Ben Heckendorn took apart a Nintendo PlayStation prototype for The Ben Heck Show to get a closer look at the innards of the result of Nintendo and Sony's attempt at working together.
It was in 2015 when the prototype first made the rounds when it surfaced after an auction. The prototype didn't look particularly impressive, going by today's standards, but it was a sight to behold as it was a rare throwback to a time when Nintendo and Sony considered collaborating.
It was in 1988 when Nintendo and Sony inked a deal that could have seen the latter's CD-ROMs in the former's upcoming SNES console at the time. However, money matters got in the middle of things and the collaboration fell apart. When Sony unveiled a PlayStation in 1991 at the Chicago CES, Nintendo publicly broke all connections with the company in favor of Philips. Not that Sony minded, as the PlayStation went on to become its most profitable asset.
That PlayStation Sony unveiled at the 1991 Chicago CES? It's what Heckendorn tore down for a look inside.
Terry Diebold got his hands on the prototype, which housed both a classic SNES cartridge and a CD-ROM, when the company he was working for, Advanta Corporation filed for bankruptcy and held an auction. Having boxed the items to be auctioned himself, Diebold was keen on getting ahold of several items.
He got what he wanted and more when the auctioneer handed him more boxes than he thought he would be getting. Diebold didn't remember having boxed that many, but nonetheless took the lot home. It was in one of the extra boxes that Diebold discovered the prototype. However, it was his son Dan, who actually got word into the world that it existed.
Dan had opened the prototype himself so he was around for Heckendorn's tear down. Sony clearly had a dominant role in the particular prototype but there were also some Nintendo chips inside, as well as the occasional component from a third party.
The prototype is operational, but the CD-ROM drive is not working. However, Heckendorn thinks he has a shot at repairing it.
Shuhei Yoshida, Sony Computer Entertainment's Worldwide Studios' president, said he's actually played on a prototype like the one featured in the tear-down. He joined Sony in 1986, five years before the first PlayStation was unveiled and CD-ROM support was altogether scrapped as a mere add-on.
Decades later, the console wars rage on, with Sony rumored to come out with the PlayStation Neo later in the year.
Watch Heckendorn tear down the Nintendo PlayStation prototype below!