Date: Monday, February 1st, 1999, 00:00
The Sega Dreamcast is Sega‘s latest entry in the video gameconsole market. This sleek, small, boxy white unit is one bad mother -shut your mouth. It’s packed with a fast processor, a screaming graphics engine, andtasty games. It also has a 56kbps modem for Internet gaming and Web browsing/email. These are all the good aspects of the Dreamcast.
On the downside, the Dreamcast comes with one of the worst gaming controllers ever made. It’s too small and uncomfortable to use forlong periods of time. Even more ridiculous is the bugginess of some of the software titles. My copy of Sonic Adventure would not run on occasion, forcing me to grasp my hair in disbelief. I also hated the wait time while the CD-ROM was loading.
However, these are relatively minor gripes with respect to the awesome power and potential for this system. Other than X-Band, this istruly the first video game console to offer Internet multiplayer action. This could truly take a bite out of the PC multiplayer gaming market. Of course,on the horizon is Playstation 2 and Nintendo’s next system, so Dreamcast could falter under the marketing muscle of Sony and Nintendo. One more notice worthy of attention: The Dreamcast is “Windows CE” compatible, which brings a shudder to my shoulders, although hypothetically, this should makedeveloping games for Dreamcast much easier. So far, there are 12 games released for Dreamcast with plenty more on the way, which is goodinsofar as the availability of games (which was a problem with the launch of Nintendo’s N64). There aren’t any “killer-app” games yet, but plenty of good, solid titles out so it has plenty of potential.
Below are the specs of DC garnered from the Sega web site.
*Peak graphics performance of over 3 million polygons per second provided by the PowerVR 2DC graphics engine for the fastest, most sophisticated 3D graphics ever seen on a videogame console. 128-bit 3D processing power provides amazing lighting and other special effects. *Built-in 56kbps modem for the ultimate in multiplayer online gaming. *24 megabytes of memory for huge, complex game worlds. *64-voice CD-quality audio. *4 built-in controller ports for easy multi-player action. *Built-in high-speed expansion ports.
The price of the Dreamcast is US$199, and it should be available at local stores nearby in limited quantities. I bought mine at CompUSA because it was sold out at Toys ‘R’ Us. You could also order it from etoys.com.
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