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redsox2013
01-07-2019, 03:56 PM
Let's say Saturn hadn't died so quickly in 1997-1998 in the U.S. What if Sega had sold another 1-2 million Saturns between 1995-1997. What would we have gotten if Saturn had enough of an install base to be supported for one more year? Here's my thoughts and opinions.

-Radiant Silvergun. Should be a no-brainer since it was well received in Japan and used 3D polygons.
-Resident Evil 2 - another no-brainer since I believe it was already being considered.
-Shining Force III additional scenarios - I know people have always clamored for these, and I believe they have been fan translated for English. I wonder if the first Shining Force III sold well enough that Sega would have considered localizing others for the U.S.
-Sega Ages Vol. 2 - Since Vol. 1 was called "Vol. 1", clearly there was a plan for Vol. 2. I would choose Power Drift, Galaxy Force 2 and OutRunners.
-Street Fighter EX - I enjoy the 3D spinoffs, even though they're not nearly as good as the Alpha or Vs. games.
-4MB RAM Cart games - I still don't know if another year of Saturn would have been able to convince SOA to bring over the RAM cart. Maybe do it the Nintendo way and include it with the first release (like DK 64), then offer it separately later on.
-Street Fighter Collection 2 - Capcom supported Saturn (and eventually Dreamcast) in every other way possible, so why not bring this one over from Japan?
-Castlevania: SOTN
-Need for Speed 2 & 3 - #3 (Hot Pursuit) is one of my favorite PS1 racers. I don't know if EA could have worked the Saturn well enough to handle the polygons & lighting effects as well as the PS1.
-Wipeout 2 & 3 - Much like NFS, could they have maxed out the Saturn to handle them?
-Virtua Fighter 3 - there's been enough discussion of this recently that I don't have anything more to add.
-Indy 500 - Still baffles me as to why this one was never ported. High profile name and Sega arcade pedigree would virtually guarantee success. Must have been a licensing issue.
-Dead or Alive - a 3D graphical showcase during an era when 3D 1 on 1 fighters were huge. Sega should have insisted on this one being brought over from Japan regardless.

Team Andromeda
01-07-2019, 04:17 PM
Yeah could have had some good stuff and maybe Working Designs would have brought over Lunar 1 and II, Grandia, Dragon Force II , Princess Crown, Wachenroder to the Saturn. Its also a shame GTA and Driver never came to the Saturn, the VDP 2 could have made short work of those games

BTW, Indy 500 was coming to the Saturn via the CS Rally team, but work was stopped and they were made to work on Daytona USA remix instead.

redsox2013
01-07-2019, 05:54 PM
I'm sure I'm forgetting about some other 3rd party PS1 games from 1998-99 that could have also had Saturn ports.

Greg2600
01-07-2019, 07:55 PM
I doubt it would have made any difference. Corporate-wise, SEGA knew they had a dud, and started work swiftly on the Dreamcast. Plus Sony was way way ahead in its install base, had mountains of cash for marketing, including marketing of 3rd party games, and the like. N64 had a huge debut as well.

TrekkiesUnite118
01-07-2019, 08:35 PM
-Wipeout 2 & 3 - Much like NFS, could they have maxed out the Saturn to handle them?

Wipeout 2097/XL was already ported to the Saturn. While better than the original port, it still has a lower frame rate, dithered transparencies, and worse textures than the PS1 version:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-OD-_x34afI

Wipeout 3 however would be impossible. By the time that game was made Sony had already bought Psygnosis and Wipeout was pretty much a first party franchise. That's why it hasn't been on any other platform since. Not to mention it came out in late 1999, by that point the Dreamcast was out and Saturn was dead and buried. Even if it lasted one more year this would be a stretch.

Team Andromeda
01-08-2019, 12:51 AM
I'm sure I'm forgetting about some other 3rd party PS1 games from 1998-99 that could have also had Saturn ports.

Its a shame that we didn't see Wild 9; which Dave Perry was telling EDGE was pushing the Saturn to its limits with low-level assembly code. Maybe if the Saturn had been pushed for another year we would have seen the likes of Metal Slug, Drift King 97 (looked great for a Saturn racer) and King of the Spirits II , Gun Griffion II, Virus ,Dungeons & Dragons Collection, Bulk Slash brought over
RE II was never going to happen though , even though work did start on it, SEGA Japan already decided along with Capcom, to move work over to the DC, which made sense and in some ways I wished, Deep Fear would have been moved to DC production to help with its launch

Leynos
01-08-2019, 11:33 AM
Well by 1997/98 finding a store that sold new Saturn games was about as easy as finding a store that sells newly released Vita games now. Would have made little to no impact and today those games would be insanely expensive.

Raijin Z
01-08-2019, 01:53 PM
There are too many what-ifs that have to fall in the right direction for the Saturn to have reached parity with, or exceed the success of the PlayStation. Sega's own worst enemy had always been itself, even if you don't believe the accounts of ramped-up infighting due to the success of Sonic as a pack-in title. I would think that if the Saturn had a better foundation and less schizophrenic engineering, it would be home to many ports of popular 3D PC games in the west, and of course arcade hits in the east, with crossover for the most popular titles.

Mega Drive Bowlsey
01-08-2019, 03:47 PM
Being a huge (classic) Resident Evil fan, I would have loved to have seen Resi 2 on the Saturn, as the port of Resi 1 is pretty damn special.

Team Andromeda
01-08-2019, 05:27 PM
There are too many what-ifs that have to fall in the right direction.

Not when one is talking about games that were already developed and out in Japan for the Saturn. All it would have taken if for SEGA not to want to kill the Saturn off in the USA and piss off Working Designs and Shiny off while they were at it

Leynos
01-08-2019, 08:41 PM
Not when one is talking about games that were already developed and out in Japan for the Saturn. All it would have taken if for SEGA not to want to kill the Saturn off in the USA and piss off Working Designs and Shiny off while they were at it

You were hard pressed to find any store that sold Saturn games by 97 so wouldn't have much of a difference if any. By then most people didn't even know what a Saturn was. If no one noticed when Resident Evil or Tomb Raider released on Saturn in the US then what difference would it make with some niche Japanese game?

Team Andromeda
01-09-2019, 03:19 AM
You were hard pressed to find any store that sold Saturn games by 97 so wouldn't have much of a difference if any. By then most people didn't even know what a Saturn was. If no one noticed when Resident Evil or Tomb Raider released on Saturn in the US then what difference would it make with some niche Japanese game?

Think you're getting the wrong end of the stick. This isn't about how one could change the Saturn fortunes, outsell the PS or N64, but more if SEGA had just decided that until the DC was ready in the west (which wasn';t until late 99) it would support the Saturn longer itself. Before Bernie made his speech that the Saturn was dead, Shinning said it was doing wonders with Wild Nine on the Saturn, Working Designs told Saturn Power mag that it has already signed up Thunder Force V, Battle Gerraga, Souky, Lunar I and II, Silhouette Mirage, for a western release on the Saturn: That's some nice serious software and I dare say that WD would have looked to traslate Grandia as well on the Saturn.
Even in Japan the Saturn was having a hard time in late 97 and early 98. SEGA was going to lose money in the west no matter what and given the big rise then of Mail Order, SEGA could have done limited production runs and basically make it mail order only and when one looks at games like Metal Slug or Dead or Alive the translation work would be minimal.

It would have been lovely to have had Princess Crown in English too, even if SEGA would have had to paid WD to do the translation.

Leynos
01-09-2019, 03:48 AM
Yeah, I'd take a Princess Crown in English. One of my fave Saturn games. Gave birth to one of my favorite developers ever in Vanillaware. I just wouldn't want Working Designs anywhere near it as that would surely make the price today unattainable for most. Also, don't want their 90s meme humor They were as bad if not worse than Treehouse.

Team Andromeda
01-09-2019, 04:13 AM
I just wouldn't want Working Designs anywhere near it as that would surely make the price today unattainable for most

If you bought it at the time, that's not an issue. But so glad I got all the WD Saturn and Mega CD games back in the day. Mind you even back then the likes of Albert Oddesy, Lunar II and Magic Knight weren't cheap on Import

Leynos
01-09-2019, 04:28 AM
How can I buy it at the time when no one was selling Saturn games?

Team Andromeda
01-09-2019, 05:28 AM
How can I buy it at the time when no one was selling Saturn games?

In the same way, I did, Mail Order. Import shop: hence how one was able to get the likes of Magic Knight Rayearth and Burning Rangers. In the UK I had to use mail order to get Deep Fear given most High Street shops had dropped the Saturn too and even used my Import shop to get Saturn Pal stuff from time to time too

Leynos
01-09-2019, 05:39 AM
You have to know the Saturn exists first. That was a real hurdle in 1997 in the US.

Team Andromeda
01-09-2019, 06:15 AM
You have to know the Saturn exists first. That was a real hurdle in 1997 in the US.

Given you own/owned a Saturn, I'm sure even you knew it existed

redsox2013
01-09-2019, 07:52 AM
The whole point of this what-if is to suppose that Saturn was just a little more successful, not to suppose that it would have come anywhere near PS1's numbers. If Sega had sold 1-2 million more Saturns in the U.S., that would have increased it's install base by 20-40%. A lot more people would have known about Saturn, stores would have carried Saturn games much longer, and there may have been enough demand for more games to be brought over from Japan as well as to have some new games developed well into 1998.

Moirai
01-18-2019, 10:28 AM
Given you own/owned a Saturn, I'm sure even you knew it existed

I think most people knew of the saturn, they just didnt buy one because playstation was 100 dollars cheaper

Team Andromeda
01-18-2019, 01:10 PM
I think most people knew of the saturn, they just didnt buy one because playstation was 100 dollars cheaper

That wasn't the point I was making there.

Black_Tiger
01-18-2019, 01:26 PM
I think most people knew of the saturn, they just didnt buy one because playstation was 100 dollars cheaper

Are you just going by the myth of "launch" prices?

The Saturn was cheaper than the Playstation in Canada, and the U.S. from what I saw at the time.

Gryson
01-18-2019, 01:55 PM
Yeah, as I recall, the Saturn matched the PlayStation pretty evenly for price.

It's also worth noting that most of the Saturn's sales in NA came when Sega started doing the 3 free games deal. This reportedly cost them heavily. In order to break even on manufacturing costs, Sega had to sell 8 games per console. However, they ended up giving away 3 games in order to push their unsold inventory of Saturns. This just pushed them further into the red when people didn't buy games.

I say that because the Saturn's sales numbers can be deceptive without understanding them. The 3 free games deal was a desperation move and was heavily opposed by people like Shoichiro Irimajiri, who wanted to kill the Saturn off even earlier.

Before the free game deal, I don't even think the Saturn had pushed 1 million units, which was nowhere near what they needed to keep it alive.

Team Andromeda
01-18-2019, 02:05 PM
Yeah, as I recall, the Saturn matched the PlayStation pretty evenly for price.

It's also worth noting that most of the Saturn's sales in NA came when Sega started doing the 3 free games deal

Not at the start, there was a clear 100 £/$ difference between the 2 systems on its US and UK launch. But whats never factored is you didn't need to buy a memory card, the Saturn had a free game (VF) In both cases not the same with the PS and in the UK you also had a Scart Lead as standard too (£30 on its own)

Black_Tiger
01-18-2019, 08:23 PM
Not at the start, there was a clear 100 £/$ difference between the 2 systems on its US and UK launch. But whats never factored is you didn't need to buy a memory card, the Saturn had a free game (VF) In both cases not the same with the PS and in the UK you also had a Scart Lead as standard too (£30 on its own)

Again, you must be reading random wiki details out of context. "At the start" in North America, there was no Playstation. The Saturn had a surprise early launch 4 - 5 months before the launch of the Playstation.

The msrp of the Saturn up until near the Playstation launch was higher than what the PSX launched at, but it was changed to be equal to that of the upcoming PSX and advertised as such before the PSX was available to buy.

Separate from some Saturn package deals that I saw advertised, which were likely retailer based, all Saturns came with Virtua Fighter packed in and by the time the Playstation launched, there were various ways that VF Remix was distributed for free, including being packed together with the console.

Gryson
01-18-2019, 10:17 PM
I think there may have been a few times when the PlayStation dropped in price before the Saturn, but Sega always responded not too long after. There wouldn't have been a price war if Sega kept the Saturn $100 more than the PlayStation.

Lync
01-18-2019, 11:26 PM
One thing about the Sega Saturn I never totally recognized myself and I think is misunderstood about the system is how vastly different a gaming machine it was in Japan than the rest of the world.

And I mean that by how seemingly insulated it became as Sega fumbled marketing it everywhere did Japanese developers find themselves free to just design and produce games according to the Japanese audience.

That probably reads as minor because of the typical imports that come to mind like "Radiant Silvergun" or "Dead or Alive", etc., but I feel this was the beginning in a separation in game culture where Japanese tastes both in genre and aesthetics were becoming polarizing.

When you see titles like "Pia Carrot", "Culdcept", or "Eve Burst Error", topping the lists while "Guardian Heroes" barely cutting top 100 or not listing other games altogether like "Astal" - Supporting the Saturn another year wouldn't have yielded anything in terms of titles worth the localization effort, or already niche import market.



I look at the Saturn here as a console that pioneered the concepts and mechanics of 3D gameplay, developed upon in stride the arcade-at-home experience, and is the last house to truly celebrate 2D games both at their peak and at a time when they were being discarded.

I look at the Saturn in Japan as NEC's PC-FX but popular. Really popular. But only in Japan because it found itself catering to Japan.

One more year would have been for naught.

Team Andromeda
01-19-2019, 03:04 AM
Again, you must be reading random wiki details out of context. "At the start" in North America, there was no Playstation. The Saturn had a surprise early launch 4 - 5 months before the launch of the Playstation.

The msrp of the Saturn up until near the Playstation launch was higher than what the PSX launched at, but it was changed to be equal to that of the upcoming PSX and advertised as such before the PSX was available to buy.

Separate from some Saturn package deals that I saw advertised, which were likely retailer based, all Saturns came with Virtua Fighter packed in and by the time the Playstation launched, there were various ways that VF Remix was distributed for free, including being packed together with the console.

I don't use Wiki for Saturn/PS stuff and just remember what was reported or advertised in the press at the time. The Saturn cost more at launch than the PS in all key territories (JP/US/Pal) but like I said for the higher price you also got a free game and didn't need to buy a memory card (£30 on its own in the UK, not sure in the USA) and also in the UK you had the added bonus of an Official Scart cable too (£30 on its own). Not that I ever thought the higher price was the issue, given SEGA dropped prices very early in for all markets.

Team Andromeda
01-19-2019, 03:23 AM
I look at the Saturn here as a console that pioneered the concepts and mechanics of 3D gameplay, developed upon in stride the arcade-at-home experience, and is the last house to truly celebrate 2D games both at their peak and at a time when they were being discarded.


I don't agree. We could have had some really nice software at the end not all of which would have been niche games (not that's a bad thing) Think its very sad were never had the likes of Gun Griffon 2, Zork Collection, Virus, Stellar Assault SS, Metal Slug in the west. The Saturn is far more like the NEC PC Engine too imo. Does really well in Japan and so not surprisingly gets Japanese games that the market likes (both systems to own for shooters too) , while the Western side totally screws up the handling of the western side for marketing and games. Pretty similar for the OG Xbox only that would be the opposite in doing well in the West and being dominated with western style software and for SONY it's much the same with the Vita where it does well in Japan and so gets a ton of RPG's


I also have to say that Guardian Heroes is one of the most overrated games ever. It's a great game to show off the hardware, but the game isn't that great (for me) and the gameplay gets very boring and each level plays and looks much the same. I so wish SEGA Japan would have ported Revenge of the Death Adder which is such a better game and would have been perfect for the Saturn

Lync
01-19-2019, 11:57 AM
I don't agree. We could have had some really nice software at the end not all of which would have been niche games (not that's a bad thing) Think its very sad were never had the likes of Gun Griffon 2, Zork Collection, Virus, Stellar Assault SS, Metal Slug in the west. The Saturn is far more like the NEC PC Engine too imo. Does really well in Japan and so not surprisingly gets Japanese games that the market likes (both systems to own for shooters too) , while the Western side totally screws up the handling of the western side for marketing and games. Pretty similar for the OG Xbox only that would be the opposite in doing well in the West and being dominated with western style software and for SONY it's much the same with the Vita where it does well in Japan and so gets a ton of RPG's

I would have loved to have Stellar Assault SS - but even in Japan that is a very difficult game to find. Which is a great example of a genre I think that has done well in the West, but in Japan - were plane/space ship simulators popular? That is my question in regards to appeal and why I have the impression of the Saturn becoming this island. By 1998 developers no longer needed to care about anyone but the Japanese gamer.

My answer to the OP - If we are speculating that the Saturn had a more comprehensive launch/developer support/smarter marketing/etc. then the discussion is just another guessing game with a crystal ball.

If we are talking about how the Saturn's run actually was, and if it had gone another year outside Japan, I'm saying the offering would have still been nil. Maybe something decent like Street Fighter Alpha 3 would have happened. Or, as I am trying to say, publishers would have little to offer anyways outside of popular and goofy sh!t in Japan like Metamor V.

So similar to the PC Engine? Sure, I think that is a better analogy than me saying PC-FX.

Team Andromeda
01-20-2019, 01:32 AM
I would have loved to have Stellar Assault SS - but even in Japan that is a very difficult game to find. Which is a great example of a genre I think that has done well in the West, but in Japan - were plane/space ship simulators popular? That is my question in regards to appeal and why I have the impression of the Saturn becoming this island. By 1998 developers no longer needed to care about anyone but the Japanese gamer.



The game was easy to get on its release and it was pretty cheap too.

Also I can't help but feel you're missing the point this isn't about the Saturn doing better for sales, but more the point that if SEGA West had looked to supported the Saturn for a little bit longer they could have cherry-picked the better Saturn software from Japan. I think its rather sad that the likes of Gun Griffon II and Stellar Assault were never translated

Lync
01-20-2019, 03:20 AM
The game was easy to get on its release and it was pretty cheap too.

Also I can't help but feel you're missing the point this isn't about the Saturn doing better for sales, but more the point that if SEGA West had looked to supported the Saturn for a little bit longer they could have cherry-picked the better Saturn software from Japan. I think its rather sad that the likes of Gun Griffon II and Stellar Assault were never translated

Why would Sega provide deeper support for the Saturn into '98 for any other reason but for sales.

But that clearly was not going to happen with it faltering, so perhaps they would just want to see how much more time and money they could exhaust before preparing for the Dreamcast then? Or maybe for love?

I just don't see why Sega would have needed to wait until they were on their last leg with the Saturn to then begin cherry-picking titles. Did they figure laying off half their American branch that year would be the right time to step up publishing efforts?

No - and I'm honestly convinced it's because they didn't have a grasp on the market from the get. Hindsight is not 20/20 either in this case with advertising like this (https://i.imgur.com/BNyvLrE.jpg). I mean, what the f#ck did they think they were selling.

A lot of this however does not interest me though. The entire SOJ vs SOA debate, complex hardware architecture, all of the 'what-ifs', etc. As the saying goes:
"The train has left the station."

What I was really interested in trying to illustrate before was how I felt the gaming pool for the Saturn in '98 had shifted toward Japanese-tastes and with titles with larger appeal like Symphony of the Night, Thunder Force V, or Grandia making the jump to the Playstation just the year before, there wasn't much to look forward to other than the prospect of starting fresh with the Dreamcast.

Team Andromeda
01-20-2019, 03:52 AM
This thread is just a what if, Not what SEGA could or should have done better or sensible business plans. This is just a fun thread on. What If SEGA did support the Saturn longer and what sort of software the Saturn could it have enjoyed in late 97 and early 98 in the west.

ALSO Stellar Assault wasn't hard to find on its release, Most import shops in the UK carried it and it was fairly cheap too (UK import shops) . Its since gone up in vaule thanks to ebay and the likes of YouTube :)

Gryson
01-20-2019, 10:56 AM
One thing about the Sega Saturn I never totally recognized myself and I think is misunderstood about the system is how vastly different a gaming machine it was in Japan than the rest of the world.

And I mean that by how seemingly insulated it became as Sega fumbled marketing it everywhere did Japanese developers find themselves free to just design and produce games according to the Japanese audience.

That probably reads as minor because of the typical imports that come to mind like "Radiant Silvergun" or "Dead or Alive", etc., but I feel this was the beginning in a separation in game culture where Japanese tastes both in genre and aesthetics were becoming polarizing.

When you see titles like "Pia Carrot", "Culdcept", or "Eve Burst Error", topping the lists while "Guardian Heroes" barely cutting top 100 or not listing other games altogether like "Astal" - Supporting the Saturn another year wouldn't have yielded anything in terms of titles worth the localization effort, or already niche import market.



I look at the Saturn here as a console that pioneered the concepts and mechanics of 3D gameplay, developed upon in stride the arcade-at-home experience, and is the last house to truly celebrate 2D games both at their peak and at a time when they were being discarded.

I look at the Saturn in Japan as NEC's PC-FX but popular. Really popular. But only in Japan because it found itself catering to Japan.

One more year would have been for naught.

I think you might be a bit off the mark here.

First, I wouldn't say the Saturn was ever successful in Japan. It's more that Virtua Fighter was successful. A huge number of people were buying Saturns to ONLY play Virtua Fighter, and Sega was not easily recouping manufacturing costs.

Second, a lot of those weird Japanese titles were very niche in Japan and did not sell much. There were a huge number of PC-98 adventure game ports and such, but that was nothing new in Japan (e.g. PC Engine).

The fact is, as Hideki Sato said, people were just not buying Saturn games. This is very evident when you look at the top sales ranking:

https://web.archive.org/web/20081230005343/http://www.japan-gamecharts.com/sat.php

Only 5 games broke 500,000 sales, and the vast majority of titles released were under 100,000 sales. Those niche titles don't appear much at the top. It's a lot of arcade ports.

As an aside: Radiant Silvergun gets a lot of praise, but it sold the same number of copies in Japan as did Gunstar Heroes (50,000).

In regards to catering to Japan: The only genre that has ever really mattered in Japan is the RPG. Sega lacked the know-how to develop their own strong RPGs (see the failure of Panzer Dragoon Saga) and they couldn't get the big 3rd parties (Square, Enix). It's no coincidence that the console that Square/Enix supported in Japan was always the one to be the most successful. If Sega had tried more to cater to Japan's demand for RPGs, the Saturn might have been more successful, but that was never really what Sega was going for or strong at.

Team Andromeda
01-20-2019, 01:21 PM
I think you might be a bit off the mark here.

First, I wouldn't say the Saturn was ever successful in Japan. It's more that Virtua Fighter was successful. A huge number of people were buying Saturns to ONLY play Virtua Fighter, and Sega was not easily recouping manufacturing costs.

Second, a lot of those weird Japanese titles were very niche in Japan and did not sell much. There were a huge number of PC-98 adventure game ports and such, but that was nothing new in Japan (e.g. PC Engine).

The fact is, as Hideki Sato said, people were just not buying Saturn games. This is very evident when you look at the top sales ranking:

https://web.archive.org/web/20081230005343/http://www.japan-gamecharts.com/sat.php

Only 5 games broke 500,000 sales, and the vast majority of titles released were under 100,000 sales. Those niche titles don't appear much at the top. It's a lot of arcade ports.

As an aside: Radiant Silvergun gets a lot of praise, but it sold the same number of copies in Japan as did Gunstar Heroes (50,000).

In regards to catering to Japan: The only genre that has ever really mattered in Japan is the RPG. Sega lacked the know-how to develop their own strong RPGs (see the failure of Panzer Dragoon Saga) and they couldn't get the big 3rd parties (Square, Enix). It's no coincidence that the console that Square/Enix supported in Japan was always the one to be the most successful. If Sega had tried more to cater to Japan's demand for RPGs, the Saturn might have been more successful, but that was never really what Sega was going for or strong at.

Think you're going off topic, but people weren't just buying the Saturn for VF, the Saturn was selling well long after VF and VF2 it was really the demo of FF 7 that killed Saturn sales almost overnight. Also even with a Huge user base how many Mega Drive games sold over a million units in not that many titles considering , its not that many. And its not really fair to bring up Saga; It was the Team Andromeda team who lacked the know-how to make RPG's, not SEGA Japan it's self and indeed SEGA did draft in staff members who knew how to make RPG's from the other divsions to help with Saga . SEGA Japan long before Saga had made some quite brilliant RPG's on the Saturn with Sakura Wars (Red only did the art and helped with the story) , Magic Knight Rayearth, Dragon Force ect. The Saturn had loads of RPG's

Also Treasure games always get hype, but don't sell in big numbers (other than on Nintendo systems) . Gunstar heroes always gets talked up but sold very little, much like all of Treasure 16Bit Mega Drive games. Gradius V will always be in most people's top PS2 shooter list and that game sold rubbish too

Gryson
01-20-2019, 01:58 PM
Think you're going off topic, but people weren't just buying the Saturn for VF, the Saturn was selling well long after VF and VF2 it was really the demo of FF 7 that killed Saturn sales almost overnight. Also even with a Huge user base how many Mega Drive games sold over a million units in not that many titles considering , its not that many. And its not really fair to bring up Saga; It was the Team Andromeda team who lacked the know-how to make RPG's, not SEGA Japan it's self and indeed SEGA did draft in staff members who knew how to make RPG's from the other divsions to help with Saga . SEGA Japan long before Saga had made some quite brilliant RPG's on the Saturn with Sakura Wars (Red only did the art and helped with the story) , Magic Knight Rayearth, Dragon Force ect. The Saturn had loads of RPG's

Also Treasure games always get hype, but don't sell in big numbers (other than on Nintendo systems) . Gunstar heroes always gets talked up but sold very little, much like all of Treasure 16Bit Mega Drive games. Gradius V will always be in most people's top PS2 shooter list and that game sold rubbish too

I'm not speaking out of my ass - in 1995, when there was still a serious shortage of Saturns in Japan, people were buying them up prior to the release of VF2 and not buying a single game! They were just waiting for VF2. It created huge problems for Sega.

Look at the sales numbers I just posted. VF2 and Fighters Megamix DOMINATED sales relative to everything else, especially the only two RPGs in the Top 20 (Grandia and Shin Megami Tensei).

Anyway, what I'm saying is not my opinion, but a restatement of what Nakayama and Sato have already said: The Saturn was not selling enough games per console to succeed.

Panzer Dragoon Saga was meant to be Sega's big blockbuster RPG, the first since Phantasy Star to compete with Square and Enix's games. Every press report from 1997 on has Nakayama touting Saga as the next big thing, the game to save the Saturn. It turned out to be a massive waste of money.

Sakura Wars is not anywhere near an RPG, by the way. It's an adventure game with light strategy portions sprinkled in. Great game, but definitely not an RPG. Magic Knight Rayearth sold nothing. Dragon Force is a strategy game.

Lync
01-20-2019, 02:18 PM
This thread is just a what if, Not what SEGA could or should have done better or sensible business plans. This is just a fun thread on. What If SEGA did support the Saturn longer and what sort of software the Saturn could it have enjoyed in late 97 and early 98 in the west.

ALSO Stellar Assault wasn't hard to find on its release, Most import shops in the UK carried it and it was fairly cheap too (UK import shops) . Its since gone up in vaule thanks to ebay and the likes of YouTube :)

Are you telling me you have a copy of Stellar Assault SS?

That game is everything in a sequel I wanted from Shadow Squadron! It seems masterful...

In '95 I only had Virtua Fighter and Knuckles Chaotix for my 32X, and I remember the night I went out and bought Shadow Squadron - it is still one of the best reasons to own a 32X. Watching videos of Stellar Assault SS gameplay, man, it has to be just as much fun to play...



I think you might be a bit off the mark here.

First, I wouldn't say the Saturn was ever successful in Japan. It's more that Virtua Fighter was successful. A huge number of people were buying Saturns to ONLY play Virtua Fighter, and Sega was not easily recouping manufacturing costs.

Second, a lot of those weird Japanese titles were very niche in Japan and did not sell much. There were a huge number of PC-98 adventure game ports and such, but that was nothing new in Japan (e.g. PC Engine).

The fact is, as Hideki Sato said, people were just not buying Saturn games. This is very evident when you look at the top sales ranking:

https://web.archive.org/web/20081230005343/http://www.japan-gamecharts.com/sat.php

Only 5 games broke 500,000 sales, and the vast majority of titles released were under 100,000 sales. Those niche titles don't appear much at the top. It's a lot of arcade ports.

As an aside: Radiant Silvergun gets a lot of praise, but it sold the same number of copies in Japan as did Gunstar Heroes (50,000).

In regards to catering to Japan: The only genre that has ever really mattered in Japan is the RPG. Sega lacked the know-how to develop their own strong RPGs (see the failure of Panzer Dragoon Saga) and they couldn't get the big 3rd parties (Square, Enix). It's no coincidence that the console that Square/Enix supported in Japan was always the one to be the most successful. If Sega had tried more to cater to Japan's demand for RPGs, the Saturn might have been more successful, but that was never really what Sega was going for or strong at.

Out of the gate Virtua Fighter might have been the reason to buy a Saturn, but in its entirety to say that the Saturn wasn't successful in Japan?

It was without question Sega's only successful console in Japan. In the history of Japan's video game market: of course not. Compared to its generation: not really. As far as Sega's hardware: sure, it may not have swept the market, but if I recall the Saturn is nearly on par with the sales of the Master System, Genesis, and Dreamcast combined for Japan.

As far as the Saturn's place as a Japanese-niche system that's pretty much what TA and I were getting at - the Saturn filled that role similar to the PCE for its generation. I don't know how well or not some of those Japanese-esque RPGs sold and the contribution to the Saturn sales as a whole, but I'm sure it didn't hurt the Saturn either. People in Japan seem to like some of those weird f#ckin' games. Give me Stellar Assault SS any day damnit!

Team Andromeda
01-20-2019, 03:02 PM
I'm not speaking out of my ass - in 1995, when there was still a serious shortage of Saturns in Japan, people were buying them up prior to the release of VF2 and not buying a single game! They were just waiting for VF2. It created huge problems for Sega.


Never said you did. But to seem to forget how the White Saturn sold out of its 1st stock run of over 100,000 units in 2days,that had little to with VF or VF 2.

And sorry Sakura Wars is more of a RPG than Zelda (but that's always classed as an RPG) and for added messure SEGA even class the series as an RPG on the game cases.

Btw I'm not on about sales, but making the point that SEGA Produced and published a lot of RPGs for the Saturn and so what about Saga, Shenmue was meant to be the DC savour and a RPG killer and it flopped, lost SEGA millions and had a more troubled development than Saga.

Gryson
01-20-2019, 03:35 PM
It was without question Sega's only successful console in Japan. In the history of Japan's video game market: of course not. Compared to its generation: not really. As far as Sega's hardware: sure, it may not have swept the market, but if I recall the Saturn is nearly on par with the sales of the Master System, Genesis, and Dreamcast combined for Japan.

But how are you defining successful? If you mean the total number of consoles sold, then yes, it sold more than other Sega consoles. But that's deceptive. So much of the picture is lost by just looking at console sales numbers (not to mention that the industry was rapidly growing at the time).

In terms of the business of actually making money, the Saturn was a disaster and brought one of the greatest gaming companies of the generation to its knees.

Every one of Sega's consoles up to that point in Japan actually made money. They didn't sell many units, but they were cheap to make and cheap to develop for. They attracted small developers who could easily get by selling 20,000 copies of a game, and Sega would be in the black from sales of 2-3 games per console sold.

Jump to the Saturn: Sega had to sell at least 8 games per console to break even due to incredibly high manufacturing costs. Developers could no longer get by with teams of 5 people, but now needed dozens. Development also took much longer. Selling 20,000 copies of a game was no longer enough to get by. Now they needed to sell 100,000.

The Saturn did survive for its first two years in Japan, largely due to Virtua Fighter and its iterations and a few other arcade ports. But then it died a quick and brutal death once Sega's losses started to mount. Many of Sega's long-time development collaborators either closed or shifted to other consoles during this period.

When you read the accounts of people on the Japanese side (such as this one (http://www.sega-16.com/forum/showthread.php?33506-Hideki-Sato-on-the-Sega-Saturn-(incredible-new-interview))), you will never find them praising the success of the Saturn in Japan. People in the West see only the somewhat high units sold and large number of games released and draw conclusions from that, but the truth is that the Saturn was too expensive to manufacture, games were too expensive to develop, and Sega did not have the resources to make it work.

Gryson
01-20-2019, 03:40 PM
And sorry Sakura Wars is more of a RPG than Zelda (but that's always classed as an RPG) and for added messure SEGA even class the series as an RPG on the game cases.

Be honest: Have you ever played Sakura Wars? It's nowhere near an RPG. I don't know how anybody could call it that. It's an interactive novel / Japanese adventure game with a light strategy/tactics element.

The back of the case on the first two Saturn titles in Japan identify the genre as "dramatic adventure". Where do you see it identified as an RPG?

https://segaretro.org/images/thumb/2/2d/SakuraTaisen_Saturn_JP_Box_Back.jpg/762px-SakuraTaisen_Saturn_JP_Box_Back.jpg
https://segaretro.org/images/thumb/3/33/SakuraTaisen2_Saturn_JP_Box_Back.jpg/772px-SakuraTaisen2_Saturn_JP_Box_Back.jpg

Team Andromeda
01-21-2019, 01:03 AM
Are you telling me you have a copy of Stellar Assault SS?


Yes i am and I had more issues getting NBA action 98 to be honest at the time (since NBA is niche in the UK and the Saturn market was dying)

https://i.imgur.com/heOnEtT.jpg

Team Andromeda
01-21-2019, 01:14 AM
Be honest: Have you ever played Sakura Wars? It's nowhere near an RPG. I don't know how anybody could call it that. It's an interactive novel / Japanese adventure game with a light strategy/tactics element.


Yes, I own the entire series have and its classed as an RPG by many even SEGA in stuff like the Saturn/DC software flyers . I wouldn't class Yakuza as an RPG myself, but that what it comes under that genre, same goes for the likes of Zelda, The Story of Thor or even Phantasy Star Online but they're seen has RPG's, very much the same for Shenmue too.

Even if we take out Sakura Wars, SEGA had ready made or produced a high number of Saturn RPG and had a lot of RPG knowledge with the number of Mega Drive RPGs it had produced or developed.

bultje112
01-21-2019, 07:50 AM
I think you might be a bit off the mark here.

First, I wouldn't say the Saturn was ever successful in Japan. It's more that Virtua Fighter was successful. A huge number of people were buying Saturns to ONLY play Virtua Fighter, and Sega was not easily recouping manufacturing costs.

Second, a lot of those weird Japanese titles were very niche in Japan and did not sell much. There were a huge number of PC-98 adventure game ports and such, but that was nothing new in Japan (e.g. PC Engine).

The fact is, as Hideki Sato said, people were just not buying Saturn games. This is very evident when you look at the top sales ranking:

https://web.archive.org/web/20081230005343/http://www.japan-gamecharts.com/sat.php

Only 5 games broke 500,000 sales, and the vast majority of titles released were under 100,000 sales. Those niche titles don't appear much at the top. It's a lot of arcade ports.

As an aside: Radiant Silvergun gets a lot of praise, but it sold the same number of copies in Japan as did Gunstar Heroes (50,000).

In regards to catering to Japan: The only genre that has ever really mattered in Japan is the RPG. Sega lacked the know-how to develop their own strong RPGs (see the failure of Panzer Dragoon Saga) and they couldn't get the big 3rd parties (Square, Enix). It's no coincidence that the console that Square/Enix supported in Japan was always the one to be the most successful. If Sega had tried more to cater to Japan's demand for RPGs, the Saturn might have been more successful, but that was never really what Sega was going for or strong at.

That list is completely off. several games missing as well like daytona usa which sold nearly a million and panzer dragoon. more than 15 games sold 500,000 in japan and virtua fighter 2 sold 1.75 million units alone in japan. that number in your link were the pre-orders. sega rally alone has been confirmed by it's developer to have sold 1.2 million units, of which nearly a million came from japan.

lumclaw
01-21-2019, 08:55 AM
Why would Sega provide deeper support for the Saturn into '98 for any other reason but for sales.

But that clearly was not going to happen with it faltering, so perhaps they would just want to see how much more time and money they could exhaust before preparing for the Dreamcast then? Or maybe for love?

I just don't see why Sega would have needed to wait until they were on their last leg with the Saturn to then begin cherry-picking titles. Did they figure laying off half their American branch that year would be the right time to step up publishing efforts?

No - and I'm honestly convinced it's because they didn't have a grasp on the market from the get. Hindsight is not 20/20 either in this case with advertising like this (https://i.imgur.com/BNyvLrE.jpg). I mean, what the f#ck did they think they were selling.

A lot of this however does not interest me though. The entire SOJ vs SOA debate, complex hardware architecture, all of the 'what-ifs', etc. As the saying goes:
"The train has left the station."

What I was really interested in trying to illustrate before was how I felt the gaming pool for the Saturn in '98 had shifted toward Japanese-tastes and with titles with larger appeal like Symphony of the Night, Thunder Force V, or Grandia making the jump to the Playstation just the year before, there wasn't much to look forward to other than the prospect of starting fresh with the Dreamcast.

The simplest, if not scrapped midway, localizations we didn't get intrigue me. Gradius Deluxe Pack was already in English.
Various games like Vampire Savior, Bubble Symphony, or Soukyugurentai were translated elsewhere, and the Saturn versions make apparent they were attempted on some level.

Working Designs fleetingly teased Iron Storm 2, never to be seen again.

Team Andromeda
01-21-2019, 02:43 PM
The simplest, if not scrapped midway, localizations we didn't get intrigue me. Gradius Deluxe Pack was already in English.
Various games like Vampire Savior, Bubble Symphony, or Soukyugurentai were translated elsewhere, and the Saturn versions make apparent they were attempted on some level.

Working Designs fleetingly teased Iron Storm 2, never to be seen again.

Good points, lots of the SNK games either had their text already translated for the Western market on the Neo or some games had a English text option ready in the Saturn version.

troopa jr
01-21-2019, 05:07 PM
maybe saturn could have had a grater catalog, but i don't see the step into dreamcast as a bad movement as it had a large number of games for its short live... the bad step came later...

Lync
01-21-2019, 07:25 PM
But how are you defining successful? If you mean the total number of consoles sold, then yes, it sold more than other Sega consoles. But that's deceptive. So much of the picture is lost by just looking at console sales numbers (not to mention that the industry was rapidly growing at the time).

Yes - I was only speaking by popularity or the number of units sold, not the profit by cost/game sales or etc.


The simplest, if not scrapped midway, localizations we didn't get intrigue me. Gradius Deluxe Pack was already in English.
Various games like Vampire Savior, Bubble Symphony, or Soukyugurentai were translated elsewhere, and the Saturn versions make apparent they were attempted on some level.

Working Designs fleetingly teased Iron Storm 2, never to be seen again.

I feel the same way and can only speculate that by '97 when the Saturn was declared "not Sega's future," publishers abandoned any outstanding efforts.

Working Designs on the other hand I was under the impression did not click with Saturn's SOA management right from the start.
They probably finished what games they had agreed to and jumped ship while leaving teasers of their other open projects to burn a bit in the minds of Sega fans. Who knows.

Team Andromeda
01-22-2019, 01:22 AM
I would have loved to have Stellar Assault SS - but even in Japan that is a very difficult game to find. .

I knew of no importer back in the day that couldn't source Stellar Assault on the Saturn in the UK on its 1st print run, maybe the issue was the game ever got a 2nd or 3rd print run.
Also if we want to talk sense and a good business plan then SEGA should have dropped the Saturn like a stone in the west and become a 3rd party PS developer, but this is just a fun thread of the kind of games one could have got if the Saturn was to have a year more in the West And 'for me' the Saturn and PC-Eng are very much alike.. In a lot of cases could outperform the so-called more powerful consoles, the systems to own for Shooters, only did well in Japan and an import shop dream system. The FX shares no of that and is more like the Philips CDi is the main plus point is the high-quality video player back and FMV style games

Speaking of late Saturn games its a shame that the likes of All Japan Pro Wrestling, Fire Prowrestling S 6Men Scramble (for me the best wrestling game around at the time) K-1 Fighting I, Sonic Council (awesome game) Suiko Enbu

Mega Drive Bowlsey
01-22-2019, 08:23 AM
As I've said before I would have loved for Resident Evil 2 to get a Saturn port. I recently found out that the reason Capcom cancelled it wasn't because the Saturn's days were numbered, but rather the game just didn't look as impressive graphically as the PS1 port, and nor could they get it to run as smoothly on the Saturn hardware. They decided to move production over to the brand new Sega Dreamcast instead, and the eventual outcome was the Dreamcast exclusive (for a couple of years at least) Resident Evil: Code Veronica.

Moirai
01-22-2019, 03:25 PM
Imagine how expensive US street fighter alpha 3 and radiant silvergun longboxes would be today if they were released in 1999. How about a US HYPER DUEL longbox? $3200.00 VG+ all day long on ebay biatch!

Team Andromeda
01-23-2019, 03:56 AM
Imagine how expensive US street fighter alpha 3 and radiant silvergun longboxes would be today if they were released in 1999. How about a US HYPER DUEL longbox? $3200.00 VG+ all day long on ebay biatch!

RSG isn't that rare, but I guess because it gets so much hype (quite rightly) and so many owners aren't willing to sell their copy makes the pice high. I only paid £40 quid for my Hyper Duel.

axel
01-24-2019, 02:33 AM
By 1997 my recollection is that if you brought up the Saturn people would say, "oh yeah, what ever happened to that?" The PSX had won, N64 was a strong 2nd only because of Nintendo's AAA titles. Really, what could Sega have done differently? I wouldn't expect them to push tons of resources into a failing system when the DC was on the way, so no Sonic game or anything like that. I don't think making games that required a 4MB RAM cart would have worked either, it would have just fractured the already small userbase. More localizations could have been nice though. Take stuff that you already have and get it out to a wider audience, that seems cost effective.

Team Andromeda
01-24-2019, 04:23 AM
By 1997 my recollection is that if you brought up the Saturn people would say, "oh yeah, what ever happened to that?" The PSX had won, N64 was a strong 2nd only because of Nintendo's AAA titles. Really, what could Sega have done differently? I wouldn't expect them to push tons of resources into a failing system when the DC was on the way, so no Sonic game or anything like that. I don't think making games that required a 4MB RAM cart would have worked either, it would have just fractured the already small userbase. More localizations could have been nice though. Take stuff that you already have and get it out to a wider audience, that seems cost effective.

But this isn't about what SEGA could have done differently or better, just simply if the Saturn was kept going for a year longer what sort of software it could have had in the west thats all

Moirai
01-24-2019, 11:08 AM
Metal Gear Solid on Saturn

WarmSignal
03-14-2019, 02:34 AM
Well by 1997/98 finding a store that sold new Saturn games was about as easy as finding a store that sells newly released Vita games now. Would have made little to no impact and today those games would be insanely expensive.

Not sure how accurate that is. I always hear of people boasting about picking up Burning Rangers and Panzer Dragoon Saga on clearance from major chain stores like Toys R Us, and those games were released in 1998.

gamevet
03-14-2019, 02:07 PM
Not sure how accurate that is. I always hear of people boasting about picking up Burning Rangers and Panzer Dragoon Saga on clearance from major chain stores like Toys R Us, and those games were released in 1998.

I had to pre-pay at Electronics Boutique for my copies of Burning Rangers and Panzer Dragoon Saga. Best Buy cleared out their Saturn stock during the summer of 1997 and Funcoland/GameStop were selling the used stuff on the cheap. TRU were the only local chain I knew that had those games sitting on shelves, while EB only ordered what was pre-payed for.

Black_Tiger
03-14-2019, 02:11 PM
There was enough demand for Saturn that EB began stocking Japanese Saturn games. The most common title I saw was Radiant Silvergun. Every local store had stacks of them. It was released mid-1998.

Leynos
03-14-2019, 02:27 PM
Almost no one around here had anything. Game Peddler did but that was local and in one mall. Everywhere else had nothing regarding Saturn. Some still sold SNES games in 98 with big walls of them and even Genesis but other than Game Peddler no Saturn games in sight despite the fact Software etc had a small Game Gear section still. When I visited LA and when to a couple of game shops it was only PS1 & PC but that was only 2 small places in 97.

gamevet
03-14-2019, 02:27 PM
Yeah, I got Vampire Savior and Magic Knight Ray Earth from EB. The final Western titles being shipped from Sega were one shipment orders. EB was only ordering what was paid for on those titles. SEGA did produce another run of BR and PDS, but I don’t know if EB did another pre-pay. TRU sure had plenty of them sitting unsold, and that is how I got my House of the Dead.

Black_Tiger
03-14-2019, 02:35 PM
I bought Magic Knight Rayearth at EB, which was stocked on shelves with other NA Saturn games. It was released at the end of 98.

gamevet
03-14-2019, 02:56 PM
I came out in August of 1998, because jackass wanted to make sure that his game was the very last title published in North America. I got mine @ Nov/Dec at an EB in South Carolina. It was on a small shelf with a handful of Japanese imports. I was close to not buying it, because they wanted $70 for it.

Black_Tiger
03-14-2019, 04:50 PM
I came out in August of 1998, because jackass wanted to make sure that his game was the very last title published in North America. I got mine @ Nov/Dec at an EB in South Carolina. It was on a small shelf with a handful of Japanese imports. I was close to not buying it, because they wanted $70 for it.

MKR wasn't priced higher than regular non-Nintendo games here ($70'ish), but I remember that Lufia II was stocked at the same time with a price of $99.99 Canadian.

The crazy part is that I was surprised that Lufua II was so cheap compared to many other SNES RPGs during the 32-bit era.

Leynos
03-14-2019, 06:19 PM
Anyone ever see Saturn games at a Blockbuster? Mine never had them.

gamevet
03-14-2019, 09:10 PM
MKR wasn't priced higher than regular non-Nintendo games here ($70'ish), but I remember that Lufia II was stocked at the same time with a price of $99.99 Canadian.

The crazy part is that I was surprised that Lufua II was so cheap compared to many other SNES RPGs during the 32-bit era.

Y'all are getting ripped off, but it's understandable, considering the exchange rate.

I remember not buying (future me hates that choice) Ogre Battle for the SNES because EB wanted $70 for it. What's really sad is that I was so desperate for a PlayStation RPG, that I'd paid $70 for Beyond the Beyond, which was not a very good RPG.

One of the main reasons why I had to think about not paying $70 for MKR, was because Christmas was right around the corner, and I had recently purchased Vampire Savior ($60 with 4MB cart) from another EB store. I had gifts to buy for the wife, sisters, brother and parents. I also recalled that Albert Odyssey had only set me back about $60, about 6 months earlier.

zyrobs
03-15-2019, 05:32 AM
If the Saturn lasted 1 more year in the US, we'd only have half as many Saturn related what-if threads.

Leynos
03-15-2019, 05:43 AM
If the Saturn lasted 1 more year in the US, we'd only have half as many Saturn related what-if threads.

Fair but this now 50% of this forum is what if. It's easy to be cynical but I find it fun to discuss how the gaming landscape could have been different for better or worse.

Team Andromeda
03-15-2019, 09:02 AM
If the Saturn lasted 1 more year in the US, we'd only have half as many Saturn related what-if threads.

And Saturn threads that last a year longer too

Gryson
03-15-2019, 12:11 PM
Not sure how accurate that is. I always hear of people boasting about picking up Burning Rangers and Panzer Dragoon Saga on clearance from major chain stores like Toys R Us, and those games were released in 1998.

According to former SOA employees who worked on Panzer Dragoon Saga:


Between the Dreamcast’s impending arrival, the Saturn’s sunset, and the game’s financial flop in its home country, where it had received a wide release, Saga wasn’t set up to succeed in North America or Europe, where retailers had grown reluctant to stock Saturn games. “Matt and I were telling the execs and sales, ‘Go go go! Make more!!! This game is special!’” Lucich says. Their appeals were ignored, and a diminished and distracted marketing department devoted little money or time to what looked like a low-dollar dead end. “We had almost no marketing for the game,” says Lucich, who took to sending screenshots to bloggers just to spread the word. “Just a couple of print ads.”

According to Underwood and Lucich, only 20,000 North American copies were produced in Saga’s initial run. After those sold out in two days, between 2,000 and 5,000 more were made. Then the tap turned off forever. Nulty recalls an “extremely small run” of roughly 1,000 copies being ordered in Europe.

https://www.theringer.com/2018/1/29/16940902/1998-video-games-panzer-dragoon-saga-missing-masterpiece

Black_Tiger
03-15-2019, 02:03 PM
Anyone ever see Saturn games at a Blockbuster? Mine never had them.

Yeah, I rented a lot of games that I would never have bought at full price. I think that the first one I rented was Skeleton Warriors. The last might have been Mr Bones.

gamevet
03-15-2019, 06:20 PM
I had a huge Blockbuster store near my apartment back then. They had a seperate section that they called the Game Zone. I was renting SEGA CD games from in back around 1993 and just around mid 1995 they closed down the Game Zone section and sold off a lot of the software for dirt cheap. I ended up buying 2 Virtual Boys with the custom carrying case for $30 each, along with every game for $4 each.

Block Buster moved the games back over to where the movies were another retailer moved into that extra space. I’d only seen like a half dozen Saturn games and it was Daytona, Mike Ditka Football and maybe SEGA Rally. Nothing worth my time, because I pretty much owned every title they had to rent for the Saturn.

Leynos
03-15-2019, 06:39 PM
I got some SNES/N64 games at Blockbuster on sales. I miss going to movie rental stores for both films and games. I also liked the gaming merch they sold on the side. Sure not special now but nostalgia and all.

WarmSignal
03-28-2019, 03:58 PM
Fair but this now 50% of this forum is what if. It's easy to be cynical but I find it fun to discuss how the gaming landscape could have been different for better or worse.

It's fun to speculate about the what-ifs of this console, because it's difficult to fathom how Sega managed to fuck it up so bad when it really seems like they had every chance not to. I think we'd all like to live in that parallel universe where they didn't, and the console was a success, and we actually got Sonic Xtreme. If the few releases that made it out in 98 were any indication, it seemed as though the console was going to eventually "catch up" with the others in terms of 3D games. Honestly, I don't think it was all that far behind anyway, comparing titles across all platforms in 1997. Sega had fucked up so bad, they couldn't afford to sit on a console that was never going to start selling no matter how good the games got. Had they not been on the verge of bankruptcy, they might have ridden in out as-is a couple more years, sadly it was not in the cards.

The more I delve into this system, the less I can understand why anyone would have chosen not to buy it. Da fuq was a PlayStation in 1995 and why did anyone want it at that time? That's the way that I felt, even by 1998, but then again I wasn't an RPG fan, couldn't care less about FF or Square. Was $100 savings and Square pledging support really the deciding factor not to buy a Saturn? If I'd been in the position of choosing a new game console in 95, I'd surely have gone with the Saturn. So long as the marketing was there enough to know about it, and the local retail stores actually had them in stock.