10 variations of the Nintendo console that were released exclusively in Japan


There have been some incredible Nintendo consoles linked over the years, but some of the most curious have only been released in Japan.

If there is one thing that made Nintendo so successful in the early years, it was their pack-in strategy. Back then, they made some incredibly weird choices for promotions – just watch All Night Nippon Super Mario Bros. This eventually spread to the consoles themselves, creating options that promoted their biggest titles, even other companies.

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Nintendo has managed to create some amazing console variations that any collector would be happy to get their hands on. Unfortunately for Western fans, many of them have remained exclusive to Japan for their first releases, making them hard to find.

ten ANA N64

The ANA N64 console

This N64 comes with a special logo on the front with Pokémon Stadium and Hi you Pikachu. ANA, or All Nippon Airways, is a Japanese airline. These were ordered by Nintendo and were distributed randomly to passengers on flights. It is estimated that between 1000 and 5000 were made. However, only 99 appeared to have been donated.

9 Backstreet Boys Game Boy

The Backstreet Boys Game Boy console

This was commissioned for a radio network in Japan that was promoting the Backstreets Boys tour of Japan. There is nothing really remarkable about this old school Game Boy other than the name on it. However, as only fifty at most were made, this is quite a collector’s item. As an interesting aside, these boys never had a Game Boy game, but their rivals certainly did on Game Boy Color with NSYNC: meet at the show.

8 GameCube tank

The Char GameCube console

It’s a huge package for Gundam fans. The GameCube and Zeon red facade is a great homage to the red comet aka Char. Even the controller is themed with.

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Not only that, but this pack came with its mobile suit, the Zaku II. It’s easy to see why this never left Japan like most Gundam-themed consoles rarely do.

7 Metal Gear GameCube

The Metal Gear Solid GameCube console

This silver GameCube was designed to celebrate Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Shakes hit the console. It has a Foxhound front and it also comes with the game. Perhaps the most interesting inclusion in this set is a disc containing the first one. Metal gear. This would not be the first disc port of this game, because Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence I also had it and Metal Gear 2.

6 Kingdom Hearts GBA SP

Kingdom Hearts GBA SP console

This was done to celebrate Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories launch in Japan. The silver GBA SP has a logo embossed on the top and also came with the game. Nintendo and Square Enix have always been good with bundles in Japan. It’s just a shame that many of them remain exclusive. As for the game itself, it is underrated in the series for the only pixel perfect sprite work.

5 Battle Royal GBA SP

The Battle Royal GBA SP console

Like the Backstreet Boys Game Boy, this pack is quite odd. Even though this handheld has the Royal battle logo stamped on it, this was not ordered for the release of the first film. Instead, it probably came out in 2003, as that’s when the GBA SP line launched in addition to the next movie making its theatrical debut. This pack does not appear to come with anything other than the system itself.

4 Game Boy Micro Mother 3

The Game Boy Micro Mother 3 console

Not only was this Game Boy Micro not released in North America, but neither was this game. Mother 3 is one of the most sought-after games in Nintendo’s library that Western fans have craved for an official translation since its launch in 2006. As for the system itself, it’s nothing flashy but it has the looks nice. These Game Boy Micro handhelds in general were underrated when they were released, which allowed them to see a very limited run.

3 Pepsi DS

The Pepsi DS console

Japan is crazy about Pepsi. Besides this DS collaboration, let’s not forget the PS1 game which was only released in Japan, Pepsi man. This pack didn’t come with a weird game like that though. The DS was blue with a small Pepsi logo on it. It also came with headphones and a case that were more on the brand than the console itself. This was a lottery prize in a Japanese competition and it is estimated that only a thousand of them were won at most.

2 SaGa 2: Hihou Densetsu: Goddess of Destiny DSi

The SaGa 2 console: Hihou Densetsu: Goddess Of Destiny DSi

This DSi bundle was themed a remake. The game was a remake of Final Fantasy Legend II, or at least that’s how western fans knew him.

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Since the beginning of this Game Boy series, Japan has always known it as SaGa. Aside from the history lessons, the system looks good with black on gold and it came with the game. SaGa 2: Hihou Densetsu: Goddess of Destiny never released in the West although there is an English fan patch for it.

1 One Piece Unlimited World Red 3DS XL

The One Piece 3DS XL console

Gold on black always looks good, but so does red on black A piece console proves. Japan is lousy with various anime-related Nintendo and PlayStation bundles that never seem to come out here. On the bright side, the game at least in this case has arrived. In terms of a console variant, this 3DS XL might be the best if not one of the best the series has ever seen. The pack comes with the game as well as costume DLC.

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