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Justin
24th July 2009, 09:17
Hi all,
Ok so now i've had a bit of time to mess about with my DC and i thought i'd share with you my thoughts, may be handy to anyone thinking of getting one.

1st stop emulation.
it's a very heathy and active scene, and it's actually not bad at emulating quite a few systems here is a list of the best ones
EMULATORS

Arcade
Emulates CPS1, System16, etc.

* MAME4All by Chui & Fox68K
Official Website: http://chui.dcemu.co.uk/mame4all.html


Amiga 500

* UAE4All by Chui & Fox68K
Official Website: http://chui.dcemu.co.uk/uae4all.html


Apple 2

* Apple 2 SoulCaptor by DCGrendel
Downloads & Info: http://www.dcemulation.org/dcemu-apple2.htm
FAQ: http://dcevolution.net/cgi-bin/dckby...ard=soulcaptor
DISKS.XML Builder: http://dreamcast.dcemu.co.uk/vbullet...ad.php?t=12766


Armstrad CPC

* DreamCPC by JMD
Downloads & Info: http://dreamcast.dcemu.co.uk/dreamcpc.php
* CPCast by LTK
Official Website: http://ltk.dciberia.net/dreamcast/cpcast/cpcast.htm


Atari ST

* DCastaway Final by Chui & Ron
Official Website: http://chui.dcemu.co.uk/dcastaway.html


Atari VCS2600

* StellaDC v2f by Svolli
Official Website: http://our-arca.de/DCstella/


C64

* DreamFrodo 64 by Tolga Abaci
Official Website: http://frodo.boob.co.uk/


ColecoVision

* [D]Colem by Gonzo
Downloads & Info: http://www.dcemulation.org/dcemu-dcolem.htm
Official Website: http://dcolem.emuunlim.com/


Game Boy Color

* DCGNUboy by Takayama Fumihiko
DEP Download: http://www.dcevolution.net/goto.php?id=29
General Info & Links: http://www.dreamcast-scene.com/index.php/Main/DCGNUboy
FAQ: http://dcevolution.net/cgi-bin/dckby...l?board=gnuboy
Official Website: http://ayame.tkym.org/~tekezo/dcgnuboy/ (http://ayame.tkym.org/%7Etekezo/dcgnuboy/)


MSX

* MSXCast by LTK
Official Website: http://ltk.dciberia.net/dreamcast/msxcast/msxcast.htm


NeoGeo

* Neo4All/CD by Chui & Fox68K
Official Website: http://chui.dcemu.co.uk/neo4all.html
Info & Compatibility List: http://www.dreamcast-scene.com/index.php/Main/Neo4All
* Neo4All/AES by Chui & Fox68K
Starter Kit Download:
http://www.dcevolution.net/dsdevelop...ter-Kit-v1.zip
Official Website: http://chui.dcemu.co.uk/aes4all.html
Info, Tools, FAQ & Tutorial: http://www.dreamcast-scene.com/index...in/Neo4All-AES
DCEmu's Neo4All Thread: http://www.dcemulation.org/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=74987
* NeoDC by Quzar
(Continuation of NeoCD/SDL by IMR, Fosters, Quzar and others)
Official Website: http://www.screamcast.net/
Mirror: http://dreamcast.dcemu.co.uk/neodc.shtml


Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) / Famicom

* NesterDC SE by Scherzo
Official Website: http://www.sch3rz0.com/nesterdcse/
General Info & Links: http://www.dreamcast-scene.com/index...ain/NesterDCSE
* NesterDC v6.0 or v7.1+b by Takayama Fumihiko
DEP Download: http://www.dcevolution.net/goto.php?id=65
Downloads & Tools: http://www.dcemulation.org/dcemu-nesterdc.htm
FAQ: http://dcevolution.net/cgi-bin/dckby...l?board=nester
General Info & Links: http://www.dreamcast-scene.com/index.php/Main/NesterDC
Official Website: http://ayame.tkym.org/~tekezo/nesterdc/ (http://ayame.tkym.org/%7Etekezo/nesterdc/)


Sega Master System / Game Gear / SG1000

* SMSplusDC v02b & Dream-O-Rama by Pascal Bosquet (Team Spoutnik) & Heliophobe
DEP Download: http://www.dcevolution.net/goto.php?id=54
Official Website: http://www.pascalorama.com/dcsmsplus.htm
FAQ & Tools: http://dcevolution.net/DCHelp/index....&board=smsplus
General Info & Links: http://www.dreamcast-scene.com/index.php/Main/SMSplusDC


Sega Mega Drive / Genesis

* GenesisPlusDC Beta Version ('gpwt') by BlackAura & Warmtoe
Plain Files Download: http://www.dcevolution.net/dsdevelop...6072006-BA.zip
SBI Download at DCHelp's SBI Repository:
http://www.dchelp.net/sbi (The file is called 'GenesisPlusDC-gpwt-260706-BlackAura.sbi')
Little Tools Set: http://www.dcevolution.net/dsdevelop...gpwt-tools.zip
General Info & Links: http://www.dreamcast-scene.com/index.../GenesisPlusDC


Sinclair Spectrum

* DC Speccyal K by Tyrrell
Official Website: http://www.speccyal.be/
Mirror: http://dreamcast.dcemu.co.uk/dcspeccyalk.shtml
FAQ: http://dcevolution.net/cgi-bin/dckby...board=speccyal


Super Nintendo Entertainment System / Super Famicom

* DreamSNES v098 by Marcus Comstedt, Peter Bortas and Per Hedbor
Tutorial: http://www.dcemulation.org/help/dreamsnestutorial.htm
Official Website: http://mc.pp.se/dc/dreamsnes/
General Info & Links: http://www.dreamcast-scene.com/index.php/Main/DreamSNES (includes hints about how to gain 100% speed on 90% of all existing SNES games with DreamSNES)
* Super Famicast by Scherzo
Downloads: http://dreamcast.dcemu.co.uk/superfamicast.shtml
General Info & Links: http://www.dreamcast-scene.com/index.../SuperFamicast


-

Check out DCHelp's SBI Repository and download the SBIs for each emu to try them all out on one disc!

or

Use BootDreams by Lying Wake to burn the plain files: http://consolevision.net/members/dchelp/

-

INTERPRETERS

SIERRA GAMES

* FreeSCI (Dreamcast port by Walter van Niftrik aka Phantom)
Mirror: http://dreamcast.dcemu.co.uk/freesci.shtml
Official Website: http://freesci.linuxgames.com/
Daily Builds: http://freesci.linuxgames.com/?page=dreamcast
* SarienDC (Dreamcast port by Ganksoft)
Info & Downloads: http://dreamcast.dcemu.co.uk/sariendc.shtml
Official Website of Sarien: http://sarien.sourceforge.net/
Official Website of SarienDC: http://www.ganksoft.com/products/doc...od_id=sariendc


LUCAS ARTS GAMES

* SCUMMVM (Dreamcast port by Marcus Comstedt)
Official Website: http://www.scummvm.com/
Mirrors: http://dreamcast.dcemu.co.uk/scummvm.shtml
Unofficial v8.0 Download: http://dreamon.cyberdogcastle.com/Main/ScummVM
Info, Links & Downloads: http://www.dreamcast-scene.com/index.php/Main/ScummVM


-

COMMERCIAL EMULATORS

* Bleem!cast
This fantastic commercial PlayStation One emulator offers perfect high resolution PlayStation1 emulation with VMU and RumblePack support, still available at http://www.play-asia.com I hope. Otherwise I'd suggest ebay.
There were three releases: Tekken 3, Gran Turismo 2 & Metal Gear Solid
FAQ: http://dcevolution.net/cgi-bin/dckby...pl?board=bleem

-

Note that only the *best* emulators are listed.

Games.
there are some classic and fun Sega games on this system and the fact that "most" DC's can read CDR (not CD-RW) is also a bonus if you know what i mean :wink:

The console it's self is actually really small and compact, lid feels a little flimsy but all in all a nice little console.

Multiplayer.
the DC is great for multiplayer, 4 controller ports on the front so it really is plug and go ;o) great fun playing Worms, Bomberman, and Sydney 2000 (the latter is a real button masher)

Conclusion.
for 25-30 with controllers and a few games you can't go wrong with this nifty little console, the graphics are bright and cheerful (you do need a scart lead at least with this the RF just isn't up to it). you can play a few games online still but not many the homebrew scene is still pretty active and there is some good stuff out there.

Summary.
BUY ONE NOW!

cheers, JuvUK

Harrison
24th July 2009, 12:43
Have you only just discovered the Dreamcast then?

The Dreamcast has been one of my favourite systems since its release. I've owned one since then and still play it often. Also have originals of nearly every game released for the system (130+) plus the US and JAP only releases (which are mainly 2D SNK fighters and Shoot 'em ups) which I ordered from various places abroad back in the day.

I've also got all the extra hardware for the system including a couple of keyboards, mouse, lightgun (house of the dead 2 pack), a few controllers and rumble packs, and loads of VMU memory cards (they eat through batteries though). The only thing I never managed to get was the rare network card. Mine still has the standard dial up modem.

Scart cable is definitely the lowest option for good visuals and sound. However a VGA adaptor is even better as many games have VGA mode built in, giving even higher resolution graphics. I've not used my VGA DC adaptor for some time. Must test it out again. Got me thinking. How hard would a VGA to HDMI adaptor be? Could then run DC games in VGA mode on HDTVs! Although many HDTVs do have direct VGA and DVI inputs so that would work. :)

The homebrew scene didn't take off on the system initially until the Utopia boot disc appeared all that changed and loads of emulators and homebrew games appeared. Some very good ones too. Although sometimes they can hit the limits of the DC's processing power and create some slowdown.

I didn't see the Bleem! Playstation emulator mentioned in your list. It was released on the DC for specific Playstation games. You had to buy the emulation disc for each specific game it supported. Only a few different game discs were released until Sony sued the company and got them shut down, but the ones that did appear worked well. The best being Gran Turismo as it ran perfectly and the DC emulation adding some texture smoothing and resolution improvements to the game.

It is a shame you didn't have a DC back when they were active because Phantasy Star Online v2 was a great online game.

It's a bit of a strange way that I got into the Dreamcast too. Originally I had not intention of buying one. I owned a Playstation and was looking forward to the release of the PS2, with a long standing preorder already in place. However a friend entered an online competition and kept winning games for various platforms. One day a parcel arrived on my doormat and it contained a copy of the Dreamcast game Sonic Adventure, which had just been released. He rang me the same day and said he had won it, but as he had already won the same game 3 times he was giving different people's names and addresses each time. Nice! :)

So having a good DC game but no DC wasn't on, so I ordered one the same day, plus all the extras available and that started my Dreamcast experience.

The Dreamcast is a very overlooked system. In my view the best Sega ever created and the graphics were quite something at the time, and still look pretty good even today. Its textures were always quite vibrant in games and had a unique look to them, making PS2 games look a bit muted. There were many DC vs PS2 arguments at the time, but looking at what developers managed to squeeze out of the PS2 towards the end of its life, I don't think the DC was quite as powerful a system. It was better however when developers coded directly for the hardware, rather than going through the Windows CE OS that was built in. Sega Rally 2 is a good example of why it was best to avoid that.

I also still have all of the Official Dreamcast Magazines too.

Justin
24th July 2009, 13:12
great, thanks for the input Harrison, but Bleem! is there at the end of the list m8, there is another PS1 emulator out there as well that is a genuine emulator i.e doesn't need specific discs

JuvUK

r0jaws
24th July 2009, 16:43
Nice reviews there guys, I never realised the Dreamcast was so flexible! May have to keep an eye out for one now. :thumbsup2:

Harrison
24th July 2009, 16:53
Ah cool. I hadn't spotted you had Bleem in there. :)

There were also some games towards the end of the DC's life that never got an official release, but then found their way to download sites. Worth checking out. Propeller Arena was one of the best of these.

As for commercial Dreamcast games, there were more than many people realise. And it is amazing to think most of them are now between 8 - 10 years old!

To show off the DCs capabilities there are a few games that are especially good. Metropolis Street Racing, Soul Calibur, Sonic Adventure 2, Shenmue 1 and 2, and Phantasy Star Online v2

And while the DC didn't have that many RPGs, one of my favourites on any system is Skies of Arcadia, which was later ported to the PS2 and enhanced.

Among the best overall for the system, on offer are:

Crazy Taxi 2
Sonic Adventure 1 and 2
Soul Calibur
Shenmue 1 and 2
Power Stome 2
Marvel vs. Capcom 2
Capcom vs SNK 2
Fatal Fury
The Last Blade 2
Fighting Vipers 2 (rare title worth money even at the time thanks to only getting a UK release).
King of Fighter 2000, 2001 and 2002
Phantasy Star Online v2
Skies of Arcadia
Grandia 2
Daytona USA
Ikaruga (great port of the famous Japanese arcade machine)
Bangai-O
Giga Wing 2
Bomberman Online
Confidential Mission (great lightgun game - good reason to keep a CRT about)
House of the Dead II (see above)
Dino Crisis
Elemental Gimmick Gear
Record of Lodoss War
Evolution 1 and 2
Headhunter (great MGS style game)
Jet Grind Radio
MDK2
Metropolis Street Racer (first game in the Project Gotham Racing series and still great. Really showed what the DC could do).
Mr. Driller
Outtrigger (brilliant arean based multiplayer shooter, with great graphics)
Quake III Arena (one of the best FPS console ports to date).
Resident Evil Code: Veronica (best in the series IMO)
RE2
RE3
Street Fighter Alpha 3
Tech Romancer
Unreal Tournament (another great FPS port)
Ultimate Fighting Championship
Virtua Tennis
Worms World Party

I'm sure I've missed quite a few out... LOL

silverf0x0
24th July 2009, 18:04
Oh yep, the dreamcast it's one of my favorites console, there were produced so many exellent titles in just few years of life, no wonder it could had fight on pair with the PS2.
It's still an usable machine, especially if you equip it with the broadband modem as Linux and Freebsd (am I forgetting some other OS?) can run on it.
Just few weeks ago a new unlicensed game (a shout em-up "R-type" like...) has been released for the Dreamcast, his name is Dux which from what I have seen look quite good for having been produced by 3 amateurs guys.
I already ordered 4 copies we'll see how it is.

@Harrison
Your list it's quite complete (actually I have to say that I really don't like some games, as "Fighting Vipers 2" , "RE2", "RE3"), you have missed "REZ", "Space Channel 5", "Samba de Amigo", "Seaman", "Napple's tale", "eldorado gate" (actually it's a useless game if you don't understand japanese...), "Ecco the dolphin", "Dynamate Deka 2", "the various NBA (NBA2K)* ands Fotballs (NHL2*) SEGA SPORTS games", "Trizeal", "Chaos Field", "Charge'n Blast", "Sonic Shuffle", "Toy commander", "Zombie Revenge", Under Defeat"...
...and many others (not to mention various sega unrealeased games which can be found in the net...).

@JuvUK
I'm working on a dreamcast site with the goal to animate the dreamcast scene a bit more , hoping I will be able to released it at the end of this year...

gazcbm
24th July 2009, 19:30
:coffee: excellent reading, cant wait to give it a whirl now :-)

RedDaemonFox
25th July 2009, 00:19
I'd reccommend it to everyone, as it's a very fun and modular system, as far as emulation goes. An SD adapter is in development and may be implemented in NetBSD DC. There is a strong dev scene I encourage anyone to get into, as the only thing hard to program for the DC is the 3d acceleration, the rest is pretty straightforward for most seasoned developers.

Harrison
25th July 2009, 01:22
@Harrison
...you have missed "REZ", "Space Channel 5", "Samba de Amigo", "Seaman", "Napple's tale", "eldorado gate" (actually it's a useless game if you don't understand japanese...), "Ecco the dolphin", "Dynamate Deka 2", "the various NBA (NBA2K)* ands Fotballs (NHL2*) SEGA SPORTS games", "Trizeal", "Chaos Field", "Charge'n Blast", "Sonic Shuffle", "Toy commander", "Zombie Revenge", Under Defeat"...

I only listed what I thought are good DC games, so actually missed a lot you listed out on purpose. ;) SC5, Samba, Ecco, and CnB are all pretty good though. Not so fond of most of the others though.

Regarding Eldorado Gate. I really wanted to try that RPG out but couldn't track down an original copy of any of the episodes back at the time. Will have to download some ISOs and give it a play. Even though I don't know much Japanese :lol:

BTW, has anyone seen the huge complete TOSEC DC archive on Underground Gamer? It has only been posted this month and is 396.42GB! :blink: No way I would ever manage to download that. Need to find someone with a complete copy willing to copy it to an HDD for me. ;)

RedDaemonFox
25th July 2009, 02:07
dcisozone.com, end of story, has a huge library of isos you can either download very fast for a fee, or a little slow for free

chain
25th July 2009, 08:52
oh ****, ive just subscribed at dcisozone :thumbsup2:

silverf0x0
25th July 2009, 10:44
@Dreamcast270mhz
What a good resource! Now I can complete my dreamcast iso collection...

:thanks:

scrappysphinx
25th July 2009, 11:18
I also subscribed to the unlimited $6 per month at dcisozone.com
But by subscribing to there you also get unlimited access to their sister site xboxisozone.com (just log in with the same details)
Not bad for $6 a month.

Harrison
25th July 2009, 15:14
That does sound good. Will be taking a look now. :)

TheCorfiot
23rd August 2009, 18:39
Picked up a Dreamcast in mint condition with Controller (inc Memory card), and Leads with 11 Games thrown in for 10 this morning at our local Car Boot Sale.... :woot:

I must say I'm quite impressed, Time to get on looking at some Homebrew Emulators :mrgreen:

TC :)

@JuvUK

I remember reading somewhere about when you were getting hold of your DC regarding Identifying the ones that could read CDR's by serial number identification.
Could you please refresh my memory ole chap

Cheers :thanks:

Justin
23rd August 2009, 19:15
All PAL units will load CDR

NTSC units tested to work
:

DC Sports Pack (Black)
August 2000 WK
Number 1 in a circle.
Model HKT-3020
670-1408M
Made In China
WK at the bottom of the sticker

DC Regular Console
Number 1 in a circle
Model HKT-3030
670-14088E
Made In Japan
PAL (E)

NTSC 2 in a circle
serial: 670-14081p
made in China
SA at the bottom
Production date 11/2000

Regular DC++ Console
HKT-3020
China, and the letters WK
670-14081N
October 2000 & letters WK

DC#2: Sports Pack (JAP)
Model # HKT-3020
Manufactured: Aug, 2000
Number 5 in a circle
690-17085k
WK -Made in China

regular console
hkt-3020
china ( WK )
670-14081N
October 2000

Standard US Dreamcast
HKT-3020
Made in Japan (SD)
1 in a circle
670-14081G
Manufactured May 2000 (SD)

Standard US Dreamcast
HKT-3020
Made in Japan (SD)
670-14081B
Manufactured August 1999 (SD)

Standard DC++
Febuary 2000 WK
Number 1 in a circle
#HKT-3020
670-14081M
Made In China
WK at the bottom of the sticker

ntsc-u
made aug 1999 wk
hkt-3020
made in china

Normal Package
HKT-3020
Number 1 in a circle
Japan; TK
670-14081J
May 2000; TK

Regular console
hkt-3020
Number 1 in a circle
china ( WK )
670-14081M
June 2000

Dreamcast HKT-3020
Manufactured: June, 2000 WK
(1) [NTSC][U]
Made In China

HKT-3020
Manufactured: December 1999 TK
TK Made in Japan
Sega Enterprise
670-14081J

HKT-3020
Manufactured: June 2000 AE
AE Made in JAPAN
Has 1 in circle NTSC-U
670-14081H

Dreamcast - Normal Package
HKT-3020
Manufactured: August, 1999 SD
(0) [NTSC][U]
670-14081D
Made in Japan

HKT-3020
March 2000 AE
1 NTSC U
670-14081H

DC Regular Console
Model HKT-3030
670-14088E
Made In Indonesia
PAL (E)

HKT 3020
1 in a circle
670-14081M

de97xxxx
HKT-3030
670-14088C

HKT-3020
MANUFACTURED: December 1999 GS
Made In Indonesia
670-14081L
GS

HTK-3020
1 in a circle NTSC U
670-14081J
Made In Japan
February 2000 TK

HKT-3020
WK at bottom
2 in circle
ntsc-U
manufactured: october, 2000 WK

Regular Dreamcast
September 1999 UD
Number 1 in a circle.
Model HKT-3020
670-14081K
Made In Japan
UD at the bottom of the sticker.
NTSC U

Model HKT-3020
Manufactured: January 2000 AE
A 1 with a circle NSTC U
SEGA Enterprises, LTD
670-14081H
Made in Japan

HKT-3030 670-14116A
Number 1 in a circle
Made in Indonesia
PAL E

HKT 3020
September 1999
Tokyo, Japan
670-14081K
Number 1 with a circle around it

US Dreamcast
Number 1 is circled
Model HKT-3020
670-14081K
NTSC-U
Made in Japan
UD

HKT-3030
number 1 in a circle pal/e
670-14116A
Made in indonesia

lots of useful info ;o)

i've not found a PAL DC that doesn't load cd-r's yet, must be cd-r not cd-rw and burn as slow as you can, x4 and x8 both seem to be ok, anything above this is a little hit and miss

yep the DC is indeed a funky little machine ;o)


Cheers, JuvUK

RedDaemonFox
23rd August 2009, 19:42
Hey juvuk you can find all the isos of DC's here (http://dcisozone.com)

Justin
23rd August 2009, 19:45
thanks but i've been a signed up speedy member for ages now, i don't think i have anything left to get from there :wink:

RedDaemonFox
23rd August 2009, 19:57
I'm surprised to have not seen you on the forums there, the team that runs it is updating the site soon, but yeah ur right as to they have pretty much every DC game ever made.

Justin
23rd August 2009, 20:16
here, EAB, 944 and 2002 that's it for me forum wise

gazcbm
24th August 2009, 23:16
Thanks to Juv, I am also a dreamcast convert!

I love the system, its like having an arcade machine in your home except it would have done back in the day :nuts: Does that make sense?

Anyway.... bloody love the dreamcast bloody love it!

TheCorfiot
24th August 2009, 23:18
Anyway.... bloody love the dreamcast bloody love it!


Exactly my feelings too having played with my Dreamcast over the last couple of days, UAE4ALL is not bad at all either.

Thank you very much Juzzer my good man.. :thumbsup:

TC :mrgreen:

Justin
25th August 2009, 11:25
and so the DC community goes from strength to strength! :thumbsup:

Harrison
25th August 2009, 12:35
It is such a shame that you are all only just discovering the Dreamcast and now realising what a great console it was.

If only this had happened back when it was for sale maybe Sega would still be here as a console developer. The Dreamcast was in my view their best system, and still one of the best released to date. Great games lineup, and all of high quality. And the vibrancy of the texture mapping on the DC added a special arcade quality to its games that the PS2 could never match.

They just didn't have the marketing budget of Sony to compete or the weight of the PSOne that Sony had to instantly get such high sales of the PS2. Had Sega's Saturn actually been good then I think the Dreamcast would have easily sold well. The Saturn was the real killer for both the Dreamcast's sales and Sega as a hardware console developer.

Justin
25th August 2009, 13:04
supposedly the selling point of the ps2 over the dc was the ps2 had a dvd drive and could play dvd's and dc only had a cd

TheCorfiot
25th August 2009, 13:35
But to be fair, And I really do rate the DC, The PS2 still stands it's ground today for a 10 year old design it has proved the test of time. Even to the point that it's competing with the PS3 to some degree.

But back to the topic, Yes I am really enjoying my DC and am saddened that it didn't gain greater KUDOS. Maybe the lack of DRM had something to do with it and therefore lack of "licensed" software sales.....Who Knows.

TC :flamethrower:

Justin
25th August 2009, 13:39
I have an old mouldy crisp under my desk that could compete with a PS3 (eh Gaz, eh!!) :ROTFLOL2: :jester:

TheCorfiot
25th August 2009, 13:44
I have an old mouldy crisp under my desk that could compete with a PS3 (eh Gaz, eh!!) :ROTFLOL2: :jester:


PMSL :woot:

Ah Juzzer, life would be so dull without you. :nod:
Again thanks for the DC headsup. :thanks:

TC :thumbsup:

RedDaemonFox
25th August 2009, 19:36
But to be fair, And I really do rate the DC, The PS2 still stands it's ground today for a 10 year old design it has proved the test of time. Even to the point that it's competing with the PS3 to some degree.

But back to the topic, Yes I am really enjoying my DC and am saddened that it didn't gain greater KUDOS. Maybe the lack of DRM had something to do with it and therefore lack of "licensed" software sales.....Who Knows.

TC :flamethrower:

I've put my ps2 to use: dipped in a can of petrol and used an open flame and kicked it around for a game of "Fire Football" (that is, soccer)

gazcbm
25th August 2009, 20:42
I have an old mouldy crisp under my desk that could compete with a PS3 (eh Gaz, eh!!) :ROTFLOL2: :jester:


Oh sorry did somebody shout me ? I was busy repairing an Xbox360 :Troll: :wink:

Anyway back to the topic,

What I love about Retro computing is that I can now go back and buy the systems I never had/could never afford for next to nothing. I am not sure that all those years ago I would have appreciated the Dreamcast like I do now and as Harrison said its a shame that SEGA no longer develop consoles, I guess the story runs very similar to the fall of Commodore and many others who have suffered with poor marketing and some very odd decisions.

As a side note I think that the Megadrive was/is just as good as the Dreamcast but in a very different way. I cant think of another platform game that is as fun and as fluid to play as the original Sonic.

woodycool
26th August 2009, 09:58
I first got into the Dreamcast about a couple of years ago when I picked one up from the car boot for a tenner.
Superb console, wish I had one back when they were released etc.

Harrison
26th August 2009, 12:55
What I love about Retro computing is that I can now go back and buy the systems I never had/could never afford for next to nothing.

That is very true. It is great to pick up systems you just couldn't afford back at the time and experience and enjoy them first hand. Emulation still never quite delivers a real system true feel and experience.

And I did this with the N64 just after the Gamecube was released. Picked up an N64 with 40 boxed games and 4 controllers for something silly like 40. And ended up buying more N64's just to get the games they were bundled with as it was working out a lot cheaper than buying the games that were being sold at the time on there own. :lol: Hence the reason I ended up with 3 boxed mint condition N64s. :) And I sold the duplicate games and third party controllers to a local CEX so actually ended up only spending about 60 in total for the whole N64 collection. ;) (well that is unlike you factor in the CD64 plus which I purchased new from Hong Hong and the Z64 Mr. Backup which I purchased from someone online).

However some older platforms are starting to get quite rare and commanding higher prices. Who would have thought a couple of years ago that Atari 520ST's would be outselling A500's by quite some margin. About 10 times the price at the moment on evilbay! It seems that Atari STs are finally getting hard to find. Have Amiga owners finally managed to buy them all up and see how long they take to melt? :jester:

But even so, these prices are still a shadow of their original prices when new.


I am not sure that all those years ago I would have appreciated the Dreamcast like I do now

I think it would have depended when you bought one. I got one before the PS2 was released and so it was a huge step forward from the PSOne. I think if I had bought one after owning a PS2 it wouldn't have been such a great system as I wouldn't have focused so much time on it.

I do still think the Dreamcast handled texture mapping better than the PS2. Although both systems did give textures different looks. The Playstation and PS2 both tended to give a slightly muted look to texture mapping. A little dull, even with colourful graphics. Whereas the Dreamcast always gave textures a high contrast vibrancy that was maybe a little over saturated, and always bith better anti-aliasing that the PS2 has ever managed, created very vibrant arcade quality 3D graphics.

However as PS2 development has continued over the years some very impressive things have been achieved with the PS2 hardware. Many later games were throwing around a lot more polygons and textures than we thought possible at its release. I think the Dreamcast hardware was much easier to code for so the developers got much more out of it early on, and had the 2 platforms continued alongside each other I think the Dreamcast would have run out of steam long before the PS2 as it was showing its limits in 3D capabilities in some of its games already at the time.

However at the time some of the games available for the Dreamcasr such as Sonic Adventure were really pushing things forward and showing a huge step forward compared to the PSOne. And don't forget at the time it was the only console capable of online gaming via its built in modem. I had loads of fun playing online with the Dreamcast. And as I was using that BT dialup internet option (the one where you paid a flat rate per month for dialup) I didn't cost me anything extra in phone bills. I even got hold of the US only released games to play more online. Ones like Bomberman were great. And Phantasy Star Online v2 still hasn't in my opinion been bettered as an online experience, and is a game you just can't replicate by playing offline as it just doesn't have the same feel or experience. That was the game where a DC keyboard became very useful. Plus only the European version of PSO was free to play online, which was another great thing.

One thing that was strange for a console was that the European Dreamcast market always seemed to be the one focused on before the US and Japan. In fact the US were generally always last to get most titles, and didn't even get many. With users having to import European copies. However the US online games did seem to have more online support than most EU games.

But for me, there is one game series that really does the Dreamcast justice, and that was Shenmue. Two brilliant games that should be played by anyone who can get hold of them. The Xbox did see an improved version of Shenmue 2 ported but you then miss the save game linking ability from the first DC game, allowing you to import your character and all your gaming collectables and achievements from the first to continue with the second. A nice feature.


as Harrison said its a shame that SEGA no longer develop consoles, I guess the story runs very similar to the fall of Commodore and many others who have suffered with poor marketing and some very odd decisions.

SEGA's downfall was two fold. Firstly they enjoyed the success of the Megadrive/Genesis for too long, just as Commdore did with the A500. Instead of putting their efforts into developing their next console they instead just kep designing add on hardware for the Megadrive, with CD drives and 32bit accelerators. Both of which didn't enjoy huge success in terms of games released for them because they were not standard parts of the Megadrive's hardware, so not many people owned them.

If they had instead not developed the CD drive or 32x for the Megadrive, but instead put that hardware into their next console they would have in my view remained a success in the console market. Imagine if they had looked at it in the opposite direction. Building a new console with these technologies, but with a cartridge slow for backwards compatibility with Megadrive games. That would have been the right solution. A new more powerful console capable of entering the 32bit next generation of games consoles, with the storage capabilities of CD, but with backwards compatibility to please the Megadrive owners.

However in my view it got even stranger with the Saturn development. Sega were focusing on 3D in the arcades with games like Virtua Racer. At the time quite cutting edge and impressive. And were trying to add 32bit 3D capabilities to the Megadrive via hardware add-ons. So why did they completely disregard 3D when developing the Saturn? They seemed to completely fail to notice that the gaming world was moving into 3D and was starting to require hardware capable of handling 3D texture mapped objects. Instead focusing on designing the Saturn mainly to handle 2D with parallel sprite processors. Very off after all their 3D efforts before this point. After the market failures of the Megadrive hardware add-ons, which cost them a lot of money to develop, the Saturn was the final huge mistake they made that caused their downfall. Designing hardware that was not where the console market was heading. Sony had them completely beat with the Playstation. Why did they fail to focus on 3D for the Saturn? Very odd. The Dreamcast easily fixed that but it was too late for them to recover.

It definitely mirrors some of the mistakes at Commodore, but not quite as badly.


As a side note I think that the Megadrive was/is just as good as the Dreamcast but in a very different way. I cant think of another platform game that is as fun and as fluid to play as the original Sonic.

:o Amiga! The Megadrive was a poor shadow of the great Amiga! OK, maybe it could sometimes push larger sprites around the screen at faster speeds, and with a 64 colour palette, but it wasn't as good! ;)

I personally never liked the original Sonic that much. It was fun for a quick game, but the game was too short and unless you were the type of person interested in achieving and unlocking everything possible on each of the levels it wasn't in my view as great as people make out. I much preferred Super Mario World on the SNES. A lot of variety, a lot more things to do, and such a huge gaming world to explore. Almost a platforming RPG before its time.

BrooksterMax
19th February 2012, 17:20
Draft 0.1 Review Basics
Later revisions to include mouse, keyboard, Dreamarena/SegaNet

Sega Dreamcast Hardware Review

Media: CD, 1.2 GB GD-ROM
CPU: 200 MHz Hitachi SH4 RISC
Memory: RAM 16 MB, GPU 8 MB
Graphics: 100 MHz PowerVR2 CLX2
Modem for online gaming and portable memory storage units.

Launch Dates

JP November 27, 1998 NA September 9, 1999 EU October 14, 1999

Introduction

Nearly a year passed before Europe got to see the Dreamcast released in 1999. The Sega Saturn was its predecessor and the last game released for the Saturn in PAL region was Deep Fear in October, 1998 - so you had a long wait for the next gen Sega gaming.

Sadly discontinued in 2002, but consoles were still sold in Japan until 2007! This was Sega's last home console, before they went on to become a software publisher as their main activity.

This console was smaller than the Saturn with a white finish, looked very different. Here is a NTSC U (USA) model on the left and a PAL E (Europe) model on the right.

http://img221.imageshack.us/img221/2784/img0206qbb.jpg

The US models had a red swirl, Japanese orange and the European blue swirl. The colour changes was due to trademark issues with a German company who used a similar red swirl.

Each console has four controller ports on the front - great for multiplayer action, no need for multi taps.

Consoles sold in Japan and the US after September 9, 1999 featured a 56 kbit/s modem rather than a 33.6kbit/s, which is great if you want to play Quake 3 online!

NTSC U underneath - note made in China
http://img838.imageshack.us/img838/6941/img0210aj.jpg

PAL E underneath - made in Indonesia
http://img401.imageshack.us/img401/8780/img0208gk.jpg

Different warnings and labels between the models, I find that kind of thing interesting!

Controller (with VMU memory unit) with Xbox 360 for comparison
http://img850.imageshack.us/img850/2853/img0212eb.jpg

I think the legacy of the Dreamcast is clearly captured here, don't you?

Personal memories

I had been a Sega Saturn owner since 1995 and the EU Dreamcast pictured is my original machine from 2002 - bought second hand at a games shop in my University town, Aberystwyth just as the machine was coming to an end.

It was a great time to enjoy the machine as games were still released for a long time after (Shenmue II, Headhunter, Rez etc.) and existing library games were sold cheaply.

With the inbuilt modem, it was possible to enjoy some of the "first" mainstream online console gaming with the DreamArena. It was quite limited by todays standards (33.6k modem!) but have fond memories of playing 4 player Quake 3 (and you could play PC owners!) with the mouse and keyboard paying 1p a minute for dial up access. Bills of 20+ per week were common for me, I'm sure others will recall similar.

Online gaming, mouse and keyboard, portable memory units, 4 controller ports - all stuff we take for granted today but this was the beginning of a gaming revolution.

Xbox 360 and PS3 owe a lot to the Sega Dreamcast which was ahead of its time without a doubt.

Gone but certainly not forgotten.

Peter
19th February 2012, 17:31
Love the Dreamcast - great review!

Currently playing some Dreamcast Neo Geo converted games, Shock Troopers, Mark of the Wolves and Savage Reign - all really good conversions!

Justin
19th February 2012, 17:35
nice review:)

do you mind if i merge it with this one?

http://www.amibay.com/showthread.php?t=2755

BrooksterMax
19th February 2012, 17:56
Go for it :) I'll add to this later when I get my new retro corner finished.

I have a mouse and keyboard (boxed), Quake 3 and the 56k modem to try out (try and make a post on Amibay using Dreamkey will be cool).

AmiNeo
19th February 2012, 18:48
Would be awesome if anyone could set up a server to setup all the Dreamcasts online games features again. I miss trading my winning cans from Shenmue in for goodies!

---------- Post added at 18:48 ---------- Previous post was at 18:42 ----------

All hail Dreamcast! One of the best and most under rated consoles of all time! :thumbsup:

Tajmaster
19th February 2012, 19:15
Ahhh the Dreamcast :)

Ive had mine 11 years now :wooha: It was the main attraction in my brothers room where we all played games, the PS2 never got a look in and the N64 was sat next to the DC but got played less.

I used to have every single official UK Sega accessory for the DC (including the maracas!) and the fabled DC LAN adapter (you dont want to know how little I payed for it). At one point I was buying 4 or 5 games a week, ahh when we were young! :D

Amazing games include:

Crazy Taxi 1 & 2
Power Stone 1 & 2
Quake 3 Arena
Virtua Tennis 1 & 2
Dead or Alive 2
Soul Calibur
Le Mans 24 hrs
NHL 2k
ANY Marvel/Capcom/SNK fighting games!

The VGA adapter wasnt a scandoubler, it actually changed the resolution to 640x480 and loads of games supported it, including the lush eye candy parade that is Soul Calibur. Sega should have stuck in a LAN port as standard for the price of LAN chips and we got the bum end with modems too as they kept ours to 33.3k where our American friends got 56k later in the DCs life as Brookster points out above.
Sega should also have made online play compulsary for certain titles to get a license. I remember when Out Trigger came out towards the end of the DCs life and online play was taken out :wooha: The game was pants anyway! :lol:

Still a great console, great memories and, fitting for this site, theres an active homebrew scene! :D

fitzsteve
19th February 2012, 23:09
Ahh the Dreamcast, I really regret selling my original setup, I always kept it boxed as new even all the little baggies for the accesories. Same with my N64 and you guessed it, sold that too :(

The good news is I since bought new ones from car boot sales but it's not the same, well to me anyway but of course the DC is a great system and I have fond memories playing MSR and Soul Calibur into the early hours if the morning then still having to get up for School/Work :coffee:

I say that was my first DC, in fact I bought a Japanese one from Computer Exchange due to the long wait we had in the UK, but I sold it a few weeks before UK release :lol:

Anyway, great review :bowdown:

Peter
20th February 2012, 00:00
@Steve - I have been playing the DC version of Mark of the Wolves - I got hold of it only because it never seemed to have a Neo Geo CD release so couldn't play it on my new Neo Geo - if you haven't got it I would urge you to get it - it is a great beat em up and the DC version is excellent!!

Buggster
20th February 2012, 00:05
Still have my dreamcast, and a stack of games....however my fav title is Twinkle Star Sprites....By far the DC had the best version of this.... The Neo version came with all th slo down of the arcade parent, the Saturn had a nice intro but still had tons of slow down. The dreamcast was in my opinion close to a perfect game. 9.8 out of 10 but thats only down to some of the sound effects being a little to cuty for me.

Also loved the 18 Wheeler and Vanishing Point.

AmiNeo
20th February 2012, 00:13
Had mine 13 YEARS and 4 months!!! :wooha:

---------- Post added at 00:13 ---------- Previous post was at 00:09 ----------


Ahh the Dreamcast, I really regret selling my original setup, I always kept it boxed as new even all the little baggies for the accesories. Same with my N64 and you guessed it, sold that too :(

The good news is I since bought new ones from car boot sales but it's not the same, well to me anyway but of course the DC is a great system and I have fond memories playing MSR and Soul Calibur into the early hours if the morning then still having to get up for School/Work :coffee:

I say that was my first DC, in fact I bought a Japanese one from Computer Exchange due to the long wait we had in the UK, but I sold it a few weeks before UK release :lol:

Anyway, great review :bowdown:








Nothing worse than pining for consoles you've let go of :(

The Jap ones are best IMO, games were still being released in Japan LONG after it died here. It had something like another 4 years over there and ofcourse you can run them on UK voltage by swapping the internal PSU :thumbsup:.

My Dreamcast is pretty much the only console I own that I have never sold and bought back at some point. My only regret is letting go of the box after about 4 years. :(

Zamza
8th March 2012, 16:02
Would be awesome if anyone could set up a server to setup all the Dreamcasts online games features again. I miss trading my winning cans from Shenmue in for goodies!

Strongly agree. I've no idea how to go about this. Gathering a comprehensive guide to all the ways all the different Dreamcast model/regional varations (with both Dial up Modem/BBA alike) can get online would be a probably the first step, but I've no experience with it whatsoever. Sounds like a project that could require its own wiki.

Speaking as a new member to the Dreamcast ownership club this thread has been a treat for recommendations. Thanks everyone for contributing :thumbsup:

cardboardboxer
8th March 2012, 17:13
EDIT

ChrisUnionNJ
8th March 2012, 23:57
I was just informed the other day by my youngest son that the dreamcast
just stopped working..
I got my 2 boys one when it first came out for Christmas and I think it
only got about a years rest till my son found all the games again..
My fav was Soul Calibur,Soul reaver,Dead or Alive 2...

:coffee:

AmiNeo
5th April 2012, 13:07
@ Chris... To quote your sig... "Never Bin or sell your old computer's you will regret it!!" That includes the Dreamcast matey! These too will be retro and much sought after some day! :thumbsup:

morcar
1st May 2012, 10:20
A great machine let down by Sega being snobby and not getting third party companies involved more.