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Console launches - your most memorable?


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Probably been done to death however dawn of new console hardware etc....

 

With the current situation this has got to be the strangest one for sure....

 

Only ever bought one console at launch and that was the 360. :D If I'm going to do anything I do it in style and probably pick the least reliable console hardware ever released.

 

Still enjoyed the day. Picked it up at 6am in a queue of others... most people in the queue didn't seem very enthusiastic and guessing most were going to end up on e-Bay - yes it was happening back then too. Spent the whole day (booked the day as leave of course!) playing Project Gotham Racing 3 and Call Of Duty 2. I was really impressed with it all. Not so on how hot the disks were when I popped them out though... I knew at that point there maybe a slight issue with cooling. This was before you could install to hard drive of course... 

 

Not done a launch day since. And no my 360 never RRoD on me. But then I did get rid of it after a couple of years and get a PS3.  Which eventually did YLOD on me. Sods law. :D

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The UK launch of the PlayStation for me. I couldn’t afford any games with console and my mate could afford a couple of games but not the console. We arranged that we’d each have a couple of days with the console and games until we got paid again. It’s been the only paradigm shifting new console for me, and I’ve played games for over 30 years. Coming from the 16 bit consoles, playing Ridge Racer and Wipeout were jaw dropping experiences :)

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Dreamcast and 360 both stand out for me. 
 

For the former, it was just that jump in quality from the N64 and an interest in arcade style games that I didn’t have before. I couldn’t get enough of it. 
 

360 was my only successful midnight launch so that was great. On forums and chat that night trying stuff out, learning what tearing was when I played Perfect Dark Zero.  
 

I was supposed to collect my Switch late, but the queue to get into the shop was a farce so I met some mates in the pub and collected it the next day with a serious hangover. 

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Probably the GameCube. Following the drought of games towards the end of the N64s life, I devoured every bit of info I could on the GameCube. Ended up importing a spice orange Japanese cube from Lik Sang (I think) with a mod button on the back to play US games and the biggest heaviest transformer in the world so it wouldn’t blow up. Monkey Ball was well worth it though. 
 

Almost equal was probably the Wii. Queuing up outside Game in Brum with a bunch of other dorks at 6.30am wasn’t the coolest thing I’ve ever done, but that thing was pure magic. 

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The only two consoles I’ve ever bought on launch were the PS4 and PS4 Pro. 
 

The PS4 was kind of a letdown. I’d been working all week in London, drove 2+ hours home and by the time I got home, got it all set up, downloaded some updates, downloaded Resogun, I was utterly shattered and played for like 30 mins before going to bed. 

 

The PS4 Pro wasn’t exactly magical, either. I brought it home and carried on playing Titanfall 2, which looked broadly the same - just a bit sharper. 
 

Hoping the PS5 will be much better. 

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That's the thing for me, I don't have many Day One memories, as I imported everything until the N64. So memories of SNES, Megadrive and Playstation launches weren't the same kind of shared experiences you have now, where everyone is waiting for their DPD driver to show up, you just had it appear one day, but I do remember coming back from school and there being a Megadrive and Strider waiting for me.

 

Probably the N64 overall, as I actually remember taking it over to a mate's flat where we were all gathered and booting up Mario 64.

 

Gamecube launch for me was pretty lame, due to the software available and I haven't been Day One since (not counting 3DS and PSVR).

 

Going for a launch PS5 (hopefully) though.

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The original xbox is the only console that I have got on release day. I was working all day so I asked my brother to pick one up for me. I got it with Halo, Amped, DOA3 and JSRF.

Was quite a thing getting home to that lot.

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I think the Wii has been my only launch-day purchase.  Bought it from the Virgin Megastore on Oxford Street / Tottenham Court Road, which was close to my office at the time.  Foolishly didn't take the day off work so it was sat on my desk all day.  We used to finish for drinks and snacks at 4.30pm on a Friday, so I set it up in the boardroom and played a bit of tennis.

 

I regretted not going to Virgin for the midnight PS3 launch where they surprised everyone by giving them a new Sony TV and sent them home in a cab (https://www.techradar.com/uk/news/gaming/consoles/home-cinema/high-definition/sony-gives-away-2-500-tvs-at-uk-ps3-launch-161213)

 

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The GameCube was the closest I've had a console to it's launch date, with my birthday falling 2 weeks after launch, so that by default. I got Luigi's Mansion and Rogue Leader with it (no Monkey Ball in stock), got it home where it lasted about 45 minutes before the fan packed in and it started overheating. Took it back for a replacement, but that was the last Cube they had and I had to take a refund. With all the other shops shut already, I was more than a little pissed off.

 

I got to Argos the next day though, where I managed to get a new console, and they had Monkey Ball in stock - so it all worked out in the end. That first year or so was great, even with the general drought, because when a big game did come out it was invariably fantastic (although I've since reevaluated Mario Sunshine, which I now think is utter dogshit).

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I bought a Dreamcast on UK launch day. Originally I'd been planning on trading my PlayStation in for it at the local Cex, but they didn't have any in stock. There was no way I was going home without one, so I went to the local Virgin Megastore and bought one at full whack in there. The plan then was to head back to Cex and trade the Playstation for games and accessories, but I had to run back to Uni for a loan meeting. I remember having to explain to someone why I was in desperate need of a student loan, despite having two bags with me, one clearly containing the brand new, released-that-day Dreamcast and the other a Playstation and a tonne of games. I think I told her I was selling both of them after the meeting in desperation, or some such nonsense.

 

Anyway, I eventually sold the Playstation and went home to play Sega Rally 2, Virtua Fighter 3tb, Sonic Adventure, Ready 2 Rumble and Trickstyle. Quite the haul! Although I was pretty disappointed by SR2 at the time - the original was better on the Saturn.

 

Years later I bought a PSP with Ridge Racers on import when they came out in Japan - that was a pretty cool feeling, having never had the cash to be able to import a system like that before. Plus it was an amazing system at launch. I worked in a branch of Gamestation at the time, so you can imagine there were plenty of people around to be wowed by my new portable system.

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There was something special about the Dreamcast launch, I think most of the other consoles I grabbed on import but the Dreamcast I went to a UK midnight opening and then played Power Stone until I pretty much passed out on the bed in the early hours of the morning.

 

Fond memories of the Gameboy Advance, PSP and Gamecube as well.

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I’m actually not sure I’ve ever bought a console at launch. I certainly picked up a Megadrive on import from Japan close to that being released over there, mainly because of Super Shinobi I think.

 

I know I got an import Xbox as soon as they were getting shipped over here because of Halo, but I’ve never done the whole launch thing it seems.

 

This gen though...well, had it not been for all the fun PC stuff that has been coming out I was going to be fully on board with both machines.

 

But I’ve spent an awful lot of money on it recently...

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360 for all the wrong reasons. I was working for Gamestation at the time and had to be at work for 4am to set up (this was a big shopping centre) and we knew we would be busy -  but we'd called all the preorders before hand, bagged everything up ready in the back office so it should have been smooth sailing. The shutter opens and this lad walks up pleased as punch (obviously been there a good few hours as the queue went on for ages) and I had the pleasure of telling him his preorder number was too high, we'd only been allocated 80 systems, down from the 120 we were initially promised. You've never seen a face go from childlike glee to adult sadness like it. Didn't argue or cause a scene just kinda limped of - like i said we'd called everyone, so he must've thought fuck it - i'll chance it!  I'll never forget that face as long as i draw breathe 

 

 

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15 minutes ago, JoeK said:

I certainly picked up a Megadrive on import from Japan close to that being released over there, mainly because of Super Shinobi I think.

 

The dates are odd to look back on, going off Wikipedia.

 

SS came out in Japan over a year after the Megadrive launch (Dec '89 versus Oct '88).

 

I was just looking then and wondering why the hell I got a Jap MD with Strider, which must've dated it around Oct/Nov 1990, *after* the PAL release of the MD?!

 

Maybe it was down to the software available and thinking stuff like Strider was going to be months/years from a Western release that made me import.

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UK N64 for me. My first launch day console, and only my second console.

We’d preordered it as soon as we could, I was the first to get my name down in my local HMV. Their launch allocation was 10 consoles!


It was a combined Xmas and birthday gift from my parents, console plus Mario 64.

I saved some Xmas money and decided to get myself Star Wars Shadow of the Empire too, if I could.

 

So launch day comes and, being 15 and still in school, my parents wouldn’t let me stay off. I got on the bus after school into town, at the cash desk they told me they thought it was some sort of joke as the other 9 had collected at midnight!


They didn’t have Star Wars so I went to Virgin Megastore, pick up the box and take it to the till, the guy looks at me and says “you need the new console to play this on” I smile and raise the bag held in my other hand. He then says he needs to talk to the manager (!) to see if he can sell it to me as they’ve only been selling to people with preorders. The manager then says the same and tries to call the regional office or something, no answer.  I don’t know if he saw the look of disappointment on the anxious 15 year olds face, or just didn’t care, but he sold it to me and off I went to see my mum who worked in the same shopping centre.

 

It was an hour before she finished. I could wait for an hour and get a lift, or take the bus. And those magic words from her “you can set it up on the living room TV from now until after the weekend”

 

Amazing!

 

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5 minutes ago, Reynard said:

 

The dates are odd to look back on, going off Wikipedia.

 

SS came out in Japan over a year after the Megadrive launch (Dec '89 versus Oct '88).

 

I was just looking then and wondering why the hell I got a Jap MD with Strider, which must've dated it around Oct/Nov 1990, *after* the PAL release of the MD?!

 

Maybe it was down to the software available and thinking stuff like Strider was going to be months/years from a Western release that made me import.


I think you’re right. I do remember becoming obsessed with the Megadrive after reading about it in a small article in the ‘Games Machine’ mag, so it may well be that it was far longer until I picked one up. It was certainly well before the US and UK launches though!

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I have always jumped on consoles some time after their launch.  The only two I went in day one for were the playstation and GBA.  The playstation wins hands down.  Ridge racer was just an insta-purchase as I loved arcade racers (still do) and had ben following the developments of the console in Edge magazine religiously.  I remember first seeing it in issue 11 and just knowing I had to have it (15 year old me back then).

 

It's safe to say nothing about it disappointed and the now 16 year old me just rinsed ridgeracer and the demo disk.

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I think you’re right. I do remember becoming obsessed with the Megadrive after reading about it in a small article in the ‘Games Machine’ mag, so it may well be that it was far longer until I picked one up. It was certainly well before the US and UK launches though!

 

I can't believe it was '88, thought it was '89.

 

I vividly remember first seeing Super Shinobi being played at my local importer and being blown away, but the gushing Mean Machines review of Strider sent me over the edge.

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I would add that I had day one access to the megadrive, SNES, N64 via a friend and the megadrive and N64 were both amazing experiences back in the day.  The Megadrive and N64 stick in my mind particularly for both getting close to arcade experiences and the N64 for Mario 64 simpy. 

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17 minutes ago, Freeman said:

UK N64 for me. My first launch day console...

 

So launch day comes and, being 15 and still in school, my parents wouldn’t let me stay off. I got on the bus after school into town...

 

 

N64 PAL launch was a Saturday?

 

I remember that one, as it was obviously weird to have a console/game release on a weekend.

 

I mentioned up thread that it was probably the most memorable launch day for me and remember taking it to a mate's after picking it up.

 

I also worked at Comet at the time and had to go in on my day off to pick it up, as they wouldn't break the street date.

 

Maybe they all thought "Fuck it" round your way and starting flogging it on the Friday!

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7 minutes ago, Reynard said:

 

N64 PAL launch was a Saturday?

 

I remember that one, as it was obviously weird to have a console/game release on a weekend.

 

I mentioned up thread that it was probably the most memorable launch day for me and remember taking it to a mate's after picking it up.

 

I also worked at Comet at the time and had to go in on my day off to pick it up, as they wouldn't break the street date.

 

Maybe they all thought "Fuck it" round your way and starting flogging it on the Friday!


Crap yes it was!

I can’t remember what lead to it being so late in the day for me then. My mum worked Saturdays so my memory of how it played out is correct, except I obviously wasn’t going from school.

To be fair, after my first experience of Mario 64, I’m surprised I remember anything.

 

I also remember my parents arriving home a bit later than expected, with Chinese takeaway, bonus! :)

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1 hour ago, Zio said:

I bought a Dreamcast on UK launch day.

 

1 hour ago, Melon_Bread said:

There was something special about the Dreamcast launch, I think most of the other consoles I grabbed on import but the Dreamcast I went to a UK midnight opening and then played Power Stone until I pretty much passed out on the bed in the early hours of the morning.

11 minutes ago, Welrain said:

Dreamcast midnight launch at Electronics Boutique in Carlisle.  I vividly remember walking home with my girlfriend then playing for a few hours before going to work knackered the next day. Awesome.


Midnight Dreamcast launch for me too. I remember waiting outside Electronics Boutique in Glasgow with a group of friends before going home to play/sleep. I was also really disappointed in SR2 at the time! But the launch was good, clean fun, albeit the shop/staff didn’t really add any fanfare or sense of occasion - probably felt aggrieved about having to be at work!

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  • Japanese N64: in a crowd at the Video Game Centre in Bournemouth watching England vs Germany in the Euro 1996 semi-final, waiting for the owner to get back from the airport with the consoles. Then a 1 hour drive home followed by playing Mario 64 in the middle of the night, completely gobsmacked.
  • Xbox 360: Despite working for MS UK at the time there was no employee purchase scheme...so I found myself joining a queue at 5:15am outside Toys R Us and - about 3 hours later - I luckily got allocated an Xbox 360 Arcade. I was one person away from leaving empty-handed. Once I had the console, I then trawled round the shops looking for a hard drive and component cable and the other stuff that the better 360 pack included as standard.
  • Wii: Learning my lesson from the 360 I pre-ordered at the local Game. But on launch day I was in Germany with my family. My brother had massive FOMO so we ended up joining a queue outside a department store in Nuremburg early in the morning. Doors opened, people running, scrum at the tills, security guards panicking and pushing people around...he managed to get one in the end.
  • PS3: Picked it up at midnight from the local GameStation (which was inside a Blockbuster video on a little edge-of-town retail park). As I walked back to the car, 2 twatty teenagers approached and half-heartedly threatened me; I told them to fuck off. That's the first and only time anything like that has ever happened to me. But it did make me wonder about picking up expensive items at midnight launches.

After the PS3 I've just ordered online at the earliest opportunity. I want the experience to be as simple and unmemorable as possible. I still get shivers thinking about queueing for hours outside Toys R Us, needing a pee and not even knowing if I'd actually get a 360. That said, I just got a "your order has arrived at our warehouse" email from ShopTo for my PS5 and it has a mangled address on it, so there's still a chance that this one will go wrong :huh:

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I’ve only had three launch day consoles. They’ve all been Nintendo (until tomorrow!) and all very different experiences.

 

First was the GameCube which I pre-ordered from Toys R Us with a few games and extras. But then I got sent to work in Brazil for three weeks with launch day right in the middle of my time away. Luckily my wife not only went to pick it up for me, but when I eventually got home the boxes were piled up on the floor in front of the telly waiting for me. So it was a delayed launch for me but very special.

 

Next was the Wii that I ordered from @moosegrinder’s old shop, along with Twilight Princess and an extra Wiimote and nunchuck. Then on the night before it came out we decided we actually needed four Wiimotes and nunchucks (so all the kids could play at once, I think) but when I went to pick mine up they didn’t have any spare. So I went on a wild goose chase round every shop in Nottingham that might have some, gradually picking up extra controllers until I looked like a contestant on Double or Drop. It was worth it when I got home for that first game of doubles Wii Sports tennis between all the kids - it really was like a magical leap in technology.

 

The last one was the Switch that I don’t think we even pre-ordered, I think I got swept up in the launch day hysteria on here and just bought it on the day from Argos.

 

So I’ve yet to experience the launch day delivery tracking fun. Until tomorrow!

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