The Neo Geo AES is a cartridge-based arcade and home video game system released in 1990 by Japanese game company SNK. The hardware featured comparatively colorful 2D graphics and high-quality sound.
The MVS (Multi Video System), as the Neo Geo was known to the coin-op industry, offered arcade operators the ability to put up to 6 different arcade titles into a single cabinet, a key economic consideration for operators with limited floorspace. With its games stored on self-contained cartridges, a game-cabinet could be exchanged for a different game-title by swapping the game's ROM-cartridge and cabinet artwork. Several popular franchise-series, including Fatal Fury, The King of Fighters, Metal Slug and Samurai Shodown, were released for the platform.
In the United States, the console was planned to debut at $599 USD and included two joystick controllers and a game (either Baseball Stars Professional or NAM-1975). However, this plan was quickly scrapped and when the system had its American launch, it debuted at $649.99 with two joysticks, and either Baseball Stars Professional or Nam-1975. This package was known as the 'Gold System.' Later, the 'Gold System' was bundled with Magician Lord and Fatal Fury. The system was also released in a 'Silver System' package for $399.99, which included one joystick controller and did not include a game. Other games were priced at about $200 (and up). With these 'premium' prices, though, most gamers weren't able to afford the system, so the console was only accessible to a niche market.The Neo Geo system was also marketed as as a very costly home console, commonly referred to today as the AES (Advanced Entertainment System.) The Neo Geo was marketed as 24-bit, though it was technically a 16-bit parallel-processing system.