Posted By: wraggster
Hi all this is a network wide feature of sorts ill be doing for just about every console thats emulated and that we own, in time it can be used as a reference point for people to look at what games are the very best on each system
Firstly heres a look at each system and a description to remind you of the history of the console.
Around March 12th, 1997 rumors began to surface about what began as a 64-bit upgrade for the Sega Saturn. Eventually news began to leak about Sega?s development of a totally new console. By June 1997, Sega had two different design specs under consideration to become the new console. One design was code-named ?Black Belt?, and the other code-named ?Dural?.
?Black Belt? was being designed by Sega of America. The console would sport an IBM/Motorola PowerPC 603e CPU with 3Dfx Voodoo graphics chipset. As a result of the programming difficulties of the Sega Saturn, Sega of America also approached big time Windows developer Microsoft to create an easy to program operating system for the console (Probably where Microsoft took an interest in the console market). Sega of Japan however began developing ?Dural? which would sport a Hitachi SH-4 CPU with PowerVR2 graphics chipset designed by old console rival NEC/Videologic (Maker of the Turbografx 16, Turbo Duo, and PC-FX). Both designs were brought to the big shots at Sega, and compared side by side. It was determined that the ?Dural? design would be used, but would incorporate elements of the ?Black Belt? design. As a result most of the members of the American design team quit the company. 3Dfx then filed a breach of contract lawsuit against Sega.
Sega worked with Microsoft, Hitachi, NEC/Video Logic and Yamaha to produce the new console. It was announced to the public as the Sega 'Katana' on September 7th 1997, and would be the first 128-bit console to enter the videogame market. Sega fueled the console?s hype by spending $100 million to launch it.
The system now called Sega Dreamcast was re-scheduled a number of times due to the demand for units. . Dreamcast was finally released on November 25th 1998 in Japan. By 16th July 1999, the Dreamcast was outselling the Nintendo 64 by a 3 to 1 ratio. Meanwhile in America, advertising for the Dreamcast was taking place and by August 1999 it had broken many sales records by grossing an estimated 98 million dollars. Europe also saw a successful release on October 14th 1999.
The Dreamcast was an impressive system boasting powerful specs, a simple to program Windows CE operating system, and a built in modem for use in internet browsing and online gameplay. The year long wait from the Japanese release gave 3rd Party Developers ample time to bring an impressive collection of software titles for the console's release.
After some delays, SegaNet was finally introduced. SegaNet gave Dreamcast users the ability to play games online. In January 2000, 30% of Japanese Dreamcast owners were online, and by February 17th this had risen to almost 50%. In the US over 300,000 people were using DC's Internet and in Europe over 200,000 were reported. It would seem that Sega had finally corrected the mistakes that plagued them in the past.
Even with the success of Dreamcast all was not well in the world of Sega. Sega faced numerous lawsuits from companies such as 3Dfx, and were attempting to recover from a failed merger with Japanese company Bandai that occurred in January 23 1997. The eventual release of Sony?s 128-bit over hyped successor complicated matters with it?s backwards compatibility and ability to play DVD?s (more bang for the buck). The President of Sega Sholchiro Irimajiri steped down and was replaced by Isao Ohkawa. One of Ohkawa's first steps is to issue an ultimatum and 500 million dollars to Sega of America to make the Dreamcast strong in the U.S market again. Sega began facing difficulties with price wars against Sony. Sega initially could not afford to lower the price of the console because they would never meet the break-even point ( losses from previous console failures did not help matters. Console manufacturers actually lose money for each console sold, and recap losses by licensing each game released for the console.) Obviously with Nintendo and Microsoft?s announcement of new consoles, Sega knew they couldn?t hold out.
On January 31 2001, Sega of America announced a major restructuring. The price the Sega Dreamcast dropped to $99.95 on February 4, and production of new Dreamcasts ceased on March 31. Sega left behind the hardware business and became a 3rd party software developer. Sega of Japan followed suit two days later.
The Sega Dreamcast was an amazing console, and possibly one of Sega?s greatest successes. It opened the gateway to console online gaming, and it's heart lives on in Sega?s NAOMI arcade board. It?s a shame that the Dreamcast?s success could not save Sega as a hardware company, but it?s amazing game library lives on in console and PC ports.
FACT: Sega?s choice to use a simplistic operating system to run it?s Dreamcast console was not only a benefit to 3rd Party Software developers, but also to private programmers around the world. Even after Sega announced they would no longer support the console, the Dreamcast lives on special thanks to these amazing private software authors. .
Thanks again to Dark Watcher for his info above.
Now heres our question to you - Whats the greatest Dreamcast Game Ever ?
Those of you have never owned or heard of a Dreamcast Check out DC News and the Dreamcast Homebrew File Archive
More DCEmu Console History Can Be Found Here