• Hey, guest user. Hope you're enjoying NeoGAF! Have you considered registering for an account? Come join us and add your take to the daily discourse.

Casio Loopy; the only game console designed to print stickers just for girls...and other "also ran" oddball game consoles

VGEsoterica

Member
Sure today you have three consoles that everyone loves...and that's it! Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo managed to wattles down the market to a three hardware platform race. But if you DIDN'T grow up in the 90s you missed the era of every company churning out their own video game console to try to get a piece of the market. 3DO, Atari, NEC / Hudson....the list goes on and on.

But Casio probably took the brass ring for the strangest attempt to get a piece of the pie for themselves...making a 32-bit video game console that printed stickers and was designed to appear to Japanese girls. The execs over at Casio thought that the market was just trying to sell to one gender...and that there was this giant swath of people who needed a console. So they stepped in...and made the Casio Loopy

Weirdly it shares a similar processor to the Sega Saturn and its way more powerful on paper than it would ever show on screen....and it prints really high quality stickers. The games? Well they are BARELY games...and clearly Casio misread the market because this thing failed HARD. We are talking Apple Pippin / Jaguar / Playdia levels of "just didnt sell big numbers"

but from a historical perspective? its pretty interesting and I will say the industrial design of the console itself is pretty damn intriguing and unique...and everything deserves a mention now and then

but GAF...what console did YOU own that failed hard any nobody cared about? because I had a 3DO at launch lolol

 

CeeJay

Member
I was around to see that era but this is the first time i've ever even heard of this device, guessing it was Japan only?

The console that comes to mind as an obscure one that totally miss-read the market was the Amstrad Mega PC. It was just a Frankenstein job of putting a PC and a Mega Drive in the same case with a sliding panel at the front that presented either a disk drive or cart slot. There was little in the way of advantages to having two systems in one. Amstrad decided to ship it with outdated PC components and tried to sell it at a very high price (Originally £999+VAT but later dropped to £599+VAT) so it appealed to neither the price conscious console market or the power hungry PC market and was DOA.

 

Drew1440

Member
Probably would have been better recieved as an add on to the Saturn or the PlayStation. Seems overkill to create a console around printing stickers.
 

H4ze

Member
When I first heared about the Loopy I just could not help myself but laugh about the people who thought that this could work out well. xD
Thx for sharing your video.
 

Mobilemofo

Member
To be fair, I never bought a failed console. My friend did tho. All of them. Even then, ya sort of knew what would sell and what wouldn't. The jaguars control pad was horrendous. The 3do (all 4 versions) were always doomed to failure. Trip Hawkins was a mentalist that chatted shit for the most part. The machine itself was right lump. I did buy a Saturn, in grey, but way after it had died. Apart from sega rally, powerstone and couple of others, it died rapidly. To early imo.
 

Eddie-Griffin

Gold Member
3DO isn't really comparable to any of the other failed consoles unless you bring in pre-Jaguar Atari and Sega consoles, or the PS3, Xbox 1. To the rest it sold and was known by millions and actually had a large game library so it's really hard to put it in the same umbrella as a PCFX or a Neo Geo.

Most failed consoles didn't even sell a million, or in some cases were never consoles in the first place (VIS, CD-i, CDTV).

A failed console selling 200,000 is a pretty big relative success when you look at how many of them released over the decades. it shows that a larger number than expected brought them and likely the mindshare reached out even further than those sales numbers so people knew about them but just never brought them.

Neo Geo, Jaguar, Astrocade(mail order to be fair), and CD32 being the most known examples, at least outside Asia.
 

MrA

Member
I've had lots of weird stuff,
apf m1000/mp1000 completely off the shelf console form 78, basically a tandy color computer same motorola cpu and gpu so don't expect any interesting qualities to it, but all games are unique and odd
emerson arcadia (all the signetics-based consoles) tons of early 80s consoles all used this same chipset, kind of neat
koei pasogo,plays many variations of go/historic go matches all on unique cartridges, and nothing else, really odd, no sound expensive at launch did I mention it play nothing but go?
 

SpiceRacz

Member
Never seen a Loopy before. I kinda dig the controller and overall design of the "console."

The only failed consoles I've owned were a Jaguar and Virtual Boy. The VB had some decent games and I got some enjoyment out of it. Cannot say the same for the Jaguar.
 

eNT1TY

Member
Was the Neo Geo really that much of a failure? I do not know how well the og cartridge one sold but do recall everyone talking about it and dreaming of owning one while accepting they will never have one for almost 2 console gens. I do know they priced themeselves out of mainstream adoption but they certainly had mindshare, too bad mindshare alone doesn't pay bills. What I consider an abject failure would be the Pioneer Laseractive, it had cool branded controllers for the Sega and Nec addon packs though (which cost about as much as a neo geo each).
 
This would be a tween dream come true in 2022.
My wife's sister is an Asian that does the cat ear headphones and RGB's to hell her gaming pc. She also loves stickers. It would be a no brainer purchase to her and some of her friends and she's in her mid twenties.
 

VGEsoterica

Member
Never seen a Loopy before. I kinda dig the controller and overall design of the "console."

The only failed consoles I've owned were a Jaguar and Virtual Boy. The VB had some decent games and I got some enjoyment out of it. Cannot say the same for the Jaguar.
The controller isn’t bad. The arc of the buttons would make it a great fighting game controller. D pad is a bit junk though
 

TheMan

Member
Was the Neo Geo really that much of a failure? I do not know how well the og cartridge one sold but do recall everyone talking about it and dreaming of owning one while accepting they will never have one for almost 2 console gens. I do know they priced themeselves out of mainstream adoption but they certainly had mindshare, too bad mindshare alone doesn't pay bills. What I consider an abject failure would be the Pioneer Laseractive, it had cool branded controllers for the Sega and Nec addon packs though (which cost about as much as a neo geo each).

I say it was not. It remained niche, but they set out to bring arcade perfect games home and by jupiter's cock that's what they did. The last game was released for that thing in 2004...14 years after the system came out. Not a failure at all.

Now the neo-geo cd? I could see that being labeled a failure.
 
Last edited:

VGEsoterica

Member
I say it was not. It remained niche, but they set out to bring arcade perfect games home and by jupiter's cock that's what they did. The last game was released for that thing in 2004...14 years after the system came out. Not a failure at all.

Now the neo-geo cd? I could see that being labeled a failure.
Neo Geo CD sold decently. Hyper Neo Geo was the failure
 

Eddie-Griffin

Gold Member
Neo Geo CD sold decently. Hyper Neo Geo was the failure

Neo Geo CD contributed to SNK's bankruptcy.

Was the Neo Geo really that much of a failure?

Commercially and in adoption yet, even the 3DO did better at a higher price point. it was a profitable niche for a short time given the price of the console and the games, but but that wore off after a few years and the niche audience of the console variation of the Neo geo declined, and while SNK did drop the price and had some games on "sales" at that point that weren't new releases, it didn't really work. the lack of variety, the restrictions, and the cheap price of the genesis and SNES were only the first problem, than the 3DO came out, and the Jaguar came out, and you had Virtua Racing and Star Fox, on the older consoles, it was a done deal. The price was still too high for the console and games, and SNK was losing money hand over fist. They tried with the CD to jump on the popularity of CD's but it didn't fix many of the old problems and introduced new ones, and they had the Neo Geo Pocket, the only affordable thing they put out, but it was cut off in Japan by the Wonderswan, and couldn't make ground anywhere else.

For the arcade Neo geo, the problem was SNK couldn't get popularity out of Japan, and as that started to go down outside some fan favorites they were losing money hand over fist there, and at the same time those polygon arcade machines, or those arcade machines with the cool 2D effects were common place in the arcades by 1993 onward, instead of those two awesome games in the corner because they were low enough in price for arcade operators to use them to replace the old has beens outside the evergreen cabinets. This pretty much killed SNK outside of Japan and a limited audience in South America, where a Sam Sho or KoF could draw some coin, but they weren't generating enough.

By the time 3D took hold in the arcades SNK attempted to get ahead of the game with the hyper Neo Geo 64, but what released was graphically weak hardware, and the PS1 ports all failed to sell.

SNK finally had nowhere left to go and went down under after some last futile attempts to save the NGP Color and the original Neo Geo. For a arcade cabinet and consoles that were supposed to be future proof and would become profitable long term it wasn't, and SNK were forced to try and reach out to new revenue streams which also failed.

the sales number it did end up with (both the console and the CD console) took years to reach burning a hole in SNK's pocket, so while the number alone may seem decent for a failure, it's actually worse than it was.

I do know they priced themeselves out of mainstream adoption but they certainly had mindshare,
Mindshare in Japan for a time, yes. Outside of Japan? Not really. SNK was in the press as "the arcade" when it first came out, and there was interest at trade shows but it was temporary. By 1992 it was rarely covered, SNK was usually not at events (outside Japan anyway) and it's price to those who were able to get info on anything about it's new games or where to buy it, for games and the console was still too high.

If they had mindshare that price by then would have been low enough to see a dramatic increase in sales despite still being a niche like the 3DO did, instead it didn't result in much of anything. By the time 1996 and metal Slug came out SNk was dead outside of japan outside a few arcade cabinets.
 

VGEsoterica

Member
Neo Geo CD contributed to SNK's bankruptcy.



Commercially and in adoption yet, even the 3DO did better at a higher price point. it was a profitable niche for a short time given the price of the console and the games, but but that wore off after a few years and the niche audience of the console variation of the Neo geo declined, and while SNK did drop the price and had some games on "sales" at that point that weren't new releases, it didn't really work. the lack of variety, the restrictions, and the cheap price of the genesis and SNES were only the first problem, than the 3DO came out, and the Jaguar came out, and you had Virtua Racing and Star Fox, on the older consoles, it was a done deal. The price was still too high for the console and games, and SNK was losing money hand over fist. They tried with the CD to jump on the popularity of CD's but it didn't fix many of the old problems and introduced new ones, and they had the Neo Geo Pocket, the only affordable thing they put out, but it was cut off in Japan by the Wonderswan, and couldn't make ground anywhere else.

For the arcade Neo geo, the problem was SNK couldn't get popularity out of Japan, and as that started to go down outside some fan favorites they were losing money hand over fist there, and at the same time those polygon arcade machines, or those arcade machines with the cool 2D effects were common place in the arcades by 1993 onward, instead of those two awesome games in the corner because they were low enough in price for arcade operators to use them to replace the old has beens outside the evergreen cabinets. This pretty much killed SNK outside of Japan and a limited audience in South America, where a Sam Sho or KoF could draw some coin, but they weren't generating enough.

By the time 3D took hold in the arcades SNK attempted to get ahead of the game with the hyper Neo Geo 64, but what released was graphically weak hardware, and the PS1 ports all failed to sell.

SNK finally had nowhere left to go and went down under after some last futile attempts to save the NGP Color and the original Neo Geo. For a arcade cabinet and consoles that were supposed to be future proof and would become profitable long term it wasn't, and SNK were forced to try and reach out to new revenue streams which also failed.

the sales number it did end up with (both the console and the CD console) took years to reach burning a hole in SNK's pocket, so while the number alone may seem decent for a failure, it's actually worse than it was.


Mindshare in Japan for a time, yes. Outside of Japan? Not really. SNK was in the press as "the arcade" when it first came out, and there was interest at trade shows but it was temporary. By 1992 it was rarely covered, SNK was usually not at events (outside Japan anyway) and it's price to those who were able to get info on anything about it's new games or where to buy it, for games and the console was still too high.

If they had mindshare that price by then would have been low enough to see a dramatic increase in sales despite still being a niche like the 3DO did, instead it didn't result in much of anything. By the time 1996 and metal Slug came out SNk was dead outside of japan outside a few arcade cabinets.
I’d hardly say after 96 SNK was dead outside Japan. So many arcades had big red cabs with releases well after 96 in the US
 

RoadHazard

Gold Member
The least successful console I've owned is the Game Gear I guess. But that was still pretty successful compared to everyone else who tried to challenge Nintendo in the handheld space until the PSP.
 

Eddie-Griffin

Gold Member
I’d hardly say after 96 SNK was dead outside Japan. So many arcades had big red cabs with releases well after 96 in the US

You are thinking of releases instead of profit. SNK was a very niche name outside of Japan especially after the mid-90's. Brand recognition was low, it was hard to find their games in more of the busier arcades even outside malls and city entertainment centers. In some local arcades you may get a few games but they were pretty much gone in the late 90's.

SNK did try to release more cabinets in the US, they even released more Neo Geo console games and cut the price in the US, but no one was biting unfortunately. This was a time when CPS3 was having a very rough start and there were expectations it would fail. Late 90's 2D arcades outside classics and a few exceptions were out, and the overall arcades were declining in general at the same time, so retailers were getting picky on what they put out.

This was repeated in other countries, really brazil was the hold out here, but SNK still wasn't able to pick arcade sales back up down their with their newer games, several were still playing earlier KOF's in the late 90's, and din' have much interest for much of the newer Neo geo games.

I owned one of these

Lynx wasn't a failure (commercially or critically anyway), it just wasn't the Gameboy, and neither was anything else lol. Game Gear etc.

Game Boy's main advantage was that it was cheap, the screen was bad, bulky, no color or light, but it was easy to mass produce and get in stores and that's why both the colored handhelds couldn't hope to win before you even got to other issues like amount of batteries. it also allowed Nintendo to make big profits by marking up the price, so they could cut the price and still make money on it.

It was a genius strategy only a few professionals understood. Everyone else was looking at Lynx, TGexpress, Gamegear, and saying but these have lights or colored screens with better graphics and games. True, they also cost more money, they weren't everywhere, and no one could match Nintendo in production.

The first portable failure I can think of, well, i guess technically for Sega the Game gear did end up losing them money but I would say the first real failure in portables was the Nomad and the R-Zone.

The R-Zone was bad.
 

VGEsoterica

Member
You are thinking of releases instead of profit. SNK was a very niche name outside of Japan especially after the mid-90's. Brand recognition was low, it was hard to find their games in more of the busier arcades even outside malls and city entertainment centers. In some local arcades you may get a few games but they were pretty much gone in the late 90's.

SNK did try to release more cabinets in the US, they even released more Neo Geo console games and cut the price in the US, but no one was biting unfortunately. This was a time when CPS3 was having a very rough start and there were expectations it would fail. Late 90's 2D arcades outside classics and a few exceptions were out, and the overall arcades were declining in general at the same time, so retailers were getting picky on what they put out.

This was repeated in other countries, really brazil was the hold out here, but SNK still wasn't able to pick arcade sales back up down their with their newer games, several were still playing earlier KOF's in the late 90's, and din' have much interest for much of the newer Neo geo games.



Lynx wasn't a failure (commercially or critically anyway), it just wasn't the Gameboy, and neither was anything else lol. Game Gear etc.

Game Boy's main advantage was that it was cheap, the screen was bad, bulky, no color or light, but it was easy to mass produce and get in stores and that's why both the colored handhelds couldn't hope to win before you even got to other issues like amount of batteries. it also allowed Nintendo to make big profits by marking up the price, so they could cut the price and still make money on it.

It was a genius strategy only a few professionals understood. Everyone else was looking at Lynx, TGexpress, Gamegear, and saying but these have lights or colored screens with better graphics and games. True, they also cost more money, they weren't everywhere, and no one could match Nintendo in production.

The first portable failure I can think of, well, i guess technically for Sega the Game gear did end up losing them money but I would say the first real failure in portables was the Nomad and the R-Zone.

The R-Zone was bad.
Poor R Zone
 

Pallas

Gold Member
That was actually a pretty nice console to look at aesthetically. Never heard of this before today so thank you, I love learning about obscure gaming stuff.

As for my system that I owned that failed? Closest I can come to was probably the Sega Gamegear. I’m not sure if it’s considered a failure though but I remember wanting it so bad as a kid because of the colors. My mother almost got the TV tuner accessory for it as well. The thought of watching TV on a handheld blew my mind as well. I was really young, probably between 2-5 grade. Honestly wish I still had it.



Also thought it was cool that it had special editions as well that wasn’t really a huge thing back then iirc.




And of course he TV tuner attachment…

 

TGO

Hype Train conductor. Works harder than it steams.
I was around to see that era but this is the first time i've ever even heard of this device, guessing it was Japan only?

The console that comes to mind as an obscure one that totally miss-read the market was the Amstrad Mega PC. It was just a Frankenstein job of putting a PC and a Mega Drive in the same case with a sliding panel at the front that presented either a disk drive or cart slot. There was little in the way of advantages to having two systems in one. Amstrad decided to ship it with outdated PC components and tried to sell it at a very high price (Originally £999+VAT but later dropped to £599+VAT) so it appealed to neither the price conscious console market or the power hungry PC market and was DOA.

I had the magazine this was in.
Sure it was at the back😂
 

VGEsoterica

Member
That was actually a pretty nice console to look at aesthetically. Never heard of this before today so thank you, I love learning about obscure gaming stuff.

As for my system that I owned that failed? Closest I can come to was probably the Sega Gamegear. I’m not sure if it’s considered a failure though but I remember wanting it so bad as a kid because of the colors. My mother almost got the TV tuner accessory for it as well. The thought of watching TV on a handheld blew my mind as well. I was really young, probably between 2-5 grade. Honestly wish I still had it.



Also thought it was cool that it had special editions as well that wasn’t really a huge thing back then iirc.




And of course he TV tuner attachment…

I had a Game Gear as a kid vs a Gameboy and I loved it but basically nobody else I knew had one
 

DaGwaphics

Member
I was around to see that era but this is the first time i've ever even heard of this device, guessing it was Japan only?

The console that comes to mind as an obscure one that totally miss-read the market was the Amstrad Mega PC. It was just a Frankenstein job of putting a PC and a Mega Drive in the same case with a sliding panel at the front that presented either a disk drive or cart slot. There was little in the way of advantages to having two systems in one. Amstrad decided to ship it with outdated PC components and tried to sell it at a very high price (Originally £999+VAT but later dropped to £599+VAT) so it appealed to neither the price conscious console market or the power hungry PC market and was DOA.


I guess the CD unit would have connected via extension cable. Would have looked cute since the CD was designed to have the console sitting on it.
 

Eddie-Griffin

Gold Member
Poor R Zone

The concept was a good idea for the time, it has the 90's fad appeal at the ready, but the product was just too clunky and gave a terrible experience that it just couldn't work. but if it was better quality they probably would have saw casuals and parents empty the shelves to play Mortal Kombat in "VR" anywhere at anytime.

Same with the Game.com, great idea, bad execution, and it was by the same company who has a history of never learning lessons. The touch pad gaming could have been put to better use, the chipset could have been better without costing them much more along with a better and colorful scree, and the modem should have had it's own bundle for serious users since they were not just targeting casual browsing, but they intended to have productivity involved too.
 

Futaleufu

Member
You are thinking of releases instead of profit. SNK was a very niche name outside of Japan especially after the mid-90's. Brand recognition was low, it was hard to find their games in more of the busier arcades even outside malls and city entertainment centers. In some local arcades you may get a few games but they were pretty much gone in the late 90's.

SNK did try to release more cabinets in the US, they even released more Neo Geo console games and cut the price in the US, but no one was biting unfortunately. This was a time when CPS3 was having a very rough start and there were expectations it would fail. Late 90's 2D arcades outside classics and a few exceptions were out, and the overall arcades were declining in general at the same time, so retailers were getting picky on what they put out.

This was repeated in other countries, really brazil was the hold out here, but SNK still wasn't able to pick arcade sales back up down their with their newer games, several were still playing earlier KOF's in the late 90's, and din' have much interest for much of the newer Neo geo games.

The Neo-Geo was such a failure that it was supported from 1990 to 2004 and outlived both the HNG64 and the NGPC...
 

Eddie-Griffin

Gold Member
The Neo-Geo was such a failure that it was supported from 1990 to 2004 and outlived both the HNG64 and the NGPC...

After SNK went bankrupt and discontinued their bad selling HN64 and NGP and NGPC which were made to bring in more revenue because the Neo Geo wasn't sustainable, and then several of the staff left, then one of those spin-offs from Playmore which brought the brand SNK back. This is easy to find basic SNK history, it was a failure. Support life doesn't take into consideration what happened in the background.

Fun system with good games but it didn't work out as SNK intended and they suffered for it. It's like a 2D Dreamcast but more expensive in that regard.

I do love the Hyper Neo Geo 64

Wild Ambition was a good first attempt at a 3D FF at the time. SNK should make a collection of those other H64 game that weren't ported.
 

Futaleufu

Member
After SNK went bankrupt and discontinued their bad selling HN64 and NGP and NGPC which were made to bring in more revenue because the Neo Geo wasn't sustainable, and then several of the staff left, then one of those spin-offs from Playmore which brought the brand SNK back. This is easy to find basic SNK history, it was a failure. Support life doesn't take into consideration what happened in the background.

Fun system with good games but it didn't work out as SNK intended and they suffered for it. It's like a 2D Dreamcast but more expensive in that regard.
SNK never stopped existing at any point of the bankruptcy, people came and went, including Eikichi Kawasaki. They didn't even stop releasing at least one KOF game per year until KOFXIII in 2010. Hard to call something a failure when it had twice the lifespan of any other 16 bit system.
Wild Ambition was a good first attempt at a 3D FF at the time. SNK should make a collection of those other H64 game that weren't ported.

I remember reading a tweet saying they were waiting for emulation in Mame to be solid before commiting to any project.
 

Eddie-Griffin

Gold Member
SNK never stopped existing at any point of the bankruptcy, people came and went, including Eikichi Kawasaki. They didn't even stop releasing at least one KOF game per year until KOFXIII in 2010. Hard to call something a failure when it had twice the lifespan of any other 16 bit system.

This is just weird, KOF 2001 wasn't even published by SNK, the company filed bankruptcy and it's assets were up for grabs, Playmore had to bid to get the shell back so they could have the brand name.

The Neo-Geo was a failure, what does "length" of it's support have to do with the fact it objectively didn't make the money needed to sustain SNK? You brought up the H64 and the NGP which were both made to try and remedy the problem and failed too. The Amiga (past OCS) failed, that's why there's no Commodore despite support for it going on years past Commodores death.

When talking about consoles commercial failure only has one definition. N64 lost to PlayStation badly, but it wasn't a failure in profits. The quote from me you posted when you first replied even mentioned profits, it was a failed console that had good support and good games on it. I don't really see why there's confusion on this.

I remember reading a tweet saying they were waiting for emulation in Mame to be solid before commiting to any project.

Of H64 games? Not sure on the progress of that, but it sounds like we'll be waiting awhile.
 

Futaleufu

Member
This is just weird, KOF 2001 wasn't even published by SNK, the company filed bankruptcy and it's assets were up for grabs, Playmore had to bid to get the shell back so they could have the brand name.
This is how I remember it happened:

-Eikichi Kawasaki founded SNK in 1978. It lasts until 2000.
-Aruze, a pachinko developer/publisher, buys the SNK IPs under several conditions.
-E. Kawasaki founded Playmore shortly afterwards.
-Aruze breaches their contract, they get sued by E. Kawasaki who wins the suit. The sale is void.
-Playmore gets all their IP back, some projects on hold get reactivated (KOF 2001). some others get canceled (Garou 2)
-Playmore only has a skeleton crew so they hire Eolith to help finish the game. Mega is brought to co-develop Metal Slug 4, Everything released in 2001 and 2002 is released as Playmore. Their last game is SvC Chaos
-Playmore gets rebranded as SNK Playmore in 2003. KOF2003 is the first game released as SNKP. Samurai Shodown V is co-developed by Yuki, they drop support for Neo Geo in 2004 to focus on Atomiswave.
 

Eddie-Griffin

Gold Member
This is how I remember it happened:

-Eikichi Kawasaki founded SNK in 1978. It lasts until 2000.
-Aruze, a pachinko developer/publisher, buys the SNK IPs under several conditions.
-E. Kawasaki founded Playmore shortly afterwards.
-Aruze breaches their contract, they get sued by E. Kawasaki who wins the suit. The sale is void.
-Playmore gets all their IP back, some projects on hold get reactivated (KOF 2001). some others get canceled (Garou 2)
-Playmore only has a skeleton crew so they hire Eolith to help finish the game. Mega is brought to co-develop Metal Slug 4, Everything released in 2001 and 2002 is released as Playmore. Their last game is SvC Chaos
-Playmore gets rebranded as SNK Playmore in 2003. KOF2003 is the first game released as SNKP. Samurai Shodown V is co-developed by Yuki, they drop support for Neo Geo in 2004 to focus on Atomiswave.

So it's as I said, SNK was a shell after bankruptcy, people left, Playmore got the brand back, and SNK itself didn't produce any games for awhile.

The point was that Neo Geo was a commercial failure that helped bankrupt SNK and caused people to believe the end of the company was inevitable, and attempts to remedy that H64 and NGP also failed. I don't understand your confusion here.
 
Top Bottom