Was CD-i designed with games in mind?

Blog full of information on CD-i and how Philips ambitious interactive idealism reverberates throughout the world of technology to this day and age. With commentary from developers through sales personal and even game testers, Interactive Dreams offers plenty of insight and retrospective analysis.
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Bas
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Was CD-i designed with games in mind?

Post by Bas » Tue Jan 20, 2009 10:17 am

I didn't expect this story to get a lot of bad remarks, some of which I feel are too 'loose' and have no arguments in his defense. So I moved that part to here, where you can fluently bash about it all you like.

Read the original story here.


by: Anonymous:
"Quite a senseless discussion, because it's just hot air. Who is that supposed ex CD-i developer who claims to have worked for ICDIA, and were are the development documents? He remained anonymous and never proved what he said. Furthermore, a "potential application" is something that could be done on a system as a side-effect, not something the system was designed for. "

And next:

"The guy who's currently active on many forums claiming to be an ex-dev and that the CD-i was DESIGNEDd for games (which is simply wrong) remains anonymous and never showed the documents he claims to have. I asked who that guy is, and where the proof for his statement is, but it seems such reasoned questions aren't allowed.

I'm also very shocked that people these days are seemingly too stupid to distinguish between 'designed for games' and 'games as a potential application'. Seems like the internet lowers everyone's IQ.

Finally, if the CD-i was indeed DESIGNED for games, then congrats for running a blog about the worst piece of gaming hardware ever made. The CD-i always had the excuse of not being made for games.

So long "


OK, I removed a few insulting parts which is basically why I deleted them from the blog. But I'd like to give his view a chance! It's funny to stay anonymous because I never get a chance to talk back. I guess, although 'Anonymous" claims the same thing the other way around, that he confuses the difference between 'designed for games' and 'games as a potential application'.

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Post by Devin » Fri Jan 23, 2009 10:02 pm

I think it's quite evident that gaming was an after thought that Philips regrets. After all the most units of software shifted for CD-i was gaming related!

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Post by cdoty » Mon Jul 19, 2010 6:03 am

The lack of some form of gaming hardware (sprites or tiles) is an odd choice for a game system around that time period.

There are a few systems, from the time period, that didn't have dedicated hardware. The Atari ST and Archimedes both lacked any type of sprites or tiles, and didn't have a blitter.

Maybe Philips figured with a processor twice as fast as the Atari ST, and an 8 bit linear video buffer, developers could write games as good for the cd-i. This also gave it the flexibility to realize the 'promises' of the cd-rom.

Could the focus on training/learning systems have caused the down playing of games?

Could the gaming crash, in the US, have played into initially not labeling it as a game machine?

It would be interesting to see the initial designs and the announcement designs, and compare them against the released product. This would give some clues as to how computers and game systems released affected the design, or if they did at all.
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Post by Bas » Tue Jul 20, 2010 9:16 am

early statements I found in the press and from ex-employees tell that Philips didn't want to compete with the likes of Nintendo and Sega. They predicted a large future in the 'edutainment' and movie segment. It was remarkably positioned towards an 'older' audience, where Nintendo and Sega clearly focused on the youth of "hard core" gaming. Apparently after slow sales Philips realized that the only profit they got was caused by the games.

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Post by Devin » Tue Jul 20, 2010 11:54 pm

I recently bought a book introducing CD-i published way back in 1989.

The consumer market actually illustrated was a middle class 40 something on a dull afternoon with nothing better to do but play a golf or maybe baseball game via the invention of interactive TV! In retrospect it is quite comical but back then this was serious stuff. Personally I'd rather spend $20 on a bat and ball than $1,000 on a CD-i player if I was the 40 something during the 90's :wink:

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Post by Gaara » Tue May 17, 2011 11:12 am

Finally, if the CD-i was indeed DESIGNED for games, then congrats for running a blog about the worst piece of gaming hardware ever made
The person who said that most have never heard of the Tiger Game.com (which did have some innovative features, but for which the best title was a Wheel of Fortune game), RCA Studio II, or Casio Loopy (didn't Loopy have like 10 titles, many of which consisted of putting clothes on dolls and stuff like that?)

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Post by ejesus » Tue May 22, 2012 4:23 am

Though it probably brushed their figment of imagination, it would not be surprising to learn that they actually thought of going with a similar implementation and just not were able to go with it ultimately. I am thinking that they are to consider how things are to be used to their most capable state. But considering the level of play-ability they came packing with, during that time, it was something that is really nice.

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Post by highlandcattle » Mon Feb 18, 2013 9:48 am

I don't think the CD-i was developped with games in mind. I mean phillips had enough experience with game systems. In Belgium and Holland they had a pretty big market share with both the MSX and the Videopac. Granted both systems were licensed and not developped internally but phillips should have known how to make a game systems.
Secondly I thinkPhillips and other companies are to blame, not the technology itself. It is obvious the game development branch was quite mismanaged by people who didn't really now what they were doing. If you read the interviews on the black moon and Interactive Dreams. You often see that a single person was responsible for a port. With MM not even the final version was used to produce the game. And on other projects money was thrown away and no results were ever achieved.

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Post by Austin » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:43 am

Truth be told, I don't know if the CD-i was designed with games in mind. However, I know that some of the early games for it weren't fully thought out. For instance, Tetris. I know everyone loves to, well--love this game, but it's half-baked in my opinion from an actual gameplay perspective (it's great from a visual one!). I don't really think developers (including whomever Philips owned) really thought about this hard until after a year or two the platform was available. Correct me if I'm wrong though--I know there are far more experienced CD-i users here than I. :)
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Post by Bas » Wed Mar 20, 2013 10:15 am

Austin wrote:Truth be told, I don't know if the CD-i was designed with games in mind. However, I know that some of the early games for it weren't fully thought out. For instance, Tetris. I know everyone loves to, well--love this game, but it's half-baked in my opinion from an actual gameplay perspective (it's great from a visual one!). I don't really think developers (including whomever Philips owned) really thought about this hard until after a year or two the platform was available. Correct me if I'm wrong though--I know there are far more experienced CD-i users here than I. :)
That's a nice perspective! I agree Philips focused a lot more on graphics rather than gameplay. The video capabilities are far better compared to the actual performance for gameplay.

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