Re: [stella] Low power 2600 "superchip"

Subject: Re: [stella] Low power 2600 "superchip"
From: Julian Squires <tek@xxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 3 Jul 2000 00:30:00 -0230
On Sat, Jul 01, 2000 at 07:54:04PM -0700, Pete Holland wrote:
> --- Glenn Saunders <cybpunks@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> > But I was talking about a sub-gameboy pricepoint. 
> How far below?  Are we talking like how the
> can be bought from Tiger for $30?

Indeed. Sub-gameboy or sub-color gameboy? Don't forget that the
gameboy (while a joy to program on, and play) is a pretty stripped
down piece of gear, even with the color extensions. The display is
probably the most expensive portion. (and see below for why I think
it's feasible for them)

It might be really difficult to go below gameboy cost unless there
was a lot of demand.

> I've been wondering about that...what is Nintendo's
> secret with the Color Game Boy?  I see it in stores
> for about $70.  The NeoGeo Pocket also runs about that
> price (believe it or not, I still see it in the wild
> once in a while).  Are they selling the units below
> cost and hoping to reclaim the money on software
> sales?  I can't believe that Nintendo and NeoGeo have
> some magical way of creating a color screen at a
> discount price and no one has bought one and discected
> it.

Economy of scale. 320x240 pixel color LCDs from Digikey (which tends
to be on the pricy side of the scale) are $229/unit in the 1000
units/order magnitude, (versus $425 for 1) so the lower resolution
gameboy display in much much much larger orders could be reasonably

Nintendo can afford to make insane numbers of them because a) they
know they're hot, b) they have the kind of capital it takes to get
the ball rolling.

I doubt there is that kind of demand here. :-/
(I think that the idea of modifying an existing old handheld unit is
a more feasible idea, for this level of demand)

> Besides, just the Atari titles overlooks the great
> games made by other companies like Activision, Imagic,
> and Hozer (yes, I'm talking about Oystron again). 
> Atari fans may buy it, but I'm sure they'd feel a
> little cheated that they are only getting one course
> in the meal.  Although a portable Quadrun would be
> sweet.

For sure. I've got a soft spot for quite a few of the
Activision games, so I don't think I could bear to only
play Atari titles.

 |/|  Julian Squires <tek@xxxxxxx>

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