Former Sony Executive Talks About The Failure Of The Nintendo PlayStation

It’s become common knowledge that the PlayStation was born of an ill-fated deal between Nintendo and Sony to produce a CD accessory for the Super Nintendo. However, some more details have recently emerged that seem to cast some more light on events. In a Japanese interview with former Sony executive Shigeo Maruyama, it has become clear that we don’t know everything about the failed collaboration between the two companies. While we still don’t know the exact details of why the deal fell through, it is interesting to hear that something behind the scenes prevented Sony from suing Nintendo for breaking their agreement. Maruyama himself was not aware of the full details, but he seems to believe that Ken Kutaragi blew the whole story out of proportion to further his own ambitions. The mystery deepens the more we learn about the ill-fated collaboration!

Maruyama: I get the feeling something was going on behind the scenes. After all, there had to be a reason Sony wasn’t able to go after them. But back then I was just a software producer, so I didn’t understand everything that was going on.

Source / Source


    1. You must be… A really sad person.
      Corrupted filth? Really?

      Love me some Nintendo. And don’t really do PS. But.. That’s just kind of.. Sad. Not going to make assumptions about your age or ability, but hope if this is your thing online that you spend some genuine time with people.

      Maybe I’m missing a running joke – I’ve seen different ‘characters’ on here before. Just kind of funny, and sad, because it makes me wonder how close this persona is to a real person.

      Some of these things maybe even including this one can be brushed and laughed off as a joke. But sometimes, it’s a little disturbing. Not in a trolling way (sad people will be sad, mad people will be mad, and forgive logic for failing) but in a ‘Hope that person is OK’ kind of way.

          1. ARARARARA CHOOO CHOO CHOO! HEINOUS WENIS WOO LALA! OO OO OO AA AA! CACACACA PATTA TA! *chorus* Chuckle me, fuckle me, buckle me good~ *ba TA!* I never thought that I’d eeeeend~ up in THA hood! *ba DING!*

      1. Years ago when he started his roleplaying crap he wrote on his gravatar profile that this commander persona was just for fun and that he does not work for Nintendo.

        Some people stated that they know his identity.

        1. ||You did outsmart Sasori, but I’m way beyond your reach, you already tried twice to expose my so called true self but that will never happen since I’m my true self already…||

      2. This is Quadraxis’s schtick. I think of him as a really confusing mascot for us. I find this website much more enjoyable if we all play along, especially when he gets into arguments with other personalities.

        That said, Quadraxis, you make your opinions on Xbots very clear, but it’s unusual for you to say much about the Sonyans (not sure if you spell it differently, sorry). What exactly is the ideological line on that?

        1. ||The Sonyans allowed the Xbots to invade our realm and they feed them with power the more they acknowledge their disgusting existence…||

  1. Nintendo probably gave them the rights to what they had already made in exchange for not suing. They never expected Sony’s game system to take off like it did.

  2. Was this pre-SNES? If so, I’m happy Nintendo withdrew and stuck with their NES brand and made the SNES.

    1. I think it was during or just after, as an add on. There were a lot of really unique features that never really came to fruition.
      SNES branding ftw

  3. Nintendo didn’t break anything, if I recall correctly, they pulled back their plans just before they would have signed the contract, because Sony was seeking control over Nintendo’s IPs in the console (and we know how that turned out with Sony’s substitute), but someone saw that in the contract just in time to stop the madness and the rest is history….

    Source: “Console Wars”, the way that I remember it at least, but I’m pretty sure Nintendo never signed the contract.

  4. Ok, I can’t 100% back this up with documentation, but I might have some insight to this. I was a teenager back then and was all over pretty much all the game magazines and pretty much any source of video game info I could find. I always keep up with any developments related to the snes cd. I remember when the partnership with Sony was announced. Several months later it was announced that the partnership was desolved and Nintendo had another secret partnership with Phillips that had been ongoing. To the point, according to what I read things went “bad” with Sony because of some underhanded shit hidden in the contract between the two. Sony had essentially worded the contract where they would assume majority control of Nintendo and essentially absorb them into Sony corp. I don’t remember the gory details of the contract, but apparently the big N’s lawyers discovered it and Hiroshi Yamauchi was none to pleased. This is why the covert deal with Phillips happened and Nintendo broke ties with Sony. It went further than this too, as Sony was the supplier of many of the ic’s used in Nintendo products. That supply chain was to be broken and caused problems initially for Nintendo. If memory serves, the snes used Sony ic’s for sound and they were to be used in future systems as well. Needless to say there is bad blood between Nintendo and Sony. If you ever wish for some type of collaboration between the two companies, you can forget about it. Japanese corporate grudges run deep. Seriously wouldn’t be surprised that one day if one company was successful enough that they wouldn’t aquire the other, hostility if necessary.

    P.S. If you love Nintendo and gaming in general, you should read the book GAME OVER: Press Start to Continue… by David Sheff. Pretty much required reading.

    1. The way I remember it, Sony wanted to gain rights to all CD produced games and Nintendo will maintain rights to all cartridge games, since Sony was a market leader in the CD business and at the time, they were way bigger than Nintendo (A Toy/Game company vs Sony Electronics).
      Problem was, due to memory limitations on the cartridges, many developers opted for CD… which meant Sony was eventually going to own the console. This didn’t sit well with Ninty so they backlashed.

      I think it was something like that

  5. So Sony was trying to obtain Nintendo according to what you find out. Sony was alredy millonary in that time. It seems like they want to obtain what they want even by doing foul play.

    1. Sony has always played dirty to gain their market share. I had a friend that was a store manager of an Electronic Boutique. He told me in late 1995 that it was well know through the retail industry that Sony hired secret shoppers. If a customer approach a sales representative and asked about a competing product (mostly aimed at Sega Saturn) that is was best to try and sell that customer a PlayStation instead as if that customer ended up being a secret shopper the sales associate would have a chance at “winning” something. That ranged from cash and merchandise to fully paid trips.

      I remember in the summer of 1995 being in a Best Buy and listening to a lady asking a sales associate about the Saturn and being told that she should wait until the Sony PlayStation comes out as it would be better. This sales person told a paying customer to keep her money and come back 6 months later instead. You tell me why he would have done that if he didn’t think that their might have been some incentive for him to do so.

      On 09/09/1999 I went to a Funcoland to pick up my pre-ordered Sega Dreamcast. I already had the import and loved the games on it so it was only natural to pick it up in the US on launch day. When I arrived at Funcoland, there was a huge promotional “sidewalk” sign in the entrance promoting the PS2 which wasn’t coming out for another 12 months. Sony built their legend on hype…”The government is going to buy a bunch of PS2’s because they’re more powerful than their super computers” and lies. One thing they did a great job of is turning their fan base into rabid fanboys. The PS1 was weaker than the N64, The PS2 was weaker than the Xbox or Gamecube. The PS3 & PS4 have been more powerful, but now that Scorpio is coming out, power doesn’t mean anything to them anymore.

  6. Sony had the rights to make a SNES addon in addition to a SNES with that addon built in. Nintendo didn’t feel comfortable with he deal as Sony had control over the SNES CD format so Nintendo went to Phillips, they sued Sony so that Sony wouldn’t release a SNES cart compatible console and lost so a few in the hundreds were produced before Sony decided to make their own console.

    1. ||They also wanted to have their symbol on it as well as several other demands that would make our impact irrelevant, that’s why they turned the Xbots down themselves because they wanted to do the same thing to them, if not worse…||

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