Some of you might remember a while back I did an Obscure Pixels on wild limited edition controllers in gaming history. Then I thought, what’s a controller worth without something to plug it into? Special edition consoles are always being released. Some of them, fairly mundane with just a new colour scheme. Others, though, tend to go that extra mile.
So, what kind of special edition consoles are we looking at? Some cool ones. Some awful ones. Some strange ones. Let’s take a journey into the world of the fancy marketing tool that is: really cool limited edition consoles.
Okay this thing? This thing kind of sucks. I hate looking at it a lot. So I want you to look at it also. It’s also an Australian exclusive, making it all the more… Sighs deeply… Collectable. It was a first prize in a competition (estimated to have taken place in 2003), and signed by former PlayBoy centrefold, Penelope Jimenez. So I mean. That’s… Something. There’s only one of these in existence, and was snapped up on Ebay after the seller wrote that his wife took a disliking to the console and so the owner was forced to keep it hidden in a closet until the fateful day it sold, probably for way more money than it should have. I should have that money.
I hate this item a lot and whoever owns it better at least be playing only that bad PlayBoy game on it and also Dead Or Alive Volleyball. At least be on brand.
Hello Kitty Dreamcast
A palette cleanser of sorts. Also the item I want most on this list. I want it so bad. You have no idea. I’ve pined over this thing for years. The console came in both pink and blue variations and released in 1999, this was intended to get more women in Japan playing games. It was also notably one of the best equipped bundles, coming with basically every accessory the Dreamcast could possibly have. This included the console, a VMU, a keyboard, a controller, a ‘dream passport’ (this included a disc which allowed for online functionality) and a puzzle game called Hello Kitty Garden Panic. What’s interesting is this game only came bundled with the console and was not released separately.
24k Gold Plated Wii
This thing sucks on a conceptual level. Where the PlayBoy console made me uncomfortable, this game feels like it would scoff at the notion of buying home brand groceries. Devised as a marketing stunt by THQ for the otherwise unremarkable 2009 Big Family Games, this console was given as a gift to the Royal Family. Given that the Royal Family doesn’t accept gifts and THQ went bust, it was, for a long time, a mystery where the Royal Golden Wii (hee hee hoo hoo) disappeared to. Thankfully, there’s a documentary for that. But for those that can’t be bothered sitting through it, the Wii was later found in the Netherlands in the hands of a collector who could truly appreciate this bizarre piece of gaming history.
The GameCube, at its time of release, was a little bit strange compared to the PS2 and the Xbox. For starters, it had these teeny tiny little discs (some say for anti-piracy, others say it was because they just didn’t want to pay Sony for the rights to use DVD technology). As a result, you couldn’t play DVD’s on it. You could just play games. Which was fine, for most people. The console came emblazoned with the Panasonic logo, and contained a remote control as well as a regular controller. It also had an LCD display on the front like a lot of regular DVD players do, but for no real reason. All in all it’s just a kind of oddity, which is probably why it was only ever released in Japan.
Pokemon Nintendo 64
This thing rules. This is the other thing I want really, really bad. I have a Pokemon Nintendo 64, but it’s a basic-ass one that was released in Australia and doesn’t have a huge Pikachu on it like this one. Did you know Pikachu’s foot is the reset button? That his cheeks light up when the console is on? That Pokeball is the power button!! That’s so cool! These were released in Europe and is, despite how amazing it is, one of the more common consoles on this list. There was also an American version of the console which is slightly rarer. Do you know what we got in Australia? The same colour scheme console with some shitty decals on it. I’m so mad. I mean I love my N64 but come on. Although it’s estimated between 100000 and 1000000 of these were made so there’s probably still some floating around out there, if you’re ever in Europe and want to be my best friend.