The console's descent from the gaming throne was largely in part, if not fully, to a last minute strategy change with a certain electronics manufacturer. Wikipedia reminds us: "While Nintendo chose the cartridge format for the N64, the company originally signed a contract with Sony in 1988 to develop a CD-ROM drive add-on for the SNES. When Hiroshi Yamauchi read the (already signed by Nintendo) original 1988 contract between Sony and Nintendo and learned that it allowed Sony 25% of the profits from the machine and also a part of games' sales profits, he was furious. He deemed the contract totally unacceptable, and secretly canceled all plans for a joint Nintendo-Sony SNES CD attachment."
That CD-ROM drive later became the PlayStation. While not trying to beat a dead horse, what's your take on arguably the most crucial turning point for console gaming given the industry's status quo?