20 Companies and Products We Remember Fondly
There's no question that GPU manufacturer 3dfx helped change the face of PC gaming, and indeed the entire gaming industry. It started with the Voodoo Graphics chip back in 1996, supplied in various arcade gaming machines during a time when arcades still showcased the latest and greatest technology (although consoles eventually killed them off).
But when EDO DRAM prices dropped by the end of the year, 3dfx went into the PC business and brought forth its now-classic Voodoo Graphics PCI card. At the same time, id Software released its latest FPS game, Quake, ditching the pixel-based graphics engine used with previous games, and turned to vector-based polygons to create a more compelling experience. Taking advantage of 3dfx's miniport OpenGL driver, the revamped Quake (GLQuake) suddenly took PC gaming into a new era of graphics, providing smooth surfaces, gorgeous textures and lighting, and screaming-fast frame rates.
In 1998 3dfx took the GPU industry a step further and introduced Scan-Line Interleave, the ability to install two Voodoo2 boards and use them together as one processing power house. However over the next few years, the company saw a shift in strategy and an overall decline, leading to a filing for bankruptcy in 2000 and Nvidia's subsequent acquisition.
This one's for you, Billy.