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Category Archives: Sega Dreamcast

shenmue soccer ball

The Relentless Twitter Campaign to Save Shenmue Continues

When Twitter launched in 2006, most gamers assumed that the Shenmue series was dead in the water. The last game in the series, Shenmue II, had released back in 2001, shortly after Sega exited the console market. The big-budget franchise had earned rave reviews, but it also cost Sega a small fortune to develop. Between Sega’s financial woes and the years of radio silence, a third game seemed all but impossible. But like Ryo Hazuki, the protagonist of the Shenmue series, fans were incredibly persistent. They used Twitter as a rallying point, banding together to share their love of the series. On the third day of every months, hundreds, then thousands of users would tweet alongside the hashtag #SaveShenmue. It didn’t matter how hopeless things seemed; they were determined to see Ryo’s journey through to the end. On June 15th, 2015, the impossible happened.…

A Bunch of Morons Swam in Mashed Potatoes to Win a Dying Console

In an all-too-Flint-Tropics-like promotion of a floundering product, a few sad souls waded in processed vegetable mush to win a pile of Sega Dreamcast gear. It should be noted that the system had been discontinued and put on clearance for $50 around the same time period. According to the final issue of Official Dreamcast Magazine, published in March 2001, the console manufacturer hosted an event dubbed “Sega Spud Drive 2K”  in Hollywood which allegedly “shatter[ed] the line between product promotion and performance art.” Either the staff of the magazine were completely delusional or painfully aware of their fates and decided to make a mockery of the whole thing. The competition involved searching for the letters of “SEGA,” which were scattered about in the giant vat of creamed tubers.…
Skies of Arcadia

Skies of Arcadia Should Have Been the Die Hard of JRPGs

In the 90s, every other action movie was a shameless attempt to duplicate Die Hard‘s success. Speed was Die Hard on a bus; Passenger 57, Con Air, and Air Force One were Die Hard on a plane. Someone even made Die Hard in a high-rise, which is really just Die Hard minus John McClane. While I have a strong appreciation for originality, I’m also pretty cool with this sort of copycatting. If a concept is good enough, it’s worth repeating. Some of my favorite games are Dragon Quest clones, and I’ve played some pretty amazing Zelda ripoffs. The secret to imitation is figuring out what to copy. If action movies had tried to be Top Gun instead of Die Hard, they would have faltered, and if JRPGs had tried to be Skies of Arcadia instead of Final Fantasy, they would have flourished.…
Sonic Adventure

Shattered Dreamcast: Sega’s Last Stand

Sega of America shocked the video game world when, four months ahead of schedule, they announced at the E3 Expo that their console, the Saturn, would be available at retail that very day. This gave Sega a significant buffer between the release of their system and newcomer Sony’s highly anticipated PlayStation. But since developers were also unaware of this abrupt change of plans, there were few games available at launch, and with the PlayStation arriving in just a few short months with plenty of software and for $100 less, Sega’s sequel to the massively successful Genesis was doomed from the beginning. Down but not out, Sega set out to design a revolutionary new system that would resurrect their once sterling reputation as one of the industry’s foremost hardware manufacturers.…
Power Stone 2 Umbrella

Power Stone 2 Is Everything I Want Super Smash Bros. to Be

Technically speaking, Smash Bros. predates Power Stone 2. While the original Power Stone made its debut in 1999, the sequel wasn’t released until 2000, one year after the first Smash Bros. title. They were two similar games that happened to come out around the same time, and it’s unlikely that either title influenced the other in any way. Still, I can’t help but feel that Smash Bros. could learn a few things from Power Stone. I love every game in the Smash franchise, but none of them have ever compared to the feeling of four-player Power Stone 2. It doesn’t matter that you can’t play as beloved characters and are stuck using the clunky Dreamcast controller. Everything about it is magical.…
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The 3D Platformer: How 1996 Witnessed the Birth of a Genre
Pokemon Nintendo Power
Nintendo Power Predicted a “Pokémon Trade War” in 1998