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 What if: Sega Had Survived?

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PostSubject: What if: Sega Had Survived?   What if: Sega Had Survived? Icon_minitimeFri May 01, 2009 7:19 pm

Hey everyone, Everlong. Alternate history is a big passion of mine, and I love it to death, so I thought I'd bring a little slice to these forums: let's suppose for a moment that we can turn the tides of Sega's fortunes in the gaming market. How do you suppose we do that, you ask? Well, let's look into it.

The president of Sega of America, Tom Kalinske, is largely looked upon as the reason for the Genesis' success; he came up with nearly every marketing ploy Sega ever had over here. He was a genius at what he did and ensured Sega would become a household brand name from that point on. Ultimately, he left Sega because of the release of the 32X which he saw as choking the life out of the poor Sega Genesis. He had reservations about the Sega CD too, but only less so. Once the CD and 32X were released, it was a downward spiral of economic loans and debt that ever helped Sega pull itself out of the hole they'd dug. Due to these failures, there was large friction between Sega of Japan and Sega of America over all this. This also lead to poor marketing for the Sega Saturn and the Sega Dreamcast, as well as lack of third party support (the Sega Saturn setting this trend that plagued the Dreamcast). So...

Let's assume for a moment that Tom had managed to convince his superiors that the 32X was a bad move and to focus on the Sega CD, perhaps butterflying away some of its more terrible shovelware. With a more successful Sega CD, Nintendo is going to be looking awful nervous about trying to do the jump to CD-based games.

And who better to lend a helping hand than Sony? Way back when, Sony approached Sega to try to start up a CD-based add-on to the Genesis, but they were turned down and Sony quickly turned to Nintendo; in our world, Nintendo turned them down and went on to support the Philips CD-i (yes, THAT God awful piece of crap). With a more successful Sega CD, Nintendo is unlikely to break down the deal with Sony and we're likely going to see, in this world, a Nintendo PlayStation (the actual title for the supposed SNES CD add-on). If sales go moderately well...then Sony is unlikely to break out of Nintendo's grasp and we can safely say the Sony PlayStation will never exist (the PS2 delivering a death blow to the Dreamcast too).

With that in mind, Bill Gates is unlikely to ever even dream of entering with the Xbox (this occurred to him in 1999 for us; with no PlayStation, he'll never feel his chokehold on media is being threatened and will likely stay quiet). If Microsoft follows a similar path, it's perhaps possible they'll team up with Sega like they did with the Dreamcast, which ran on Windows ME. Ever notice how similar the Xbox controller and Dreamcast controllers are? That's a reason for it, more or less.

A more successful Sega CD ensures Kalinske stays President of Sega of America too, which likely puts the Sega Saturn in a far better position, likely to be marketed at a lower price and more publicized. Considering that Sega never really had much of a success in Japan compared to the rest of the West, I believe it's possible Sega may even move her headquarters eventually to America, too. This could suggest a possible Sega-preference in the minds of most North American and European gamers, but that's debatable.

So let's assume, after all that, the year is now 2009. The 'Cold War' of Sega and Nintendo has never ended and the two are still locked in an epic struggle with their analogs to the Wii and Dreamcast 2. The Wii-analog is likely, knowing Miyamoto's love of innovation, still more or less probably going to be similar to our world, but if Sony is still with us, there's a chance this one might sport a Blu Ray-esque build in. Legend of Zelda in Blu Ray? Possible. Shocked

The 'Dreamcast 2' is likely to more or less be similar to the Xbox 360; I can foresee Microsoft, if the deal with the Dreamcast-like machine went well, supplying an Internet service, and this machine will likely run on Windows Vista as well (or whatever it is they'll call it), and be compatible with its media forms. Hard to say what else though...

So what say everyone here? What would this world look like, game-wise? What games would you think are released on what consoles? Is Nintendo still going to be 'kiddy' in this world, despite being directly involved in the Console Wars more than our world? What might a third party that could possibly enter be?

I've built the world here, but I'll let everyone play around with ideas. Surprised
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