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access_time March 20, 2014 at 1:25 PM in Features by Charlie Grammer

Gamebusters myth 19: The mafia created a game console

Did the mafia truly create the Gizmondo?

Did the mafia truly create the Gizmondo?

Welcome to the 19th Gamebusters myth, dear readers. If you’re a regular reader then I thank you for all of the support, and if you’re new to the series, this is where I track down myths in the gaming world and try to debunk them. Because some myths are fact I am unable to debunk everything, but either way I do hope these articles let you learn something new.

This week we’ll be looking into the myth that the mafia has created a gaming console. The story goes that mafia had its hands in pretty much every part of the entertainment industry. As a result, it wouldn’t be hard to imagine that they had their hands in the gaming industry as well.

While they  don’t have their hands in the newest consoles by Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo, it’s said that they did indeed create their own system. This system, named The Gizmondo, is a handheld system that was released in 2005, although it never really took off. The story goes that it sold less than 25,000 units, earning it the title of the worst selling handheld of all time.

Once the system officially died, details came out about Stefan Eriksson, one of the company’s executives. It was alleged that he ran a Swedish criminal organization known as “Uppsalamaffian”, or The Uppsala Mafia before he joined the company. Upon joining he was one of those main minds behind the doomed-to-fail handheld.

Fact or myth? This is another mafia myth that is fact. Stefan Eriksson did run the organization and after the details came out he left the company in a spectacular fashion. To go into detail he wrecked a $2 million Enzo Ferrari sports car in 2006 and had his house raided on suspicion of embezzlement, grand theft auto, drunken driving, and weapons charges. He proceeded to spend three years in jail, thanks to a plea bargain, and has been deported to Sweden.

Is there a myth that you’d like to see? If so, just leave a comment and I’ll make your request a priority. Until next time, happy gaming!


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