Most of us who grew up in the 90s have fond memories of video game cartridges. We all believed that a mighty blow to them would magically make our games work again (It probably won’t and is pretty unsanitary). And nothing screams gaming nostalgia more than Nintendo, who is rumored to go back to its roots by reintroducing to us the concept of gaming cartridges.
Gaming cartridges have lost its luster in recent years. Most game developers prefer the optical disc which is cheaper and can store a large amount of data. Even Nintendo has shunned away from using gaming cartridges in their last three home gaming consoles.
But according to The Wall Street Journal, it looks like chip based cartridges are getting another look “thanks to fierce competition among semiconductor makers including Samsung Electronics Co. and Toshiba Corp. to develop flash memory that can pack more data onto small chips at a lower cost.”
If the cost of a cartridge can be cut reasonably, then there is no doubt that these are more suitable for gaming purposes. Video games are not cheap by any means and scratching or accidentally sitting on it will set you back about 50 to 60 US dollars.
Chip based cartridges are just more durable and won’t break as easily, especially if you have younger gamers in your family. Younger audiences have been a core market for Nintendo and they are always looking out for them as evidenced by their more kid based portable gaming system the 3ds, which still uses chip based cartridges.
Another advantage of gaming cartridges is that it would allow games to have faster loading times and is more difficult for data pirates to copy compared to disc based games.
There is also no denying that Nintendo is trying to drum up the Nostalgia drum. And there is no better time to use that card than today. There is a certain clamor and demand from today’s gamers to play retro-style games.
The simple ingenuity of such games seems to be a breath of fresh air to the new generation games filled with first person shooters or complicated Role-playing games.
Nintendo even decided to cash in on this phenomena by launching a NES classic edition gaming console which will be available during the Holiday months.
It seems like Nintendo is hell bent on making their latest home console a success after the public’s lukewarm reception to its current gaming console, the WiiU.
Besides the nostalgia-inducing game cartridges, their system codenamed the “Nintendo NX” looks to dabble in making a home and portable hybrid gaming console.
There are also rumors that Nintendo could dabble in Virtual Reality technology to compete against the sudden emergence of PC’s Oculus Rift to Sony’s PlayStation VR (Who would not want a trip to the Mushroom Kingdom in Virtual Reality?) Another thing to watch for is heart monitoring solutions, which according to Digitimes is a technology by Pixart Imaging, who are currently working to get it into Nintendo’s NX machines.
The Nintendo NX is rumored to start rolling out in stores by the first quarter of 2017.