an educational twist in order to appeal to the parents that were going to be buying it for their young kids. Its final games came out in 1996.
2 NEC PC-FX
The PC-FX was a console that was released in 1994 by NEC Home Electronics. It was the successor to the PC Engine but unlike the PC Engine, this console wasn't released anywhere but in Japan.
This console was designed to look like a PC tower and was marketed as being similarly upgradable for owners that wanted to switch out parts and upgrade some aspects of the console. This console came with a variety of different accessories like a game controller and mouse. This console was discontinued in 1998 and was the last game console that NEC ever released.
1 Fujitsu FM Towns Marty
The Fujitsu FM Towns Marty is a console that was released in 1993 exclusively in Japan. This console used a CD-ROM drive and was backward compatible with older FM Towns consoles, something that the manufacturer hoped would help to get it into the homes of a lot of customers.
A new version of this console was released with a price tag of 66,000¥, a lower price tag than the first FM Towns console, but was basically identical to the first one other than the lower price. Over 400 games were created for FM Towns consoles.
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