I had heard about NEMO, Hasbro's ill-fated VCR-based videogame system that supported 4 switchable, simultaneous streams of video. It was cancelled, and its considerable footage assets were sold off cheap, providing the raw material for several Sega CD titles including Sewer Shark and Night Trap.
But I hadn't really been aware that:
- Milton Bradley was put into play by the failure of the Vectrex console, plunging the company into debt and enabling its rescue/acquisition by Hasbro. I had always associated the Vectrex with GCE, its creator and primary game developer, but Milton Bradley put up (and lost) much of the money for distribution. (The book doesn't say anything about whether MB's pioneering Microvision handheld was a winner or loser.)
- Mattel was unable to take advantage of the MB situation due to its own heavy losses on the Intellivision console.
- Hasbro sank $45 million into development of a head-mounted Virtual Reality system with the working title of Sliced Bread, of "the greatest thing since..." fame. It was slated for release in the mid-90's but was dropped, due in part to its projected $499 price tag. It was in development so long that cartridges were replaced with CD's, but its complicated core microchip was still too expensive to make it cost-effective for retail.
What's become of those lost artifacts, I wonder?