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Sega Selects PowerVR Series2 as 3D Graphics Technology for New Arcade System

TOKYO – Sept. 17, 1998 – NEC Electronics Inc. and VideoLogic® today announced that a chip based on PowerVR Series2™ technology will be the graphics engine in Sega’s new system board for arcade machines, known as "Naomi." 

The arcade boards are expected to achieve more than three million polygons per second, with a peak fill rate exceeding one gigapixel per second, delivering more than three times the performance of current arcade-based systems. Used in Sega-branded machines, as well as in arcade machines made by other manufacturers, Naomi systems and the first game, "The House of the Dead 2™" will be available in Japan in November 1998, and in the U.S. and Europe in 1999.

The Sega arcade design win represents the second step in PowerVR’s three-market, cross-platform gaming strategy. NEC and VideoLogic have already announced the PowerVR 2DC™ chip to be used in Sega's new game console, Dreamcast™. 

Sega, in its press release issued Sept. 17, 1998, states: "Sega is positioning…‘Naomi’ as a strategic product…[Sega’s] goal is to create the de facto standard in the amusement industry, with plans to ship over half a million boards worldwide…" Sega has already announced it has formed several alliances with both domestic and international licensees; 20 software game developers have already pledged to develop titles for Sega using the new system.

"With Dreamcast, PowerVR set out to create a new standard in 3D graphics for console gaming; now with Sega’s Naomi, we will deliver unprecedented levels of 3D performance to arcade systems," said Hossein Yassaie, president and chief executive officer, VideoLogic. "We are confident that Naomi’s new price-performance point, combined with Sega’s strong position, will set a new standard and fundamentally change the dynamics of the arcade market." 

Naomi-based arcade systems will provide cross-benefits from some of the technology specifically developed for Dreamcast. For example, the Dreamcast VMS (Visual Memory System) will allow gamers to play a game on Dreamcast, save the data to the VMS, then upload the same information onto Naomi-powered arcade machines. This potentially allows gamers to chart their course of game play both in the arcade and at home.

"With Naomi, PowerVR is truly helping Sega redefine arcade entertainment," said Charles Bellfield, product marketing manager, multimedia strategic business unit, NEC Electronics Inc. "Not only are players no longer restricted to one platform or one location, but this level of performance raises the bar of game play brought from the home into the arcade and back again."

PowerVR's Cross-Platform Strategy

NEC and VideoLogic believe a cross-platform strategy addressing the broad gaming market reduces the overall cost of developing and manufacturing product through higher volume sales. The annual volume of game consoles, PCs and arcades with 3D graphics processors will exceed 154 million units in 1999 and 182 million units in 2000, according to the analyst firm Dataquest. Higher volume sales mean lower unit cost for customers across all three market segments.

Cross-platform adoption benefits software developers as well. As 3D graphics become pervasive on all gaming platforms, the demand for games that take advantage of high-quality 3D will increase. Thus, developers can design arcade-quality 3D games, offer them to consumers on lower-priced systems, and create titles nearly simultaneously across three market segments.

For game players, a cross-platform strategy means costs are spread out among more units, keeping the price of 3D gaming low. More high-quality game titles will be available sooner for the PowerVR-enabled Dreamcast console, PCs or arcade systems. And a player’s favorite game accelerated by PowerVR may be found on three platforms at the same time. 

About PowerVR Series 2 Technology

The PowerVR Series2 graphics technology for game consoles, personal computers and arcade systems achieves high-level performance and superior image quality at consumer price points. PowerVR’s cross-platform strategy benefits system manufacturers, game developers and game players by increasing the demand for the latest premium-featured 3D hardware and software. PowerVR Series2 is API-neutral with support for Direct X, native PowerVR API and Open GL advanced features.

About VideoLogic

VideoLogic Group plc is an international company, which develops, designs and supplies market-leading 2D/3D graphics accelerator and audio products for PCs, games consoles and arcade entertainment machines. Since it was founded in 1985, the company has introduced, directly or via licensing arrangements, a succession of innovative silicon chips and add-in boards which have played a major role in the development of multimedia and computer-based entertainment systems. VideoLogic has its corporate headquarters in the United Kingdom and is publicly traded on the London Stock Exchange (FOOTSY:VDO). Product details, news, technical support and the latest software are all available on the VideoLogic web site at www.videologic.com.

About NEC Electronics Inc. 

NEC Electronics Inc., headquartered in Santa Clara, Calif., designs, manufactures and markets an extensive line of electronic products including ASICs, microprocessors and microcontrollers, graphics accelerators, digital signal processors (DSPs), memories and components including flat panel displays and lithium-ion batteries. The company operates a 709,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Roseville, Calif. NEC Electronics is an affiliate of NEC Corporation (NIPNY), a multibillion international manufacturer of computer, communications and semiconductor products. For more information about products offered by NEC Electronics Inc., please visit the NEC U.S. Web site at www.nec.com.

Press release from here.

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PowerVR, PowerVR Series2 and PowerVR 2DC are all trademarks and/or registered trademarks of VideoLogic Ltd. in the U.S. and/or other countries. VideoLogic is a registered trademark of VideoLogic Ltd. NEC is a trademark or registered trademark of NEC Corporation in the U.S. and/or other countries. Sega is registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Dreamcast is a trademark of Sega. All other trademarks or registered trademarks belong to their respective companies in the U.S. and/or other countries.