dreamcast is in my guiness book of records 2000 for being the most advanced games console ever. it had a 33.6k modem! how could that handle the bandwidth any game requires? i do remember when dreamcast took off, and everyone being very excited, but it was too gimmicky and too shallow to have been any good. PS2 and Xbox get my vote any day.
Microsoft made the Xbox so I wouldn't be surprised if it crashes a lot.
Sega Saturn didn't really have many games to advertise with. About all they had wqas Knights into Dreams. When I played a demo of it at a game store once, I couldn't really figure out the point of it. I think it had something to do with turning into this flying jester guy and then avoiding this big clock before it got you.
Dreamcast was better, but not quite as good as PS2.
Well, the Dreamcast had a couple of major problems.
First of all, it didn't have a lot of third-party support. Capcom made a lot of games for it, and Namco made Soul Calibur, but Sega made most of its games itself. EA didn't make any games for it, and regardless of how you feel about EA's sports games, a lot of people won't buy a system if they can't get Madden on it.
Also, I think the thing was simply too Japanese for its own good. A lot of games were put out in the states with only the original Japanese audio, which a lot of anime dorks thought was really cool, and a lot of non-dorks thought was really gay. To that end, Capcom put out about 500,000 2d fighting games, which stopped being cool around about the same time Street Fighter II: Turbo came out on the SNES. There just wasn't a lot of effort put into appealing to people in markets outside of Japan, and thus, it should come as no great surprise that it failed in markets outside of Japan.
As for the Saturn, yes, I think a lack of good third-party games was probably a big factor, but I remember that Sega had been making a lot of add-ons for the Genesis at the time, like the 32X and the Sega CD. They didn't support these add-ons very well, and I think the Saturn was looked on very dubiously by a lot of people.
At any rate, Sega has always made the best games for its systems, which is why it's a lot better of just making those games for other systems. This is also why people speculate that Nintendo will do the same thing, but I would be kind of sad to see it happen. After all, Nintendo brought video games back from the dead after Atari bit the dust.
The Saturn's failure was mostly the result of bad managment decisions on the part of Sega. They had burned their customers severely by providing next to no software support for the Sega CD, and the overpriced 32X add-on that the released only a year before the Saturn launch. Then, fearing Sony's entry into the market with the Playstation, Sega jumped the gun on the American release of the Saturn -- releasing it in May of 1995 instead of the original launch date of September 5, 1995, with next to no software (a crappy port of Virtua Fighter being the high point of the launch lineup). Constant delays in software releases, the lack of a true Sonic game, and Sega's stupid decision to not localize much of their quality Japanese software only worsened their situation. Also, as others have mentioned, there was very little 3rd party support as many had jumped ship to the easier to develop for Sony Playstation. Then, of course, price was an issue -- the Saturn at $400 being 1/3 more expensive than the Playstation at launch.
Finally (well, not finally, but all that I'm going to talk about anyway), there was the issue of system power. Saturn was a 2D beast, easily whooping the pants off of both Playstation and N64 in the arena of flat gaming, but sadly it's 3D couldn't quite compete. Being designed for quadralateral based engines, the Saturn's very design led to blocky looking games -- not to mention the fact that Sony's machine could render 360,000 polygons per second w/ full effects, while the Saturn could do only around 200,000. Procesor speed also showed a gap -- the Saturn using twin Hitachi SH-2's running at 12.5 MHz each, while the Playstation featured a single 33MHz chip design. There are several other differences, but those are the main ones.
The Dreamcast's failure was a result of bad timing on the part of Sega, more than anything else. It was to be the save-all system, and it almost worked (outselling the Saturn in the U.S. by 8 million units to 1.5 million). Coming in after the N64 and Playstation had peaked, it enjoyed about a year at the top of the market. It had a kick-ass launch list (the best of all time if you ask me), and a constant stream awesome software throughout it's life. The first system to succesfully go online, it led the way to the current generation's net play. Sadly though, it didn't quite make the splash it could have due to many of Sega's customers fearing it would go the way of the dodo like Sega's past 3 systems had -- which ended up being a self-fulfilling proficy. Lack of support from 3rd party giant EA Games didn't help either -- tho to be honest, Sega's internal sports games whooped the pants off of anything EA had on the market at the time. Then, of course, many people were simply waiting for the PS2 -- and later, the immensly more powerful GameCube and XBox. Dreamcast's failure is really quite sad, as it is my belief that it's game library still rivals the PS2, GameCube, and XBox combined. This is a shamless plug, but if any of you don't have one, go out and pick one up with a ton of games for really cheap and enjoy what could have been.
1) Light consoles have potential but fail easily. (Dreamcast, possibly GameCube )
2) Heavy consoles have potential but fail more easily, usually because people died trying to take them home. (I nearly broke a foot carrying the Saturn. That's why I haven't bought the XBox*.
3) Medium consoles will live for bloody ages even though they're usually inferior to others. (i.e. PS1, PS2)
* that's a lie, it's only because it wouldn't fit in the games cabinet
both consoles ruled. i am studying computer games programming at uni and most people i've met there agree that the saturn was superior to the playstation, so it seems to be the preferred console of people who know wtf they are talking about.
I recently got a DC and i was dieing for one a few weeks prior to gettin it! I felt attracted lol
its an amazing console, just full of arcade games. PS2 seems too commercial, Xbox is excellent but only when its chipped (load up a new dashboard, get emulators on hard drive etc). Cube is cute and fun. but GBA does it for me
anyways DC had Sonic Adventure 1 which is one fantastic game...
The saturn was an amazing system. What killed it was not getting any of the damn games from Japan. I have tons of ridiculously amazing games on the Saturn. So no, the Saturn system itself isnt lame. Sega of America execs (all of which dont work there anymore) are lame.
The Dreamcast is one of my alltime favorite systems. It does a lot of things better than the PS2 and quite a few things not as good. What really hurt Sega was releasing the Dreamcast before Sony released the PS2. Basically the DC comes out and Sony delays the release of the PS2 to make sure it has more features than the Dreamcast. I.E. ability to play DvDs, USB connectivity etc. Then to top it all off when Sega simply announced they were not making anymore NEW consoles after the Dreamcast the public mistook it for them saying no more new dreamcasts and the Dreamcast was dead and they were no longer supporting it.... Odd considering it still has fantastic new games being made for it all the time in Japan still.
Dont get me wrong. I own all of the systems and have more games than is probably humanly sane, but it really disturbs me when people bash those two systems and dont have the facts straight. =] If you think the Saturn is lame try Guardian Heroes, Capcom D&D Collection or any 2D Fighting game, any of the Working Designs or Treasure RPGS that came out. Basically, Kirby SMith up there knows his stuff.
what about the neogeo i got one for 30 quid and some games for 12 quid, snk decided to after a while to only sell in japan after being killed of by pokemon
lets face it pokemon was the reason gameboy advances arent 2 years older.
the dreamcast was still way behind the ps1 in terms of sales for the two to three years it was available
so it wouldnt have stood a chance against ps2 even if sega had the money to keep supporting it.
its 2004 and ps1s are still having games released!
I'm not sure why Saturn didn't take off. I wanted to get one of those, but they were expensive (kinda like today's PS2). Besides, I was satisfied with the Genesis back then.
DC had plenty of fun games, but most are anime games which I'd be embarrassed to admit liking. It's technically superior to the PS1 in the fun factor, but I'm not sure about the hardware. I guess 3D was the in-thing in a 2D world.
Personally, I like the PS2. Sure, it's commercialized, but it's still fun if you play it with friends. WWE makes some good games, though the loading times are getting longer again. The XBox is just a small computer, with only computer games and poor offline multiplayerbility, so I frown upon it.
Of course, the best console of all is the computer. I find WASD and IJKL a lot easier to use than the PS's controller. Not to mention the fact that you can do other things with the rest of the buttons. The console shooters truly suck. I don't know why anyone plays them (besides offline multiplayerbility, of course).
Disclaimer: Any sarcasm in my posts will not be mentioned as that would ruin the purpose. It is assumed that the reader is intelligent enough to tell the difference between what is sarcasm and what is not.