The Game Wave Family Entertainment System, or just the Game Wave, was a hybrid game console and DVD player co-developed by Canada-based ZAPiT Games and award-winning R&D and product commercialization consulting firm Nytric Ltd.
Unlike other consoles of its generation, the Game Wave was made specifically for families with no heavily action-based game genres present in its library. In fact, a majority of the Game Wave's titles were trivia or puzzle games. With its ability to play DVD movies, it also acted as a multimedia platform. Because it was a family-oriented console, the Game Wave utilizes four IR remote-type controllers, one for each player and each with a different IR beat frequency and alphabetically-marked buttons for selecting answers in trivia games. It can accommodate up to six controllers at a time when one purchases the extra controllers separately, allowing for six-player gameplay with certain software titles.
- 4° degrees: The Arc of Trivia Vol. 1 (pack-in title)
- 4° degrees: The Arc of Trivia Vol. 2
- 4° degrees: The Arc of Trivia Bible Edition (pack-in title)
- Letter Zap
- Lock 5
- Rewind 2005
- Rewind 2006
- VeggieTales: Veg-Out! Family Tournament (pack-in title)
- Zap 21
Why It Flopped
- The console was comprised of just a cheap DVD player with a Mediamatics 8611 processor mated to the DVD drive by an Altera MAX II Complex Programmable Logic Device. Much weaker than the other 7th generation consoles.
- This was in fact done to keep production costs down and to make it less expensive for people to buy.
- Poor build quality.
- The IR remote controllers used by the system aren't all that responsive.
- The games have slow and long loading times.
- On some units, the DVD tray would eject and close on its own, adding to point number 2 above.
- There was little to no advertising for the system, even with Hari Venkatacharya as the CEO of ZAPiT Games. As a result of that, it sold around 70,000 units.
- Only thirteen software titles were released for it.
- The packaging design for the system wasn't even decided upon until a month or so before release in its native Canada.
- The team at ZAPiT Games was constantly fluctuating, with members coming and going.
- They tried advertising and selling the Game Wave to Christian families in the Bible Belt, even with VeggieTales: Veg-Out! Family Tournament (which was tied in with the VeggieTales: God Made You Special, Live! Tour) being packed in with the system, along with Game Wave products being sold on the official VeggieTales online store, but it still failed to sell well.
- Around 2005, right-wing Christians in the Bible Belt within the United States of America were agreeing with Jack Thompson's views about video games promoting violence and sex in youth. ZAPiT Games knew this, and made the decision to poise the Game Wave as a wholesome alternative to the more expensive consoles and then directly sell it to Christian families.
- In 2013, Hari Venkatacharya was arrested for committing millions of dollars worth of fraud, having defrauded over 40 companies worldwide, 25 of which being in the Toronto area alone. Some of this fraudulent activity was committed, before and even during Venkatacharya's time at ZAPiT Games and Nytric.