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Since the launch of the original PlayStation, Sony Computer Entertainment has established itself as one of the most important players in the history of video games. They’ve now launched four home consoles and two handhelds, and published many games on top of that. It’s a history that Sony should look back on with pride.
But did you know that Sony has been publishing games well before the word “PlayStation” was even thought up? Indeed, Sony dipped their toes in video game publishing for several years before branching off on their own, releasing games on platforms such as NES, Genesis, and PC.
We’ve explored the humble beginnings of several SCE Worldwide Studios, but now it’s time to look at Sony’s brief time as a third-party publisher before PlayStation took off.
The first game that Sony got their hands on was 1989’s Super Dodge Ball for NES. The publisher on the box was CSG Imagesoft, with “CSG” standing for CBS/Sony Group. It’s a name that reeks of super generic company branding, like DataEast or Initech, but that was a time when video games were largely seen either as toys or computer software like anything else.
Besides all of that, Super Dodge Ball was a hell of a lot of fun. Chances are that you played dodgeball at least once growing up, but Super Dodge Ball made the gym class staple seem like a hyper competitive sport of the highest order. It’s criminally underrated and easily one of the best multiplayer games in the NES library, so check it out sometime!