Holiday Notice

Hello everyone. We are shortly moving to a new, bigger premises so website ordering will be closed for the next month while we move everything to our new building, reorganise and do a full stock take. We will be open again at the start of November. Many thanks. Console Passion

Sega Dreamcast

The Sega Dreamcast (Japanese: ドリームキャスト; code-named "Blackbelt", "Dural" and "Katana" during development) was Sega's last video game console.

When the time came to design the successor to the Sega Saturn, the new President of Sega, Shoichiro Irimajiri, took the unusual step of hiring an outsider. He hired Tatsuo Yamamoto from IBM Austin to head a skunkworks group to develop the next-generation console. However, it soon became apparent that the existing Japanese hardware group led by Hideki Sato did not want to relinquish control of hardware, and so there were two competing designs led by two different groups.

[collapse collapsed title=read more...]

The Japanese group led by Hideki Sato settled on an Hitachi SH4 processor with a PowerVR graphics processor developed by VideoLogic (now Imagination Technologies) and manufactured by NEC. This was originally codenamed "White Belt". The first Japanese prototype boards were silkscreened "Guppy" and the later ones "Katana".

The US skunkworks group (in a secret suite at the 303 Twin Dolphin Drive building) led by Tatsuo Yamamoto settled on an IBM/Motorola PowerPC 603e processor with a 3Dfx Voodoo 2 graphics processor, which was originally codenamed "Black Belt". The first US prototype boards were silkscreened "Shark" (in response to the Japanese "Guppy"). The Japanese hardware was codenamed "Dural", then later, Katana. This codename was only used by The US hardware team called themselves the "Black Belt team".

In July 1997, it was decided that the Japanese "Katana" would be the chosen format, renamed Dreamcast. In September 1997, 3Dfx filed a lawsuit against Sega and NEC (later including VideoLogic), claiming "breach of contract", although they later settled.

The Dreamcast was released on November 27, 1998 in Japan, on September 9, 1999 in the United States (the date 9/9/99 featured heavily in US promotion) and on October 14, 1999 in Europe. The tagline used to promote the console in the US was, "It's thinking", and in Europe "Up to 6 Billion Players". The vagueness of these campaigns and almost total lack of any in game footage has been touted as one of the reasons for the Dreamcast's eventual downfall. Many Americans knew that the Dreamcast was coming, but didn't know what one was.

The Dreamcast was the first console to include a built-in modem and Internet support for online gaming. It enjoyed brisk sales in its first season and was one of Sega's most successful hardware units. In the United States alone, a record 200,000 units had been pre-ordered before launch and Sega sold 500,000 consoles in just two weeks (including 225,000 sold on the first 24 hours which became a video game record until the PlayStation 2 launched a year later). In fact, due to brisk sales and hardware shortages, Sega was unable to fulfil all of the advance orders. Sega confirmed that it made $98.4 million on combined hardware and software sales with the Dreamcast with its September 9, 1999 launch. Sega even compared the record figure to the opening day gross of Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace, which made $28.5 million during the first 24 hours in theatres.

Before the launch in the United States, Sega had already taken the extra step in displaying Dreamcast capabilities in stores nationwide. Much like the PlayStation's launch in North America, the displays of titles such as Soul Calibur, Sonic Adventure, Power Stone and Hydro Thunder helped the Dreamcast succeed in the first year. Although Electronic Arts declined to support the Dreamcast which included the omission of its popular sports games (due in part to EA's losses from the past Sega Saturn), Sega Sports titles helped to fill that void.

In April 1999, Sony announced its PlayStation 2, designed to be backwards-compatible with the older PlayStation, and released the unit in Japan in March 2000. Sony's press release, despite being a year ahead of the launch of the PS2, was enough to divert a lot of attention from Sega. Even though Sega touted the Dreamcast's online capabilities (the PS2 would not go online until late 2002), American public attention was focused upon the PlayStation 2's ability to play DVDs (the DVD format did not catch on in Japan until after the release of the PS2 as VCD/SVCD were established standards). Electronic Arts also announced its support for the PS2. This, combined with the fact that SEGA had dropped support for the Saturn and did not offer backwards compatibility led to poorer sales in America (Sega CD and 32X are good examples of this).

On January 31, 2001, Sega announced that production of Dreamcast hardware was to be discontinued by March of that year, although the 50 to 60 titles still in production would be published. The last North American release was NHL 2K2, which was released in February of 2002. With the company announcing no plans to develop a next-generation successor to the Dreamcast, this was Sega's last foray into the home console business. By the time Sega decided to cease development of the Dreamcast, about 10 million consoles had been sold. Though the Dreamcast was officially discontinued in early 2001, commercial games were still developed and released afterwards, particularly in Japan.

Many consider the critically acclaimed arcade shooter Ikaruga developed by Treasure to be the Dreamcast swan song. It was released in September 2002 in Japan only after a large amount of speculation on the game's fate; its US release was on the Nintendo GameCube in April 2003. Hacked unreleased games like Propeller Arena and Half-Life continued to become available to the public by program decoders like Echelon. On February 24, 2004, Sega released their final Dreamcast game, Puyo Pop Fever, although a small number of third-party games are still being released, such as Trizeal, released in April 2005, or the release of Rajirugi and soon-to-be-released Under Defeat.

Despite its short lifespan, the Dreamcast is still a very popular and highly-regarded console among many fans due to its impressive library of both mainstream and quirky titles. It is even starting to become a cult classic, as the system is getting harder to find (in fact, although the Dreamcast was officially discontinued in January 2001, Sega continued to produce the console for a short time afterwards due to rising demand, not least among collectors and hard-core fans).

[/collapse]

Coaster Works

Box: 
yes
£12.00
Manual: 
yes
£12.00

You built it, you ride it! So you think you can design a better coaster than the pros? Prove it! Design and build then ride your very own dream roller coaster. Yes, that's right - RIDE IT! Realistic Physics combined with the look, feel and sound of a real roller coaster put you in the front seat for the wildest ride of your life.

Chicken Run

Facebook
Box: 
yes
£12.00
Manual: 
yes
£12.00

Ginger is a chicken on a mission, she bravely leads the flock in a number of wild and wacky escape attempts from the barbed wire confides of Tweedy's farm. To do this she needs the help of Rocky, a smooth talking American rooster and the cheeky cockney rodents Nick and Fletcher. Will they make it to freedom before the end up as chicken pies? Their fate is in your hands!

ChuChu Rocket

Facebook
Box: 
yes
£5.00
Manual: 
yes
£5.00

Chu Chu Rocket, exclusive to Dreamcast, offers a new on line gaming experience in the form of a four player, adrenaline paced puzzle game. You can enjoy this wildly addictive puzzle game with friends, in the confines of your own home, or over the Internet against complete strangers! Just lead the mice to a rocket while protecting them from the vicious cats along the way. Chu Chu Rocket! The concept is simple but the challenge is never ending.

Charge N Blast

Facebook
Box: 
yes
£20.00
Manual: 
yes
£20.00

Get ready! Lock, Load and Charge N Blast! The ultimate shoot 'em up action game has blasted it's way onto the Dreamcast. Developed by the same team that brought you House of the Dead and Sega Bass Fishing, Charge N Blast is guaranteed to make you beg for more!

Championship Surfer

Box: 
yes
£8.00
Manual: 
yes
£8.00

Time to Rip! Ten outrageous beaches, five-thirty foot breakers and eight world class surfers including Corey Lopez, Shame Bsechen and Rochlle Ballard. You got the cajones to be king of the giant waves? We'll see!

Carrier

Facebook
Box: 
yes
£60.00
Manual: 
yes
£60.00

In the 21st Century terrorism reigns supreme. You are part of an elite unit chosen to isolate and destroy ARK before it reaches land. You never know what is lurking in the murky water or around the next corner. Meanwhile, ARK is gaining power after attacking itself to the nuclear core of the Heimdall. Sheer wit and brute force are all that can save you.

Capcom vs SNK

Facebook
Box: 
yes
£38.00
Manual: 
yes
£38.00

Over twenty-five different characters from the Street Fighter and King of Fighters series collide in the ultimate test of supremacy. Select from two different  fighting styles; Capcom Groove and SNK Groove. Groove Points System -  fighting skills are evaluated in real time.

Cannon Spike

Facebook
Box: 
yes
£90.00
Manual: 
yes
£90.00

Far into the future, a rouge group of terrorist robots wreak havoc on the world and its citizens. The Anti Robot Special Forces has been created to overthrow these radical robots. With an arsenal of weapons and high powered motor boats, you must lead a courageous legion of seven members through multiple levels of robotic terror, huge bosses and other evils. Prepare yourself for the ultimate in speed, strategy and firepower.

Caesars Palace 2000 Millenium Gold Edition

Facebook
Box: 
yes
£10.00
Manual: 
yes
£10.00

The Emporers club awaits! Here you'll find the largest assortment of heart pounding 3D gabling games ever under one roof! Experience first class action on every visit with the friendliest atmosphere and the most experienced dealers in town!

Buzz Lightyear of Star Command

Box: 
yes
£12.00
Manual: 
yes
£12.00

Calling all Intergalactic Space Rangers! Only you, Buzz Lightyear and your elite Space Ranger team can defeat the evil Emperor Zurg and his bad guys in their dark quest for universal domination. To infinity and beyond!

Syndicate content