‘SEGA still have a lot to offer us.’
The Dreamcast is a legendary console- one of the most progressive machines ever made, loaded with one of the most astonishingly good lineups ever on a single console, a pioneering system that introduced concepts like online play and second screen gaming years before others would catch on- and all of it condensed into a short, eighteen month life cycle, before the heavy losses that it was incurring would force SEGA to leave the gaming hardware market permanently.
The Dreamcast’s reputation endures, and while SEGA managed to survive by leaving the hardware market, they are now a shell of the proud company they once were, making far fewer games, and very few of those reaching the same heights that their titles used to hit with alarming regularity back when they supported their own consoles.
In such a context, the question of a new SEGA console – because make no mistake, legions of loyal and hardcore fans want a new SEGA console – is a troubling one. SEGA can barely handle its product lines and finances as it is now- do we really want it to attempt another console in the condition that it is in right now?
Speaking to Twinfinite, Project Dream team members Bertie Wiseman and Joanne Freeman discussed why they believe there is still a place in the market for a brand new SEGA console.
“They have a lot to offer us still. I think it [Project Dream] is about reinventing SEGA. Bringing something back that everyone wants, especially today when it’s cool to be a retro gamer and people also want something new.”
“It’s not like SEGA is incapable of making new things. It’s just because of the past, how things preformed, the awful timing that they had, they felt it was better not to risk it. And then they carried on focusing more on what sells more of Japan.”
“We have a really good hardware guy that likes to remain anonymous,” said Freeman. “He has a few existing businesses and we have a lot of samples of things if it were to go into production – what it would be like, what the price range would be for the materials that we want to use, and of course whether we want to use the images that are on the site or have a look at newer designs. Or some of the things that fans have submitted to us by mail and say, ‘hey that looks really cool!’”
This all does raise the interesting question of just what the Dreamcast 2 pitch is– is it planned to be a brand new high end console that would go toe to toe with Sony, Nintendo, and Microsoft’s offerings? Or is it going to be a retro gaming box, something like a repackaged Dreamcast capable of HD output, playing the entire library of SEGA games, perhaps?
Whatever it is, we await further developments on this with interest.