Launched in the US and Japan late 2001, Nintendo have now shipped over four million units of the GameCube worldwide.
The rumours of a pre-Xbox launch on the 8th of March 2002, with a price tag of £199, proved to be untrue.
After months of hype and anticipation, Nintendo finally put end to all the speculation and officially announced that the GameCube would be on sale in Europe from the 3rd of May with a recommended retail price of 249 euros - around £152. But, it seems Nintendo may have underestimated just how serious Microsoft are about dominating the games console industry. When the Xbox’s price dramatically fell by a third, only a couple of weeks after its launch, Nintendo rapidly retaliated by dropping the GameCube’s RRP to £129.99.
Yes, it really is that small - the GameCube measures 4.5” by 5.9” by 6.3”. In the UK
, the “Cube” is available in two colours – Indigo (purple) and Jet (black); in Japan there was also a Spice (orange) version.
GameCube games are stored on 1.5 Gigabyte Game Discs – 3 inch diameter CD-ROMs
The compact GameCube has 4 controller ports and 2 memory card slots; with a
485 MHz custom CPU, 40 MB memory and a 162 MHz custom graphics processor - which can draw 12 million polygons a second - all crammed into its tiny plastic case.
A unique feature of the GameCube is that it can be connected to one or more of its
handheld cousins, the GameBoy Advance, which can be used as supplemental screens and controllers. Some games for the GameCube will include extra levels which can only be unlocked if a GameBoy Advance is connected.