Playdia
ManufacturerBandai
TypeHome video game console
GenerationFifth generation
Lifespan
  • JP: September 23, 1994[1]
MediaCD-ROM
CPU8-bit NEC μPD78214GC @12MHz; 8-bit Toshiba TMP87C800F @8MHz (Z80 derivative)
GraphicsAsahi Kasei AK8000
SoundAsahi Kasei AK8000
Controller inputInfrared Joypad
PredecessorBandai RX-78
Terebikko
SuccessorApple Bandai Pippin

The Playdia (プレイディア, Pureidia) (developed under the codename "BA-X"[2]) is a fifth-generation home video game console released exclusively in Japan in 1994[3] at the initial price of ¥24,800.[4] It was intended for a young audience and, like many consoles of the era (such as the LaserActive and the 3DO Interactive Multiplayer), was marketed more as a multimedia home entertainment system than as a dedicated gaming console,[5] with anime quiz software and edutainment making up most of the game library. The Playdia uses a single infrared joypad with simple controls. Bandai, the Playdia's manufacturer, was the only software publisher to support this console (except for VAP who published Ie Naki Ko - Suzu no Sentaku instead of Bandai).

Overview

The Playdia has a CD-ROM drive, and the software is on CD-ROM. The controller has two AAA batteries with infrared wireless that can be stored in the main unit. The target age group was set mainly for elementary school students as both the hardware and software were inexpensive for home games at the time.[6]

The Playdia can create anime-style full motion video (FMV) using CD-based games. Most are interactive learning experiences. However, Bandai created a few video games with an interactive component based on its franchise series, including Gundam, Sailor Moon, Ultra Man, and Dragon Ball Z. They lack true game action.[6] As a simple interactive cartoon, the player just directs the on-screen figure by choosing from the menu options that are presented to them on the Playdia control pad. Playdia is the only 8-bit fifth-generation game machine, because the products of the competitors at that time have 32-bit CPUs and 64-bit CPUs across the board. The system had to rely on Bandai's IPs which started to be redundant.  

On the main body and software package, there is a logo of "QIS" and the notation "This software is dedicated to the QIS standard".[7] QIS is an abbreviation of "Quick Interactive System" and indicates a high-speed access function to CD-ROM. There is no BIOS or menu when the user starts the console without a disc, all that shows is a blue screen.[6]

The Playdia had very poor sales, therefore for Bandai, the console was a failure. Bandai discontinued the console in 1996[6] and the unsold consoles were converted by Banpresto, a Bandai subsidiary, into coin-operated Micha King machines that played anime clips in Japanese arcades and shops. Its successor was Apple Pippin that Bandai co-developed, which was also unsuccessful.

Playdia software

1994

1995

1996

Not for sale

Hardware

The Bandai Playdia motherboard

References

  1. ^ "GameForest - TVゲームの歴史 - プレイディア". Retrieved 2008-07-10.
  2. ^ Starr, Michael; Chapple, Craig (2008-07-09). VINTROPEDIA - Vintage Computer and Retro Console Price Guide 2009. Lulu.com. ISBN 978-1-4092-1277-5.
  3. ^ "Video Game Consoles Rarity Guide". RarityGuide. 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-28.
  4. ^ Forster, Winnie (2005). The encyclopedia of consoles, handhelds & home computers 1972 - 2005. GAMEPLAN. p. 201. ISBN 3-00-015359-4.
  5. ^ "Overseas ProSpects: Bandai BA-X". GamePro. No. 64. November 1994. p. 268.
  6. ^ a b c d Micom BASIC Magazine - November 1994 https://retrocdn.net/images/a/a0/MicomBASIC_JP_1994-11.pdf
  7. ^ a b "Tidbits | Saiya-jin Zetsumetsu Keikaku". Kanzenshuu. Retrieved 2023-05-31.