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History of video games/Platforms/3DO Interactive Multiplayer

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History[edit | edit source]

3DO logo

Development[edit | edit source]

Development of the 3DO started in September 1989, when noted computer and game console designers Dave Needle and Robert J. Mical met with David Morse at a restaurant and noted initial 3DO on a paper napkin at a restaurant.[1][2]

Launch[edit | edit source]

The 3DO was launched in North America on October 4th, 1993[3] at a cost of $699.[4][5] Unlike many also rans of the era, the 3DO was widely publicized, and Time Magazine named the 3DO it's product of the year in 1993.[6]

On March 20th, 1994 the 3DO was launched in Japan.[3]

Legacy[edit | edit source]

Discontinued in 1996, about two million 3DO consoles were sold.[4] Despite it's relatively small market share, the 3DO is known for the talent behind it, namely Trip Hawkins and third party supporting studios such as Naughty Dog, Crystal Dynamics, and Toys for Bob.

The 3DO was intended to be succeeded by the M2, though that system was never released.

Technology[edit | edit source]

A 3DO console with accessories.

The Panasonic FZ-1 3DO has a 32 bit ARM architecture CPU clocked at 12.5 megahertz.[5] This was quite substantial at launch, though lower end competitors quickly caught up and surpassed this spec within a few years. The system has 2 megabytes of DRAM, and 1 megabyte of Video RAM,[5][7] which was quite also quite a substantial amount of memory for a game console at the time of the 3DO launch.

The 3DO uses a custom Clio chip and a custom Madam chip to accelerate certain tasks.[8][9] The 3DO supported texture mapping and anti-aliasing.[10]

Games[edit | edit source]

A 3DO in a museum.

3DO Game Aesthetics[edit | edit source]

Many games for the 3DO were hallmarked by FMV (Full Motion Video) graphics, typically featuring real actors and often featuring early computer generated imagery. FMV was sometimes used nearly exclusively for FMV games. Some other games simply relied on FMV for story cutscenes or environment flair.

Gameplay graphics were often entirely FMV. More interactive games often used simple real time 3D graphics, prerendered 3D graphics, advanced 2D graphics, or some mix of the aforementioned techniques.

1993[edit | edit source]

Crash 'n Burn[edit | edit source]

A launch title and pack in game.

Read more about Crash 'n Burn on Wikipedia.

Escape from Monster Manor[edit | edit source]

An exclusive 3D survival horror first person shooter.

Read more about Escape from Monster Manor on Wikipedia.

Jurassic Park Interactive[edit | edit source]

A 3DO exclusive action game developed as a tie in to the prior year's hit movie Jurassic Park.

Read more about Jurassic Park Interactive on Wikipedia.

The Life Stage: Virtual House[edit | edit source]

A 3DO exclusive construction simulator, and a launch title for the Japanese release of 3DO.

Read more about The Life Stage: Virtual House on Wikipedia.

Twisted: The Game Show[edit | edit source]

A 3DO exclusive party game.

Read more about Twisted: The Game Show on Wikipedia.

Plumbers Don't Wear Ties[edit | edit source]

An adult FMV game.[11]

Read more about Plumbers Don't Wear Ties on Wikipedia.

1994[edit | edit source]

Doctor Hauzer[edit | edit source]

Read more about Doctor Hauzer on Wikipedia.

Advanced Dungeons & Dragons: Slayer[edit | edit source]

Read more about Advanced Dungeons & Dragons: Slayer on Wikipedia.

Station Invasion[edit | edit source]

Read more about Station Invasion on Wikipedia.

Demolition Man[edit | edit source]

Read more about Demolition Man on Wikipedia.

Guardian War[edit | edit source]

Read more about Guardian War on Wikipedia.

Iron Angel of the Apocalypse[edit | edit source]

Read more about Iron Angel of the Apocalypse on Wikipedia.

John Madden Football[edit | edit source]

Read more about John Madden Football on Wikipedia.

PaTaank[edit | edit source]

Read more about PaTaank on Wikipedia.

Kurokishi no Kamen[edit | edit source]

A Japan only, 3DO only, game.

Read more about Kurokishi no Kamen on Wikipedia.

Way of the Warrior[edit | edit source]

Read more about Way of the Warrior on Wikipedia.

1995[edit | edit source]

Blade Force[edit | edit source]

A third person 3D shooter set in a dystopian future crime ridden city.

Read more about Blade Force on Wikipedia.

Foes of Ali[edit | edit source]

Read more about Foes of Ali on Wikipedia.

Guardian War[edit | edit source]

Read more about Guardian War on Wikipedia.

Iron Angel of the Apocalypse: The Return[edit | edit source]

Read more about Iron Angel of the Apocalypse: The Return on Wikipedia.

Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon S[edit | edit source]

A 3DO exclusive 2D fighting game based on the Japanese Sailor Moon media franchise. It was released the same month as Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon, a 2D beat em' up arcade machine with similar graphics.

Read more about Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon S on Wikipedia.

Slam 'N Jam '95[edit | edit source]

A 3DO exclusive basketball game well regarded for its solid two player mode.

Read more about Slam 'N Jam '95 on Wikipedia.

Zhadnost: The People's Party[edit | edit source]

3DO exclusive party game with a dystopian theme and extensive FMV use. The intro cutscene appears to take clear inspiration from the collapse of the Soviet Union, a then recent event.

Read more about Zhadnost: The People's Party on Wikipedia.

1996[edit | edit source]

Doom[edit | edit source]

The 3DO port of Doom was notoriously poor as most development was delegated to a single person with only 10 weeks to perform most of the port.[12][13]

In December 2014 the source code for this port of the game was released.[14][15]

In January 2022 the example of Doom for the 3D0 became a common talking point in the NFT gaming community.[16]

Read more about Doom on Wikipedia.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Models[edit | edit source]

Controllers[edit | edit source]

Chips[edit | edit source]

External Resources[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "Third Time's a Charm (They Hope)". Wired. https://www.wired.com/1994/01/3do/. 
  2. "Dave Needle, Original Amiga Engineer and Creator of the Atari Lynx and 3DO, Dies" (in en). Quarter Disorder. 24 February 2016. https://quarterdisorder.com/2016/02/23/dave-needle-original-amiga-engineer-and-creator-of-the-atari-lynx-and-3do-dies/. 
  3. a b "Panasonic R.E.A.L 3DO Interactive Multiplayer - Game Console - Computing History". www.computinghistory.org.uk. Retrieved 1 August 2021.
  4. a b "3DO Interactive Multiplayer (1993 - 1996)". Museum of Obsolete Media. 13 March 2020. Retrieved 28 October 2020.
  5. a b c "Panasonic FZ-1 R.E.A.L. 3DO Interactive Multiplayer Video Game Home Console". iFixit. Retrieved 29 October 2020.
  6. "THE BEST PRODUCTS OF 1993". Time. 3 November 2005. Retrieved 13 November 2020.
  7. "3DO System Info". www.vgmuseum.com. Retrieved 17 November 2020.
  8. "Revisiting the Panasonic 3DO FZ-10 32 bit console - is it underrated? Review, Teardown, Games". Retrieved 18 November 2020. {{cite web}}: Text "MVG" ignored (help)
  9. Lyon, Tony. "Panasonic FZ-10 3DO Interacvtive Multiplayer". Retro Video Game Systems. Retrieved 18 November 2020.
  10. "3DO, Formatting Our Future". www.gamezero.com. Retrieved 21 November 2020.
  11. "Abysmal 3DO 'classic' Plumbers Don't Wear Ties is getting a re-release from Limited Run Games" (in en-CA). Destructoid. 18 June 2021. https://www.destructoid.com/plumbers-dont-wear-ties-limited-run-games-rerelease/. 
  12. Gander, Matt (May 17, 2016). "The unfortunate tale of 3DO DOOM". https://www.gamesasylum.com/2016/05/17/the-unfortunate-tale-of-3do-doom/. 
  13. Hurley, Leon. "Here's Why the 3DO Port of Doom Sucked" (in en-us). Kotaku. https://kotaku.com/heres-why-the-3do-port-of-doom-sucked-1671138312. 
  14. "Source code for Doom’s 3DO port has been released online". PCGamesN. https://www.pcgamesn.com/doom/source-code-for-doom-s-3do-port-has-been-released-online. 
  15. Prescott, Shaun (16 December 2014). "DOOM 3DO source code is now publicly available". PC Gamer. https://www.pcgamer.com/doom-3do-source-code-is-now-publicly-available/. 
  16. Obedkov, Evgeny (13 January 2022). "Story of 90s Doom 3DO port and what it says about modern-day NFT evangelists’s view of video games". Game World Observer. https://gameworldobserver.com/2022/01/13/story-of-90s-doom-3do-port-and-what-it-says-about-modern-day-nft-evangelists-view-of-video-games.