The Dreamcast – A Retrospective

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The Dreamcast, Sega’s last official hardware released worldwide, just turned 20 this year. Let’s take a look back on this influential but ultimately ill-fated console, looking at the hardware, the games and it’s impact on video gaming as a whole.

Sega has been a long standing fixture within both the arcade and home console market with a string of hits ranging from racing games to flying games and mascot Staples like Sonic the Hedgehog. Sega had much success with their superior scaling technology in games such as After Burner and Outrun as well as in the home with the massively successful Sega Genesis. Partially due to their stellar marketing and knowing their American audience. A string of lackluster home consoles and bad business moves came after though with the launch of the Sega CD, 32X and Saturn most of which barely lasted more than a few years. Consumer confidence in Sega was pretty low. And then something big happened.

The late 90s we’re an interesting time. Final Fantasy VII among other games was the turning of the tide. Video Games were coming out of the basements and seedy arcades. They were becoming cool, mainstream. Sony, Nintendo and Sega all had consoles out on the market. The PC vs. console wars hit fever pitch. Times were good in general for games. The 32X was dead, the Saturn was on it’s last legs but Sega had some killer tech on the horizon.

In possibly the best launch lineup of games (House of the Dead 2, Hydro Thunder, Power Stone, Ready 2 Rumble Boxing, Sonic Adventure, Soulcalibur and Tokyo Xtreme Racer among others) Sega came strong out of the gate. With the launch date of 9-9-99, fervor was high in America and with a $199 price tag, included modem and hip marketing that played to American tendencies to boot, the North American gaming audience ate it up. Sega had a console that was definitely modern and forward thinking at the same time. It looked to be that Sega could be in it for the long haul.

Things were looking good for Sega or at least it seemed. The reception over in Japan was good but not great. It seemed that lots of people were eagerly awaiting the new iteration of Sony’s PlayStation console, the PS2.

Sega was able to bring arcade quality visuals to the home without compromise. It signaled the end of arcades as we new them. Soulcalibur was the poster child for the console. It had visuals surpassed from the arcade version. More characters, extra modes and tons of game tweaks. It was a console exclusive. No PlayStation port, no N64 port. And that game was near perfect. Balanced to fighting game fans’ exacting standards. SoulCalibur along with new series Crazy Taxi, the groundbreaking Shenmue, the NFL 2K football series, Jet Set Radio and more, the games were incredible. The Sega produced 2K sports series, now owned by 2K Games, was far superior to EA offerings. With superior gameplay and online support, Sega was winning over the sports fans.

Sadly though, all of these things couldn’t keep the Dreamcast afloat. Just 2 years after it launched and with pressure internally, on March 31, 2001, Sega discontinued manufacturing of the Dreamcast. While games still continued to come out well into 2002, it was the end for Sega in the console market. They would become exclusively a publisher and developer of games. The console manufacture couldn’t compete with the PlayStation 2 and it’s included DVD playback capability.

Sega Logo

Sega left a mark on the industry with some of the most iconic characters and game series and the Dreamcast left a mark on console development to this day. It was the first console with integrated online connectivity. It had the first controller with an LCD screen via an optional memory unit. Microsoft looked very heavily at the Dreamcast for inspiration into their first foray into the console gaming market. Peter Moore formally of Sega was poached and brough over to the Xbox team.

Episode 188 – A Blizzard of Controversy with Special Guest Matthew Adler

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It’s a big week for news and we got a special guest to cover it all. Joining Dan and Dave on the mics is returning guest Matthew Adler, freelance journalist for IGN, Activision/Blizzard gets in some hot water for banning the winner of a Hearthstone competition in China over protest statements made during the post game interview, Sony drops some more PS5 news, Fortnite gets pegged for being too addictive and Reggie Fils-Aime gets inducted into the Gaming Hall of Fame. All that and more on episode 188 of Rated G for Gamers.

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Episode 187 – The Best Time of the Year

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October is upon on. Football, crisp weather and best of all, Halloween. Dan and Dave talk costumes, Tom Holland saving Spiderman in the MCU and the new AEW wrestling league. In the news, Sean Layton leaves Sony abruptly, Troy Baker and Gearbox have some drama over Bordelands voice over work. All that and more on episode 187 of Rated G for Gamers.

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Our October giveaway is live!

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October giveaway

Our giveaway for October has kicked off. We’re giving away one copy of the Luigi’s Mansion 3 for the Switch. You have until October 31st to enter our contest. Entry details are as follows:

Listen to our episodes all month long for secret codes. We’ll be dropping one unique code each episode and each unique code gets you one entry. DM or private message on social media @ratedgforgamers or email us at your answers. Also you can gain an additional entry by following us on Twitter, like liking our contest post and retweeting said post. Good luck to all who enter.

Episode 186 – Sam Jackson Narrates Your Skyrim Adventure with Special Guest Justin Mattioli

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On this weeks episode, special guest Justin Mattioli joins Dan and Dave as they break down all this weeks news. The biggest announcements from Sony’s State of Play, WB Montreal teases another Batman game, AtGames buys the royalty rights to Ms. Pacman and now you can have Sam Jackson be your Alexa Narrator. Oh what a time we live in.

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Episode 185 – E3 Tries to Stay Relevant

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Oh boy did E3 come out with some wild news. In an effort to stay relevant, the ESA put out an announcement about E3 2020 being all about influencers, fans and media. Whatever that means. Dan and Dave breaks down all the info and weigh in with their thoughts. Also in the news, Nintendo gets back into the fitness game and GameStop closes over 200 stores. All that and more on episode 185 of Rated G for Gamers.

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There’s still time to enter our September giveaway!

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September contest

Our giveaway for September, one copy of the Legend of Zelda – Link’s Awakening remake for the Switch is still kicking. You have until September 30th to enter our contest. Entry details are as follows:

Listen to our episodes all month long for secret codes. We’ll be dropping one unique code each episode and each unique code gets you one entry. DM or private message on social media @ratedgforgamers or email us at your answers.

Episode 184 – Our Most Anticipated Games this Holiday Season

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We got a special one today folks. Dan’s on vacation right now so we decided to do a episode about our most anticipated holiday games. Join us as we break down our favorites for the 2019 holiday season.

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Episode 183 – Leaks, Surprises and the September Nintendo Direct

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We got some Gears 5 news at top of the show as well as the new Bad Boys trailer, some 14 years after the last entry. We are reasonably hype. In the news, Nintendo does it’s usual thing and drops a new Direct. They confirm some leaks, drop some new stuff the day of and somehow, someway still manage to surprise us a bit. Also there’s a new Nintendo peripheral in town and Reggie Fils-Amis goes back to school.

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Episode 182 – The Name is the Same but the Game has Changed

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One half of Rated G is over the moon this week. Telltale Games is being revived… in name only though. Dan and Dave speculate on what they will develop next. Ninja gets a line of Adidas street wear, Capcom teases retro remakes and the Lion King and Aladdin come to modern consoles in a mega retro collection. All that and more on episode 182 of Rated G for Gamers.

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