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Sega Ages Switch: M2's Sega 3D Classics line coming to the Switch.

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3 minutes ago, NE146 said:

 

Well heck they announced it more than a year ago already and we've been waiting this whole time. About time it comes out!

Yeah, I wonder why they get these out so slowly. M2 is a small company and they probably have lots of different projects to work on simultaneously, so maybe that's why it takes them a while to release these. From what I understand, each of these games is probably running in its own special custom emulator, so getting those emulators perfect may take some time. Not sure if Virtua Racing runs on emulation, though.

 

I did forget one Super Scaler that has been released: Space Harrier. That and Out Run are the only 2 that have been released, I think. One other game that I forgot to mention is Revenge of Death Adder. That's another one that's never gotten a release outside of the original arcade release.

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It may not be considered a Super Scaler release, but G-LOC: Air Battle has appeared as well. That's pure 2d sprite scaling throughout with no polygonal graphics. 

 

M2 doesn't seem to be emulating these in the traditional sense. The process is the same as their 3D Classics line on the 3DS, which was extensively covered with interviews with M2 staff. Here are some or perhaps all of those interviews.

 

https://web.archive.org/web/20170630094431/http://blogs.sega.com/2015/01/23/sega-3d-classics-developer-interviews/

 

Looking at the Space Harrier interview for instance sheds some light.

 

Quote

NH Yes, that’s right. You have to understand the underlying game before you can add things on top. For this project, we did it all using a method that’s similar to emulation, however strictly speaking, it’s not emulation.

YO: At the core, there’s a program running that’s based on emulation techniques.

NH Specifically, the code that ran on the arcade CPU, the MC68000, isn’t used in 3D Space Harrier. Replacing that code allowed us to finally get the 3D working.

YO: That’s what we mean when we say this game is the result of all of the hard work and technical skill developed up until now.

NH Since we could take our time with Space Harrier 3D, we were able to do things like support wide screen.

 

I think I've said this at AtariAge before, but the process seems to be a hybrid that straddles the line between software emulation and a traditional port from the original code. I'm in no position to elaborate from a technical perspective, but the gist as I recall from reading these interviews back when the Sega 3D Classics program was active was that elements of both techniques were utilized. 

 

Quote

I suspect if sales have disappointed overall (A year ago the news said the line had underperformed in Japan but that sales were exceeding expectations in the west), I think it's largely due to the game lineup.

 

I had meant to add that I think it was also a big mistake to make these be Switch exclusives.

 

No disrespect is intended to the Switch, but I suspect PS4, XB1, and Windows sales would more than justify the added development expenses to go multiplatform and help keep this program active. 

Edited by Atariboy

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Afaik, After Burner is the only game that we have seen but that is not available yet. There have been talks about a lof of games (the Sonic arcade game, Star Wars Arcade, even Dreamcast games) but nothing concrete yet. Have you seen pictures of Herzog Zwei? I know I haven't.

 

I think the main problem with the SEGA AGES series is that these games probably cost a lot more to make than Hamster's ACA reissues for instance, while they're sold for the same price. That's why they try to focus on more popular games, even though most of them have been reissued before (sometimes a lot), and personally I'm not interested in Super Scaler games on Switch since I already have them on my 3DS, already at 60fps and in 3D.

 

I think they found the soft spot with Virtua Racing and Shinobi, because these games are popular but have not been reissued very often. So if I were them, I would focus on games like the first Virtua Fighter, maybe Virtua Cop, Revenge of Death Adder (which is not well known but the original Golden Axe is)... Personally I would love the original arcade version of Crackdown that uses the same high resolution as Gain Ground but is a lot less confusing. For its creator, it's basically a top down sequel to Shinobi. But I guess I already talked about it several times in this topic. 😅

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16 hours ago, Atariboy said:

And some of the arcade selections have been a bit bizarre, at least where western tastes are concerned.

I have to agree... who was asking for not one but two Puyo Puyo ports for a platform that already has a Puyo Puyo game? (hold your fire, PP fans...) I'll second everyone who mentioned Revenge of Death Adder and throw in a vote for Shadow Dancer. On top of that, there were a bunch of games from the 3DS series that never made it outside of Japan (including Alien Syndrome and Alien Storm). If they've already done the backwards-engineering work for them and the games sell better in the west anyway, why not bring them to Switch already? I really hope we haven't heard the last of this series.

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So I played Thunder Force AC for the first time today. Not on the Switch, but on the beautiful and glorious 32-bit Sega Saturn that I got in the mail today.

 

The game is... well, it's a reworked Thunder Force III, a console game that is so badass that it got ported to the arcade to make Thunder Force AC. Normally arcade games get watered-down home ports, but the opposite happened here. I can't think of many games that are awesome enough to go from a console to the arcade, so that alone should say something about how good this game is. It's apparently got some stages that are different from Thunder Force III, though, so I'll have to play both games to completion so I can compare them fairly.

 

Everyone here probably knows that there are very few things that I love more than delicious YM2612 FM music, and Thunder Force AC does not have that at all. I don't think I'll bother with this one on the Switch, sadly, since I can play it on the Saturn, which means not only can I play it with the single best controller ever created, I can also play Thunder Force IV, which is on the same disc. I also have the other Gold Pack, so I do have the original Thunder Force III with the music that I prefer.

 

Thunder Force AC is still an excellent game and I recommend it to everyone, so don't misunderstand! Thunder Force in general is awesome, although I have not played the original Thunder Force, the original Thunder Force II on the X68000, or Thunder Force VI.

6 hours ago, roots.genoa said:

Sonic arcade game

SegaSonic the Hedgehog, the one with the trackball? Pretty sure you are not talking about Waku Waku Sonic Patrol Car... although I'd like to see that one! Nobody would buy it, though.

 

6 hours ago, roots.genoa said:

Have you seen pictures of Herzog Zwei? I know I haven't.

From M2? Nope, nothing, sadly.

11 hours ago, Atariboy said:

It may not be considered a Super Scaler release, but G-LOC: Air Battle has appeared as well. That's pure 2d sprite scaling throughout with no polygonal graphics. 

 

M2 doesn't seem to be emulating these in the traditional sense. The process is the same as their 3D Classics line on the 3DS, which was extensively covered with interviews with M2 staff. Here are some or perhaps all of those interviews.

 

https://web.archive.org/web/20170630094431/http://blogs.sega.com/2015/01/23/sega-3d-classics-developer-interviews/

 

Looking at the Space Harrier interview for instance sheds some light.

 

 

I think I've said this at AtariAge before, but the process seems to be a hybrid that straddles the line between software emulation and a traditional port from the original code. I'm in no position to elaborate from a technical perspective, but the gist as I recall from reading these interviews back when the Sega 3D Classics program was active was that elements of both techniques were utilized. 

 

 

I had meant to add that I think it was also a big mistake to make these be Switch exclusives.

 

No disrespect is intended to the Switch, but I suspect PS4, XB1, and Windows sales would more than justify the added development expenses to go multiplatform and help keep this program active. 

Interesting... not quite a port, but not quite emulation. Still, like you said, there is absolutely no reason to keep these exclusive to the Switch unless Sega and Nintendo have some sort of agreement going on that we don't know about. If so, Sega should seriously reconsider how these releases are done in the future.

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18 hours ago, Atariboy said:

No disrespect is intended to the Switch, but I suspect PS4, XB1, and Windows sales would more than justify the added development expenses to go multiplatform and help keep this program active.

It sure makes sense, but while ACA games are also available on PS4 and the ACA NeoGeo games on XB1 as well, I've noticed that most media outlets tend to forget they're not exclusive to Switch. Which is weird because they appeared first on the PS4 - before the Switch even launched. I guess XB1 and PS4 owners are less interested in retro stuff in general...

5 hours ago, Steven Pendleton said:

SegaSonic the Hedgehog, the one with the trackball?

Yes.

Edited by roots.genoa

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9 hours ago, roots.genoa said:

Yes.

I wonder how well the game would play without the trackball. I think it would be way too easy with an analog stick in its place. Maybe I'll try it in an emulator to see what it's like. I do not have a trackball, though... maybe I can try the touchpad on the PS4 controller.

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I always wondered if there was a chance they might do a compilation style release of Sega Ages....been holding out for the possibility of that before I make a buy. Really disappointed the the Japan-only 3Ds release got Turbo Out Run but not the Switch Sega Ages. 

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I wonder if Sonic CD will ever get the Sega Ages treatment. If it does, they better use the Christian Whitehead version. I was kind of angry they didn't use the CW version of Sonic 1 since that's like the best port out there. 

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12 hours ago, Magmavision2000 said:

I wonder if Sonic CD will ever get the Sega Ages treatment. If it does, they better use the Christian Whitehead version. I was kind of angry they didn't use the CW version of Sonic 1 since that's like the best port out there. 

If it's like his Sonic CD, it's actually not a port or even emulation; it's a complete remake of the game in an entirely new engine. I imagine that is why they used the original version, since it's probably easier to build an emulator to run an old game on a modern system than it is to port something. These aren't exactly "emulated", but they aren't exactly ports, either, judging by that article from earlier in the thread, though.

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On 7/1/2020 at 5:43 AM, SearsRoebuck said:

I always wondered if there was a chance they might do a compilation style release of Sega Ages....been holding out for the possibility of that before I make a buy. Really disappointed the the Japan-only 3Ds release got Turbo Out Run but not the Switch Sega Ages. 

They probably will.

I was kind of bummed that it took so long to happen on the 3DS, after I had already bought half of the games from the eShop. And yeah Vol. 1 and 3 never came out over here :(

 

16 hours ago, Steven Pendleton said:

If it's like his Sonic CD, it's actually not a port or even emulation; it's a complete remake of the game in an entirely new engine.

Well I mean, technically that's what a port is :)

But yeah, most companies tend to favor emulation, as long as the target platform is powerful enough. Especially companies like Sega, who lost most of their original source code.

Sonic CD, that's anyone's guess...would be a lot easier to just use the version that's out there already, rather than write a Sega CD emulator for just one game. I don't know how all the old Sonic collections did it though (like the one on the Gamecube, etc.).

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Sadly, the feared demise of the Sega Ages line has now been made official.

 

https://www.nintendolife.com/news/2020/08/sega_says_it_wants_to_re-release_more_past_titles_on_nintendo_switch

 

Hopefully it's reawakened one of these days. While I wasn't always crazy with the selections, M2 did some amazing work with Sega's rich history for three generations now.

Edited by Atariboy
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Just bought Virtua Racing on sale the other day B)

 

Shame it doesn't have all the Saturn extras though...I love that port, but the loading times are just terrible. I'd rather play it on Genesis than sit there waiting.

 

12 hours ago, Atariboy said:

Sadly, the feared demise of the Sega Ages line has now been made official.

https://www.nintendolife.com/news/2020/08/sega_says_it_wants_to_re-release_more_past_titles_on_nintendo_switch

So...they're done...but they're not done? :?

Edited by Asaki

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11 hours ago, roots.genoa said:

At least we'll get a few more reissues (Virtua Fighter, Crack Down, Golden Axe II, etc.) in the Astro City Mini...

Question is...how do we acquire the Astro City Mini reasonably?  I want one baaadly, but don't speak any Japanese and don't want to pay a mint.

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3 hours ago, Curious Sofa said:

Question is...how do we acquire the Astro City Mini reasonably?  I want one baaadly, but don't speak any Japanese and don't want to pay a mint.

https://www.amazon.co.jp/セガ-アストロシティミニ/dp/B08CDYVRZW/ref=sr_1_2?__mk_ja_JP=カタカナ&crid=2WPH5Q8EBG94&dchild=1&keywords=astro+city+mini&qid=1598492740&sprefix=astro+%2Caps%2C260&sr=8-2

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Barring unknown projects, M2 is done at this time with Sega in the console world since all they've been doing there in recent times was the Sega Ages line and that's being shuttered. 

 

That Sega guy is teasing more classic rereleases on Switch. But the statement is so open ended that it's difficult to determine if he's saying an actual project is underway behind the scenes or that they're just open to the idea and are discussing potential rereleases internally. And he isn't saying if M2 is involved in whatever he's alluding to.

 

He may even just be referencing House of the Dead. We had some ports or remakes of those announced quite sometime back and they've yet to appear. If Sega and M2 are taking a break, personally I'd like to see Hamster get a Sega license for at least the golden age stuff since Sega themselves doesn't seem too interested in classics like Turbo and Zaxxon. I'd of liked to have seen that even if the Sega Ages line had continued, since M2 didn't seem interested in that era.

Edited by Atariboy
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1 hour ago, Atariboy said:

Barring unknown projects, M2 is done at this time with Sega in the console world since all they've been doing there in recent times was the Sega Ages line and that's being shuttered. 

It seems they are apparently doing the Astro City Mini... at least, that is what I heard. I can't seem to find any official information on it.

 

Edit: it's the Game Gear Micro that they are doing.

 

Hopefully it turns out to be better than their other mini consoles. M2's work on the 3DS games they did, Sega Ages, and the Castlevania and Contra collections was excellent, but I was very disappointed with the Mega Drive Mini and somewhat disappointed with the PC Engine mini. Perhaps they took on too many projects at once. They are a relatively small company, from what I understand, so maybe it's possible that they took on too much work at around the same time.

 

Anyway, yeah, Sega Ages is dead now, sadly. At least it ended with an extremely awesome and relatively (and sadly) unknown game like Herzog Zwei. It absolutely deserved this rerelease, and it's great to see that it finally got rereleased for the first time since its release 31 years ago.

Edited by Steven Pendleton

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1 hour ago, Steven Pendleton said:

I didn't want to have to create an Amazon.jp account.  But I did.  And ordered it. :)

Sweet Avatar btw! Is that the MiniTower?

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1 hour ago, Curious Sofa said:

I didn't want to have to create an Amazon.jp account.  But I did.  And ordered it. :)

Yeah, it's apparently possible to order stuff from Amazon Japan without making a separate account, but I'm not sure how to do that.

 

1 hour ago, Curious Sofa said:

Sweet Avatar btw! Is that the MiniTower?

It's the real tower. Here's the mini tower:

 

342.png

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On 8/26/2020 at 8:47 PM, Atariboy said:

That Sega guy is teasing more classic rereleases on Switch. But the statement is so open ended that it's difficult to determine if he's saying an actual project is underway behind the scenes or that they're just open to the idea and are discussing potential rereleases internally. And he isn't saying if M2 is involved in whatever he's alluding to.

I read it as a threat of more Chinese remakes like Panzer Dragoon or other stuff nobody asked for, or else "I'm not saying we're not doing anything but we probably aren't". Sega Ages is maybe the most interesting stuff on the Switch for me, and gave a lot of these games a brand new lease on life for me. Even the really minor tweaks like being able to turn down the shot sound in Space Harrier is a big deal to me. I hate to see it end like this. There's not much hope that the games they skipped over will ever get the kind of treatment M2 would have given them. Oh well, I grabbed a bunch of these on sale that I haven't even cracked open yet, so I'm good for the foreseeable future.

 

I think Streets of Rage 4 turned out well, so maybe there's hope for House of the Dead.

 

On 7/1/2020 at 4:43 AM, SearsRoebuck said:

I always wondered if there was a chance they might do a compilation style release of Sega Ages....been holding out for the possibility of that before I make a buy. Really disappointed the the Japan-only 3Ds release got Turbo Out Run but not the Switch Sega Ages. 

I'm sorely tempted to go through the nuisance of a hacked or imported 3DS just for Alien Syndrome.

 

I do have to say, I appreciate M2 giving attention to overlooked games, but the choice of games for that Astro City thingy are a lot more logical than what they went with.

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I couldn't find what I thought was the for the Panzer Remake so thought I would post here, but if I missed it and there's a thread please let me know and I will move it on over.

 

Got a special early Xmas present for myself from LRG in the mail today:

 

PD Remake 1.jpg

PD Remake 2.jpg

PD Remake 3.jpg

PD Remake 4.jpg

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12 hours ago, Curious Sofa said:

I couldn't find what I thought was the for the Panzer Remake so thought I would post here, but if I missed it and there's a thread please let me know and I will move it on over.

 

Got a special early Xmas present for myself from LRG in the mail today:

 

PD Remake 1.jpg

PD Remake 2.jpg

PD Remake 3.jpg

PD Remake 4.jpg

Ooh, that's super nice!  I wish companies still made these kind of packages as a standard instead of 'limited-run' (no pun intended).

 

I'm kind of sad that the Sega Ages titles have fallen by the wayside- it would've been cool to see a few more titles on the Switch.  I believe they're not making any more in the Ages collection, right?

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