Dreamcast 2 Project Getting “Inviting Response” From SEGA

I have many fond memories of SEGA consoles, having owned the original SEGA Master System, the Master System II, Megadrive I and II, SEGA CD, 32X, Saturn, Dreamcast, Game Gear and finally, I was hoping to get my hands on the Dreamcast 2, but that plan never really saw the light of day. Some of you may know that when SEGA threw in the hardware towel, the Xbox from Microsoft was the next thing on the horizon and was released as a spiritual successor to the Dreamcast, which is why we saw games like Shenmue released on the system.

Project Dream have been working hard to revive SEGA consoles for real, not just in spirit, pitching the idea of a new Dreamcast and they’ve even gathered over 27 thousand petition signatures. Now they’re getting some more important names to support them; people who work at SEGA.

Two of Project Dream’s leaders, Bertie Wiseman and Joanne Freeman, spoke with Twinfinite about their involvement with SEGA, saying interactions so far have been fairly inviting. “It went from me ringing up to pester them for not replying to our mail and the receptionist asking for a full lowdown on what we wanted to talk to people about,” said Joanne. After multiple pitches, contacts and phone calls, the team says they have made contact with multiple SEGA names, including a senior member of SEGA Sammy.

“It all kind of happened quite quickly, and by the end of it, he finished chatting with me on the phone and sent one of our team members a message to say ‘send what you got through when you’re ready, and I’ll make sure it gets to the right people.’”

“We’ve been messaging a few other people. Some have gotten back to us and some haven’t,” Joanne continued, “but we haven’t had a negative response from SEGA, I can 100% say that. It’s been a mildly inviting response.”

“We don’t know what’s going to happen, but hope it’s a situation where it all goes well and they say ‘yep, great, we love the idea we’ll run with it.’” Should SEGA decide not to associate with the project, the team “would like to carry on with a spiritual successor to the console.”

Project Dream are getting ready to present their ideas to SEGA and see if they can get a real product and a real business idea together. The fact SEGA isn’t shutting them down at the first hurdle is promising, but there’s still a few major hurdles to cross.

Fan Starts Petition for an HD SEGA Dreamcast

Petitions used to be political tools as a show of strength by the proletariat, signing one’s name to a formal document in protest at, say, a local park being sold off to Barratt Homes. The age of the internet, though, has turned the humble petition into a medium for spoilt children to throw their toys out of the pram.

Do you want a sarcasm font on social media because the concept of the absurd flies over your head? Start a petition! Think that Taco Bell should give a minimum of two hot sauce packets with each meal? Petition away! Have an irrational hated of sporks? This is what petitions were made for! Want your favourite band, S Club 7, to reform? After all, there ain’t no party like an S Club party. You know what to do…

In that vein, Australian gamer Ben Plato has launched a petition for SEGA to release a Limited Edition, HD version of its Dreamcast console, because there is a massive void in the world that only such a box can fill.

“The new console should have a new but similar design, wifi, wireless controllers (4 maximum) 720p or 1080p HD upscaling and HDMI output, internal 500g Hard Drive and a GD-Rom drive,” Plato writes.

“The console should be able to play original Dreamcast GD-Roms and also have the ability to connect online to a Dreamcast Classics Store to purchase and download classic Dreamcast titles in digital form where it can be played directly from the Hard Drive,” he adds.

It should also have a cup holder, a picture of my favourite fictional dog (Snoopy, by the way), and tell me that I’m lovely every 30 minutes. Are you listening, SEGA?

The petition already has 19,273 signatories on Change.org.

“By making the console made to order,” Plato asserts, “there is less risk of financial loss.”

Cue a second petition when SEGA releases its Limited Edition HD Dreamcast with Go-Faster Stripes for £2,000 in order to claw back the R&D costs of producing such a console for only 20,000 people.

President of Sega Japan Eventually Realises Games Should Be Good

Games should be good. It’s quite the epiphany, right? Sadly, it may have occurred to Hajime Satomi, President of Sega, two decades too late. After the failure of it Dreamcast console, bankruptcy, and a shift into mobile gaming, Satomi has finally realised that the quality of its games should have been paramount, and the lack of which has contributed to the company’s downfall.

Speaking to Famitsu, Satomi said, “As far as the Western market goes, we learned a lot from Atlus [developer owned by Sega]. If we can make a title with proper quality, I believe there’s a good chance for it to do well even in the West for players that like to play Japanese games.”

He added, “I’ve been talking to the employees about how we should start putting serious consideration into quality from this point on. Especially in North America and Europe, where it’s always been more of a focus on schedules, I believe that if we can’t maintain quality, it would be better to not release anything at all.”

It seems that Satomi can now acknowledge how Sega alienated the fanbase it worked so hard to accrue during the 1990s, conceding that “We did our best to build a relationship of mutual trust with older fans of Sega, but looking back, there have been some titles that have partially betrayed that trust in the past 10 years.” He lamented, “Sega in the ‘90s was known for its brand, but after that, we’ve lost trust and we were left with nothing but reputation. For this reason, we’d like to win back the customers’ trust and become a brand once again.”

Can Satomi and Sega put their money where their mouth is? We’ll find out soon, with Satomi assuring, “Since we’re seriously considering quality I can’t make that promise for the time being but I believe we will announce something for home consoles at Tokyo Game Show.”

Thank you Forbes for providing us with this information.

PS4 Beats PS2 Sales

Back in early 2000, Sony brought us the PlayStation 2, the console that set the world alight; bringing amazing quality to the masses. Back then, the PS2 was almost unrivalled, the Sega Dreamcast was the only real competition as the Nintendo GameCube and Microsoft Xbox were not released until over 18 months later; this allowed the PS2 to sell over 155 million units in total.

Today, it was announced that the PlayStation 4 has knocked its older brother off the top spot for like-for-like sales. In just 18 months, the PS4 has sold over 2 million units in the UK alone, outpacing the PS2. This now means that roughly 3% of the UK population owns a PS4, or about 7.5% of UK homes.

Worldwide, Sony have announced a total sales figure of 22.3 million units since launch, smashing its closest rival Microsoft with an estimated 14 million units and doubling the Nintendo Wii U of just 9.9 million units.

It isn’t overly surprising that the PS4 is the most popular console in the UK, for years Sony has held a strong market lead over its console rivals in Europe as well as Japan. In the US, Sony has had a tougher time where the Xbox 360 was dominating the previous generation console sales, but due to early slip-ups in the early stages of the Xbox One, Sony has maintained a lead there too.

I personally don’t own a console, I just don’t find the free time to justify the cost. Are you one of the 3% of UK residents that own a PS4 or do you own a Xbox One? What about in other countries, do you and your friends all own the same console? Let us know in the comments.

Thank you to ArsTechnica for providing this information.

Shenmue Fan Attempts To Make Shenmue HD

One talented Shenmue fan is clearly tired of waiting for Sega to make Shenmue III, in fact, I think it is now pretty safe to say that Shenmue III simple isn’t going to happen, it has been too long and less than favorable software sale of the first two aren’t exactly good motivation to complete the trilogy.

[youtube width=”800″ height=”450″]http://youtu.be/g7cjDaOQpB0[/youtube]

Shenmue was an awesome game, but you’ve already started reading this article, so you likely already know this fact. Koreanfan NaconKid has recreated a couple of scenes from the game in HD, keeping with the original art style, but buffing textures and resolutions to look better than ever before. Everything from the leather jackets to the arcade machines have been tweaked to perfection and best of all the arcade machines have had new games added to them.

[youtube width=”800″ height=”450″]http://youtu.be/y1UrqRoTAbk[/youtube]

This project is a long way from playable and Nacon admits that completing the rest would take a long time. However, as far a fan project goes I’m thoroughly impressed and this could be the spark some developers at Sega need to show them there is potential and interest in a HD re-release of the first two games, something that could pave the way for a third entry in the series.

Thank you Pushsquare for providing us with this information.

Images courtesy of Pushsquare.

Is Emulation the Best Feature of the Nvidia Shield?

Introduction


Emulation is a popular pass time for many PC gamers, and in recent year there has been a big increase in GPU horsepower in the mobile market, allowing us to enjoy many classic games on the go, not just  on our desktops. The Nvidia Shield is one of the most powerful mobile gaming devices on the market, and this is especially thanks to its Nvidia Tegra 4 GPU/CPU, which is not only capable of running many older games such as those from the Super Nintendo and Mega Drive, but also a lot more advanced 3D titles from consoles such as the Nintendo 64, Sega Dreamcast and more. What I hope to find out today is whether or not these games work well enough to justify using the Nvidia Shield as a dedicated emulation device.

Obviously there are some grey area legal issues when it comes to emulation, most of which focus around the piracy of compatible roms, so I feel obligated to mention that I do not condone anyone downloading games, but that there are also many other ways to obtain these games. There are tools and apps out there which let you rip games you own, and this applies to both cartridge based games as well as disc based games. Fortunately I’ve been collecting games for many years now and can use games I already own and have at my disposal, but keep in mind that you’re responsible for sourcing your own titles how you see fit, as we here at eTeknix take no responsibility for this, nor will be providing sources to where or how you can obtain the games. Boring stuff out of the way, let us get back to the action!

Getting roms configured on your Nvidia Shield, or to be honest any powerful mobile device can be a little tricky. Generally the more powerful your device, the better chances you’ll have of getting your games to run, as the task of emulating hardware can be quite demanding, especially when it comes to more modern titles such as those from the Sega Dreamcast. So while I am focusing this article on the Nvidia Shield, there is no reason why you can’t try this out on your mobile phone or tablet, so long as you think it’s powerful enough to do so.

The Nvidia Shield has a few extra tricks that make it a great choice for emulation, firstly because it has a controller built directly into it, as well as a high quality touch-screen display. You can use USB OTG to connect wired controllers such as the Xbox 360 controller, a mini-HDMI to HDMI cable to put the device into console mode and play on your big screen and more, so you’re not going to be limited to only playing this as a handheld, but virtually anywhere you want, on whichever screen you want (so long as it has Miracast or HDMI).

Today I’ll be taking a look at the Super Nintendo, Sega Megadrive, PlayStation 1, PlayStation Portable (PSP), Dreamcast and Nintendo 64. There are plenty more emulators and formats out there, but I feel the ones I have chosen cast a wide net over what is possible on mobile device emulation. Even older or less powerful systems such as Gameboy, MAME, NES and Master System generally all work from the same emulators I’ll be testing and already have widespread, proven compatibility with most mobile devices, so feel free to experiment with them at your own leisure.

New Game Coming To Sega Dreamcast Next Week

NG:DEV.TEAM, a German based games developer, have announced today that their latest title, NEO XYX, will be heading to the much loved and certainly not forgotten Sega Dreamcast. That’s right, despite the many years of service the Dreamcast has seen, and not forgetting the few extra generations of console gaming we’ve had since it was released, the Dreamcast still has a loyal fan base and an active community of development. Games may not be flying off the production line, but for owners of the console we think one or two games a year is a lot better than no games!

The latest entry to the console is NEO XYX, a Toaplan style 2D arcade shooter, something that the Dreamcast has long proven to be ideal for. The game was originally developed for the NEO·GEO but it will officially re-release in its new format next week on February 17th. for Sega Dreamcast will be released on 17th February.

NEO XYX features six stages of excellent 2D arcade game play with over 40 unique enemy types and huge fully animated pixel art bosses. If you want to know more you can check out the official release trailer below.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J4OGpcCsOD0[/youtube]

Key Features

  • 6 arcade style designed stages
  • Beautiful Toaplan style / Japanese 90tis arcade styled pixel art
  • 40+ fully animated pixel art enemies
  • 11+ huge fully animated pixel art boss enemies
  • 60 fps
  • Medal collecting score system
  • Dynamic difficulty rank system which kicks in for experienced players

Accessories (Dreamcast)

  • VMU
  • VGA
  • Original pad
  • Arcade stick

The game will also be available in three editions, all of which are available at the developers online store.

  • Collector Edition [CE] (limited to 300 units worldwide) – Beautiful DVD slipcase with LE and RE. A T-shirt, two postcards and 4 stickers
  • Limited Edition [LE] (limited to 1000 units worldwide) – Game + Soundtrack OST CD
  • Regular Edition [RE]

Thank you NEO XYX for providing us with this information.

Images courtesy of NEO XYX.

London Based Sega Dreamcast 15th Anniversary Party On November 27th

REZtron Ltd have announced that they will be hosting yet another console Anniversary themed event. This time it will be filled with nothing but Dreamcast games! Having successfully hosted Mega Drive’s 25th Anniversary event last month REZtron’s fifth ‘retrotainment’ of the year will take place once again at the award winning The Hoxton Pony cocktail bar, from 5pm til 11pm on Wednesday 27th November. REZtron will give centre stage to yet another iconic and pioneering console of the yesteryears.The 15th Anniversary of the SEGA Dreamcast.

I’m a big fan of the Dreamcast and it is great to see it get even further recognition within the gaming community. Sega may not have had such a smooth time with actually selling and marketing the console, but anyone who actually owned one will tell you that it had some gorgeous graphics and some absolutely stunning games.

15 years later and poeple are still making games for the Dreamcast, having a handful of games released this year alone by indie devs such as RedSpotGames, Hucast Games and NG:DEV.TEAM to name a few it proves that there’s still a lot of love for the 128-BIT beauty years after the console’s official commercial life span.

The celebration of the world’s first internet-ready console that was released in Japan on November 27th 1998 will fittingly host 15 legendary games throughout the night on gorgeous CRT TVs and on a projector,including games such as House of the Dead 2,Virtua Tennis,Rez,Ikaruga,Soul Calibur,Crazy Taxi 2,Power Stones,Shenmue and maracas action with Samba De Amigo to name a few..

There will also be competition running on Shenmue’s mini game ‘QTE Title’ during the first half of the night,with prizes to give away. To keep things true to REZtron’s retrotainment spirit there will be some 80s/90s Karaoke kicking off on the MEGA-CD Karaoke system just after 9pm.

The ‘128-BIT retrotainment’ will take place on Wednesday 27th November, 5pm till 11pm. Tickets can be booked through Eventbrite, Dreamcast15.eventbrite.co.uk and anyone who comes dressed in gaming or anime inspired Cosplay will get in FREE!

Thank you Reztron for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Reztron.