Thursday, September 10, 2009

090909 - DREAMCAST WOULD'VE BEEN 10!


Was it the best ever console? Maybe not, but it has some of the best games on consoles ever!!! I had a wonderful time with my DC when it was alive. I still keep its carcass in my drawers, maybe I'll ship it out to get repaired one of these days.


I attributed the downfall of SEGA's console business to 3 points:

1. Piracy - c'mon we all had some 'cracked' Dreamcast games at some point.

2. Sony's marketing power - had us all fooled, PS2 wasn't more powerful than the DC - in fact it took them several years to iron out anti aliasing problems that were never an issue with the SEGA console right from the start.

3. Astronomical development costs of the Shenmue Saga. 70million dollars in USD sure sounds like about average for development costs now, but think back 10-12 years ago where the market isn't as vast as today and neither were videogames as accessible as now (and neither were the profits as readily accessible to the publishers and developers).


Shenmue had a lot of innovative features that were improved from older games - its so called 'quick time events' where you have to push a combination of buttons when the game requires you to - is now de facto standard for some of the biggest console titles (The Force Unleashed and God of War are some examples). Yet very few console games were able to replicate the sandbox feel of Shenmue - save GTA4, Fallout3 and the bigger budget games. It wasn't a profitable business since it was rumoured that every DC owner would have to buy Shenmue twice for SEGA to actually make money on both the console and Shenmue. Still when you look back at Shenmue maybe 8-9 years ago....the graphics looked on par, if not better than the Wii.



Anyway - I think its a shame SEGA got out of the console business - because it meant no exclusives, and the lack of a hardware department meant they weren't able to do things to what they want.

Here's to the good times!!
Sorry for the cut off, I my blog can't take images more than 400px across.

2 comments:

Joshua Prowse said...

Nice retrospective. And a good point too that Wii's graphics are wanting in comparison to DreamCast's (e.g. Zelda v. Shenmue). I had forgotten that game.

Jerry Teo said...

Yeah, but you can't deny that Nintendo did some slick marketing with the Wii when they launched it.

How's BC treating ya?

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