Nintendo NES

The Nintendo Entertainment System is one of the great success stories in video game history. To better explain the story of this console, we first have to talk about some of the history of videogames before the console was even started...

In the late seventies and early eighties, American giant Atari dominated the worldwide home video game market, with a number of other developers trying to compete but falling short. However, between 1982 and 1984, the American videogame market crashed and paved way for a new wave of consoles & manufacturers. The crash was due a number of key events which effected each of the existing video game companies at that time.

Consumer confidence in Atari had fallen after a number of highly anticipated releases failed to impress. The 2600 version of Pacman looked nothing like Namco's arcade hit, and Atari spent a fortune on the rights to produce a game for E.T. So confident were they that the game would outsell anything else ever produced that they (apparently) produced more copies of the games than there were consoles! The game was a disaster, and Atari ended up destroying millions of copies of both games, along with a slew of other games they had 'over produced'.

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The American market turned its attention to the Colecovision, made by Coleco. Not only did it boast a number of almost arcade perfect games from Nintendo, Sega & Konami but it produced an adapter to allow Atari 2600 games to be played on the Coleco console. Atari fought back by releasing the 5200, which was an improvement on their 2600 and had superior sound and graphics capability. Unfortunately the machine didn't sell very well, and Atari announced poor sales resulting in a massive stock drop for Warner Communications, its parent company.

The advent of the Commodore 64 computer, a cheap powerful alternative to video games consoles sparked Coleco to reveal its new 'Adam' computer. The company piled all its money into production of the new machine, which was a very bad move as the machines were poorly made and over half were sent back with faults. Eventually Coleco went bust, the Colecovision disappeared into the ether, and its games went with it.

Nintendo had felt some of the impact of this as they had ported a few of their successful arcade games (Donkey Kong & Donkey Kong Jr) onto the Colecovision. But Nintendo had also decided that if they were going to release their own titles onto the home video game market, they would also produce the machines to play them on...

They started producing the Family Computer, or Famicom as it is better known, and it was released in Japan in 1983. Unfortunately, its early release wasn't without its problems. The 'console' (I use this term loosely, as it was initially released as a home computer) was produced in remarkably quick time, probably as an attempt to compete with Sega's third offering - the Sega Mark III, and as such the Famicom had a number of teething problems.

Nintendo noticed that their machine had done relatively well not as a home computer, but as a games console. They had ported the same games onto their new Famicom that disappeared with the Colecovision and this seemed to be the selling point of the new machine. Nintendo had initially signed a deal with Atari, which gave the American giant the sole rights to produce the Famicom outside of Japan. Unfortunately, in the aftermath of a insider trading scandal at Atari, the Nintendo deal fell through. But as one door closed another one opened!

1984 was the most disastrous year for the American Video Game market. MB had dropped the price of the Vectrex so much it was losing money on every console sold, eventually causing it to be scrapped. As previously mentioned the Colecovision disappeared without trace, and the Intellevision also bowed out after Mattel Electronics was shut down. Finally, after a series of game flops, poor console sales and other financial scandals, Warner sells off Atari. Its new owners announce they will no longer be selling video games consoles, only producing games.

All this left a massive hole in the market - one that Nintendo was very keen to plug. They had developed a new incarnation of the Famicom, solely for playing video games. Keen to get the console onto western shores they 'tested' the console in New York stores, promising to buy back any unsold machines from the now cautious retailers. Of course there weren't any unsold machines, and within a matter of weeks the new Nintendo Entertainment System was being sold Nationwide.

Such was the demand for the new console that shops could not keep up. This was a feat that even Atari hadn't managed to achieve. The American gamers had been waiting a long time for something new, something that offered better titles than what Atari had churned out and the Nintendo had it all. Helped along by an Italian Plumber named Mario, the Nintendo Entertainment System was the must have toy for the American Youth during 1984/85.

It was the fact that Nintendo was the first to get its foot in the door that helped it keep ahead of its competitors. By the time the Sega Master System came along, every other kid already owned a Nintendo, so everyone wanted to stick together and have the same as their friends. Even though the Master System was the better of the two machines, the general consensus was to go with the majority. And the majority had already chosen the NES.

Nintendo sensing they had the upper hand started to 'lock in' game developers. Everyone wanted to make games for the NES - they had the biggest market share so by that logic more units would be sold. Fine said Nintendo - make games for us. But only us. One by one big names were being tied into Nintendo America, which effectively gave them a Monopoly over the video games market. Eventually, they would be forced to relax these ties by the US Government, but by this time they had already won round one of the Nintendo vs Sega video games war!

However, this shouldn't detract away from the fact that the Nintendo was a truly amazing machine which gave birth to some of the best known characters and game franchises. Zelda, Mario, Donkey Kong, Metroid & Megaman were all made household names on the NES, and Nintendo had set the standard against which all future games consoles would compete.

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Street Gangs

Box: 
yes
£70.00
Manual: 
yes
£70.00

Hear the message from Sick, the meanest ganglord in town: "I hold your high school captive, and some of the students will have a trying moment, if they're ever fool enough to cross my path!" But you aren't afraid of anybody! Face the terrible gangs and neutralize their bosses, in order to deliver the city from terror!

Urban Champion

Notes: 
This game is missing its manual
Box: 
yes
£56.00
Manual: 
no
£56.00

Think you're tough, huh? Well, you better be. Because you've got to be quick on your feet and fast with your hands to become the next URBAN CHAMPION. You've got to block, fake and land punches that will knock your opponent off the screen. Do that three times and there will be a confetti celebration in your honor as you become the new URBAN CHAMPION. But watch out. Just when you think you've beat him to the punch, you fall into an open manhole! Or get hit by a falling flower pot! Think you can handle the action? Then prove it.

Krustys Fun House

Box: 
yes
£26.00
Manual: 
yes
£26.00

Hey, kids! Give a hoot! Help out your old pal Krusty the Clown! My official Krusty's Fun House is infested with rats! There are over 60 levels in this game, and they're all crawling with the little varmints! I've got my loyal cadets, Bart and Homer Simpson, to guard the rat traps, but I need you to lead the filthy rodents into those traps! Then we blow 'em up! We incinerate 'em! We laser-blast 'em! We electrocute 'em! We Krusterize the little stinkers!!!

Legendary Wings

Notes: 
This is a US NTSC game and may only work on a US console or modded PAL console. This game is missing its manual.
Box: 
yes
£30.00
Manual: 
no
£30.00

20,000 years in the future, mankind has built a giant supercomputer named DARK to rule the planet. For hundreds of years, DARK has governed with wisdom and justice. But now the unthinkable has happened: DARK is malfunctioning, and humanity is writhing in the grasp of a ruthless tyrant. DARK has built a fleet of robot warships to patrol the skies, and has created an army of mutant monsters to guard the underground bases from which he now terrorizes mankind.

Prince Valiant

Box: 
yes
£60.00
Manual: 
yes
£60.00

The quest to find the legendary Viking Ring of Peace begins in treacherous marshland, where every step is potentially lethal. Armed with a mere crossbow, the prince must fight his way through a vast forest, inhabited with cut throats and thieves, down into the underground caverns, through the deadly maze to the ring's resting place. Now he must cross the stormy sea and battle the hostile viking armada to reach Camelot. Arthur's Hall lies beyond the labyrinthine maze of corridors and passageways...will Prince Valiant make it and fulfil his dream of knighthood?

Pro Wrestling

Notes: 
This game is missing its manual
Box: 
yes
£60.00
Manual: 
no
£60.00

It's a reverse bulldog, a double nogin-knocker, a leap off the top turnbuckle - it's pure pandemonium! Welcome to the world of Nintendo Pro Wrestling, where you take on six of the meanest, baddest, most rotten guys around. With names like The Amazon, Giant Panther and Kin Korn Karn. You'll begin the match by choosing a wrestler and an opponent - either the computer or a friend. Then with a flick of the wrist you'll perform drop-kicks, body-slams, head-locks and dozens of other bone-crunching moves designed to annihilate your opponent. But be warned.

Shadow Warriors 2

Box: 
yes
£80.00
Manual: 
yes
£80.00

Dynamic action scenes! Split your body into three, destroy all enemies with the Invincible Fire Wheel and other new Ninja fighting techniques! Ninja Gaiden II gives you the feel of real Ninjutsu! Exciting cinema display format! Ninja Gaiden II uses the same Cinema Display Format as the original. The fiendish plot unfolds in a movie-like sequence. Action, drama, revenge. Just wait till you get to the end!

Gauntlet

Notes: 
This is a US NTSC game and may only work on a US console or modded PAL console. This game is missing its manual.
Box: 
yes
£24.00
Manual: 
no
£24.00

Journey forth, brave traveler, whether warrior, valkyrie, elf or wizard ye be. Gauntlet lets up to four adventurers explore together as Thor, Thrya, Merlin and Questor, each with unique traits. Thor possesses unmatched strength, while Questor relies on swiftness and agility. Resilient Thyra excels at close-range combat, and Merlin's magic proves powerful from afar. Traverse the darkest of mazes, destroying vile beasts and claiming gold as your reward.

Incredible Crash Dummies

Box: 
yes
£45.00
Manual: 
yes
£45.00

Have fun with some real headbangers... THE INCREDIBLE CRASH DUMMIES!! Spare Tire's been dummy-napped, and it's up to Slick 'n' Spin to rescue him from the clutches of The Junkman! Lend 'em a hand as they: Slam and jam on the Crash Test Center tire bounce! Try not to fall head over heels on the Big Top high wire! Go to pieces steering clear of rowdy truckers on The Docks! Shake a leg past snarling dogs and runaway tires at The Junkyard! Knock heads with the Junkman to set Spare Tire free! THE INCREDIBLE CRASH DUMMIES... where fun is a farewell to arms!

Ivan Ironman Stewarts Super Off Road

Notes: 
This game is missing its manual
Box: 
yes
£16.00
Manual: 
yes
£16.00

Grab the wheel and hit the gas! For the first time ever, race up to 4 players simultaneously with Ivan "Ironman" Stewart's Super Off-Road. Based on the #1 arcade game, this all-out dirt-grinding race is now available for the NES. Watch out for the mud holes, jumps and other obstacles on the 8 different Stadium tracks. From match-offs to spin-outs, Super Off-Road is as close to genuine short-course racing as you can get!

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