This Day in Video Game History
Mattel announced that it had projected a fourth-quarter loss due to the increased competition in the video game market.
Nintendo released the Ninja Gaiden platform game for the Nintendo Famicom in Japan. The game will become wildly popular and spawn a lucrative game franchise.
The United States Senate Judiciary and Government Affairs Committee convenes to investigate the issue of violence in video games. The hearings that follow mark the beginning of U.S. government involvement in the game industry. The hearing themselves would become notorious for their one-sided attack and over-dramatization of the content of the popular games Mortal Kombat and Night Trap. Night Trap, in particular, was characterized as "disgusting," "sick," "shameful," "ultra-violent," and an "effort to trap and kill women," despite the fairly mild levels of actual violence it contained in comparison to other action games of the time. As a result of the hearings (or, more realisticly, the media outcry they caused), the game Night Trap would be pulled from shelves around the nation and banned in a number of jurisdictions. The hearings would also result in the industry being forced to adopt a self-regulated rating system on threat of one being imposed by legislation.
Namco released the Tekken versus fighting game to arcades.
Blizzard Entertainment released the Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness real-time strategy game for personal computers in the U.S. (ESRB: T)
Quebec’s provincial government issues warnings to both Nintendo and Sony Corporation that it will file a lawsuit if the two companies have not released versions of their games in the French language in Canada by the end of the year.
Bandai released its WonderSwan Color handheld game system in Japan, featuring a 3.072 MHz NEC CPU, 512 KB RAM, and a 2.1-inch LCD screen. The WonderSwan came in five different colors: Pearl Pink, Pearl Blue, Glass Orange, Glass Black, and Glass Blue. The system would be successful, largely due to an agreement under which Bandai would port Squaresoft’s original Final Fantasy games with improved graphics. Price: 6,800 yen
Microsoft Game Studios released Microsoft Casino for Windows in the U.S. (ESRB: E)
EA Games released Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, based on the book of the same name, for the GameCube, PlayStation 2, and Xbox in North America. (ESRB: E)
Nintendo Europe announced that it had shipped it ten millionth Game Boy Advance system, three million of which were Game Boy Advance SP units.
Ubisoft released Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, based on the 2000 film of the same name, for the Game Boy Advance, PlayStation 2, and Xbox in North America. (ESRB: T)
Ubisoft released Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones for Windows, the GameCube, and Xbox in Europe. (PEGI: 16+)
The 2006 Spike Video Game Awards show is held. Bethesda Softworks’ roleplaying game The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion was awarded Most Addictive Game, Game of the Year, Best Role Playing Game, Best Performance by a Male actor for Patrick Stewart’s performance, and Best Original Score. Game developer Epic Games won the Studio of the Year award for its third-person shooter Gears of War, which also won awards for Best Shooter Game, Best Multi-Player Game, and Best Graphics.
Interlink Electronics filed a lawsuit against Nintendo alleging that the Wiimote trigger infringed on its patent for a "Trigger Operated Electronic Device." (US No. 6,850,221)