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History of video games/Platforms/Control-Vision

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The Control Vision planned to leverage standard VHS tapes to create interactive games.


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The NEMO / Control-Vision is an unreleased console funded by Hasbro.[1][2]

The console began development in 1985.[2][1] Development was difficult because the idea of an interactive movie had not yet been perfected, and the film makers in charge of recording were unable to leverage tricks they could normally use to improve results in linear movies.[2] An early prototype of the console was simply a modified ColecoVision.[2] Hasbro refused to launch the product due to it's high price of $299 vastly overshooting Hasbro's goal of under $100, and pulled funding in 1988 two months before launch.[1][2]

The console had been originally planned for launch in early 1989.[1]


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Developer Tom Zito later purchased the rights to Control-Vision titles, then reworked them into games for other platforms like the Sega CD.[1][2] The release of the game Night Trap in particular is noted for being a factor in the creation of video game ratings boards.[3]


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The Control-Vision was able to offer choice on linear VHS tapes by exploiting television interlacing.

Using linear VHS tapes played through an external VCR as it's media, the Control-Vision exploited interlacing of video to have two simultaneous videos being run, with only one of the videos being shown.[3] More streams could be added for more choices, at the cost of reducing video frame rate.[3]

Notable games

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  • Scene of the Crime
  • Bottom of the Ninth Inning
  • You Might Think
  • Night Trap - Later released on other platforms, causing major controversy.
  • Sewer Shark


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  1. a b c d e "Only In The 80's Would They Put Video Games On A VHS Tape". Kotaku. Retrieved 8 November 2020.
  2. a b c d e f "Finding NEMO: The Story Behind Hasbro's 'Nintendo-Killer' - IGN". Retrieved 8 November 2020.
  3. a b c Parish, Jeremy (31 October 2018). "The story of NEMO, Hasbro's console that never was". Polygon. Retrieved 8 November 2020.