Basic purple version, also availible in black, blue, red, etc.
Limited Edition Platinum color
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles Limted Edition
THE RANT: Three years ago I decided it was time to get on the bandwagon with a modern system, and after weighing the three alternatives I decided to go with Gamecube first. Why you may ask did I choose the loser system when all the cool stuff is on the other two (besides the fact that it was the cheapest?) For one simple reason: Nintendo has the best game desginers out there under thier roof, and they themselves haven't put out a loser game, ever, as long as I can remember. That and Mario Sunshine, perhaps the best game ever made, is why I bought a Gamecube before an X-box.
My thing is this: I am old for a video game person. The average game player is in the 14-25 age group. That means they grew up with Super Nintendo and Playstation. My ass had an Apple IIE. So to me the graphics on all three modern machines are so advanced that I personally can't tell the difference. Put the 3 different versions of Soul Caliber next to each other, can you tell them apart? They all look the same to me.
So that leaves it up to the games to decide which system is the best, and in that category the Gamecube wins hands down for one reason: Nintendo's in-house software is the best in the world. You can count on them to deliver new and exciting game concepts with each new release, not to mention their games are FUN. Goofy net nerds who compare system specs tend to forget that aspect of gaming. I'm not in it because one console can dish out more polygons per second than another, I want to play some fun games. People forget this stuff is not a job; It's not a religion, it's not a way of life. It's entertainment. A videogame fulfills the same need as a dancing monkey with a tin cup- it entertains you. It gives you something to do so you forget how crappy your life is. You do not live or die depending on what system you own or how many points you can score on Galaga. You come home, crack a beer, eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, maybe do a couple of bong rips, and play a stupid game. When you sit in front of the TV stroking a controller you are essentially masturbating with a $200 machine. So all of you flatulent flamming net homos please shut the hell up about which system is the best. Damn.
Nintendo learned their lesson about carts with the N64, but being their usual scared-of-piracy-selves opted for 3 inch optical discs instead of CDs or DVDs. The discs can store up to 1.3 Gigs of data, making them compare favorably with either option. No more blurry, bulky polygons or foggy 3D environments. This also means you need specialized equipment to copy them (can't just slap the game in your CD burner and rip them off.)
THE GOOD: As per usual Nintendo's in house people have produced some pretty amazing titles on this machine. Mario Sunshine, Metroid, Zelda: Windwalker, Pikimin, Animal Crossing, all of them kick some major boo-tay. Because the optical disc is so tiny load times are practically non-existent. Expect to wait no more than a few seconds for a game to load. The controller is probably the best out of the three new machines. It's perfectly natural feeling (although I could do without the pistol grips) and the layout of the buttons is perfectly logical.
THE BAD: Unlike a PS2 or X-Box, you can't watch DVDs on a Gamecube. But whatever, I already have a decent DVD player so that doesn't apply to me. The controller has a (now standard) analog stick, which means it's only a matter of time before it breaks and you have to get a new one. Nintendo has released an awful lot of kiddy games for this machine, although more adult titles also surfaced like Resident Evil 4. The main shortfall is the appalling lack of software, however the quality of Nintendo's first party titles makes up for this somewhat. But there's only so many times you can throw Mario in a game and try to pass it off as original.
The Ugly: Most gamestores out there seem to be unloading Gamecube stuff like it's infected with terburculosis; A used Gamecube can be had at any Gamestop or EB Games for about $69. Clearly in this round of the console wars Nintendo got thier buttocks handed to them on a silver platter. It's really sad, to see the company that used to sell games like crack getting owned at the industry they practically invented by the makers of cheap CD players and buggy computer operating systems.
Why should you buy a Gamecube:
- You like Mario.
- You're a casual gamer who likes Mario.
- You don't mind waiting a long time inbetween good titles. And you like Mario.
Why you shouldn't:
- You like games without Mario in them.
- You want some games with some asskicking in them.
- You like to play games on-line
Back to Modern Systems
Hip Pad Screen
Essentially turns your Gamecube into a portable, lets you play it in the car, etc.
Zelda Windwalker Limited Edition
485MHz custom CPU with 162MHz custom graphics processor
4 pixel pipelines
1 texel per pixel pipeline
4 texels per clock cycle (4 pixels with 1 texel per pixel)
Maximum of 8 texture layers per rendering pass (done in 8 clock cycles)
650 megapixels per second
650 megatexels per second
33 million polygons per second (peak)
6 million to 12 million polygons per second (with effects)
Custom Macronix 16-bit DSP Sound Processor
sound data stored in 16MB A-Memory
IBM Gekko CPU
64KB L1 cache (32KB instruction + 32KB data)
256KB L2 cache
1125 Dhrystone 2.1 MIPS
CPU external bus
64 bits wide
1.3 gigabytes per second bandwidth
24 Megabytes MoSys 1T-SRAM
64 bits wide
325 megabits per second per pin
2.6 gigabytes per second bandwidth
16 Megabytes DRAM
8 bits wide
81 megabits per second per pin
81 megabytes per second bandwidth
3-inch Optical Disc Technology (1.5 gigabytes)