JAKKS Pacific GameKey Systems

Console Name: JAKKS Pacific GameKey Systems
Release Date: July 2005
Country of Origin: United States of America
Publisher: JAKKS Pacific
Staff(s):
Stephen Berman, president and COO of JAKKS Pacific
Nelo Lucich, Jakks Pacific's Vice President of interactive

History
JAKKS Pacifics was founded b on January 12, 1995 by Jack Friedman, an American businessman who had previously founded LJN and THQ. In 2002, the company decided to venture in a domain by launching its first plug & play system, the Atari Classic 10-in-1 TV game. By 2004, JAKKS Pacifics already had a dozen of their Plug It In & Play TV Games on the market and was becoming to be one of the stars amongst the JAKKS Pacific portfolio. Their TV Games units were sold in more than 500 different retail customers in over 35 countries worldwide. In 2005, the company announced that they would expand their TV Games line with new TV Games technology, such as wireless versions, GameKey expansion packs and AC adapters. The plan was to release 20 The goal of the key was allow additional content to be added to the system later on. GameKey were set to have additional games for that features multiple games, or additional levels for that feature only one game but with multiple levels.

From February to July, JAKKS Pacifics contacted their licensee to negotiate the addition of the GameKey in their future release. By July, the company was ready to release their firsts consoles.

Release
Released in July 2005, the Gamekeys had a rough start. The new units were not selling well. JAKKS Pacifics had a lot of hope that the Nickelodeon series which included SpongeBob Squarepants, Dora the Explorer and Nicktoons would be a huge success, but it wasn’t. The systems were not selling and the Gamekeys were selling even less. And as they turn out to sell less than expected, merchants were not keen to let these consoles take shelves space. It was then decided to pack-in some of the GameKey in certain packages.  The Stand-Alone pack would not include anything but the system, the Super GameKey Combo Pack, would include one GameKey, the Super Value Gamekey Mega Pack would include 2 Gamekey while the Super Value Power Pack would include one Gamekey and a power supply.

Demise
Sadly, the sales numbers were still insufficient to justify developing additional games. In mid-2006, all Gamekey development was stopped and products were no longer marketed for it. The packaging was changed and the GameKey logo was removed from the consoles. JAKKS Pacifics continued with its TV Games line, but the GameKeys were never used again.

Consoles
JAKKS Pacifics released at least 22 different consoles that support the GameKeys. All console that share the same compatibility codes will be compatible with the same GameKeys, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that they share the same built-in games. For example, all Star Wars consoles (compatibility code: SW) have the same built-in games while the Nickelodeon ones (compatibility code: NK) doesn’t. It is also important to point out that some GameKeys compatible console has a “Game Key Ready” button. As most of these console were also released without this feature, this button and the GameKeys port are the only visual aids to differentiate the GameKeys Ready console that their non-GameKeys counterparts. Console detailed for about $20 while GameKey, when sold individually, detailed for $9.99. Although all GameKey have the same shape, they are product specific. If you try to insert a GameKey into the incorrect controller, a splash screen will appear saying : “This GameKey is only meant for use with the [controller type] TV games controller. Please turn off the unit and remove the GameKey.” A logo of the required GameKey and controller type will also be displayed (ex. “SW” for Star Wars).

 

Darth Vader
Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
Compatibility: SW
Compatible GameKey: 1
General Grievous
Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
Compatibility: SW
Compatible GameKey: 1
Yoda – Limited Collector Edition
Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
Compatibility: SW
Compatible GameKey: 1
R2-D2 – Limited Collector Edition
Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
Compatibility: SW
Compatible GameKey: 1
Dora the Explorer
Nickelodeon
Compatibility: NK
Compatible GameKey: 3
Nicktoons
Nickelodeon
Compatibility: NK
Compatible GameKey: 3
SpongeBob Squarepants: Fry Cook Games
Nickelodeon
Compatibility: NK
Compatible GameKey: 3
MS. Pac-Man
Namco
Compatibility: NM
Compatible GameKey: 4
Disney (Red)
Disney
Compatibility: DY
Compatible GameKey: 3
Disney (Blue)
Disney
Compatibility: DY
Compatible GameKey: 3
Disney Princess
Disney Princess
Compatibility: DP
Compatible GameKey: 1
Spider-Man
Marvel
Compatibility: MV
Compatible GameKey: 1
2005
Fantastic 4
Fantastic 4
Compatibility: F4
Compatible GameKey: 0
Winnie the Pooh
Winnie the Pooh
Compatibility: WP
Compatible GameKey: 0
WWE
WWE
Compatibility: WW
Compatible GameKey: 0
Dragonball Z
Dragonball Z
Compatibility: DB
Compatible GameKey: 0
Care Bears
Care Bears
Compatibility: CB
Compatible GameKey: 0
Wheel of Fortune
Wheel of Fortune
Compatibility: WF
Compatible GameKey: 0
Justice League
DC Comics
Compatibility: DC
Compatible GameKey: 0
Scooby-Doo
Scooby-Doo
Compatibility: SD
Compatible GameKey: 0
Capcom
Capcom
Compatibility: CC
Compatible GameKey: 0
     

 

 

Games
13 different GameKeys exist. As mentioned, GameKeys are only compatible with the controller of the same type. See the Compatibility code in the table above.

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