Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs it the Sega 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar of portable gaming?

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Sonicx9
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Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs it the Sega 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar of portable gaming?

Postby Sonicx9 » August 17th, 2017, 1:25 am

I ask because I always see similarities between these systems for the following reasons.

1. Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiac both came out before the Nintendo DS/PSP and the Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiac where in raw power above the Game Boy Advance but below the DS/PSP in raw power, just like how the 32X/3DO/Jaguar where between the SNES/Sega Genesis and the PS1/N64.

2. All of these flop consoles/handhelds tried to be the next best thing but all flopped compared to the SNES/Genesis/PS1/N64/GBA/DS/PSP, etc. I mean N-Gage flop, Zodiacs flop, Sega 32X flop, 3DO flop, Atari Jaguar flop.

3. Even though the N-Gage and Zodiacs handhelds where more powerful, they where all more difficult to program for then the GBA/DS/PSP which where much easier to program for/had better optimized hardware. The same thing was for the 32X/3DO/Jaguar compared to the SNES/Genesis/PS1/N64, etc.

4. Both the N-Gage and Zodiacs had short lifespans that got killed of fast because of the more powerful/easier to program/better optimized hardware thanks to the DS/PSP. Just like the 32X/3DO/Jaguar compared PS1/N64 for the same reasons.

5. Both the N-Gage and Zodiacs have small library of games just like the 32X/3DO/Jaguar and the library for the N-Gage and Zodiacs where considered very poor quality compared to the GBA/DS/PSP. The same thing for the 32X/3DO/Jaguar compared to the SNES/Genesis/PS1/N64.

Any other similarities that I am missing for the N-Gage and Zodiacs compared to the 32X/3DO/Jaguar? I would like to see what others have to say about this?

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Stalvern
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Re: Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs it the Sega 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar of portable gaming?

Postby Stalvern » August 17th, 2017, 9:23 am

You forgot the Gizmondo.

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scotland
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Re: Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs it the Sega 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar of portable gaming?

Postby scotland » August 17th, 2017, 9:55 am

I am not sure where you are going here. Things fail to sell for many reasons, and sometimes succeed despite many flaws that may have sunk them.

One major reason for success are the launch games. Nintendo may owe alot to Tetris, which helped sell the Gameboy, and how much of the Switch's success is from Zelda despite it being overpriced?

Sonicx9
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Re: Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs it the Sega 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar of portable gaming?

Postby Sonicx9 » August 17th, 2017, 9:55 am

Stalvern wrote:You forgot the Gizmondo.


I was thinking of adding the Gizmondo, but it was released after both the DS/PSP respectivly. But it does go hand and hand with the Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs just like the 32X/3DO/Jaguar of portable gaming?

goldenband
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Re: Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs it the Sega 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar of portable gaming?

Postby goldenband » August 17th, 2017, 10:54 am

Sonicx9 wrote:3. Even though the N-Gage and Zodiacs handhelds where more powerful, they where all more difficult to program for then the GBA/DS/PSP which where much easier to program for/had better optimized hardware. The same thing was for the 32X/3DO/Jaguar compared to the SNES/Genesis/PS1/N64, etc.


That's not wholly true of the 3DO. The 32X and Jaguar had complicated architectures involving multiple processors, but the 3DO architecture was allegedly a pleasure to work with in some ways, with very developer-friendly aspects. The problem was that their developer tools were terrible, partly because they were Macintosh-only at a time when Macs were very crash-prone. Late in the system's life I think other tools were released, but it was probably too little too late.

Anyway, I think the Lynx is really the 3DO of portable gaming! Many of the same designers worked on both projects (the 3DO is a direct descendant of the Lynx), they both included cool features like hardware scaling, and they were both significantly ahead of their time and suffered as a result.

Sonicx9
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Re: Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs it the Sega 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar of portable gaming?

Postby Sonicx9 » August 17th, 2017, 11:07 am

scotland wrote:I am not sure where you are going here. Things fail to sell for many reasons, and sometimes succeed despite many flaws that may have sunk them.

One major reason for success are the launch games. Nintendo may owe alot to Tetris, which helped sell the Gameboy, and how much of the Switch's success is from Zelda despite it being overpriced?


I was basically saying that there where similarities with Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs/Gizmondo to the 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar but for the handheld side. I mean when I was younger, I saw lots of hype for the N-Gage being the Game Boy Advance killer. And that thing tanked big time with its many problems such as high price at launch, lack of games, etc. And one thing that the fails handhelds had in common is they where hard to program for/poorly optimized hardware. I mean the N-Gage version of Sonic Advance looked and ran much worse then the GBA version dispute the N-Gage being more powerful! Have a look: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBMzfR4N1XE.

It is so odd how 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar/N-Gage/Zodiacs/Gizmondo where supposed to be powerful, but the hardware was very poorly optimized/hard to program for. And sometimes look and run worse then less powerful hardware, LOL!

Sonicx9
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Re: Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs it the Sega 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar of portable gaming?

Postby Sonicx9 » August 17th, 2017, 11:13 am

goldenband wrote:
Sonicx9 wrote:3. Even though the N-Gage and Zodiacs handhelds where more powerful, they where all more difficult to program for then the GBA/DS/PSP which where much easier to program for/had better optimized hardware. The same thing was for the 32X/3DO/Jaguar compared to the SNES/Genesis/PS1/N64, etc.


That's not wholly true of the 3DO. The 32X and Jaguar had complicated architectures involving multiple processors, but the 3DO architecture was allegedly a pleasure to work with in some ways, with very developer-friendly aspects. The problem was that their developer tools were terrible, partly because they were Macintosh-only at a time when Macs were very crash-prone. Late in the system's life I think other tools were released, but it was probably too little too late.

Anyway, I think the Lynx is really the 3DO of portable gaming! Many of the same designers worked on both projects (the 3DO is a direct descendant of the Lynx), they both included cool features like hardware scaling, and they were both significantly ahead of their time and suffered as a result.


But according to Digital Foundry John Linneman, he said the 3DO had trouble with 2D games at 60FPS which was unusual at the time because of the frame buffer issues, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ni13xjHvwu4 95% of 2D games during that era where 60FPS FYI. So that meant the 3DO hardware was difficult to program for/had poorly optimized hardware.

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Retro STrife
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Re: Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs it the Sega 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar of portable gaming?

Postby Retro STrife » August 17th, 2017, 12:30 pm

Like scotland, I'm a bit confused on the premise. But I will say this... as a console collector, I have a strange affinity for the failed systems of the 90s - like 3DO, Jaguar, and CD-i. And I get that same good vibe when collecting for the N-Gage and Zodiac.. they are very much the handheld equivalent to me. So from a collecting perspective, they feel very similar for me.

Honestly, I'm surprised to see the Zodiac mentioned here, as I personally only learned of it a few years ago.. somehow it slipped under my radar for years. Rare to see it get brought up on a forum, but glad to see it getting some facetime! Along those lines, I think the Zodiac is a little different then the other systems you mentioned -- I had at least heard of the others (and their hype) when they were coming out and in the years afterward, but it took 10+ years for me to learn of the Zodiac. Maybe I was under a rock at the time, but I also take that to mean that the Zodiac was barely marketed.

goldenband
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Re: Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs it the Sega 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar of portable gaming?

Postby goldenband » August 17th, 2017, 12:47 pm

Sonicx9 wrote:But according to Digital Foundry John Linneman, he said the 3DO had trouble with 2D games at 60FPS which was unusual at the time because of the frame buffer issues, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ni13xjHvwu4 95% of 2D games during that era where 60FPS FYI. So that meant the 3DO hardware was difficult to program for/had poorly optimized hardware.


Oh, it wasn't great for 2D, sure -- that's well-known, and characteristic of all systems/platforms that rely on framebuffers: it's a highly flexible approach, but you live and die by the CPU speed. But for 3D games, the reports I've heard indicate that it was actually a rather well-designed system whose main shortcoming was a CPU that wasn't as strong as it could have been. It also made the same mistake as the Saturn, i.e. using quadrilaterals instead of triangles.

The SNES was an incredible hassle to program for in many ways, with a complicated architecture and an underpowered CPU. Quite a few cross-platform games (and some exclusives) suffer from severe slowdown, and sometimes games that originated on the SNES and were lazily ported to the Genesis still run better on the Genesis because the latter's CPU is that much faster.

If it had been put out by a smaller company and/or failed in the marketplace, everyone would talk about the SNES the way they talk about the Jaguar or 3DO or 32X, or even the often-criticized Sega Saturn. But because it was successful and backed by a big company, we overlook the fact that it was a very screwy design in many ways.

Now, the CD-i, that's a disaster of an architecture (and I say that as someone who likes the system). Everyone who got good results out of that platform was working miracles!

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Stalvern
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Re: Nokia N-Gage/Tapwave Zodiacs it the Sega 32X/3DO/Atari Jaguar of portable gaming?

Postby Stalvern » August 17th, 2017, 1:13 pm

Sonicx9 wrote:But according to Digital Foundry John Linneman, he said the 3DO had trouble with 2D games at 60FPS which was unusual at the time because of the frame buffer issues, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ni13xjHvwu4 95% of 2D games during that era where 60FPS FYI. So that meant the 3DO hardware was difficult to program for/had poorly optimized hardware.

No, it doesn't. It means that it was better at some things than others, like every system.

The 3DO failed because it was ahead of its time and because the company's idiotic business model made the system exorbitantly expensive, not because of its hardware. As a system, it was brilliant.


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