The Nintendo Company has been around for over 120 years and it appears like they will be around for a lot more. About 16 years ago, the Nintendo Company launched the Nintendo Game Cube. The console wasn’t all that but it polished most of the 3D graphics that came with the Nintendo 64. The game cube came with an introduction of new and cooler features as well as an integrated system connectivity and menu that comes with a sister console that is handheld. Most of us only take a cursory look at these gaming machines and even though we do play the game, it’s only the diehard fan that goes a step further to explore the nitty-gritty of the game. The game cube comes with numerous surprises and the higher you go the more of these secrets are revealed. From concealed intro screens to non-existent controllers, the game cube is perfect for keeping your appetite whetted. It comes with games like melee, Super Smash Bros, Super Mario Sunshine, and The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Walker all meant to entice the buyer into buying. The GameCube is quite cool when it comes to its surprise features as well as nifty accessories that give the A-list consoles a run for their money. For this article, we take a look at 10 Nintendo secrets you never knew
10. GameCube Could Play Games Online
With the advent of technology, the way we play and socialize changed and we stopped favoring real-life friendships and instead, it is not uncommon to find people who discard human interaction for virtual friendships. The Nintendo Game Cube was old school and did not favor online gaming as compared to the Xbox or the PlayStation leaning more towards friendship battles with real-life combatants. Unfortunately, though, the online trend had gained quite a following with people waging online duals with virtual friends from all over the world. The fact that Game Cube did not follow this trend contributed to its lack of following and eventually its downfall.
This thought was a misconception because, with the Game Cube, it was possible to play online with the Nintendo GameCube Broadband Adaptor. The adaptor is endowed with an Ethernet port and plugs at the lower part of the game cube. To enable this online feature, the player had to use an Ethernet cable. The limitation though was that only a few games were compatible with this feature in the market. Of course, because people favor less fuss when it comes to their games preferring the plug and play option, not many people took to this features and the Nintendo game cube fizzled.
9. The GameCube’s Low Sales Forced Nintendo to License Mario
For most of us, Mario is the best game on any Nintendo console and the Game Cube did not disappoint. The Game Cube was launched with quite some pomp but it was still the most unsuccessful console compared to the PS2 and the Xbox. The Nintendo 64 actually did far better than the Game Cube. Every attempt was made to prevent the Game Cube sales from nose-diving and this is why there were unprecedented background moves meant to salvage the situation.
Nintendo licensed the characters of the beloved super Mario to third party gaming companies. From this sprang Mario and Rabbids Kingdom Battle as well as combos of the cast of the mushroom kingdom with other games. There were guest appearances featuring EA games. The Mario brothers made appearances in NHL and Madden as well as SSX on a tour which was their snowboard game and Luigi and Princess Peach which were playable characters. They outdid themselves when the Mario brothers made an appearance on NBA Streetz vol.3 forming an official Nintendo team on the three on three basketball games as well as an appearance on the Konami Dance revolution Mario mix. Despite their best effort, this did not pay off and the sales went belly up.
8. GameCube Was Wireless before Xbox and PlayStation
The best-selling feature of any electronic equipment is its wireless capabilities especially with a generation that has short attention spans and can’t sit still. Wireless gadgets and video games with wireless controllers replaced their wired counterparts of previous years after the seventh generation. This was the best feature for players as they were no longer confined to the length of the controller cable and what better way to dual than with the space to imitate the combatants?
Gaming in earlier years was a complicated affair and one had to come close to the TV screen as they were limited by the controller cable. While all the other consoles that came after the Game Cube had wireless features, it is the Game Cube that brought this invention to our screens first. The Console had the honor of giving the wireless controller a successful entry into the gaming world for the future generation with its controllers that were wave bird branded. The players had to plug in the receiver to controller port and flip the on switch on the remote control to match the receiver to the channel. After the setup, wireless features would come into play. With a game cube adapter, the Nintendo Wii and the Wii U are compatible with the wave bird controllers.
7. Hardcore Fans Hated the GameCube Zelda
Gamers prefer to stick to the tried and tested waters and they do not like to deviate too far from what they know. Surprises that are too far-fetched take a while to sink in. when a spoiler is given, the diehards expect to see it through and they wait with bated breath for the launch and that is why, when The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker was unveiled, most of the hardcore fans were highly disappointed because as opposed to the demo that was previously released in the Nintendo space world event of 2000 which featured Ganondorf in a sword fight against Link, which created the assumption that there would be an ‘Ocarina of time’ follow up, Nintendo released wind walker instead.
The fans were furious and highly disappointed and they, in turn, accused Nintendo of making false advertisements. While the earlier versions featured matured content, this title featured a young Tool with muted settings. Despite the controversy, the game managed to garner quite a following even gaining critical acclaim. Tool link appeared on other Nintendo consoles in the legend of Zelda: phantom hourglass &spirit in the 3Ds whose game was reprogrammed on the Wii U. Not bad for something that seemed doomed.
6. There Was A GameCube That Could Play DVDs
The Nintendo cube was not able to play DVDs as opposed to the play station 2 and the Xbox which turned out to be its greatest shortcoming in the gaming world. This detail proved to be fatal to the Game cube sales as most people prefer to be able to kick back after a game and listen to some soothing tunes or watch some action instead of taking part in it. This cool feature was missing but not in all consoles. There was a console that came with these awesome features but did not land everywhere nor was it a Nintendo release.
When the Nintendo was in development, it commissioned Matsushita Electronics through its Panasonic Company to provide a Mini Game disc of its console. Through this deal, Panasonic could make an imitation of the Game Cube which they did and in 2001, they unveiled the Panasonic Q, the console gave the players the opportunity to play DVDs as well as the Nintendo Game Cube. The Q also had a remote and 4 controller ports. Sounds like it would be a great invention but unfortunately, the console failed commercially and Panasonic had to cease production after only two years after its release.
5. The Best Console Launch Lineup Of All Time
Whenever there is a new gaming console, its fans wait for the launch with bated breath as every launch comes with new experiences and new challenges. However, more often than not, the titles are either too dull or the time allocated to the games is just too short for it to be worth the wait or deliver the anticipated thrill. The Nintendo game cube despite its other shortcomings came up tops here as its lineup was quite successful and is still on the lips of most gamers as the best console launch experience of all time. The console came with over 200 games which were a ‘yeepy’ moment for most gamers with the Luigi Mansion being the best-selling feature of the game cube at that time.
The titles at startup came with various titles which appealed to most gamers unlike the Nintendo 64 which only came with two titles during its release; Super Mario 64 & Pilotwings 64. The Nintendo 64 was a lot more successful than the Game cube but the players could only access a platform or flight starter software, to begin with. The Game cube was set for big things were it not for the minor shortcomings.
4. Why The GameCube Was So Cheap
Nintendos president during the launch of Game cube takes all the credit for its successful launch. He knew that gamers only need a console to play the new titles and for this reason, he set out to provide a cheap console and let the gamers use their resources to buy games. Most of us thought the reason for its success was the lack of a bigger lineup of titles in the Nintendo 64 but the reason is the market prediction that Nintendo is well known for. This trend continues to catapult Nintendo in the Console market as witnessed with the Wii which outsold the Xbox 360 and the Ps3 thanks to its motion technology which was quite new in the market at the time.
Six months after it was launched, the console was selling at a low cost of At the low cost of only 149$ a 50 $ drop from its launch price. The Game cube continued to drop in price selling at a measly 99$ in the following year. This was an unprecedented trend in any console as The PS2 only came to this cost during the last half of its lifecycle. The Xbox had a longer run falling at 149$ during its last leg of production.
3. Smashing intro sound!
Most of us are fans of the entertainment offered prior to the booting of the video which comes as a welcome warm-up session. The Game Cube followed this welcome tradition with the sound of a xylophone forming the console logo. The unforgettable tune came with an Easter egg that would let a player customize the music from the default sound. This was and still is a unique feature of the Game Console as the competitors are yet to use this formula and it helped remove the drudgery of listening to the same intro sound over and over again.
The modifications were quite entertaining and surprising as was evidenced by holding the “Z” on the first controller, which would elicit the laughter of a baby and the sound of a chimpanzee. This entertainment was magnified if one was lucky to have four friends around and each held the Z button which would elicit a “kabuki-type” sound. Even though the intro isn’t the actual game and there are cases when the actual thing came as a bummer, with such an introduction, one was assured of getting some mega entertainment and it’s a pity that this Console was not a commercial hit.
2. A Mini Disk?
The 6th generation consoles featured DVDs as the preferred media source. The DVDs store a huge amount of data as compared to the CD-R and were the much popular as they allowed gamers to free their hands. The PS2 & Xbox could read the DVDs but for those who owned the GameCube, this privilege was denied to them as the Game Cube could only read the mini- disk. The rationale behind Nintendo’s decision to use the tiny CDs was because they wanted to prevent piracy of this console.
At the time, piracy was a huge problem as everything that came in a DVD was pirated even before it hit the market. While their efforts were commendable, the tiny discs turned out to quite expensive for the gamer because they had a limited capacity only able to store about 1.5 GB. The developers had to compress their games and at times had to use multi disks to contain their data as witnessed in Resident Evil 4 which was published as a single disc b for the PS2 and double discs for the Nintendo GameCube. The good news is that the Nintendo learned from its mistake and never again used this trend.
1. It Could Play Game Boy Games
The best feature of the GameCube is with the advanced handheld Gameboy. The Nintendo 64 also had this capability due to the wide boy 64AGB feature but the wide boy accessory was not publicly available. The game boy player was able to run directly run GBA cartridges to the system just by plugging in the add-on that is at the bottom of the console extension port. Players then insert the mini CD which is an inclusion of the game boy color games peripheral and open the game boy player app. this accessory is compatible with game boy color games as well as the original game boy.
Settings like screen size and controller mappings are modifiable to suit the player. The best feature is that one can change the cartridge without having to close the console to change the games and it came with the advantage of being able to clearly play the games. The console had one disadvantage though, to play the games, one had to do it in a lit room since the console did not offer brightness features only available in the GBA SP version. That was a great invention despite that. Nowadays, it is possible to use computer emulators to remedy this shortcoming.