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Newsletter from 11-23-1998
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11-23-1998 { DC Import Pricing, DC News, New Saturn Releases, and more... }

Hi All

As the launch of the Dreamcast in Japan approaches this Friday, pricing on the first batch of imports have become available. NCSX has quoted as the console with one controller to sell for $580US. With one game the price jumps to $630US and with two games $675US. At $580US, the markup is $330US as the suggested price in Japan is ¥29 800 or $247US. NCSX recommends that people wait until the second shipment of Dreamcast consoles arrives later in December as they expect import prices to drop 30-40% after the initial shipment when the availability of the console increases. Some estimates leave the initial shipment of DC consoles to about 150,000 units, with a second shipment of about 350,000 following two weeks later. Sega's goal is to ship 500,000 units by the end of the year, and one million by the end of the first quarter next year.

Prices aren't as bad as some have thought, but they mirror the same excessive initial costs that came with importing the Saturn, PSX or N64 at their respective releases in Japan. I for one will not be getting a DC until prices go down a bit. Hopefully I'll be able to get one in January or so, but the question of where to hook it up remains (I've no TV in my dorm). Hopefully the system will be able to use a standard RGB cable or some other connection to standard computer monitors. We shall see.

As it stands, four titles are set to launch with the console: Godzilla Generations, Pen Pen Tricelon, July, and Virtua Fighter 3 TB. Incoming, previously slated for a December 23rd ship date has been moved up a week and is now set to ship on December 17th.

If you haven't checked them out already, I've posted links to the videos I mentioned last week, along with some screenshots from them in the Snapshots area. CSK Research Corp has revealed two new titles for the Dreamcast. First is a flight/acrobatics game that has support for up to four players (not sure if it is simultaneous or not). The game is called Aero Dancing Featuring Blue Impulse. The game allows for one to choose from a variety of jets and bombers including the F-4, F-15, and the F-86bi. The game is set for a February 1999 release. In the racing genre comes Buggy Heat. An off road buggy racing game for one or two players includes several play modes including Championship, time attack, and training mode. It is set for a March '99 release.

Speaking of the launch, the American newspaper, Washington Post included a review of the Dreamcast. Written by Rob Pegoraro the review concludes that the DC is not worth the $250, twice as much as the competition: the N64 or PSX. His complaints were price, amount of games available, and the modem setup of the system. While I disagree with his conclusion, the lack of initial titles will keep some casual gamers from ugrading formats...then again, title availability has not been a major concern for fans looking at the excessive demand for the system in and ouside of Japan. One can read the review at:

A minor DC tidbit is that Hitachi and NEC had Dreamcast units at COMDEX running in Demo modes. Nothing new was shown in terms of game footage.

For the Saturn, several new games shipped last week: All Japan Pro Wrestling Featuring Virtua (Sega/Re-Rel), Balldy Land (Banpresto), Capcom Generations Vol 4 (Capcom), Guyfade Crown (Capcom), Sankyo Fever Simulation Vol 3 (Ten Lab), She'sn (Kid), Side Pocket 3 (Re-Rel), and Street Fighter Zero 2 (Capcom/Re-Rel).

Four new games are coming this week for the Saturn. They are E'Tude Prologue ~Trembling Heart~ (Takuyo), Grandia Memorial Package (GameArts), Pretty Girl Mahjong Special 5th Anniversary Package (Jaleco), and Wizardry Llylgamyn Saga (Sir-Tech).

Work continues on the new areas...I am finishing up initial authoring of the Genesis area (not including Reviews which are needed!), and have begun outlining the Dreamcast area. The area will be up as soon as possible. As always, volunteer writers are most welcome. That's about all for this week, happy gaming!


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