Holiday Message

We are packing all of our stock away for PLAY Expo London (www.playexpolondon.com) where we will be exhibiting all weekend. The show will be London's biggest ever retro expo so we strongly advise anyone who is a retro fan to come along to this amazing event! The store and ordering is now closed until Tuesday 14th August. You can still send us messages while we are away and we will answer when we return.

3DO

The 3DO Interactive Multiplayer (most commonly referred to as 'the 3DO') was a line of video game consoles released in 1993 and 1994 by Panasonic, Sanyo and Goldstar. The consoles were manufactured according to specifications created by The 3DO Company, and were originally designed by Dave Needle and RJ Mical of New Technology Group. The system was conceived by entrepreneur and EA Games founder Trip Hawkins.

Despite a highly-promoted launch and a host of cutting-edge technologies, the system's high price ($699.95 USD at release) and an over-saturated console market brought 'the 3DO' to a speedy demise.

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The consoles had very advanced hardware features at the time: an ARM60 32-bit RISC CPU, two custom video co-processors, a custom 16-bit DSP and a custom math coprocessor. They also featured 2 megabytes of DRAM, 1 megabyte of VRAM, and a double speed CD-ROM drive for main storage, Up to 8 controllers could be daisy-chained on the system at once. In addition to special 3DO software, the system was able to play audio CDs (including support for CD+G), view Photo CDs, and Video CDs with an add-on MPEG video card (released in Japan only). However, few titles utilized the console's full potential.

A noteable feature of the console is that it is one of few CD-based consoles that feature neither regional lockout nor copy protection, scoring it points amongst import gamers and software pirates alike, though reports have suggested that the Goldstar model isn't particularly durable when used for either of those purposes.

It was often said that the 3DO software library exhibited many of the worst aspects of home video gaming at the time. This was the dawn of CD-ROM gaming, so cutscenes of pixelated video footage dominated many titles at the expense of good gameplay. The most well-recieved titles were commonly ports of games from other systems, such as Alone in the Dark, Myst, Out of This World, and Star Control II.

Other notable titles include Need for Speed, Jurassic Park Interactive, Crash N' Burn, Slayer, Killing Time, and the first console port of Super Street Fighter II Turbo, which exceeded the original with its CD-quality audio. Game series that started on 3DO by Electronic Arts, Studio 3DO and Crystal Dynamics established themselves on other 32-bit consoles.

In addition to the consoles, a 3DO Blaster ISA peripheral card for PCs which offered all the features of the home console was manufactured by Creative Technology.

The 3DO Company also designed a next-generation console called the M2, which was to use a PowerPC 602 processor, but the company abandoned the console business and sold the technology to Matsushita who never brought the system to the market.

By the early 1990s, the video game market had become overcrowded. Philips, Sega, Nintendo, Commodore, SNK, and Atari each had a video game system on the market. By 1995, most of these systems had fallen out of the loop and were discontinued. Nintendo's SNES and Sega's Mega Drive/Genesis were the most successful systems. Many consider the final blow to be the overwhelming popularity and affordability of the Sony PlayStation, which not only forced out other CD-based systems like the CD-i, but also laid Sega's Saturn to rest by the end of 1998.

Despite heavy promoting on the YTV variety show It's Alive, and the potential expandability behind the 3DO Interactive Multiplayer, third-party support was lacking, and the 3DO system was discontinued in 1995. The 3DO Company then became a software publisher, producing such games as the Army Men franchise, until it filed for bankruptcy and liquidated its assets in 2003.

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Alone in the Dark

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Your quest for truth drives you to investigate the mysteries of Derceto, this strange house. You'll encounter hideous, hidden monsters that come at you when you least expect them. From the creaking stairs to the dark catacombs, the 3DO experience plunges you into the depths of Derceto. Too late to turn back, you must go on and face it alone. and in the dark!

Alone in the Dark 2

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Once more Edward Carnby is involved in a mysterious and supernatural investigation. A little girl named Grace Saunders has been kidnapped by One Eyed Jack, the infamous gangster. And once more, Carnby is alone. alone in the dark!

3D Atlas

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A multimedia expedition to understanding planet Earth. Examine the world in three different visual contexts - environmental, physical and political with nine zoom levels of detail. Time lapse photography with 3D flights and views of areas of the planet. Mini documentaries from global warming to endangered species. View country post cards and satellite photos of major cities. Around the world trivia game featuring over 1000 challenging questions.

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