This Day in Video Game History
Apogee Software released the Duke Nukem II platform game for Windows in the U.S.
Sony Computer Entertainment released its PlayStation video game console in Japan, featuring a 33 MHz 32-bit CPU that featured a Geometry Transfer Engine (GTE) that handled all 3D graphics calculations and a Data Decompression Engine (MDEC) that provided the realtime decompression of full motion video, a geometry coprocessor that dealt with rendering 3D graphics, 2 MB RAM, and 1 MB VRAM. It was also the first successful game system to play games on compact disc media, marking the end of the cartridge era. Sony had spent half a billow dollars on the system’s development the system, and it was released as the result of a breakdown in the earlier partnership between Sony and Nintendo, under which Sony had intended to develop a peripheral that would allow the Super Nintendo Entertainment System to read compact discs. However, Nintendo broke off the partnership and worked instead with Philips. Sony continued the development, and the PlayStation console would become the first game system in history sell over one hundred million units. Within just the first thirty days of the system’s release, Sony sold over three hundred thousand units. Within six months, Sony sold over one million units. Price: 39,800 yen
Konami released the Justifier light gun for the PlayStation video game console. The peripheral raised controversy due to its striking similarity to the real-life Colt Python.
Midway released the game compilation Mortal Kombat Trilogy for the Saturn in the U.S. The compilation included the first three game in the series, Mortal Kombat, Mortal Kombat II, and Mortal Kombat 3. It was the sixth title in the Mortal Kombat series. (ESRB: M)
Nintendo released Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire for the Nintendo 64 in the U.S. The game’s story takes place between the films The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, and Lucasfilm dubs it an “interquel.” (ESRB: T)
Sony Computer Entertainment America announced selling an industry record average of six software titles to each piece of console hardware for its PlayStation platform in the U.S. At the time of the announcement, there were over two hundred game titles available for the console.
Sega released the Sonic Adventure platform game for the Dreamcast in Australia. (OFLC: G8+)
Nintendo released the Super Smash Bros. Melee versus fighting game for the GameCube in the U.S. (ESRB: T)
Nintendo released the Pikmin real-time strategy game for the GameCube in North America. The game was critically acclaimed, except that it required players to complete the game within thirty games of beginning. Despite the fact that the requirement was widely criticized, the game would sell over a million copies, and in the game’s sequel, the would be removed. (ESRB: E)
Sony Online Entertainment released the EverQuest: The Shadows of Luclin expansion for the EverQuest massively multiplayer online roleplaying game for personal computers. It was the third expansion for Everquest. (ESRB: T)
Infogrames released Dragon Ball Z: Budokai for the PlayStation 2 in North America. (ESRB: T)
Capcom released the Resident Evil Code: Veronica survival horror game for the GameCube in the US. It was the fourth game in the Resident Evil series, but the first in the series to be debuted on a non-Sony platform. (ESRB: M)
Microsoft Game Studios released the first-person shooter Halo: Combat Evolved for the Mac OS X in North America. (ESRB: M)
Sony Computer Entertainment announced that it would begin selling its PlayStation 2 console in China despite piracy concerns beginning December 20th.
Atari released the Sid Meier’s Pirates! strategy game for Windows in Europe.
EA Games released the first-person shooter GoldenEye: Rogue Agent for the GameCube, PlayStation 2, and Xbox in the U.S. (ESRB: T)
Infogrames released the game compilation Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls for the Game Boy Advance in PAL regions. The compilation included the original Famicom versions of Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy II. (OFLC: G8+, PEGI: 3+, USK: Free for all)
Vivendi Universal Games released first-person action game The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay for personal computers in Europe. The game’s story is a prequel to the film Pitch Black. (PEGI: 16+)
A hack is released that, with the installation of Linux, allowed PlayStation 3 users to rip the content of Blu-Ray discs onto the console’s hard drive.
Following GameSpot editor Geff Gertsmann’s dismissal, users across the web begin boycotting the website’s of GameSpot’s parent company, CNET. The same day, the staff of the one of GameSpot’s chief competitors, 1up.com, staged a demonstration outside the San Francisco headquarters of GameSpot to show support for Gerstmann and to re-assert the integrity of the game review process.