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The Forgettable Game.com
By Cyril Lachel     |   Posted on June 29, 2005   |   Episode 63 (Show Archive)  

   

Warning: Playing the Game.com could turn you off of all video games!
When you think about all the portable game systems that went up against Nintendo there are a lot that spring to mind. Chances are you come up with the Game Gear, Neo Geo Pocket Color, and Lynx. Heck, a few of you may of even said the TurboExpress and WonderSwan Color. But chances are you wouldn't have said anything about the Game.com, one of the most easily forgotten game systems of all time.

In the late 1990's Tiger Electronics, who up until that time had specialized in simple handheld devices, introduced the Game.com an ambitious little game system that was hard to describe while keeping a straight face. The Game.com featured a touch screen display giving you an option to how you control the game or sift through the menus. You could also go online with the Game.com, giving some meaning to its otherwise silly name. Even with its unique features the Game.com failed to attract any buyers and quickly fizzed out.


Here is Tiger's second dedicated portable, the Gizmondo!
But while you can be excused for not remembering the Game.com, a magazine called Pocket Games should not have that lenience. In their Spring 2005 issue, Pocket Games has this to say about the furry company: "Tiger Electronics goes up against the behemoths of the biz with Gizmondo, its first attempt at seizing the handheld crown."

Clearly Pocket Games is forgetting about the Game.com, Tiger's first foray into the dedicated portable market. Even though the Game.com managed to host some of the biggest names in video games - Resident Evil 2, Mortal Kombat Trilogy, Duke Nukem 3D, Sonic the Hedgehog - not a single one of them was worth playing, let alone owning. But still, a magazine like Pocket Games, who prides themselves on knowing everything about the portable industry, should be able to remember back to the days of the Game.com.


Believe it or not, Mortal Kombat Advance is still worse!
Oddly it's not just Pocket Games who has managed to forget about Tiger's "other" handheld, as Nintendo has been making some statements that seem to indicate that they don't remember the Game.com. On Nintendo's own website for the Nintendo DS they suggested that their system was the first to incorporate a touch screen, something the Game.com did (poorly) half a decade earlier.

Of course it's probably in Nintendo's best interest to forget about the Game.com, since remembering would put their whole media blitz about the world changing touch screen in question. But really, that would just be the first of the unique DS features that aren't so unique - first system with two screens? Only if you forgets to count the Virtual Boy and Game & Watch.

But maybe there's no reason to fight this, it was an utterly forgettable system to begin with and something that only collectors should own. The games were a joke, nearly unplayable ... and nothing about the system made you want to buy it, play it, or even look at it. Maybe it's for the best that we've all forgotten about it, but I still say a magazine like Pocket Games should have a longer memory.
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