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Tuesday, July 08, 1997

In the 16-bit era, Sega and Nintendo each had large stakes in the console market amounting to a near 50-50 split between the two companies. Than, game designers could create games for either system they chose without major publishing concerns. Today, the market is much different. All but the largest companies can afford to product games for several platforms. As a result, a small game developer getting purchased by a corporate monster is becoming much more common. Corporate goals are radically different from those of a game developers. Big business often only sees money while disregarding what the developer wants. Dissatisfaction with the corporate mind set is beginning to spread amongst teams bought my companies such as Electronic Arts. Long time industry member Peter Molyneaux is only one of many examples of people who are not happy with their over-seer (in this case EA).

A long time Sega supporter, Core has been making many great games since the days of the Genesis. Most notably, their strong support for the Sega CD with games such as AH3 Thundersrike. Recently, Core was purchased by Eidos. A relatively new company in the gaming business. Months ago, Core demonstrated a 3D 'beat em up' game called Fighting Force Fighting Force(It is rumored that they wanted to do it as Streets of rage 4). The game had very good graphics and looked to be a future hot title. However, Core's owner, Eidos has recently made a deal with Sony which would make the game a Sony PSX exclusive. So what happens to the near complete Saturn version? Unfortunately, nothing may happen and it may never come out.

Since entering the console market, Sony has done extremely well. Making up for the lack of any first party games by using their marketing muscle, brand name, and of course extensive cash resources. Cash that may even go to independent game developers who are often financially strapped. Hopefully, Sony's position in the industry will change. No one company has ever dominated the video game market for an extended period of time. Atari had its time nearly two decades ago, Nintendo ruled the late eighties, Sega the early 90's, and now Sony is dominating the market. Things will change, but until they do, things will be tough.


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