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The Truth About Nintendo's First Home Gaming Console

Today, Nintendo is enjoying a rebirth with the Switch, selling over 70 million units since launch, a definite improvement over the previous generation. Titles such as The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey headline a stellar lineup of games and have further cemented those two franchises as staples in the gaming landscape.


Nintendo as a company was founded back in 1889 and started by producing playing cards. Later on, gamers across the world would be in awe as they picked up the controllers for the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1985.

However, while the NES made a huge splash upon its debut, it was not the first console Nintendo ever made. Before Samus was hunting down Mother Brain and before players were throwing controllers across the room trying to beat Mike Tyson in the original version of Punch-Out!!, Nintendo was looking to cash in on another video game craze sweeping the world.

Nintendo Enters The Ring

Whether you are an avid gamer, a moderate button-presser, or have zero interest in the industry, chances are, you know about Pong. The original arcade smash was released in late 1972 by Atari and took the world by storm. This would, inevitably, lead to making home versions, which came out in different forms from different companies.


Nintendo saw this trend and decided to throw its own hat in the ring. In 1977, Nintendo and Mitsubishi Electronics released the Color TV-Game 6. This device contained 6 variations of Pong which would modify the game through obstacles and paddle sizes. Unlike many other systems of the time, you could use batteries as well as a power adapter.

Upgrades came early and often. A week later, the Color TV-Game 15 was released. It featured, as the name implies, 15 games built into the unit as well as detachable controllers. A year later, the Color TV Game Racing 112 added a racing wheel. 2 more upgrades were released up until the series was discontinued in 1983.