The ring of death and other serious problems we have suffered with our consoles.
- Red Ring of Death – Xbox 360
- Yellow Light of Death – PlayStation 3
- Random Disc Eject – PlayStation 4
- Joy-Con Drift – Nintendo Switch
- Dead pixels and dust on the screen – PSP
- Error reading double-layer discs – Nintendo Wii
- Short Life Lens – Sega Dreamcast
- Disc Player Issues – Xbox One
- Thompson Disc Player – Xbox
- Crashes and crashes – Wii U
The new consoles from Sony and Microsoft, PS5 and Xbox Series X | S, are not without problems and errors in their first weeks on sale. However, this has been happening for decades on PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo and Sega consoles, and here we show you what are the 10 most known and frustrating mistakes in the history of consoles, from the Xbox 360 ring of death to the disc eject error on PS4.
The launch of a new console is usually accompanied by errors and serious problems. This is something that we have already seen with PS5 and Xbox Series X | S, which are being affected by some bugs that, fortunately, have a solution or alternative. The same thing happened (and happens) to Nintendo Switch with its problematic Joy-Con, for example.
That said, ” The good thing ” is that these errors of PS5 and Xbox Series X | S will be solved over the weeks and in future models, as it happened in the past generation of PS4 and Xbox One. At other times in history, the solution was much more drastic or you had to directly say goodbye to your beloved console.
And this is the reason for this report; We will travel through the tunnel of time to analyze the 10 most famous and destructive problems that have affected our fellow players. From the Dreamcast or PSP to Xbox 360 or Nintendo Switch, very few are the lucky consoles that have been spared these frustrating glitches.
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We show you what they are the 10 most well-known mistakes in the history of video game consoles, some of them already famous even in popular culture. Here we go.
Red Ring of Death – Xbox 360
One of the best known console bugs ever, and it’s a shame, because Xbox 360 was a huge success for Microsoft and coughed in the face of its main rival, Sony’s PS3. The infamous ring of death was a recurring problem in the console’s early years, and there was no definitive solution.
As a result of the Xbox 360 overheating, the green ring on the ON button turned into a red circle and the console became useless. Microsoft extended the warranty from one to three years for this error, and it had losses of more than a billion dollars. Fortunately, with the Elite, Slim or Super Slim models, this problem almost completely disappeared.
Yellow Light of Death – PlayStation 3
The error that affected the first PS3 models was a nightmare for Sony, almost at the level of the Xbox 360 ring of death. The cause was practically the same; the console was overheating due to Wear of a thermal paste on the base PS3 models, and this caused a crash in the console. I was one of those affected by this error (RIP my PS3 FAT).
There was a variant of this problem, although not as destructive. The flashing red light indicated that the console was having trouble dissipating heat, due to obstruction of dust in the vents. This could be easily fixed, albeit voiding the warranty …
Random Disc Eject – PlayStation 4
Beyond PS4 overheating issues, this bug caused more of a headache in the first two years of Sony’s console, which caused a detail of the base model of PlayStation 4 to be modified, related to the ” Eject ” button to eject disc.
It turns out that one of the rubber supports if we placed the console vertically, was just below the button to eject disc, and the pressure from the weight of PS4 made the console eject disc at any time, making us return to the Start menu. Sony replaced the touch button with a mechanical button and the problem seemed to be solved.
Joy-Con Drift – Nintendo Switch
One of the most serious problems of Nintendo consoles, which even continues to give a lot to talk about today. The Big N faces a number of lawsuits for this particular Switch Joy-Con bug, which has to do with joystick shifting and gyro calibration.
It turns out that when the Joy-Con wear out and suffer from this error, we it is impossible to play our Switch games normally or navigate their interface, for handling and control go crazy. Do you remember when your old controllers moved the joystick without touching them? Well, something similar, and aggravated by the gyroscope of these Joy-Con.
Dead pixels and dust on the screen – PSP
Although this problem is not as destructive as the previous ones, it must be said that Sony’s magnificent PSP (PlayStation Portable) was not free of errors. Did you sometimes see spots on the screen? This was due to the large gaps through which dust could enter the console, either in the assembly factories or already in our homes.
But more serious was the appearance of dead pixels on the PSP screen, a problem that is not new to portable consoles, but which was very annoying. The solution? Change the console thanks to the guarantee … or try your luck like a handyman.
Error reading double-layer discs – Nintendo Wii
One of those problems that, fortunately, had an official and almost definitive solution. Due to the design of the Wii disc reader and the large opening of the slot, the slot filled with dust very easily … and made it impossible to read double-layer discs. While Only 10 games in the Wii catalog use double-layer discs, some are real gems …
Examples like Super Smash Bros Brawl or Metroid Prime Trilogy were unplayable for this problem, but Nintendo released official cleaning discs to fix this problem, and it succeeded 99%.
Short Life Lens – Sega Dreamcast
A real nightmare for retro gamers (including myself), and the worst part is that there is no definitive solution. Although the Dreamcast components are of a high quality, it had a lethal handicap: the lens of its disc player. In its day this error did not appear until the final stretch of its life cycle, but today it is a very recurring problem for lovers of retro.
The only two solutions are: change the lens, an expensive option that today is more complicated than it seems, or continue to extend its life with continuous calibrations. The latter is simple and takes 5 minutes to do, but it will not end the problem in the medium to long term.
Disc Player Issues – Xbox One
The transition from consoles with physical disc players to exclusively digital hardware was already taking its first steps in the last generation, added to some problems with the classic mechanical players. Early Xbox One models were affected by a terrible screech when reading discs, the result of a jammed gear.
The first solution that the players found was to hit the console, on the reader area, which seemed to solve this error. Microsoft never approved this “rough” maneuver and recommended that users send their Xbox One to technical service. With the new One models (Elite, One S and One X) this was completely fixed.
Thompson Disc Player – Xbox
Microsoft’s original Xbox was pretty much a PC at the time, which made hacking pretty easy. Microsoft’s solution was to implement different types of readers (up to four), with more encrypted encoding, and the one that takes the cake is the Thompson reader.
Beyond the usual problem of jamming the reader tray, the worst thing was that this reader model did not read certain games, especially those of great capacity, and whose coding was more complex. This problem affected the first original Xbox models, but as of 2004 this error was solved with the model together with the Slim controller.
Crashes and crashes – Wii U
Although all of the above problems were due to hardware bugs, on Wii U the bugs came with the software. It turns out that some console updates cause crashes, errors in games and applications or system crashes, depending on the console and randomly.
Nintendo never quite recognized this problem, although it affected more players than it first appears. While the frequency of this error decreased with each update, the Wii U never finished eradicating this strange and frustrating error.
Have you had any of these errors on your console? Could you get out of trouble? While these are the 10 most famous and frequent problems of this selection of consoles, there are many others that we have not discussed, either due to their rarity or less frequent.