OPINION: Dreamcast Dead?

Heard a rumour that the Dreamcast is dead? At first glance this may all seem like some sort of self-destructive pattern on Sega’s part , and that may make you lose your faith in the company as a fan. But, as this massive news special will soon explain, the odds are all in the favour of the Dreamcasters. First off, let’s address the rumours and stories and whatnot (that sounds SO English. Wait, I AM English).

The Rumours

For a while now, people have been hammering on that the Dreamcast won’t live much longer. Faithful DC owners (like me) have been hoping for this rumour to just blow over. But, what came instead was the ultimate insult; an announcement that Sega will be making games for other consoles and killing support for the Dreamcast.

“NOOOOOOO,” was the cry of many across the globe. The rumour mill is really having a field day on that one, with stories that the Dreamcast will be obsolete come March and everyone will lose interest. But calm down there, don’t worry. Here is the truth, as it seems to be at this moment in time.

The news that the Dreamcast won’t live much longer IS true. But Sega is only discontinuing the manufacture of the console, not killing support for it. The truth of the matter is that Sega lose a lot of money on each Dreamcast sold across the world, due to continuing price cuts. So, Sega will stop making the consoles, selling them until the very last one is off the shelves. That will be phase one of their debt-destroying plan.

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Another matter is the story of Sega making games for other consoles. Well, if the world-share dominance plan has eluded you, then here’s the scoop: a while back Sega told the world that they will distribute Dreamcast hardware to companies making general electrical equipment, such as set top boxes and mobile phones. One such product is even Nintendo’s Game Boy Advance, due out this summer.

While the Xbox at the moment doesn’t seem to be getting the Sega treatment, the PlayStation 2 and possibly Nintendo Gamecube will get some software ported from the Dreamcast. Do not fear, these will be old titles – the first being Crazy Taxi on PS2 – so don’t expect the likes of Shenmue for a good few years, if ever.

Now the rumour concerning Sega’s dropping of Dreamcast support. THIS is completely false at present, with Sega developing at least 100 new titles for the console such as Jet Set Radio 2, House of the Dead 3, ToeJam & Earl III and Shenmue 3. If anything, Sega sees the Dreamcast as its number ONE priority at the moment, with conversions to other consoles a great time AFTER the original Sega game has hit DC.

Dreamcast Not Deserted

Now you’re probably wondering how all this will affect Sega. Well, get the low-down right here…

If anything, this will benefit Sega – their rise from largely-ignored first-party hardware company to a popular third-party publisher (that treats its loyal Dreamcast fans like first-class customers) will net it a lot of good will from fans. Anything that was a hit on Dreamcast is sure to be a massive success on more popular consoles. The thought of a ‘Sonic Adventure Advance’ on Nintendo’s new Game Boy console is a very promising one. Be sure to check up with Sonic Stadium for news on this rumoured game.

To Dreamcast? Absolutely nothing will change. So don’t worry about that. Dreamarena will still be active, Sega will still be loyal to its fans, as it will undoubtedly put them FIRST, and also the 100-plus titles scheduled for it means that the Dreamcast will still be around for a good while. The only difference is that there will now be no Dreamcasts to buy, but anyone stupid enough not to buy the console by now (unless they could not afford it) quite frankly deserves to miss out on Sega’s lovely goods.

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Here Come The Games

You see, have faith and the Lord bringeth… erm, the goods. Here is a list of the new announced titles by Sega Japan, which just proves that the Dreamcast is far from dead. *Deep Breath*

  • House of the Dead 3, the third in the fantastic zombie shooting arcade game
  • Dynamic Golf, promising realistic graphics and online capabilities
  • Get Bass 2, the sequel to the great fishing game Sega Bass Fishing. Time to prepare your Fission rod…
  • Alien Front Online, which is expected in the summer in the US
  • As Snow, which is its development name at present, is a love simulation which is due spring, which sounds about the right season to… *SNIP*
  • Outrigger, a game looking fantastically good, due out ‘2001’
  • Project Propeller Online, ONLINE DOGFIGHTS ONLINE! From the excellent AM2, expect many a good thing…
  • Derby Owners Club Online, a horse racing stats game – only scheduled for good old Jap land at the mo
  • Power Smash 2, don’t worry about the name, the original Virtua Tennis was called Power Smash in Japan, therefore… VIRTUA TENNIS 2!!!
  • Crazy Taxi 2, now this should be class. Apparently set in Chicago and with a new cast of drivers, this seems every bit as good as the first!
  • Let’s Make A Monster, No Kidding! A kind of Pokémon do, raise a monster and fight it with others. Kewl.
  • Victory Goal 2001, from AM2, the Dreamcast’s first decent football game hopefully
  • Derby Tsuku 2, a sequel to the Japanese horse-racing game
  • Guru Guru Onsen 2, another sequel, only to a kind of ‘Planet Ring‘ kind of thing in Japan
  • Sonic Adventure 2, now there is NO reason at all to not get excited about this
  • Bikkuriman 2000, have NOT A CLUE what this is all about, first released in Japan at some point
  • New Space Channel 5‘, the first was so good and funky, there HAD to be a sequel
  • K-Project, only a working title, is said to be a kind of shoot-em-up. sounds promising
  • Toe Jam & Earl III, now THIS is what I’ve been waiting for! AND will be released by Sega hopefully sometime this year
  • NFL2K2, NBA2K2 and NHL2K2 was inevitable to reach DC, and here they are. Not imaginative names though…
  • Far Nation, another Multiplayer Network RPG release in Summer, and apparently, ONE server can handle THOUSANDS of players online! Wow.

Not including others such as Shenmue 2 and 3, Bomberman for DC and many others, but if I go on about the rest, I’ll be here all day. Now are you satisfied with Sega’s ‘mutiny’?

“You Talkin’ To Me? EH!?”

Electronic Arts, more commonly known as EA, has decided to ‘warn’ Sega about it’s decision to go third-party. What? Ah, I see.

EA’s president says that Sega will struggle to survive if it abandons its own console, and also that Sega will be confused with the programming requirements and development cycles of certain consoles. OOOOOOOH! Although this was said in a ‘polite’ way, I think it was just the company being jealous.

Well, EA is currently PS2’s top developer in the USA, but Sega going third party could just change this, as their games are second to none. NONE, I TELL YOU! EA could lose it’s title as ‘top developer’, which gives Sega even more attention and respect. Third-party geezas beware, cos Sega’s coming to town!!!

Published by

Dreadknux

Sexy founder of The Sonic Stadium, and creator and co-organiser of the Summer of Sonic fan convention. By day, I'm a super-fantastic games journalist, el professionale. By night, I'm the mother-loving Sonical Batman. I keep the site ticking, look after the TSS Network, and get all excited about Sonic games so that you can too. May contain nuts.