Since home video games first came on the market in 1972 we have gone through 7 generations of consoles. This is a list of the best video game systems of each generation.
1. Magnavox Odyssey
The Magnavox Odyssey was not the first home console but it was the first console to play more then one game. The first games before this were primitive pong games. The Magnavox Odyssey was the only home console of its generation to play more then one pong style game. The Magnavox Odyssey was not owned by many people it was new and expensive. The Magnavox Odyssey is only known because it is the first of its kind.
2. Atari 2600
While the Atari 5200 was a more advanced system not many people had it, it was more expensive, and it was big and bulky and poorly made. The Atari 2600 was the first home video game system for many. While some may not be old enough to have had it this was the first video game system that many Americans had. Most people never saw or played a Magnavox Odyssey but most who are old enough at least played the Atari 2600. Unlike the Magnavox Odyssey the Atari 2600 had competition even from another Atari system. The Atari 2600 was the game system of its age though. Even today you can get plug and play games that play Atari games, you can not say that about the Fairchild Channel F games.
3. Nintendo Entertainment System
The Nintendo Entertainment System or as it is often called the NES saved video games. The NES may be the most important and best system ever. Outside of the Atari 2600 no other system that had any competition in its generation controlled such a clear majority of the market. The NES era was Nintendo’s golden era. At one time Mario was more popular then Mickey Mouse. The NES even had its own movie the Wizard that was a thinly veiled advertisement which people still love. The NES was not the top tech in its time but everyone had one. The NES had the longest runs of any system. It goes without saying that the NES was the best system of the third generation and likely the best of all systems.
This may be a surprise and many will disagree and say SNES. I have to go with what I had and what I liked as a kid. After Genesis does what you can’t do on Nintendo. The Sega had a head start on Nintendo as Nintendo was trying to milk the NES for all it was worth. Sega may not have had as good of sound but it did have blast processing. The Sega also had a more adult library. While the SNES is famous for its great selection of games the SNES is geared more for the younger audience much like most of the Nintendo consoles would be.
5. Sony Playstation
I have to give it to the Jaguar opps sorry about that I mean the Playstation because it ended up winning the CD vs cartridge war. The N64 was first and had a nice start and had a good library of games but they were again geared more for kids. The Playstation also had a good selection of games and it was a technologically more advanced system. The Sony Playstation paved the way for Sony to be a major player in the video game market.
The Xbox paved the way for Microsoft to enter the video game market. The Xbox had some great games. Halo is one of the games that really made the Xbox what it is. The Xbox library was excellent. The Gamecube was the worst system Nintendo ever made so the only real competition from the PS2. The PS2 was not as great as the original though.
The Blu-ray gives added value to the PS3. The XBox 360 did not bring out enough to its library. The Wii is a family and kid system with many games only for the Wii and many games that other systems have not be available for the Wii. Both the Xbox 360 and the PS3 offer pretty similar libraries, graphics, online game play, and sound. The PS3 mostly wins on the added value of the Blu-ray.
It’s been a long time and we have come along way with our video games. There were some dark times but video games are now stronger then ever. While some may disagree with the list they can not disagree that these systems were some of the best systems ever made.