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A SEGA fan's lament


SEGA DreamcastSega is still haunted by these 3 mistakes. They had cost a lot of money to market and turned away a large chunk of the gaming population. Still, they released in 1998 in Japan their Dreamcast. It was the first 128-bit console and it was the first and currently still is the only console with a peculiar gizmo, a modem. It was obvious that they had learned from their past mistakes.

Aside from improved classics like Sonic, Sega Rally and Daytona, third parties contributed with improved games of their own like Soul Calibur, Dead or Alive, Marvel vs. Capcom 2, Street Fighter 3 and Resident Evil: Code Veronica. Though there was no support from Electronic Arts, Sega's own NBA 2K1 and NFL 2K1 could hold their own against their EA counterparts. These two along with Quake 3 and Phantasy Star Online also brought something new: going online and playing multiplayer. New concepts in gaming were introduced as well in Shenmue and Crazy Taxi and Jet Grind Radio.

The list of good games goes on and on. Electronic Gaming Monthly (EGM) says the Dreamcast has the highest ratio of good games vs. bad ones. says that while the Dreamcast may not have been the best selling console, it was still one of the best consoles ever. I along with people who have one have to agree.

Sadly last February Sega announced it would discontinue Dreamcast production and would pull out from the hardware market. Games were canceled left and right. It seems stupid that the console with the best games wasn't profitable.

There are many factors to blame: the curse of their 3 previous systems, poor third party support, online games coming too late and poor marketing. Also 3 consoles were coming out that were more powerful and had more money to back them up. People decided to wait. Sega to save itself decided to develop games for its once archrivals Sony and Nintendo and the newcomer Microsoft.

It is a sad turn of events and business is still business.

Sega will still continue making its games. I can't help but wonder what they can do with superior hardware. They will also continue making Dreamcast games until the end of the year. Titles to watch out for are of course Shenmue and Sonic Adventure 2.

Here in the Philippines the situation is not as bleak. The Dreamcast is still, at the moment, the console to own thanks to our supply of games from our friends in Greenhills.

As you can see, the situation is not that bad. This early Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft are fighting over who gets the most Sega games. Whoever wins will get my support and in my opinion, will have the best chance to win the next-gen console war.

July 2001

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