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  1. #1
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    Default Nokia goes head-to-head with Nintendo

    The Game Boy Advance is set to get serious competition at last, with Nokia taking the wraps off a new device called the N-Gage - a handheld console styled mobile phone which is designed specifically to act as a challenge to Nintendo's dominance of the market.

    The new device, which looks superficially similar to the GBA but bears an attractive brushed metal finish and is bristling with buttons thanks to the requirements of functioning as a mobile phone, will be introduced in February 2003, and games for it will be distributed on solid state memory cards - much like the GBA or GP32 units.

    As one might expect, a key selling point for the N-Gage will be online and multiplayer functionality. The system will carry a Bluetooth chip, enabling wireless multiplayer gaming over short distances, and Nokia is talking up the possibilities of gaming over the mobile phone networks.

    Although the N-Gage is certainly the most serious challenger yet to the GBA, with both the Neo Geo Pocket Colour and the GamePark GP32 being niche interest units at best, and the WonderSwan Colour still unreleased in the west, it remains to be seen just how much of an impact the device will have. Software support remains a concern, although Sega has already signed on to create games for the device, and if Nokia gets the publishing revenue models on the system right, it may well win widespread support from publishers concerned by the tight margins on the GBA.

    Perhaps most worrying of all, though, is the fact that the device will have zero impact in the Japanese market - and thus probably very little support from Japanese developers. Japan operates an entirely different mobile phone system to the rest of the world, and Nokia's devices do not function there. While this is not a problem for conventional phones, it may well turn out to be a major hurdle for this hybrid console and phone to overcome.

    © gamesindustry.biz.
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  2. #2
    ABCMan
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    well, the new 4 button gba with backlight should be out within the next few months, so it could be an interesting fight, £70 for a gba or £400 for a nokia.... mmmmmmm i wonder what most parents would buy?

    the colour scheme pictured matches one of the available colours on the old neo geo pocket.

    the article isnt entirely accurate in other comments either, for example the wonderswan colour was replaced by tyhe wonderswan crystal, the article claims that it is a niche machine, but oddly it outsells the xbox in the far east and i suspect they wouldnt call the xbox a niche machine (although i might )

    another point would be battery life, try running any nokia phone with the backlight on and see how long it lasts for, acceptable on a phone where its only on for a few seconds at a time, but not acceptable if its on all the time to play games.

    still i'd get one for the novelty

  3. #3
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    LOL

    I knew atleast you'd reply, knowing you like your games and Nokia's, this one would be a must for you.

    All the best
    “If I asked you to have sex with me, would the answer to that question be the same as the answer to this question?”


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    yes i can see it dominating now

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    hmm is this information solid? No news about this on the Nokia site

    Why would they bother breaking into the games market?

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