The Vectrex was an 8-bit video game console developed by General Consumer Electric (GCE) and later bought by Milton Bradley Company. It was released in late 1982 at a retail price of $199. As the video game market declined and then crashed, the Vectrex exited the market in early 1984. The rights to the system reverted to its developers, Smith Engineering.
Smith Engineering briefly considered designing a handheld version of the device in 1988, though the success of the Nintendo Game Boy made such a project too risky. In the mid-1990s, Smith Engineering condoned the duplication of the Vectrex system image and cartridges for non-commercial uses.
Unlike other video game consoles which connected to TVs to display raster graphics, the Vectrex included its own monitor which displayed vector graphics. The monochrome Vectrex used screen overlays to give the illusion of color, and also to reduce the severity of the inherent flickering caused by the vector monitor.
It is widely believed that the Nintendo 64 was the first home console to include an analog controller. However the Vectrex, preceding the N64 by over a decade, featured an analog jostick as seen in Pole Position.
It was also possible to use light pen and 3D imager.
At the time many of the most popular arcade games used vector displays, and GCE was looking to set themselves apart from the pack by selling high-quality versions of games like Asteroids, Space Wars, and Armor Attack. The system even contained a built in game, the Asteroids-like Minestorm.
Even today there are new games in developement by hobby programmers. Also new hardware (for example Vecvox - speech synthesizer) is available.