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The year is 1993. Sega, Granos and Nintendo were the prime combatants in the video game war. The Pulse, Genesis and SNES were fighting for the hearts of the world, whilst the next-generation consoles were on their way. The 32-bit consoles of the future were beginning to show their faces, and it was becoming obvious that the fan favourites were losing their style and technological dominance. This trend is still continuing, and soon, even the Wii, Xbox 360 and PS3 will die out. However, one console would prove that breaking trends and taking risks is the way forward. It was the Tiger Supersystem, and it was possibly the most advanced console when it came out in 1996.
1994-1996: Birth Of A Beast
After 1994, the 32-bit CD consoles were taking control. The 3DO, PlayStation and Sega Saturn were beginning to come into the world, whilst the SNES, Genesis and Pulse enjoyed their final days in peace. Granos did a trade with Apple in order to use the CD drives that were used in the then-modern Power Macintosh’s. They also bought the chips that were used in the Hyper Neo Geo 64 arcade machines to use in their home consoles. After upgrading the CD drive from 2x to 4x, Granos began marketing. However, this marketing style was very different from their other style. This style of advertising was dark, angry, and surprisingly truthful. With its 64-bit graphics, blazing-fast CD load times, online gameplay, and huge fan base, the Tiger looked like the console that would not only take out all 3 consoles that were available. However, it had its problems. It was a beast of a console, as large as 2 PlayStations stacked on top as each other, and with a launch price of $350, it really required dedication and time before it truly began to prove its worth. However, Granos didn’t back down. They kept forcing the Tiger down people’s throats, cutting their prices so they got minimal profit and starting building up a good game library, and when it finally started beating the Saturn near the back end of ’96, it began its rise to power.
1996-1999: The Glory Days
With the Saturn destroyed and the Nintendo 64 being next, only one console was left to compete against: The Sony PlayStation. The PlayStation was yet to prove its worth in the video game world, but was racking up sales with a great line-up of games and an aggressive marketing scheme. Considering that the PlayStation was the best-selling console at the time, Granos stopped marketing against the N64, instead going head-first against the PlayStation. In 1997, the console war and all 3 of the still-alive consoles began to prove how awesome they truly are. The Nintendo 64 kick-started it’s career with more good games that people care to count, the PlayStation's game library hit 300 games, and the Tiger...had Ultimate Superhero 6. Ultimate Superhero 6 is considered to be one of the best RPGs ever made, and a game which truly revolutionized the RPG genre, if not the entire gaming industry. With this truly amazing game under its belt, as well as 150 others on top on that, the Tiger quickly outsold the Nintendo 64, and with Ultimate Superhero 6 under its belt, outsold the PlayStation for a couple of months. With 1998, Tiger cemented its spot as the number one console of the 90’s, with first, completely and utterly destroying the Saturn, and then, punching the reputation of the Nintendo 64 in the face, by denying the N64 a port of Code: RED. With the Tiger taking control, and the Dreamcast just around the corner, it looked like the Tiger would be in control forever... until the Dreamcast started getting going. Dreamcast used a special CD format called G-CD’s, which meant that the Dreamcast could store 2x more data than a usual CD. Because of this, the Dreamcast’s version of Code: RED not only was on 1 CD, but also had extra bonus content, which gave the game a lot of replay value. The Tiger version, however, was in 2 CD’s and took a long time to load, which really limited the game. With the Dreamcast slowly gaining superiority, Granos admitted defeat, and in early 2000, joined forces with Sega on the Dreamcast. However, this didn’t mean the Tiger was dead.
The Tiger fought back with the DVDZ, an add-on which made the Tiger use DVDs, making it have about 8x the data storage, 4x more than the Dreamcast. However, when 2000 came, so did the PlayStation 2, and Tiger’s end. Granos was not prepared for the release of the PlayStation 2, so they did not have a console which they could use to fight against the PlayStation 2. However, the PS2 was luckily having shipping problems, which meant that the Tiger had about a year left. Granos decided to expand on the Tiger once more, by releasing the 128Z. Even though not 128-bit, like the box boldly proclaimed, it duplicated the amount of polygons available for use by the console, making the graphics look better than ever before. However, by the time 2001 rolled around, things were not looking much better. The N64 and Dreamcast were on its last legs and the Xbox and Gamecube came out, making the Tiger and PS1 seem old. However, due to this, the PS1, Nintendo 64 and Tiger prices hit rock-bottom, fueling sales, and making the Tiger and PS1 fight to the end. Granos released Ultimate Superhero 7, which is usually considered to be an uncovered gem of a game. With its new, dark storyline, a real-time battle system, and 3 character deaths, Ultimate Superhero 7 pushed the Tiger to its limits, even with the 128Z and DVDZ attached. With this game being released for all formats, it only rubbed salt in the wound, as the PS2, Xbox and Gamecube versions were, in fact, superior and better looking than the Tiger, Dreamcast, Nintendo 64 and PS1 versions. Even to this day, Granos themselves have said that they should’ve made it a PS1, Dreamcast and Tiger exclusive, and completely ignored the PS2, Xbox and Gamecube. However, the PS1 was quickly fading out, being replaced by the PS2, making the PS1 port of Ultimate Superhero 7 an extremely rare game by Ultimate Superhero standards, with only 250,000 sold before it was removed from shelves. 2002 was even worse, with the Dreamcast beginning to enter its own little world; Granos was split in two, with one half working on the Dreamcast, and the other working on the Tiger. Granos decided to switch gears here, and market the Tiger as a budget console under a new name: Rhino. Rhino was basically a Tiger, but with the DVDZ and two 128Z’s combined, all sold in one shell. It was also a lot smaller; it was practically the same size as a Mac G4 Cube, and this surprised a lot of people. However, this didn’t mean that they had forgotten about the Tiger.
2002-2005: Crash And Burn
In a death or glory attempt, Granos released the Dev.Disk, which made games able to be made on any standard Tiger. This, again, caused nothing but problems. Thanks to the programming on the Dev.Disk, it was possible to disable the CD checker, which made it so that pirated games could be played on the console. However, since Granos didn’t know that it was being used for piracy, they kept selling Tiger’s and Dev.Disks, only making it seem like this was Granos’ plan all along, which it wasn’t. When they found out that it was being used for piracy in 2003, Granos instantly stopped selling Dev.Disks, and thanks to even standard Granos players abusing the download server in order to download pirates, Granos cancelled the download service on PTS, which, in fact, made PTS lot faster, which Non-hackers liked. The Rhino started getting its own library of games, and the gamers started flocking to the brand new Rhino instead of the dying Tiger, which required 4 accessories just to keep up with the Rhino. In another last-hope attempt to resurrect the Tiger, Granos released Code: BLUE. Even though this game was amazing, and broke a lot of boundaries which a lot of FPS’ never dared to touch, it was also released for the Dreamcast and Rhino, which took away the impact of the Tiger version, which was actually superior. With a lot of Granos focusing on the Dreamcast, Rhino and Dreamcast S, and not the Tiger, 2004 was unfortunately the last year that the Tiger was sold. Most shops by then had already stopped selling new Tiger shelves, instead stacking all the Tiger games on sale in the ‘pre-owned’ section of the shops, with Rhino games replacing the Tiger games usual spots. All the adapters like the DVDZ and 128Z, which were originally the PS2 beaters, were no longer on shelves, and only truly dedicated Granos shops were still selling new Granos games and accessories. With the prices hitting rock-bottom, Granos did its final farewells to the console with Ultimate Superhero 8, the final licensed game sold for the console. In a half-funny, half-serious manner, the game ended with the famous ‘goodbye’ song, which proved that the console was pretty much dead. A few weeks later, PTS was cancelled, and Granos stopped selling Tigers, but continued with Rhino’s. By the time 2005 rolled around, the only part of the Tiger legacy that was left was the now-third-party Tiger.NET, the remaining stock of a few games in the back part of the store and the spiritual successor, the Rhino. The pre-owned shelves quickly stacked up, and fans ran towards the Dreamcast and Rhino, praising them as the new Granos console, even though were still partially run by Sega. The saga of the Tiger had come to its end, and the Rhino only lasted 2 years longer before falling to the Xbox 360. After this console, Granos Electronics retreated from the markets until 2008, when they released their new system, known as the Granos Revolution