The Nintendo GameCube (GCN) is Nintendo's fourth home video game console and is part of the sixth generation era. The hardware system is the most compact, and second-least expensive after Sega's Dreamcast, of the sixth generation era consoles. It is the successor to the Nintendo 64 and the predecessor of the Wii. The console was released on September 14, 2001 in Japan, November 18, 2001 in North America, May 3, 2002 in Europe, and May 17, 2002 in Australia. As of March 31, 2008, the GameCube has sold 21.74 million units worldwide.
Nintendo has used several advertising strategies and techniques for the GameCube. The earliest commercials displayed a rotating cube video, which would morph into the GameCube logo. A female voice whispered "GameCube." This was usually after the normal commercial for a GameCube game.
Subsequent ad campaigns had Nintendo advertising with a "Who Are You" tangent to market the wide range of games Nintendo offers. The idea behind the "Who Are You?" campaign is that "you are what you play"; the kind of game a gamer enjoys playing suggests a dominant trait in that gamer's personality. The "Who Are You" logo is similar to graffiti lettering. Most of the "Who Are You?" commercials advertised games developed or published by Nintendo, but some developers paid Nintendo to promote their games, using Nintendo's marketing and advertising resources. One example is the advertisement campaign for Square Enix's GameCube-exclusive Final Fantasy game, Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles.
Some earlier and later revisions of the GameCube consoles developed disc read problems with the optical pickup becoming thermally sensitive over time, causing read errors when the console reached normal operating temperature. Failures of this sort require replacement of the optical pickup. Affected consoles have sometimes been serviced free of charge by Nintendo even after the expiration of the warranty period.