Back in the 1990s, Nintendo and Sega introduced a number of add-on components to extend the longevity of their consoles. Sega released the Sega CD and the 32X for the Sega Genesis, while—in Japan—Nintendo released the 64DD, a magnetic disc drive for the Nintendo 64. After years of development, the add-on promised better graphics, deeper gameplay, and even internet connectivity. But the 64DD was a complete failure when it was released in Japan in 1999; 14 months and 10 games later, it was discontinued altogether. The 64DD was such a disaster for Nintendo that the gaming company halted the release of the add-on in the United States.
However, retro game collector and YouTuber Jason “Metal Jesus Rocks” Lindsey recently discovered an English-language production version of the 64DD. He acquired the unit from a Craigslist posting in the Seattle area, where Nintendo of America is headquartered. At first it was believed the 64DD was a prototype or developer kit, because it was dated for 1996/1997, two years before it was released in Japan. But a former engineer at Nintendo confirmed to Lindsey that it was, indeed, the retail-ready version.
Although the unit itself is operational, the blue disc that was included doesn’t boot up and Lindsey has been unable to track down any games for the add-on. Games were never developed for the U.S. market and it’s region-locked to North America, so Japanese games wouldn’t work either. He’s hoping that someone from the hardware-cracking community can help him read the disc or rip the operating system to use in emulation. Until then, we'll just have to imagine what could've been with the video above.