Dreamcast EXTREME has some screenshots from Next Generation magazine (Issue #45, pages 91-97) on the technology demos that SEGA showed people behind closed doors at the last E3 show in Atlanta. Game-Online recently described these demos in this article. Most of the screenshots look grainy when enlarged due to the screenshots being scanned in from a magazine. Most of the screenshots are about a room, that looks like a room that could exist in a Panzer Dragoon game. Here's hoping that SEGA is working on a Panzer Dragoon Saga game for the Dreamcast!!! One screenshot that looks quite amazing is the 'lace' screenshot, which is a scene that contains a floral lace sheet. This sheet has amazing detail, where each thread in the sheet can be seen. The sheet has portions that you can see through, and the whole room behind the sheet continues to be rendered perfectly. This particular screenshot also shows off the super-sampling, as all the edges in the sheet are sharp looking with no annoying pixelly jagged edges. Check out the screenshots for yourself! This is just a small taste of what is to come!
(Source: F5 Twister)
It seems that Yuji Naka of Sonic Team will be going to Europe, and talking to the lads over at Game-Online about Sonic Adventure, as this quote indicates:
Yuji Naka will be coming to Europe to reveal details of Sonic Adventure on Dreamcast. Game-Online has been invited to a special demonstration of the new game, and a opportunity to quiz one of the world's greatest games designers on his creation, the Dreamcast architecture and the future of Sega.They will be releasing the information on August 22nd, after the Sonic Adventure introduction in Tokyo.
(Source: Game-Online article)
SEGA is releasing four new Godzilla screenshots at it's website each day. One screenshot today is really starting to show that this title will be quite impressive. The texturing is quite good and it looks like the game will be set in a city that is quite active, with cars and buses on the streets. It is nice to see that SEGA is continually offering us information and screenshots of the games coming to the Dreamcast, especially over the summer months.
(Source: F5 Twister)
SEGA has put up a few more screenshots of the Godzilla game that is coming to the Dreamcast. Personally I find these screenshots of questionable quality. They do not look anywhere near as impressive as NEC's upcoming game, Monster Breed.
(Source: F5 Twister)
Dreamcast Modem is Internal
Q: What's the bottom line on the Dreamcast modem? Is it external or internal?So the modem is modular, and most likely something you can plug into the Dreamcast unit from the bottom of the machine.
Here is report from FGN Online:
Sega's chief publicist, Tadashi Takezaki, has released further details on the upcoming Japanese launch event for Sonic Adventures. "There are places in the car park for 5,000 cars and inside the hall there will be monitors all over the place to maximize the experience for attendees," claimed Takezaki. Details of the game itself though, are still extremely thin on the ground. The creator of Sonic, Yuji Naka is in raptures about the title: "Usually when you make games, you can always see room for improvement, but with Sonic Adventure, this time I truly thought it was perfect. When I showed it to other staff members, they were really wowed by it and we can show this on the day of the launch event."SEGA's staff are used to seeing great games because of all the great games produced for the Model 3 hardware and they were wowed by Sonic Adventure! This title sounds as if it is going to be the most impressive graphical game of all time! Just what SEGA needs to make the Dreamcast the best selling console of all time.
Another game by NEC, which looks like the most impressive game yet from NEC, that is coming to the Dreamcast. Here is what NGO had to say about this game in this article:
Currently 30 percent complete, this two-player simulation from NEC Interchannel looks to take on Pocket Monsters. Players' first responsibility will be to make a new monster, with the ability to mix characteristics, with the aim to make a hybrid animal. The main task is to look after the monster, but occasionally there will be an adventure to undertake, or a time to travel to the dungeon. Intended to tie in closely with the Dreamcast VMS, Monster Breed. will have graphics to amaze when on the big console (each monster is constructed with tens of thousands of polygons) and allow players to transport data around, swap and compare with their friends, and generally continue with the game on the move via the VMS memory card. No release date has been set yet for Monster Breed.This game clearly sounds like it will be a showcase game for how powerful the Dreamcast is for manipulating a huge amount of polygons per second. Here are two screenshots that really show how impressive this game looks: shot1, and shot2. Check out the rest of the article for more screenshots and information on other NEC Dreamcast titles like Godzilla, Mercurius Pretty and Seventh Cross. Not mentioned in the article, but mentioned previously is another game that NEC is working on, which is Sengoku Turb. That makes a total of four games now from NEC. It seems that since the Dreamcast has NEC graphics chip the PowerVR and NEC does not have a console in the market anymore, that they are going to be throwing their full weight behind the Dreamcast. An article at GameFan that provides more info on Monster Breed:
The second and better sounding game is Monster Breed, it is a game that sees you raise monsters. As they grow you send it to do battle with other monsters. The game will be compatible wit the VMS memory system and you will be able to trade monsters with your friends. There is said to be well over 200 monsters in the game and according to reports from the director each monster will be made up of over 5,000 polygons.This game clearly has NEC's best development team, as opposed to the other games that NEC is producing for the Dreamcast.
Pen Pen Triathalon
NGO: How do you feel about about making games on the Dreamcast?Another game on the Dreamcast that will be a showcase for the powerful geometry engine of the SH-4 processor. Check the screenshots in the interview, and you can clearly see that the animation for the characters looks like it will be quite unique and varied. Each character is very smoothly contoured! This game is clearly designed to appeal to the younger generation, and just what SEGA needs to attract them to the Dreamcast.
Good question and something SEGA of Europe along with Dreamcast Technical Pages is not sure of. SEGA of Europe had two pages at their website that indicated that the VMS PDA unit had 4 MB of Data Storage Capacity, but now one of those two pages has changed. Here is the first page that had indicated before that the VMS unit had 4 MB of Data Storage Capacity, but now it indicates it has 128 KB of Data Storage Capacity. The second page is the European press release on the Dreamcast that still mentions that the VMS unit has 4 MB of Data Storage Capacity as this quote indicates:
Among the revolutionary features of Dreamcast is the "as standard" networking capability. Another is the Visual Memory System (VMS) which is both a memory card and the world's smallest portable game system with built-in LCD Screen. The VMS card can store up to four megabytes of data - more than some other next generation consoles. Plugged into the Dreamcast controller, the LCD screen lets players set up secret moves against their opponents. Pull out the VMS card and it becomes a portable electronic game machine no bigger than a business card.Since SEGA of Europe has changed the first page, this would seem to indicate that the Data Storage Capacity of the VMS unit is 128 KB and not 4 MB. If you have more information to help clear this up, please let us know!
Dreamcast 2D Capabilities
Q: There has been a lot of talk about the DreamCast's 3D capabilities but none about its 2D capabilities. So, what are the DreamCast's 2D capabilities? Can it perform ports of Street Fighter III at an arcade-perfect, near-arcade perfect, or nowhere near arcade perfect level? Or is it a 3D only system.Here is what Yu Suzuki had to say at Game-Online about the Dreamcast 2D capabilities:
The Dreamcast is indeed a machine that does specialize in 3D but this doesn't mean that it's not capable of 2D either. If we change the Z variable to 0, then we can make 2D. So as the Dreamcast doesn't have to calculate the Z value, in theory this mean that the Dreamcast is capable of even greater 2D. One thing that I do want to say is that instead of me saying how amazing this machine is, I'd rather everybody see for themselves how great Dreamcast is.Remember that the Dreamcast can render 200 million pixels per second, so it would have no problems with any 2D game from Capcom! Any 3D chip can do 2D as you just have to then render all textures flat to the screen instead of placing them on objects in a 3D scene. 3Dfx Interactive used to have a 2D game API for their Voodoo chipsets that never became popular, so they abandoned it, thus also showing that a 3D chipset can do 2D with out dedicated 2D hardware. Since the Dreamcast PVRSG chip has a very powerful texture compression with real-time decompression, a lot of 2D information can be compressed to fit in the Dreamcast memory space! What this all boils down to, is that Capcom's 2D games will be awesome on the Dreamcast!
Game-Online has a write-up on some demos that SEGA showed people to highlight the rendering power of the Dreamcast. These demos where shown at E3 behind closed doors and are being talked about now because the NDA time has elapsed. Here is a quote about the first demo:
E3 DEMO #1: POLYGONSSounds like a beautiful environment for an adventure game! Hard to believe that SEGA is showing such sophisticated 3D demos at such an early date. This just goes to prove that the Dreamcast is very easy to program! We all going to see some incredible 3D games on the Dreamcast, starting with Sonic Adventure!
Here is an article explaining where Microsoft is headed with the Windows CE Operating System. Version 3.0 is due next year, but this version most likely will not be appearing on the Dreamcast as Microsoft has already indicated that the version of Windows CE for the Dreamcast is a special version that is optimized for the Dreamcast hardware. Expect compatibility to be maintained between Windows CE 3.0 and the Dreamcast Windows CE. It is version 2.1 of Windows CE that has support for Hitachi's SH-4 processor. You might also want to check out Microsoft's Dreamcast Windows CE webpage which has moved to new location here.
(Source: Ernesto by email)
Yu Suzuki Speaks and the World
But how much is the Dreamcast pushed in the Tower of Babel demo? Does the machine really reach anywhere near its 3D limits? "If this demo was running, say, a 1,000,000 polygons per second, then the machine is capable of producing three times this amount with ease. To make the machine run at its fullest capacity, it would take a lot of time and effort but if we were to push it, Dreamcast would be able to handle 3,000,000 to 3,500,000 polygons per second. But we're still yet to see the Model 3 board do this."Check out the whole article here.
(Source: F5 Twister)
News does not get bigger then this! Yes! Yes! Yes! This is something millions have been waiting for! To see Sonic on the Dreamcast by Yuji Naka and the rest of Sonic Team! August 22nd, 1998 in Tokyo is a day that we will see Sonic running on the Dreamcast hardware! This day is almost as big as the Dreamcast introduction of May 21st, 1998. Sonic Adventure will be the game seen by most people that will tell us what the Dreamcast is capable of. There is no question that this game will be one of SEGA's biggest titles ever to be released. I do not know about you, but I am frothing at the mouth in anticipation of this title! If there is any game I would buy for the Dreamcast it will be this one!
So you've announced your first title for the Dreamcast.Another quote from the same article:
"It's been four years since Sonic and Knuckles," Naka said on Sega's site. "People are ready for the Dreamcast, and this will be the number one game they're waiting for. We apologize for keeping silent for so long. I've seen what they (the Sonic Team) have done, and in a word, it's awesome. Come, be a part of this historic event."You can check out Sonic Team's webpage at SEGA of Japan's website here. So Sonic Team have been working on this game for at least a year and a half since that is how long it has been since NiGHTS into Dreams has been released. GO SEGA GO!!!
(Source: Yusaku by email)
Revenant mentions today at their site some positive aspects about Dreamcast, but do not provide any details on Dreamcast development. Here is a quote from their news section:
Hi all! It has been a hectic few past weeks. There have been many rumors floating around about Akolyte and what we're doing for the Sega Dreamcast. Whereas we're not able to say anything more about that yet, it is very encouraging that there is fan interest for Akolyte to go there. In house, we think that the system is a potential blockbuster opening up with the capabilities of a set-top unit as well as a high power console system. With multiplayer capability over the net, the Dreamcast may prove to the be system that bridges the gap between the PC world and the traditional "island" console system.Revenant has put up some new screenshots of Akolyte at their site.
Pen Pen Tri-ice-lon
VM Labs Project X and Sony's Playstation
2 Are Doing 3D Differently
Food for Thought
SEGA of Japan has put a new page at their site on the Godzilla game for the PDA unit. It seems that there will also be a Godzilla game for the Dreamcast, as there are couple screenshots shown of the game! So has Godzilla been given the bump mapping treatment? Well, he sure looks bumpy!
(Source: Yusaku by email)
More Developers for Dreamcast
Infogames - Outcast, Alone in the Dark 4, an unnamed racing game, and a exclusive game(Source: Game-Online article)
Either Microsoft gave SEGA a great deal on the WinCE OS or Microsoft is paying SEGA a lot of money to put a logo on the Dreamcast that says: "Powered by Windows CE". Hmmm, and I thought the SH-4 was powering the Dreamcast. One begins to wonder if chisels will become a hot selling item around the time of the Dreamcast release?
(source: Gamespot article)
PDA Available Tomorrow!
SEGA Otaku has an interview with Alex Lemedy of Nigma, which is the company working on the game Drones. Here is part of that interview:
Sega-Otaku: Previously, Nigma has confirmed that other Dreamcast projects are currently in the works, although specific's couldn't be released at that time. We were wondering if you could possibly tell us what genre's of development Nigma hopes to explore with future Dreamcast development?Graphically Drones and any other game using this engine will be absolute stunners on the Dreamcast!
Here is some more news on SEGA doing everything right to make the Dreamcast a huge success. It seems that SEGA is moving people in the company to concentrate on the Dreamcast launch as oppose to their arcade division. Here is quote from Next Generation Online:
The first sign of things to come was the ousting of arcade-centric Hayao Nakayama for Shoichiro Irimajiri (president of SEGA of Japan). But even more significant was the transfer of Sadahiko Hirose from Ascii Entertainment, which is partly owned by Sega, to Sega of Japan's consumer development team. Hirose should provide important product development partnership during the coming months of first-party Dreamcast title production. [more]The same article mentions that Yu Suzuki will be working on a Dreamcast-exclusive title.
More Drones Screenshots
Sengoku Turb and Seventh Cross
Coming to North America?
NEC Home Electronics has confirmed that Dreamcast RPGs Sengoku Turb and Seventh Cross are to be released in North America and Europe. Speaking to Sega-Otaku a spokesperson also confirmed that other Dreamcast titles are under development by NEC-HE, and though no details have been released the titles are not RPGs.From what I have seen from the screenshots so far, is not too promising! Sengoku Turb looks childish and Seventh Cross is lacking in objects in the enviroment that the game takes place in. Hopefully gameplay makes up for the questionable graphic styles of these two games.
Everyday it seems there is a new developer for the Dreamcast. The amount of support that SEGA is getting for this insanely powerful new console is remarkable. Everyone and their dog wants a piece of the action. Here is a quote about some new developers:
Both Human Entertainment and Banpresto have told gaming press that they are waiting to sign up for Dreamcast development. Confirmed developer Koei looks on course to announce Romance of Three Kingdoms 6 and New Horizons 2 for Dreamcast.(Source: FGN Online)
A lot of Dreamcast sites have been receiving email from a mysterious source who claims that two games, which are called Silent Trigger and Nightmare Saga are being developed for the Dreamcast by a company called Edge Creations. There is no company called Edge Creations in the video game business. Both Silent Trigger and Nightmare Saga are not games in development for the Dreamcast. This is a hoax! It was Fernando Mosquera at SegaNet who put me on the right track, when he suggested the game was a hoax in an article at his site today. Dreamcast Technical Pages reported on the Japanese game Enigma for the PowerVR cards on November 18th, 1997. Well the suppose screenshot for Silent Trigger that most sites have been showing, reminded me of that game. A quick check has shown that it is the same game! If you need convincing, then check out this page at NEC Home Electronics site in Japan. Enigma is a game from KOEI CO., Ltd. and will most likely be a game we will see on the Dreamcast, since it already runs on PowerVR cards! An easy port for KOEI!