The War For Video Game Supremacy








Over the course of the past two decades, the video game industry has blossomed into a multi-billion dollar a year business. There are three major companies that, at this time, are at the forefront of the industry; Nintendo of Japan, Ltd., Sony Entertainment, and Sega Enterprises, Ltd. Each of these companies have North American subsidiaries respectively. Companies, such as Atari, laid the groundwork for these three market giants in the early eighties by releasing the first home video game consoles. Atari has since faded as an industry innovator mostly in response to Nintendo's burst onto the domestic market in 1985 with the release of the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). After the release of the NES, Sega began focusing more company ventures on home entertainment consoles. Sega was historically well known for their presence in the coin-operated arcade market and continues to flourish there, but was interested in gaining market share in the fast growing domestic market. Between 1985 and 1995 Nintendo and Sega continued to battle for market supremacy, dedicated to producing innovative games and console systems. Nintendo had for the greater part of that time won the battle. In 1995, Sony Entertainment released the PlayStation. Sony's new system pushed the company to the front of the market. Since 1995, the PlayStation has sold over 70 million units. The PlayStation is the second leading video game console in the history of the business. The only console that has sold more units is Nintendo's Game Boy that has been on the market since 1989. Over the past five years, Nintendo and Sony have competed relatively closely for the top spot. Sega on the other hand has taken a vast dip in sales after the release of the PlayStation but has bounced back into the industry with the release of their latest system the Dreamcast. Dreamcast is the first 128-bit system to hit shelves. Nintendo and Sony both have 128-bit machines to be released one year from now. The question is, who will control the market heading into the new millennium?