The Nintendo 64 History
In 2000, the eyes are already set to the upcoming "128-bits" generation, Nintendo disclosing the GameCube at the Space World the 24th August. But Nintendo and Rareware keep on producing game hits for the Nintendo 64 such as Perfect Dark, Super Smash Bros, Mario Party or The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask. This last one is released in November 2000, the same day as Sony's PlayStation 2 and is able to overshadow it quite a bit, showing the Nintendo 64 still has some resources. Still in 2000, Nintendo launches colour variations of the Nintendo 64.
From 2001, games releases are very low and the Nintendo 64 is slowly being pulled off the shelves. Surfing on the success of the Pokemon franchise, a Pikachu special edition of the system is launched. Rareware releases this year the most delusional game of the system: Conker's Bad Fur Day. Because of its vulgarity and gross humour, Nintendo decides not to publish it and it's finally THQ who will take care of the distribution in Europe and in the USA but with a much higher price than usual (600FF/90€ in France, 3800FB/95€ in Belgium).
In Japan, Randnet announces in February 2001 that they will not accept new registrations and that the 64DD network will be closed by the end of the year because of the very poor sales of the system.
The last game released in Europe is Mario Party 3, the 16th November 2001. In Japan, Bomberman 64; Arcade Edition is released on the 20th December 2001 and in the USA, where the Nintendo 64 sold the better, a few games are still released until Tony Hawk's Pro Skater sees the light of day in August 2002, putting the end point to the "life" of the console.
The Nintendo 64 ends its carrier in 2002 with around 33 millions systems and more than 250 millions games sold worldwide. In terms of sales and general recognition, the Nintendo 64 is considered a half-mess, compared on one hand to the sales of its two predecessors, the NES and the Super NES, which gave an over-dominant position to Nintendo, and on the other hand to the nearly 100 millions of PlayStation sold by Sony in the same time. But in terms of games quality, gaming pleasure and great games that have made an impact of gaming history, the Nintendo 64 has played an important role.