I found this rather excellent Saturn tribute by total accident! It's very pertinent to my own videogaming life, but if it seems at a tad irrelevant to our most revered console, be patient! It all comes good in the end! Watch and enjoy!
Monday, 31 December 2007
Thursday, 27 December 2007
Lock up your wife and kids, dust off your Saturn and get ready for hours of gaming action. No, I am not talking about browsing your old library of Saturn games. Satakore.com staff recently and quietly released what might be one of the biggest gaming releases for the Saturn since its decline. The Dezaemon 2 Game Save Manager. If you are asking yourself, what I am talking about; Dezaemon 2 is a great little program released around 1997 by Athena. With it you can create shoot'em up games from scratch, without actually having to learn a programming language. Some may remember the infamous "Shoot'em Up Construction Kit" which was released for the C-64 and Amiga. Dezaemon 2 wasn't of much use for the ordinary Saturn user not only because of the language barrier, but also because you have to actually put quite some effort into making a game, before you can actually play. That is... until now!
With the Game Save Manager, which comes with a whopping 118 games already on the CD, you can transfer already made games to a Saturn memorycard and load them up in Dezaemon 2 to actually play them. And rest assured, there are plenty of them! Over the years hardcore japanese Shoot'em Up fans have created many great games. Satakore.com also has a list of nearly every known usermade "shmup" for the Saturn version of Dezaemon 2 along with plenty of screenshots, as well as videos. Hell, some games are actually from 2006! Whilst browsing that list I was quite amazed how incredible the quality of some of those games is. Some might think, that usermade games are of a mediocre quality at best, but just have a look at "Devil Blade 2"! It might as well be a commercially released game. The graphics are absolutely gorgeous and with the Dezaemon 2 Engine behind it, you can be sure that it's also very playable.
So the only thing you probably need now is a copy of that Dezaemon 2 as well as a memory card to store the games on. I am currently bidding on one as we speak and hope I can try all those great games as soon as possible. You should do so, too and hopefully this is encouraging those great japanese individuals to produce more games. Now that more people than ever before can play them.
Monday, 24 December 2007
Saturday, 22 December 2007
Whilst out Christmas shopping today ( and I apologise right now for my lack of postage, what with the demands of the Christmas season and all...) I took it upon myself to go and buy my boys their traditional stocking filler DVDs.
"Now hold on there Father K! WTF are you talking about and what the hell has this got to do with the Saturn???" And BTW what the hell is a 'stocking filler'?" I hear you cry! OK, I'll explain! Over here in the UK and in our colony the good ol' US of A, it's a Christmas tradition to hang up a stocking (or big sock) on the fireplace for my brother in law, Father Christmas, to stuff full of little bits of funny crap, which compliment the main stash of excellent presents (for the Krishna children an Xbox 360 and some awesome games) you receive (found under the tree.)
Now this allows you to actually extend the present opening for a while longer, at little expense to your Mum and Dad... Stocking fillers are like (for example) chocolate coins, tangerines, mugs, CDRs, money boxes, socks, gloves, or any other crap that is small and doesn't cost a lot... Which leads me on to my next point...
One of the traditional 'stocking fillers' that I have always got my boys are really cheap DVDs, bought for a pound (£1) at the pound shop (dime store.) These have included such greats as Ninja movies (such as 'Master With Cracked Finger'), Blaxploitation Movies eg. 'Cleopatra Jones', Laurel and Hardy shorts, Horror B Movies such as 'She Freak' and 'King Kong vs. Godzilla', basically stuff no one else wants...
But today's Yuletide Harvest yielded the 'classic' shlock horror tittie-fest and zombat movie "House Of The Dead", apparently based on the Sega classic...uhm... "House Of the Dead"
In fact, (apparently) the whole movie was produced in close consultation with Sega, and having watched it, actually bares no relation to the game, other than when snippets of HOTD 1& 2 gameplay are flashed up between scenes... Oh! and G actually turns up with those other "dogs of the AMS..." at the end of the movie... HEY! It cost a quid, and what else are you gonna get for that financial outlay? There is some actually great fight scenes (Matrix style, but with zombies) and a cameo appearance by the great Jurgen Prochnow! I don't know where I'm going with this and the South Park 'World Of Warcraft' episode has just come on the TV, so I'm gonna sign off! Merry Christmas!
For a better review look here...
Enjoy the trailer and screenshots!
Friday, 21 December 2007
The Sega Saturn is my inspiration for all kinds of stuff. This time I made a decal (vinyl sticker) for my rack in which my Saturn found a nice and cosy little place. It's made out of a nice vinyl foil which resembles etched glass and thus looks quite elegant. Just perfect for my Saturn. It's my little tribute to one of the most underrated consoles of all time.
(Click the picture for bigger version. Oh and please excuse the crappy picture quality.)
Posted by elend at Friday, December 21, 2007
Wednesday, 19 December 2007
For those few of you who don't know, J is producer of the most excellent "Corner Of Randomness", one of my very favourite sites which is a constantly hilarious and originally written site blog, covering gaming (Wii in particular) urban music, cosplay, J Pop, the funnier side of celebrity and witty commentaries and observations about his own life.
It was indeed, the inspiration for Father Krishna's Wiikly Sermons, although I never managed to equal it's brilliance.... *FK manages to seemlessly get in yet another plug for his under-visited blog...* LOL! ;)
Burning rangers is like something straight out of the 80's. It takes everything you loved about Japanese cartoons from that decade growing up such as Voltron and Ulysses. A funky sing-a-long theme song, a futuristic setting, a couple of mecha's and a team of heroes in tight spandex, short jackets, white gloves, headbands and dodgy haircuts. This is the world of the Burning rangers. It's almost as thought Sega saw you coming.
So let's get down to how this all plays. The Burning rangers are pretty much a team of firemen (and women). Players take control of one of two new recruits into the Burning rangers - Shou or Tillis. The game is made up of a handful of missions which have you navigating through labyrinths of fire filled buildings to put out fires, stop explosions and rescue any helpless civilians you happen to come across. As you play through the missions you will come across crystals. Crystals are a form of currency that is needed to teleport civilians out of buildings. If you do not have enough crystals, then a civilian will have to be left to burn. Crystals are acquired by putting out fires, but crystals can be shattered if hit with a charged shot from your water pistol. So whilst a charged shot is guaranteed to extinguish a large fire, it could potentially nip all chances of acquiring crystals in the bud. As you move around fires and explosions can go off at anytime. Players are warned of these hazards beforehand via a whistling sound. When you hear it, it doesn't mean it's time to snap yo' fangaz and do the harlem shake - it means you need to move fast! By tapping a button your Burning ranger will perform a dodge maneuver which will clear them out of harms way. In earlier missions the whistle will sound quite some time before an explosion, but in later missions the time between the whistle and the explosion become shorter and in some cases are instantaneous. Getting hit by an explosion not only means losing a chunk of your health, but also all of your crystals. No crystals means not being able to save civilians, which in some cases isn't such a bad thing. Some of them sit on the floor in the middle of large rooms moving their heads from side to side like Stevie Wonder, expecting to be saved. Unfortunately you're not always able to choose who you save, as wandering into an area with a civilian in clear view will immediately trigger a cut scene and have you teleport them. Some civilians aren't in such obvious locations however and the real challenge once you finish the game the first time round is going back and saving them all. They're at least kind enough to send you a letter for rescuing them which is quite thoughtful of them.
The audio in Burning rangers is fantastic. During missions there is no music and this works to the games' advantage as it creates a feeling of tension. All you can hear is the crackling of fires, explosions going off in the distance and the sound of debris and constructions falling around you. Having any music play throughout the duration of stages would take away from the atmosphere. You also have your navigator (the sexy, but cold and disinterested Chris) constantly speaking to you during missions which gives a real sense of being as part of a unit and also helps break up the silence. At the tap of a button your navigator will tell you exactly where to go. This is a pretty snazzy feature, as not once do you hear the CD spin in the Saturn like crazy trying to load the speech.
Burning rangers features bosses, all of which are crap. The Burning rangers are essentially glorified firemen with jetpacks, so why they have to fight bosses I have no clue. The bosses are unecessary and do not work well into the plot (another thing this game didn't need). The final boss is some space alien looking thing that you fight on what looks like a dancefloor from a Madonna video. It is not a rite of passage that every third person action adventure needs bosses. This game could've done without them or some decent ones at the very least. All of the bosses aside from the final one is some form of bland looking mecha. The only interesting thing about the bosses is that one of them resembles Pikachu and you can shoot him in the face.
The characters in this game are brilliantly designed. Bright, colourful, camped up, but downright cool. The finger pointing Shou, the cute as a button Tillis, the sexy Chris, the smooth ladykiller (but could also be gay) Leed and the big black Mr. T inspired Landman. Unfortunately, the supporting cast do not play much of a role. They're in the intro and in the ending, but they don't do much in between. You'll sometimes come across some of them during missions, but when you do they're just stood there doing nothing. Or they'll say a couple of words and then run off and leave you. It's a shame because the supporting cast are just as cool as the leads.
The graphics in this game are surprinsgly good for the Saturn. A console which was pretty capable, but ridiculously hard to get anything decent out of. Sega actually managed to pull some nifty graphics out of their big black box and as a result Burning rangers looks pretty spiffy. Especially in comparison to some the ghetto...and I mean GHETTO looking games that came before. (Only the Sega Saturn could fail to pull off an arcade perfect version of Virtua Fighter 1). The graphics in this game aren't perfect. There is some slow down and some clipping issues - but it's definitely one of the first (and unfortunately last) games on the Saturn that actually rivalled a PlayStation game in the graphics department. Burning rangers made the Saturn look incredibly capable and even now it still looks impressive.
Burning rangers was a game that had everything going for it. But unfortunately it was released at the wrong time. (Console swan songs never sell well). As much as I loved Burning rangers, I couldn't help but think it really did need a bit more to it and that it needed a more powerful console. When the Dreamcast came along and I saw what it was capable of, my first thought was that Sega should've released Burning rangers for it instead. They would've been able to do alot more with the Dreamcast's extra graphical power, controller and VMU unit. We could've had fully destructible environments, bigger explosions, analogue control, water blasting using the triggers and the VMU acting as a detector for finding nearby civilians. A missed oppurtunity for certain, but the Wii is a chance for Sega to fix all that.
If you own a Sega Saturn, then chances are you already own this game. But if you are one of the few who does own a Saturn and don't have a copy of this game in your collection, then you need to take it upon yourself to hunt this game down. It's a must own. Hopefully Sega will resurrect this series and introduce it to the masses who missed out on it the first time round. A re-elease on the Virtual console or an all new Wii sequel would be greatly welcomed.
A flawed game that is far from perfect, but one that was incredibly fun to play, original, full of promise, cool ideas and most importantly, still holds up to this very day. A Sega saturn classic and one of Sonic team's best efforts."
J's RATING: 7 / 10
This review, J and his beautiful Corner Of Randomness carries the Official, Father Krishna Seal Of Approval!
I recently bought that Cyberbots Limited Edition. I already had the normal version in my collection and since it's a very great game with awesome animations, ridiculous lush graphics and the Capcom playability we are all used to, I decided that I need this Limited Edition aswell. I always wondered what's in it, and after seeing several pictures of what I thought was the box, I was quite enthused. "Damn, it comes with a model kit?", I thought. Well... it doesn't. The thing I saw was actually just the book, which is in the box and its cover is designed like a model kit box. Still a great item in my opinion and there's also that weird pop-up sheet thing, which many of you may know from their childhood. It was a bit hard to unfold so my photo is unfortunately not very good. Anyway, they give a little impression of what's in the box and they might be helpful for everyone, who always wondered what's actually in it.
The book is really nice by the way. It contains a lot of great pictures, development concept art, pictures of Cyberbots merchandise and even a sheet of music along with the lyrics. It's 48 pages heavy and even interesting for people who don't speak or read japanese. Go grab it, I saw it on ebay for less than 30 EUR (= 43 USD; 21 GBP)!
(click the pictures to get a bigger version)
Tuesday, 18 December 2007
A man as great as Segata Sanshiro just can't be worshipped enough. I once received this very nice black Saturn (model 1 with oval buttons, yay!) as a gift from some guy in the UK. It is region code unlocked and able to play CD-Rs, which makes it a nice testing station for homebrewn stuff or recently released games that never were like Sonix X-Treme or Return Fire. With the switches located at the front (yes, I'd have placed them at the back, too!) I can set the region aswell as switch between NTSC and PAL, which is really handy.
To actually remember which switch combination does what I got myself some stickers printed. And why not put Segata Sanshiro's fierce face on the stickers aswell, so that I never forget that I HAVE to play Sega Saturn every day! So, there you have it, the Segata Sanshiro special edition...
Monday, 17 December 2007
This is HILARIOUS.
Other sites like UK Resistance (a WEB SITE not a blog) might provide hilarious posts about people trying to rip off others with Wii Ebay sales but this is the first time I have seen the Sega Saturn in a similar situation.
The Saturn, as well as other Sega systems excluding the Genesis, is very rare in the rural areas of Northern and Central NY, US where I live.
But does that justify this Craigslist ad???
Actual text from ad:
"1 Sega Saturn with 1 controller and 1 game works great takes the cd's and the cartridges have the power cord and the a/v out cord have posted pics to show that it works if interested E-mail me at email@example.com....They are very hard to find anymore..... "
(Actual Picture from Ad. What game is that???)
I almost hope some confused parent bids over $300 for this Saturn.
Hey I got a Saturn with NiGHTS for $10 in a local thrift store, but if someone wants to pay $800 for this bad boy more power to them...
Posted by Caleb at Monday, December 17, 2007
Posted by Caleb at Monday, December 17, 2007
Sunday, 16 December 2007
One thing seems to go hand in hand with retrogaming: Collecting.
No matter if you recently bought back your childhood on ebay or if you have gathered since you were little. When you have a look at retrogamers the chances are high, that they have a vast amount of old games aswell as consoles in their rooms. Some limit themselfes to one console only, but others collect nearly everything from their childhood and what they couldn't afford back then. In some extreme cases the love for the games has turned into some kind of love for collecting. Some people collect more games than they play and some even only collect factory sealed stuff, which they can't - and never would - play anyways!
With prices for Saturn games ranging from approx. 140 USD for a "Final Fight Revenge" and over 200 USD for a "Stellar Assault", many invest quite some time to take good care of their collection. I did so, too, when I accidentally bought the same game twice some years ago. That's why you read this post now. I wanted to support the Saturn cover scans archive (Run by Satakore.com staff, if I am correct) and thus made a list of all my Saturn games available online. You may want to check it out. Maybe for having a quick look at backcover scans of games, you were always interested in or for just plain curiosity.
And why not show us your Saturn collection, too?
Posted by elend at Sunday, December 16, 2007
Friday, 14 December 2007
And the tributes just continue to roll in!!!
Firstly there's the most amazing tribute from elend... (Just peek below!)
Then there is the most amazing sketch from the Gagaman(n)... Look here!
And finally bask in the glory that is... The Father krishna Seal Of Approval! (I love it!!!)
Posted by the mighty NebachadnezzaR!And if that's not enough, nip over to Gnome's place and have a little look at this!
Hallelujah! Segata be praised! I'm buzzing right now! This is (almost) as good as drugs!!!
Thursday, 13 December 2007
Wednesday, 12 December 2007
From the need to to have a blog of my own, after being a contributor on brother blog the Dreamcast Junkyard, to becoming one of the finest retro gaming blogs on the interweb, the Junkyard has become very much a team effort.
Celebrating the addition of Gnome, Pierre, Caleb, Nebachadnezzar and very recently elend as contributors, that is really what has made the Junkyard great. Each of those contributors has made the SJY the sum of it's parts. But let's not forget "the fifth Beatle" J, who has also contributed so much to the site... The beautiful header at the top of the page, the Warholesque picture of Segata that graces the side-bar and of course the wonderful Segata remix... But I digress... And the one person that suggested I have a blog of my own, that most excellent of creatures, the most highly valued and inspirational deity that is The Elderly Gamer!
Let's set the table... Invited to make their contributions and comments are that fine bunch of contributors mentioned above! But also I'm giving a particular nod to the commentors, Hex, Ross, Gagaman(n), the most reverend Tomleecee, Ms. Hex, Nick944, Mikey4U1984, Funnyman, SegaMark, Deitrix, Racketboy! And any of our other most esteemed commentors! Thank you! WE LOVE YOU! We crave your feedback and love your input!!!
OK Let's set the scene for the party! Father Krishna is dressed in the uniform of the cult... Expansive and extra large (XXXL) judo suit, Elvis wig of beehive proportions, with freshly inked SJY tattoo emblazened across his heart...
In a massive hall the table is set... At each place is a complimentery copy of Christmas NiGHTS, and a see through Sega Saturn (Derby Stallion Edition) are the freebie gifts!
The meal? It's your personal most favourite three course fayre, of course personally catered to you by the most eloquent of Japanese chefs...
The venue, a large banqueting hall, 16th Century building, bedecked in elends art work and official promotional Saturn launch regalia...
Each place has a name card, and you are sat next to the blogger you know best....
Of course each team member holds the head of the table... We're all sat together! We're waiting for the DJ's to turn up... Drummond and Cauty of the KLF, Fatboy Slim and The Chemical Brothers!
Enjoy the food! Enjoy the free bar and enjoy the music!!! I hope everyone invited will turn up and comment!
Tell me what you've enjoyed about the gathering! Post links to this feast and mention us on YOUR blogs! I've had a couple of glasses of wine in celebration and I need to feel your love!
Flag up great posts! But at the end of the day, just pour out your feelings for The Saturn Junkyard! BTW, me and elend have got a little project lined up for all our readers...
And who has just turned up for the celebrations? Who has come down from heaven to join us tonight Who has filled HIS place at the end of the table? Why it's our guest of honour... Ladies and gentlemen... Doff your wigs and unbutton your Judo Suits for the one, the only, Segata Sanshiro!!!
Whilst browsing the lovely Stage 6 site (which is some kind of higher quality YouTube) some videos catched my attention. Saturn versus Playstation comparisons. Whereas YouTube has the greater amount of Sega Saturn related videos, Stage 6 has the advantage of providing an actually great videoquality and thus enable us to actually recognize the slight differences between Saturn and Playstation versions of different games. Which brings me right to the bright side of this post: The Saturn versions are in some cases only a little bit inferior and sometimes even on par with the Playstation versions. Not that we always knew it anyway...
I think the comparison videos are highly interesting and make you also feel a little bit better about the Saturn's 3D capabilities. Go check them out right here.
Oh and btw, every now and then there's also a non comparison video between the search results, so you may have to browse all those pages.
Tuesday, 11 December 2007
Monday, 10 December 2007
This video pretty much covers the major high and low points of the Saturn. Segata Sanshiro and Bernie hate included.
(Bernie was the guy who pretty much killed off the Sega Saturn early in the US and said that Western gamers didn't like RPGs... BTW how much is the Saturn version of Lunar remade on the PS1 in English selling for now? $100? $200? Bernie you dumbass...)
Posted by Caleb at Monday, December 10, 2007
Friday, 7 December 2007
We've been buzzing here at the Saturn Junkyard, since we discovered the delights of radioSEGA, that 24 Hour source of online Sega gaming music... From the orchestral magic of Shenmue, to the retro-futuristic space funk of Space Channel 5, to the J-Pop/Hip Hop of Jet Set Radio and the 16 bit inspired midi goodness of Sonic The Hedgehog, it can all be pumped out of your PC's speakers, courtesy of radioSEGA! But who bestowed this wonder upon us? Who took the time and effort to regail us Sega fanboys (and girls -Hi Hex!) Why, it was that most beatific of beings, the enigmatic, SegaMark. In the second of a series of interviews, intended to flag up those heroes who keep the Saturn alive in our hearts, we bring you SegaMark... The Interview!
Hi SegaMark, first of all I'd like to say a huge thank you to you for agreeing to do this interview, and an even bigger thank you for creating the wonder that is radioSEGA. We'll get onto that in a moment, but for now let's find out a little bit about you...
I'm Mark and I'm 22 from Warrington, UK. I'm currently studying Web & Multimedia design at the University of Central Lancashire. Interests are gaming (duh!), music, graphic and web design.
May I say that radioSEGA is an awesome site and a very unique creation. When did you first get the idea, and how long did it take you to bring it to it's current splendour?
RadioSEGA began as a bit of dicking around with Shoutcast on my PC when I was bored one afternoon. My website MySEGA (http://www.mysega.co.uk) already once featured a rubbish embedded flash MP3 player but I soon decided to offer 2-3 slots on Shoutcast (after experimenting with it in the past proved successful) playing some Sega music I had sat on my PC. I soon invested some cash for some proper Shoutcast hosting and made a dedicated website at http://radio.mysega.co.uk - the station was very basic and was only on for 8-10 hours per day. This was back in Februrary/March 2006. By April or even June RadioSEGA got a new site and went 24 hours, with the domain radioSEGA.net. The site died for a few months in August due to a lack of time but came back in November 2006 and has been growing since through hard work such as setting up a requests system and other great little features!
I think it's because were a company who were extremely innovative, a company that took risks to create amazing gameplay experiences that go against the mainstream. I guess that's why they're out of the console business now... But when playing Sega arcade games it's the amazing gameplay, Music and visual style.
What Sega systems have you historically had, or currently own?
But right now I currently own a Master System, Japanese Mega Drive, Japanese Mega CD, Japanese Sega Saturn (the see-through Derby Stallion one).
- Samba De Amigo
- Jet Set Radio
- Shenmue 2
- Daytona USA 2001
- Crazy Taxi
- Chu Chu Rocket
- Sonic Adventure
- House of the Dead 2
- Virtua Tennis
- Sega Rally Championship
- NiGHTS Into Dreams...
- Daytona USA
- Burning Rangers
- Panzer Dragoon
- Marvel Super Heroes vs. Street Fighter
- Metal Slug
- Fighting Vipers
- Virtua Cop 2
- Panzer Dragoon Zwei
- Sonic The Hedgehog 2
- Sonic The Hedgehog 3 & Knuckles (Hey, it should of been one game anyway!)
- Streets of Rage 2
- Rocket Knight Adventures
- Shadow Dancer
- Shinobi 3
- Sonic The Hedgehog
- Gunstar Heroes
- Dynamite Heady
OK, I'm going to put you on the spot... What's your favourite game of all time?
radioSEGA is a feat of huge proportions, do you have time to check out any other websites or blogs? If so what are they?
Do you read any gaming publications?
Finally, whilst we're all aware of your love for game music, what bands or music float your boat outside of gaming?
And there you have it! SegaMark! Great taste in games, great taste in music and finally a great taste in Games Music! Once again, a massive thank you from the Junkyard Team! And don't forget folks, tune into radioSEGA whenever you get the opportunity! There's a shortcut to it at the top of this very page!