Thursday, 2 January 2020

Neptune - Sega Saturn Mascots


Early gaming consoles had a great host of cute, often furry, characters we like to refer to as “Mascots.” These are the spokesmen that stood out among the rest of the games in their respective companies. Though, many of them did not live up to the hype that they wanted. Names like Bubsy, Boogerman (yes, for real), Zool, and Gex were either remembered in infamy, or not remembered at all. You also had Spyro and Crash Bandicoot for the PS1 that came a long way in popularity, but still didn’t quite have the staying power as the more prominent mascots.

Well, believe it or not, the Sega Saturn also had its fair share of mascots. Some that rose to some very distinctive time in the spotlight and some that were gone and forgotten before people even learned their names. Well, in this article, we’re going to take a brief look at the candidates. We will also be determining who we at Planet Virtua claim to be the console’s true face of public interest. Let’s begin, shall we?


Sonic the Hedgehog



Oh, I’m sorry, is this a little too on the nose? Yeah, we’re getting this one out of the way. Everyone knows who is the true face of Sega. He is undisputed and even though some of his recent games haven’t been up to par, we still love him. Anyone who got a Sega Genesis normally saw at least five or six pictures of this guy on the box. The Blue Blur will always be king. However, we are talking specifically about the Sega Saturn and as much as we love our favorite hedgehog, he wasn’t exactly given the “royal treatment” when it comes to games of the generation. Sorry, old friend, you’re treated better on the Dreamcast.


Sir Tongara de Pepperouchau III



The brave knight who is on the way to save his true love, the clockwork fairy princess, Chelsea! Sir Tongara de Pepperouchau III, or Pepper for short, was a decent attempt at making a mascot for the Saturn system. He stood out in a lineup, for sure, as there were no other noble knights of valor who fought evil toys among the other candidates. So, what stopped him? Well, for one thing, his game didn’t exactly turn heads when it came to gameplay or originality. Then there was the fact that he was released in America the same year that a very similar batch of characters came to the big screen in Toy Story. Though it is remembered fondly today, the game itself received mixed reviews at the time of release and Sir Pepper himself wasn’t really seen as the “mascot type.” Check out Clockwork Knight and its sequel if you’re wanting a good platformer.

Akira Yuki



Strangely enough, when it comes to characters you’d recognize along with the Saturn, Akira is definitely along that line. After making his debut in Virtua Fighter, he was seen on pretty much the frontline of every fighting type game magazine having to do with Sega. Virtua Fighter 2 and Fighter Megamix both featured him on the cover and he was on more than one magazine cover. Would we consider him a “failed” mascot? Well, not really, but he didn’t exactly have a whole lot of staying power when compared to other fighting game spokesmen. He was, indeed, a very noble effort.




Nights

One of the most iconic characters on the Sega Saturn. Her high flying gameplay along with her very unique physical appearance makes her a cornerstone of beauty in the eyes of gamers of all ages. She tested so well with the youth of Japan and America. She is on custom consoles that don’t even feature Nights into Dreams in their libraries! Put Nights by a crescent moon, add in some sparkles and you’ve got some A-Class artwork that you could stare at for hours. Nights definitely fits the bill when you are looking for a Sega Saturn mascot, even rivalling Sonic on the subject. Considering the last game made for her was made back in 2007, this is a serious accomplishment. With an HD remake on recent consoles and Steam, this beauty of a character is still making waves with the make of just one game. Definitely, a top notch pick for the Sega Saturn mascot!

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Segata Sanshiro



OH, SNAP! You didn’t really think we’d forget this massive manliness of awesome, did you?! The hero who could kick a baseball into a home run, then beat your ass for no other reason than to show you the legendary Sega Saturn Shiro! Don’t you dare insult the Sega Saturn, or Shiro-sama will destroy your universe and insist you play the Saturn!

For real, though, Segata Sanshiro was one of the greatest comedic characters to ever come out of the land of the rising sun. His commercials were ridiculous and absolutely crazy, and we loved every single minute of it! His pushing of the Sega Saturn console was legendary and he became a legend because of it! He still lives on today through memes and hilarious inside jokes but for the true blue Saturn fans, there really couldn’t be a better mascot that we could ask for.

Our pick, here on Planet Virtua, is none other than the man himself: Segata Sanshiro!

3 comments:

fatherkrishna said...

Great stuff as usual Jeff! Can I add Craig Stadtler to that list?? ��

Virtua Neptune said...

Pffffft! Wow, golf is what we want to promote, for sure!

Unknown said...

Segata was quite the character and I have no problem with him being the Saturn mascot.