Classic Sega fans™ (who are the best people) have been absolutely spoiled this & last gen

#1

right then, so i wan to make the case that last gen was Sega’s finest since bowing out with the dreamcast (given that the lion’s share of their best efforts went to xbox, but then monkey ball/etc went to GC & Virtua fans saw love on the PS2, so that was kind’ve split), and i don’t think they get enough recognition for this. mind you, i’m talking stuff they developed & also those published with partners like Sumo.

last gen alone:

  • Sonic All Star Racing/Transformed: Sumo made some of the best kart games since Diddy Kong Racing, and with a ton of classic Sega fanfare too. Superstar Tennis got this ball rolling but man, they really dug deep for the greats here!
  • House of the Dead: Overkill: to me, this is inarguably the series’ peak. it’s just ridiculous and fun to play too.
  • Valkyria Chronicles - okay, so i’ve only played part 1, but that shit was really good! also, you’ve got Vyse returning from Skies of Arcadia!!! woops, spoiler for that. but really? the game is like a dollar at this point and it’s nearly 10 years old y’all
  • Sonic Generations - Sonic Mania wasn’t out yet, and this was the return to greatness. also? Colors dropped this gen and that was more innovative and also good
  • Yakuza - 4 was one of my favorites of the series, and that was totally last gen. it’s more DNA from river city ransom/streets of rage than GTA and one of my favorite series to date. so much classic sega built into this series.
  • Binary Domain - the ryu ga gotoku folks got let off the leash, and made a good game! but none of y’all bought it, so it’s over now. good job guise
  • Virtua Fighter 5 - i guess this was good? look , i worship Yu Suzuki but i’m not gonna keep apologizing for not getting into this series, so hey, fuck you danny, you’re not my real dad
  • Rez HD - oh my god this is the real reason we moved to HD right here, thou shalt have no gods before miz
  • Ghost Squad - this was fun

they also published Vanquish, Bayonetta, Alpha Protocol, Persona 4, Alien Isolation and so much more quality. oh, and we got HD ports of Jet Grind Radioooo, Nights HD, Guardian Heroes and more saturn fighters
and After Burner Climax (the series’ peak!) and OutRun arcade but dumb licensing took them both away before any hint of physical copies so let’s not talk about them
damn
that really sucks
well hey, M2 did some fantastic ports for the 3DS collection at least
i know samba de amigo, nights and alien syndrome saw wii efforts but i don’t recall any of them going too well? i should boot them up

this gen? Sonic Mania (the real sonic 4!), ToeJam & Earl 4, a remake of Wonder Boy 3 & a badass new one with Monster Boy, Shenmue III (okay the last few ones have not been sega’s work but they are known from that stable), upcoming Panzer ports and i’m sure i’m forgetting more stuff. sure we don’t have Bonanza Bros or ESWAT HD so they clearly havent been reading my letters but this is still quite the list!

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#2

Lots of great stuff to be found indeed, though what is a rude awakening is how if you took away the “last gen” part there wouldn’t be much to write home about relatively speaking.

There’s a staggering difference between the types of games Sega was green lighting across DS, PSP, Wii, 360 and PS3 and systems after that. And that’s including the Atlus acquisition this gen, which has led to more risk averse behaviour from that developer, and a doubling down on DLC.

It feels like lot of the teams that would have been making wholly original handheld or lower budget Wii titles were probably shifted to Sega Networks for mobile and web focused efforts, and the decline of handhelds and increasing scope of console developments explains the rise in risk averse behaviour and general fall in the number and variety of titles.

It’s almost crazy to think that last gen, Sega greenlit titles like Resonance of Fate from Tri-Ace, or the five P* games (Infinite Space, Madworld, Bayonetta, Anarchy Reigns, Vanquish), while also rebooting Sega Rally for a big budget home return, and experimenting on DS, PSP and Wii with quirky titles like English of the Dead, Hatsune Mike Project Diva, Monkey Ball Banana Blitz, Feel the Magic and Let’s Tap, also experimenting elsewhere with the likes of Binary Domain, Valkyria Chronicles and new Nights and Sonic titles.

We just don’t see that scope and variety from this generation’s Sega Games, but the current health of the console market seems to indicate an uptick at least. The new Sakura Wars game isn’t something I’d expect most publishers to take a risk on doing given the evidently highly production values and the decline of the genre it’s in on console.

And Sega were good to allow Atlus USA to continue bringing over smaller titles from other publishers and Sega themselves - the likes of Stella Glow, Utawarerumono, 7th Dragon III, Legend of Legacy and Alliance Alive were all greatly appreciated by me.

I’m glad those games existed while they could, but the fragmentation of today’s market means we probably won’t see anything like that kind of output again. And to be fair, many of those titles weren’t commercial successes despite the relative health of the console market last generation.

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#3

yeah! that’s a big part of my post: more chances were taken than since the pre sammy days…it’s a low bar, sure, but virtually none of the players (save Nintendo, who can afford to still try wario games and the like) of that era ate more than some form of a shell since their height - konami is far worse off, while capcom is finally diving back in. i know HD development costs closed too many great studios - and as you said, pushed too many others to taking fewer chances - but i feel like were finally moving (albeit slowly) past the dumb AAA/Indie dichotomy to allow for something of a resurgence of AA type lane again.

we’ll see how it holds but still…as a classic Sega fan, I’ve a lot to be happy about so far this gen

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#4

True of almost every publisher though.

Last gen 500 million consoles/handhelds were sold. This gen is about half that including Nintendo having released three consoles. Big consolidation.

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#5

It is. It’s not specific to Sega and as @IrishNinja mentioned Sega has come off from the decline better than other publishers. Only Namco and Koei Tecmo I feel kept things rolling as-is, though both did stop investing in handheld-specific games pretty soon after the 3DS and Vita launch windows.

Edit: Not sure why I mentioned Koei Tecmo to be honest. Forgot Koei was releasing offbeat games like Opoona before the merger!

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#6

Sega has done a really good job of embracing their past while also creating new things. It’s not the Sega I loved in the Genesis, Saturn and Dreamcast eras, but it’s legitimately great at times. You can tell there are still some people there that totally get it unlike what happened with Konami in recent years.

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#7

I don’t feel spoiled at all. Before the Sammy restructuring Sega were coming out with new franchises and creative ideas all the time.

This generation can be summed up as games that are made specifically to evoke a “hey, remember this old franchise from back when Sega were actually good?” feeling of nostalgia plus whatever RGG Studios are doing (the one part of Sega that isn’t dysfunctional). I specifically fell in love with Sega games because they were so modern and showing me visual styles and game concepts I had never seen before; whatever we have today, this aint it.

I am a massive downer I know!

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#8

sober: right, i should’ve said somewhere initially about expectations & all that. they’re not the same beast anymore.

should nintendo ever drop out of hardware - which i’d really fucking hate to see - i suspect we’d see something similar, on a different scale: mario, zelda and the bigger efforts of EAD/etc wouldn’t go anywhere, but would we still see IS putting out stuff like WarioWare? we’d be lucky to get something half as good as Pushmo on mobile. fewer chances are taken/less variety is offered when you can’t offset risks with hardware sales, bigger royalties etc i imagine.

now couple that with what happened to them: i still like to think sometimes about what a sega/namco merger would’ve looked like, but we got sammy, who frankly felt like about as as good a deal as SNK fans got with playmore, at times. everything interesting got cut, and we were left with “revival” efforts like beast rider, shadow the hedgehog and again, whatever altered beast did.

shy of camelot coming back, the golden age is clearly done - i’m saying we’re seeing a renaissance in comparison to what we had

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#9

I really do believe that Nintendo would quit the videogames business before they’d stop making hardware.

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#10

I always thought this was on point: https://metro.co.uk/2013/05/18/why-nintendo-wont-go-third-party-readers-feature-3788332/

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#11

Yeah, this is why I feel Sega’s output this generation hasn’t contributed much relative to last generation. You could take last gen’s output on its own and the sentiment in the OP would be no worse off I think.

I’m glad Sega continues to innovate with the arcade though. Chunithm is one of my favourite new Sega properties in a long while, and seems as timeless as the (seemingly) final release of Project Diva Arcade. And the return of Sega gt is welcome, even if it doesn’t have as much ambition as Sega Rally Revo did.

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#12

A lot of these responses echo my stance on SEGA (and Capcom) over the last few years. Both were pretty bad games companies for a while, kept afloat by a few key franchises and merchandise, and now they are coming back up to ‘good’ games companies again, but both have a long way to go.

I mean, SEGA has done really well with their retro offerings and remakes/reboots over the last few years, but I wouldn’t call it ‘spoiling’ the fans until we more than we have. Spoiling in my view would be releasing a line of SEGA-Mania games, giving other franchises the Sonic treatment like Golden Axe, Altered Beast, Shinobi, etc. Think SEGA AGES 2500 (which was spoiling the fans) or the Konami ReBirth series. Plus SEGA has been pretty bad if you are a Saturn or Dreamcast fan lately.

I do commend them for their rising PC support, and their expansion of Yakusa games on there.

I guess I’m just pining for something that’s always seemed impossible, SEGA truly returning to form as developers and publishers so that they can be as cutting-edge and innovative as they once were.

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#13

I was a little more positive at times during last generation especially when the Platinum Games partnership was announced but this generation has been dire. I look at their output since 2013 and I see too much of a focus on the domestic market and far fewer games.

Which is another thing that bothers me about current Sega: it’s too Japanese. Sega at its peak took western influences and licenses and attempted to make games with worldwide appeal. By contrast look at the anime styled drek that the post-Camelot Shining games have become, the lack of a localisation and release of PSO2 outside of Japan, ditto with Border Break, that crappy anime Virtual-On game with sexualised under-age girls and the struggle to get Yakuza games in the west (luckily this battle is now won).

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#14

I don’t think it’s fair to conflate a game being “too Japanese” with the inclusion of anime licenses or generic RPG themes.

A lot of the games Sega has produced using licenses in recent years have been good - the Hatsune Miku rhythm games are developed by AM2 and are consistently excellent, and Dengeki Bunko Fighting Climax is a fun fighting game.

I think even without the trope-y anime themes RPG like Shining Resonance would be mediocre - the development talent (Media.Vision) just isn’t there. It would still be the case if it primarily weren’t made for a Japan and Asia release.

The same goes for Virtual-On - the team at Sega that made that game were largely not involved with previous games, and Access Games handled development duties.

It’s also worth noting that the games Sega greenlit which were aimed at a global audience, at least on paper, like Binary Domain or the Platinum stuff, were commercial failures relative to how much it cost to get them out the door.

I see the issue being more with the genres being less feasible today (especially with the handheld mid-tier disappearing), and Sega’s reshuffling of development talent.

The silos between Sega Games in Japan, Sega USA and Sega Europe are certainly still there though. Sega Europe seems exclusively dedicated to Football Manager, Aliens and Rome Total War alongside the odd PC port. I’m not even sure what Sega USA does these days other than Sonic and localisation.

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#15

fair point; that SEGA AGES 2500 line was incredible. i wish more of them were cheaper!
and the lack of konami rebirth games on a physical disc still breaks my heart.

also: time for me to look up Chunithm

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#16

agreed on disappointment in the current form of camelot, but to me that feels like expecting rare in 2019 to be like rare in '99. and im kinda with @harborline_765 in that while i too don’t dig the animu/loli fanservice shit, those didn’t seem like good games even without, sadly.

the lack of PSO 2.0 over here baffles me to this day. i thought the perfect window for that was late 2013/early 2014 - the first year drought was so bad, and DC online and other F2P titles were doing well. i felt like that game could’ve killed around then, i’dve been all over it too!

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#17

Let me know when they share the PSO love

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#18

while people may no think of them as sega-sega, sega europe did bankroll interesting stuff for pc players tbf

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#19

Sega will never be what they were but I guess I can agree they’ve done some cool things lately. Sonic Mania being their centerpiece as of late (what a game!)

If only smilebit and Amusement vision didn’t disappear.

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#20

I can confirm that VF5 was an excellent addition to the series and it retained that certain bright Sega-ness that only they can pull off.

Maybe once people get over their giant expectations for the new Shenmue and accept it for what it’s going to be, Yu can focus on VF again? Who knows

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