The GameCube (Japanese: ゲームキューブ Hepburn: Gēmukyūbu?, officially called the Nintendo GameCube, abbreviated NGC in Japan and GCN in Europe and North America) is a home video game console released by Nintendo in Japan on September 14, 2001; in North America on November 18, 2001; in Europe on May 3, 2002; and in Australia on May 17, 2002. The sixth-generation console is the successor to the Nintendo 64 and competed with Sony Computer Entertainment's PlayStation 2 and Microsoft's Xbox.
The GameCube is the first Nintendo console to use optical discs as its primary storage medium. The discs are similar to theminiDVD format; as a result of their smaller size and the console's small disc compartment, the system was not designed to play standard DVDs or audio CDs. The console supports online gaming for a small number of titles via the broadband or modem adapter and connects to the Game Boy Advance via the link cable, allowing players to access exclusive in-game features using the handheld as a second screen and controller.
Contemporary reception of the GameCube was generally positive. The console was praised for its controller, extensive software library and high-quality games, but was criticized for its exterior design and lack of features. Nintendo sold 21.74 million GameCube units worldwide before it was discontinued in 2007.