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Newsletter from 06-10-1999
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06-10-1999 { Editorial, Dates Moving Around, Prices, and more... }

Hello all,

It's been two weeks since the last newsletter...what can I say? For nearly three years I've delivered weekly Sega news with hardly a break, and with my current workload, I felt that it was time for a brief lapse. I suppose part of it has been me reaching the point of burnout...I've run dEX independently since 1995 now, and aside from some much appreciated help from some volunteer writers over the years, it has remained an individual effort.

At this time, the site has grown to such a size that it is becoming a monster to properly maintain. Currently, dEX is made up of somewhere around 400 print pages of pure text. In the future I hope to turn dEX into a database run site to allow for customized information to be delivered, and ease site maintenance. But such solutions are long term (and expensive) investments and at times I question the need for such an investment. This does not mean I will be ending dEX, I merely wonder how many people out there actually read this newsletter and if this resource is indeed useful to others. I admit funding is a problem, but I also refuse to include advertisements or associate myself with conglomerates such as IGN who in force restrictions and display of adverts. I guess I've stuck myself in a difficult position, but then, sometimes things have to be that way.

For those who did miss not having a newsletter last week, I'm sorry. For now, here's some news of things going on. Many release dates of games have been moving the near weeks, the first DC game we shall see is Giant Gram on the 17th. After that on the 21st Expendable, KoF99, and Shutoku Battle will be released. Days later, on the 24th, Sega of Japan will reduce the Dreamcast console price by nearly ¥10 000 down to ¥19 990 ($164US). Some games will also be re-released at a lower price of ¥1 990 ($16US): VF3 TB, Sonic Adventure, Pen Pen Tricelon, and Godzilla Generations. The special low price of the games will only be in effect from June 24th to July 31st, while the hardware price will remain at the lower cost.

Notably, Shenmue: Chapter 1 has been postponed from its early August release to October 28th. Also, Chapter 2 has been moved from late '99 to mid 2000. In the place of Chapter 1, on August 5th we shall see the release of Namco's Soul Calibur. Warp has also finally confirmed the long delayed game, D2. It will come on 4(!) GD-Roms on November 11th.

Masaya has announced their first DC title, not surprisingly it is another game in the Langrisser series. Titled Langrisser Millennium, the game will be a full 3D RPG for release in Spring 2000. Unlike the previous games in the series, this version will move away from the turn based system and use a real time battle system. There are two primary modes in the game: Map and Battle. You travel about and rearrange troops in map mode, and once the enemy is met, the play mode changes to battle mode. In each battle, up to four of one's characters can be participate at a time.

In the States, Konami has delayed the US release of Castlevania from 1999 until January 16th 2000. The reason is to fine tune gameplay as thus far many of the game elements have yet to be developed. Sega has decided to postpone the release of VF3: TB on US shores. The reason behind this is that they feel there are enough strong launch titles already and this allows them to work on the game some more. Why? Well, first off Vf3 TB was after all a rushed release in Japan, the extra time will allow them to incorporate extra play modes in the game. Another disappointing delay is that of NBA 2000, this time however, it is the NBAs fault for not releasing the year 2000 roster in time. VF3 and NBA 2000 are now set for a mid-October release. For other release dates releases check out the site.

Sega has marketed the Dreamcast like crazy and unfortunately, this strategy may backfire. Due to semiconductor shortages, only around 1.5million DC units will be available in the US until March. The problem lies in that retailers have preordered 2.4million units! Whether this may negatively impact Sega by turning potential buyers to the competition, or it may actually drive hype more than anything.

Speaking of hardware, Sega will be releasing 500 special Dreamcast units with a clear case in Japan on July 22nd. The release will coincide with the release of Seaman: The Forbidden Pet. The special package will include a clear DC along with matching controller, VMS Card, Seaman, and a microphone.

Back to marketing...beginning next month, Sega of America and a yet to be named video rental chain will be renting out Dreamcast consoles and 3 DC titles. Popular speculation has pointed to Blockbuster Video, but GameSpot news has claimed to confirm that Blockbuster's main rival, Hollywood Video will be renting out the DC. As of now, the three games to be rented along with the console have been unnamed.

That's all for this week, again, thanks for your support! I'll try to get the next newsletter out on Tuesday or so next all depends on my finals which begin Saturday.


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