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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Syndicate

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Blast your way onto the 3DO with Syndicate! In the dark and twisted cities of tomorrow, corporate Syndicates compete for global dominance. But in the future there's no board room deals, no corporate takeovers, no politics - just the dreadful justice of a gun toting machine who knows no remorse. Battle for global domination in 50 missions. Control your team of cyborgs. Modify your agents and research more deadly weapons.

Super Wing Commander

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The original classic reaches new heights of cinematic realism in mankind's ongoing struggle against the ruthless Killrathi Empire with twice the excitement and incredible sound. Dodge Missiles and hurtling asteroids as you fly 72 do or die missions. Use your years of academy training as you engage the most cunning Killrathi aces in deep space dogfights. Experience full digital sound with mission briefings and your wingman's warnings.

Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo

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Experience the ultimate arcade action in your home. Super Move! If you're not addicted to Super Move after playing Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo, you will definitely not be excited by whatever game you play! By using the regular special moves, charge up the Super Move gauge. Input the Super Move Command, then let it soar! Experience the ultimate power!

Station Invasion

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Produce your own TV show at our all-kid television station. Choose from five hit shows - a hilarious sitcom, a game show, a lively talk show, a steamy soap, and a madcap mystery adventure series. Come face to face with the stars of these shows: live video characters who need your help. Work things out through brain tickling puzzles and skill-boosting challenges - the better you are the harder it gets. Challenge your friends to see whose shows are better - yours or theirs.

Striker World Cup Special

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World Cup tournament with teams from twenty-four different countries. You can do pass, trap, sliding tackle and more as a player. Six different parameters for each player give them realistic character.

Starblade

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Ultimate Space Battle with Texture Mapped Polygon 3D technology! Operation Star Blade. Target Red Eye Armoured Moving Planet of Royal Rapid Deployment Force.

Star Fighter

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Extremely responsive flight controls combined with an unbridled flight path provide unparalleled freedom of motion. Fly anywhere. Fly upside down. Leave the airspace for outer space. Fast frame rate, real time rendered 3D objects and a wide variety of missions make this future look bright. Too bad you've got to blow it up!

Star Wars Rebel Assault

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Step into the boots of Rookie One an aspiring Rebel fighter pilot and fly your way from training runs all the way to the Death Star. Chase TIE Fighters through an asteroid storm, take out a Star Destroyer, blow away Imperial walkers and blast through a Rebel base overtaken by Storm Troopers. Play as male or female over fifteen extensive and varied stages with three levels of difficulty.

Space Hulk

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A vast and ancient abomination rushes with grim purpose through the cold blackness of Space. It's destination? The Imperial Planet Devlar III. It's mission? To totally destroy every life form on the planet. For this Gargantuan Space Hulk carries a deadly cargo - the dreaded Genestealer brood.

Star Control 2

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Overthrow the UR Quan Masters! Prepare yourself for an epic adventure that spans the extremes of space. Struggle to liberate Earth from alien imperialism. Star Control 2 is now enhanced with CD Quality Music, voice and sound effects!

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