Unimpressed by the name of Googles new video game platform a reader lists what he believes to be the five worst console names ever.
So we have our first sort-of console of the new generation, a brand new platform from a company brand new to the games industry, and what did they call it? Stadia. I have no idea why. I was actually worried during the annoucement that it was going to be focused on esports and other things I dont care about but it doesnt seem to be that at all. Stadia doesnt seem to mean much of anything in context, other than it vaguely being a place where people play games.
Its not a very good name but its by no means the worst. Because consoles have been around for a long time and theyve almost all got rubbish or meaningless names. NES? What does that stand for? Xbox? Is it a box full of Xs – what does that even mean? PS Vita gives no hint youre talking about a portable PlayStation and Nintendo DS literally means nothing, they made up what the initials meant afterwards as a retcon.
But these are still not the worst offenders. These are my top five worst names. Names so meaningless and counterproductive that I genuinely have no idea how so many people couldve known about it and not spoken up. Oh, and for the record, I still think PlayStation is the best name. Its a riff on workstation, it makes sense, its easily abbreviated. A good name. Switch, as well. Its short, easily to remember, and actually describes the console. Unlike these stupid names…
5. Game Boy
The main problem with all these names is simply what are they supposed to mean? Its a boy thats a game? I assume the implication was meant to be that it was a smaller, more junior version of a home console but it even sounded weird back in the 90s when no-one really noticed the casual sexism in the name – that apparently didnt want any girls playing. People talk about bringing the Game Boy back but how could you when the name is so silly and dated?
What is this even meant to mean? It casts your dreams onto… the TV? Why would I want that? Especially the one where Im being chased by the giant teddy bear. Or maybe its Segas dreams. You know, the ones about them staying in the console business and the Dreamcast not being a flop. Its a stupid, meaningless name that ordinary people are never going to associate with gaming and creates an immediate bad impression of, Huh? Whats that supposed to mean?
It just goes to show what a compelling product the Wii was that being saddled with such a terrible name didnt hurt it at all. I dont think wee means quite the same in America as it does here – as I understand its more a name for your John Thomas than what comes out of it – but either way it really doesnt seem a good idea to name your make-or-break console after a slang word for urine. I know Nintendo like to take risks, but this was an unnecessary one.
2. Xbox One
The worst thing about this one is you can just imagine the cheesy American marketing execs as they came up with the name, oblivious to the fact that it makes no sense (there already is an Xbox 1!) and that nobody but them understands what its supposed to mean (apparently it was meant to signify that it took the number one socket on your TV). As an added bonus it makes it almost impossible to give the next Xbox a sensible name either. Xbox One launch people, your failure is complete!
1. Wii U
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