On this day 32 years ago, the Japanese home console market experienced its "big bang" event, exploding from nothing into a massive industry. In their own way, each machine that debuted in July 1983 -- Nintendo's Famicom (aka NES), Sega's SG-1000, and the MSX computer -- played an important role in the evolution of the games industry.
While the Famicom may be the best-remembered of the three, even its success was part of a bigger picture. In reading through this series, we hope you'll come to better understand why and how the industry evolved the way it did and the part each of these platforms played in helping to make video games what they are today.
- 1983: The Summer That Changed the World
A look back at the state of the Japanese games industry at the dawn of the "Famicom boom."
- The Most Essential MSX Games Notable releases for the MSX computer.
- The Most Important Games on Sega's SG-1000 Sega got its start in the console market with this modest machine. We look at a few titles worth remembering.
- Essential Famicom Games From the Pre-NES Days The games that cemented the Famicom's fortunes before the system made its way to the U.S.
- Why Did Atari Fail in Japan? Atari's 2600 made a splash in America when it launched in 1977. Six years later, it still hadn't made significant headway in Japan. Here's why.
- Nintendo Gets Into the Game A look back at the birth of the Famicom.
- Sega's Home Debut How Sega entered the console race, and why the SG-1000's modest performance was just right at the time.
- MSX: The Little Hybrid That Could This game-friendly computer architecture helped PC gaming go big in Japan.
- The Famicom Legacy Why Nintendo's first console remains important after so many years.
- NES and Famicom: Recollections on Its 30th Anniversary USgamer editors, readers, and industry figures weigh in on their favorite NES memories.