Although Nintendo tried to portray the Virtual Boy as a step forward for video game consoles, this one was actually taking several steps backward. The Virtual Boy had only a monochrome red-and-black screen, was not portable in the same way the Game Boy was, and many found the 3D effects didn’t really add much to the overall experience of the games, according to Business Insider. Furthermore, the games themselves were deemed lackluster and didn’t garner much excitement from players. Only 22 Virtual Boy games were ever released. Not to mention that the Virtual Boy came with a breadth of potential health hazards, including nausea and eye strain (via Business Insider). 

In fact, Nintendo needed to issue a warning about these health hazards with the console. It also stated that allowing young kids to play the Virtual Boy could lead to lasting vision issues. This is the more extreme end of the health issues with the console, but players also reported back problems from having to bend into the headgear on the tripod instead of being able to wear it. Headaches were also widely reported.

These shortcomings led the Virtual Boy down a path of destruction. The initial price of the console at its release in 1995 sat at $179.95, but Nintendo eventually had to decrease this over time as sales stagnated. In all, only 770,000 units were sold in total (via Fast Company), a very small number compared to the Game Boy, which had 40 million in total sales. This complete lack of interest in the Virtual Boy caused Nintendo to discontinue it a year later. 

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