Is it the end, or just the beginning? No, it was the end. Definitely the end. The end for Sega Saturn Magazine which indirectly bank-rolled part of UK:Resistance for the last 18 months, but regardless, we still find it difficult to comprehend just how cool some of the stuff in News Archive Ten is. I mean there's the oh-so-bitchy Crap Webmaster's Guide To Copying SSM, the visual guide to the death of the Saturn, the dawn of the speech bubbled pictures era... feel the quality! And marvel at how sad our lives must be for us to spend this much time on a crappy web site...
As also promised (stupidly), here's a news story about Dreamcast game July, just so we can use our great 'July bus caption' that we've got:
July is a great new adventure game for Dreamcast, which should be available with the machine when it launches. The game's plot revolves around strange 'sexless' mutants which start being born. These 'sexless' people do not die, and gather together to fight against human opressors. There's also a sub-plot involving scientists, militant terrorist groups and murders, which all centres around one of these sexless mutants and a London-based student.
Typical. You wait ages for a bus, then it's destroyed by a shadowy group of terrorists trying to destroy a scientist who's been carrying out top secret research into the birth of sexless mutant children who never die and are teaming-up to destroy all of humankind as revenge for experiments carried out by uncaring government researchers.
Have you seen the new Dreamcast VF3 pics? If not, try visiting one of the 'proper' sites like Dimension-S to see them. Pai's in them now and they look even better. Once you've done that, come back and take a look at our new Employee of the Week which features, as promised, the funniest joke ever made about women tennis players.
Site News! Next week will be very busy. Over the weekend we shall be uploading a fantastic Employee of the Week, featuring what is quite possibly the funniest joke ever made about women tennis players. Then on Monday we'll have a pointless news story about Dreamcast game 'July' just as an excuse for a good caption that we've got for a picture of a bus. Plus, every day next week will be part of 'New Comedy Feature Week'... proving beyond all reasonable doubt that we do indeed have way too much spare time on our hands. Bet you can't wait, eh?
Remember that "Club Saturn" remix cd from a few years back? No, probably not. It only sold about three copies (and Gary bought one of those). Well there's apparently another one in the works, this time it's based around music related to Sonic and will probably be part of the promotion for Sonic Adventure. We're not sure of many other details yet, except that industrial legend (who you've probably never heard of) 'Cevin Key' is producing one of the tracks.
Sometimes, despite potential pot/kettle name-calling allegations, it's just downright too hard to resist a-cutting-and-a-pasting someone else's stuff. Like these new Dreamcast VF3 pics which Seganet have got today. There's another two over there too, and they also look equally impressive. Been putting in plenty of late nights, Dreamcast programming guys? Looks like it...
That's better. That's MUCH better! And they're obviously Dreamcast pics too - look how the names of the characters haven't been coded in properly yet. What a relief! Keep an eye on Sega Japan's site for official hi-res pics...
It's time for the feature that is officially "too post-modern to be porn" - it's a special multiple choice Employee of the Week!
Remember what games are? You know, those things Sega used to release from time to time for us to buy and play in the old days? Well, it's kind of blasphemous to mention this, but you can now buy a Nintendo 64 with a copy of Goldeneye, Mario 64 or Banjo Kazooie for a super-low 99 pounds. Should keep you busy for a while.
Obviously a little bored wandering around the rapidly-emptying Emap building, Sega Saturn Magazine's former editor and Master has seen fit to post his thoughts on the events in Tokyo (he was there) on our message board. As nobody ever uses the poxy message board, we thought it would be nice to repost the Master's opinions here for you all to read.
"I have just got back from Tokyo, so was quite curious to see how the fan sites had covered Dreamcast games. So here is some news for you. It's all a load of shite. VF3 especially is being vilified by people who don't have a clue as to what they are talking about.
"I have a great deal of experience with this game since we had the coin-op in the office for a few months, as the boy Gary will remember. The Dreamcast port is astoundingly good. Unfortunately, people have been getting confused because so far THREE versions of the game have been revealed.
1. Screenshot Edition
"This is where the official screenshots have come from. They demonstrate the backgrounds and sheer rendering power of VF3tb's Dreamcast engine. They are not gameplay shots. And they are of an old version.
2. Video Edition
"This is the version shown on video at the New Challenge Conference and on video screens at the TGS. People would have camcorded this one... but again, it's an earlier version. Taka looks smaller than Jacky and Shun is taller than Akira!
3. The Playable One
"This is the one running on Dreamcast and the subject of my reports on Game Online. Bear in mind that most web reporters would not have gotten in on press day and also that 100,000 people per day crammed into the hall on the public days. I very much doubt that any of these "journalists" would have got more than five minutes on the game. Hordes of Jap kids were running across the hall to get onto it, even knocking over the security guards!
"Personally, I played VF3 for an hour after the NCC2 and an hour at TGS. This game is amazing - all the moans about textures, size of characters, 3d backgronds etc are perfectly relevant for the video version, but NOT for the one I played. Although Akira's trousers looked a tiny bit odd.
"Everyone's an expert by the look of it, but I really doubt that most of these guys have actually got a look (or a play) at the "proper" version. Hey ho.
"The conversion will be stunning, the backgrounds are brilliant, the characters are almost entirely identical to the coin-op's... and basically it's just an ace game.
"Shame about Rally 2 though... they've got a lot of work to do before that should come out. However, I've been assured that it won't be released unless it's good enough and Sega will be a laughing stock if it isn't perfect to the Model 3 game.
|Dreamcast Rally 2 - multiple versions too? This looks a little 'PC' at the moment, probably due to being a very early Dreamcast port of PC code - but we just guessed that. Expect more effects and technical 'stuff' to be applied to the final product, which should easily manage to eclipse the PC game.|
It's been like feeding time at the monkey house with all the Japanese Dreamcast news, and if we're the zookeepers that would make you lot the... anyway, Sega Japan have thrown a couple of extra bananas into the fray by uploading some new hi-res Dreamcast pics on their ace site. Here's a handy link section:
Dreamcast Rally 2: Here Geist Force: Here Early Dreamcast VF3tb: Here
Click on the picture to see a smaller version
Serious caption: The arcade version used only coloured polygons to build the characters. The Dreamcast version appears to be using hi-resolution textures to render the features and clothes of the characters, which regardless of the power of the machine, will always give a slightly rougher, more jagged look as the textures join together. Also, bear in mind that this isn't the Model 3 game running under emulation, it's a conversion from one system to another, which always results in differences for the better or worse. Looks great to us, and if the Master says it's good that's all we need to know.
...and here's a quick tip: cut out the middle-men and keep checking Sega Japan's What's New Page to see what people are going to be uploading on their web sites tomorrow. It's a great resource these days. You get pictures bigger and without the logo stuck on too. Makes us all obsolete... whoops.
Pay attention, this is proper news: MCV, our second-favourite UK trade magazine, has reported that Sony will announce PlayStation 2 one week before Dreamcast's Japanese launch. They will announce that it IS DVD based, is NOT backwards compatible, and can do a dodgy-sounding ten million polygons per second - surely a PR lie so obvious to totally prove the maxim that desperate times do indeed call for desperate measures. And with 99% of decent third-parties already committed to Dreamcast, we have to wonder exactly what games will be available on this suspiciously over-specced machine. File under "no threat" and ignore.
Here are some boring statistics for you, but there is a reward at the end.
The last bastion of hardcore games journalism is no more. The final shining beacon of hope for UK Sega fans beams into shops this week, as the last issue of Sega Saturn Magazine goes on sale. As usual, second-rate "webmasters" will be rushing out to buy a copy, before scanning and retyping the whole mag quicker than you can say "Copyright Emap Images 1998", picking the meat from its bones in a desperate attempt to look like a 'proper' web site done by grown-ups.
Italia Resistance is a no-no: Sega sold a shameful 10,000 Saturns across the whole of Italy! Sega's new Glasnost-style honesty also reveals that "just over one million" Saturns were sold throughout all of Europe. The Megadrive has been out-selling the Saturn in the UK for the last year. Fact.
And now the reward - a little something we affectionately call 'week34.htm' - this week's EoTW!
We thought we'd save you all the effort! Here's a handy chart of the key contents of this month's SSM, with a quick reference guide as to whether it's worth copying out the articles and scanning the pictures to upload on your shitty site:
|The crap webmaster's guide to what's worth copying from this month's SSM!|
|Feature||Text worth copying?||Pictures worth scanning?||Copyright Emap Images?|
|Blue Stinger Showcase||Maybe - new character info, plot details and tech info is revealed||Maybe - hi-res, some images not yet uploaded to web sites||Yes|
|Bizarre Creations Interview||Yes! Candid revelations about Dreamcast, company plans, software plans etc||Scan, scan like the wind! Exclusive 'artwork' created especially for SSM||Yes|
|Naomi news||Maybe - system specs, info on games||Maybe - pics of both HotD games||Yes|
|Godzilla Generations||Yes - more info on how it plays and what you do||Yes - huge, exclusive, new hi-res pics||Yes|
By the way, a test version of Capcom's Tech Romancer 3D robot-fighting game is in Tottenham Court Road's Casino arcade, which is handy for people who suddenly find themselves with eight hours to fill every day... and the newsagent round the corner sells bottles of meths for only 80p.
We'd do anything to ensure the UK Dreamcast comes with a built-in modem. Yes, even get down on our hands and knees and bark like a dog. So will it? News is that Segasoft (American Internet-gaming/PC wing of Sega) are starting a UK version of their Heat.net Internet multi-player service. This can only be in preparation for UK Internet service provision for Dreamcast, as Segasoft are already the sole ISP for Japan and American Dreamcast users, which in turn means that this Sega-badged ISP is the only way your Dreamcast may be connected to the Internet.
Sega are still to tell us anything about how Dreamcast's 'net access will work, but imagine if Sega do put together a free network of servers allowing all Dreamcast users free 'net access... that could be the final factor that ensures UK 'must have' status for the machine. Woof woof!
ID Software have denied rumours that they are working on Dreamcast stuff. CEO Todd Hollenshead says there`s "Not a single ounce of truth in it." That`s a shame, although we still reckon some sort of Quake variant will make it on to the machine eventually.
Parlez vous francais? You`d better do for this week's Employee of the week Oui! Je voudrais couchez avec vu ce soir!
It`s time for another `CTW reports` feature where we cull news stories from "surprisingly hefty" trade paper, CTW (some people earn money from this). Today CTW report that Sega are signing up ex-MTV man Giles Thomas as marketing manager. Giles reckons his "youth and lifestyle experience was absolutely integral to Sega's decision to hire him." And, "The rules were broken by Sony in the way they marketed PlayStation. We are set to break those rules again." Looks like the Sonic costumes are out then.
The TGS* (see note) will be underway on October 9th with plenty of Dreamcast titles on show including playable, yes that`s playable versions of Sonic Adventure, Godzilla Generations, Virtua Fighter 3tb, and Sega Rally 2, as well as others like Pen Pen TriIcelon, Monaco Gran Prix Simulation, D2 and Mercurius Pretty.
* TGS stands for `Tokyo Game Show` and should not be confused with the `Tokyo Geisha Service` which, as you should already know, is confusingly situated just round the corner.
A quick double-dose of hardcore action - first hardcore games, with this page at Sega Japan where some ace new Sonic Adventure pics have been posted, then some hardcore of a more traditional nature with this absolutely gorgeous piece of hi-res babe artwork of Tina from Dead or Alive 2. You can thank us later.
Even more hardcore, here`s another Employee of the week
Yes, the phrase "hallowed pages" was never more appropriately used than when describing Sega Saturn Magazine, and sadly the phrase "closed down" now also applies, as next month's issue 37 will be the last. Officially, the Saturn's UK death and lower sales of the magazine are to blame, although unofficially, Sega want their new Dreamcast title to be more "lifestyle" orientated (more tits, less games), and aren't too keen on continuing with the SSM 'hardcore' style. The final still-quite-good-but-our-hearts-aren't-really-in-it issue will be on sale next month, after that there will be an A4-sized void in all our hearts.
A beautiful butterfly, trampled by the uncaring boot of harsh economics
A scanner and a lack of Japanese-reading skills can be a dangerous combination. Our Japanese-enabled source says that all of the Sega Rally 2 and VF3tb pics printed in the Japanese magazines (and subsequently scanned and dumped all over the net today) are arcade pics, printed as a taster of what's to come. Sega Japan have not released any Dreamcast pics of Rally 2 and VF3.
Very nice, but only arcade shots. Sorry.
Public reaction to early PlayStation 2 launch rumours
At approximately 7.00pm this evening a document was uploaded to the internet that was both tawdry and explicit. Millions of people around the world logged on for a view of this salacious item. Yes, it was another UK:Resistance Employee of the week!
We need a bit of cheering up around here at the moment, so for no apparent reason here's a picture of two fully-grown men lowering a turkey into a metal bucket with a coat-hanger, while also looking very serious, blissfully unaware of the comedy potential offered by their situation:
Two fully-grown men lowering a turkey into a metal bucket
with a coat-hanger, while also looking very serious, blissfully
unaware of the comedy potential offered by the situation