The Odyssey 2100 is a game console from Philips. It’s a so-called pong machine. A game console that does not use a variety of cartridges, but has pre-installed games. The Odyssey 2100 had two predecessors, the Odyssey 200 (1977) and its successor the Odyssey 2001. The three consoles where introduced shortly after each other and differed very little from each other, so there was no real incentive for consumers to buy all three variants. The Odyssey 2100 was Philips last and final pong machine. In the same year that the game console was released, Philips also introduced its real successor, the Videopac G7000. The latter did use interchangeable cartridges, allowing a greater variety of games to be played on the console. This heralded the second generation of game consoles.
The Philips Odyssey was based on the Magnavox Odyssey line up. Philips took over the American company Magnavox in 1974. Magnavox had already marketed consoles under the Odyssey brand name since 1972. With this Magnavox even came into conflict with Atari, which was the undisputed leader in the arcade halls, but was late to to conquer the living room. Magnavox continued to market consoles under its own name even after the acquisition of Philips. Philips, a more renown brand on the European continent, developed their own ‘European’ versions of the Magnavox Odyssey. Just as they would later do with the Videopac.
In Japan, the Odyssey was marketed by Nintendo. This was Nintendo’s first step into the gaming market where it would continue to garner praise to this day.
The Odyssey 2100 had a black-gray color. It was therefore less prone to yellowing than many other ‘white’ Pong machines. The colour also gave the game console a more chic look. On the front is a long, wide sticker in a largely glossy aluminum color, accompanied by a blue and green stripe. This was supposed to give the console a futuristic appearance, but by today’s standards this is actually cheap. The two controllers are hard-wired, as is the antenna output.
A total of six games were pre-installed on the Odyssey 2100. These included Wipe-out, Flipper, Tennis, Handball, Ice Hockey and Soccer. These games were shown on the screen in colour and could be played in a variety of ways, allowing, with some creative thought, a total of 23 games to be played on the Odyssey.
|Predecessor||Philips Odyssey 2001|
|Successor||Philips Videopac G7000|
|CPU||National Semiconductor MM-57186N|