General Questions and Information Thread

Discussion in 'General Sega Discussion' started by Andlabs, Aug 25, 2011.

  1. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    Here's a tedious lesson for the three people who might care. When we started Sega Retro, I wasn't aware this was much of a thing, but Wikipedia misleads in very subtle ways.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:MacOS_original_logo.svg

    Classic Mac OS logo - the first result in Google Images, plastered over the biggest source of information on the planet. And it's fake!

    Source: Apple.com? Yeah maybe, but it's a raster image "vectorised" to produce an SVG. SVGs are always the best so hurray, best format, everyone wins etc., but not unless we're really dealing with just vertical and horizontal lines, the result (however close) will always be an estimate. At high resolutions, this logo begins to break down (it's just about noticeable with the "S") and at low resolutions... well nobody cares, but once you know it's not real, it's gets under your skin.

    So I went to find a real one.

    https://segaretro.org/File:MacOS_logo_1998.svg

    And look, slight differences on the M serifs and different colours too. Because I ran into the official 1998 brand guidelines:

    https://retrocdn.net/File:Mac_Logo_Guidelines_1998.pdf
    https://retrocdn.net/File:Mac_Logo_Guidelines_1998-08-26_Horizontal.svg
    https://retrocdn.net/File:Mac_Logo_Guidelines_1998-08-26_Vertical.svg

    (strictly speaking these are "Mac" rather than "Mac OS" guidelines but there's an OS vector in there)

    I am president CEO of the pedantic society. Except not really because I haven't obeyed their spacing recommendations. But whatever - point is, it's not just text that can be wrong on Wikipedia, images can be too, so watch out.

    Oh and because obviously:
    https://retrocdn.net/File:Mac_Logo_Guidelines_2001-04.pdf
    https://retrocdn.net/File:Mac_Logo_Guidelines_2018-03.pdf

    I found some 2001 and 2018 specs too. In fact we're making a collection.


    "Don't you make fake logos too?"

    https://retrocdn.net/Category:Magazine_logos

    Sort of..? Unless I can find an official one, then yes I have been cleaning up logos from magazine scans. But in most cases, the original sources will have been lost, and some were never digital to begin with, but I'm not redrawing these things from scratch so they're usually accurate enough. Also this was for an idea that never came to be - Metacritic has logos for review summaries and I thought about doing something similar for Sega Retro (i.e. it was an aesthetic thing, not a documentation one). But that's more typing than I can be bothered with and half the reviews don't have neat summaries.
     
  2. Overlord

    Overlord

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    (Removed images for sake of needless size)

    I saw this thread a couple of days ago, and there's a nice CLEAR Penguin ELSPA chart in a tweet chain related to this from May 1992: https://twitter.com/andynick42/status/1431721396829397000

    [​IMG]

    Note the SNES is in this one.
     
  3. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    I'm tempted to go digging for the UK SNES launch, because looking at those numbers and the limited knowledge on the net at the moment, I'm inclined to say the launch was poor.

    Like, "there were only three games" poor, and one of them (Super Mario World) was bundled with the system. So you buy F-Zero and Super Tennis and... wait? Hmm.
     
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  4. Pirate Dragon

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    I did look into UK SNES launch a little while ago, here's what I found and posted elsewhere;

    You can see SNES market share jump from 0.9% to 2.1% when Super Soccer and Super R-TYPE released.
     
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  5. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    So I think they were continue to play the classic "Nintendo in Europe" game that we love so dear.

    https://archive.org/details/Total_Issue_005_1992-05_Future_Publishing_GB/page/n3/mode/1up

    Wikipedia seems keen on a precise date in April but much like we found with the Mega Drive, that might not be entirely correct. But it's hard to tell, because Bandai, who distributed the console, only bothered to start talking about the thing in January 1992, and the release period was "March or April or May or maybe June but not July" before settling on late April. Also they didn't know what they were selling exactly, so you couldn't really plan too far ahead. In the end, £149.99 for the console, two controllers and Super Mario World, and £45 for either F-Zero or Super Tennis.

    The Mega Drive at this point retailing for £129.99 + one controller + Sonic, with new games around the £35-£40 mark.

    And even though the system had been out since November 1990 in Japan, the objective was to release three or four games a month, totalling 25 by the end of December 1992. And these were not necessarily "new" games - you could have picked things up on import more than a year prior in some cases. It got better as the year went on, but there wasng't much to talk about for the first six months.

    We're currently listing 18 games available for the UK Mega Drive launch, and it was up to over 100 by Q2 1992. Sega UK even used this as a selling point.


    So yes, more expensive console with more expensive games, and fewer of them. That might explain the numbers.


    EDIT: beaten by the Dragon by three minutes
     
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  6. Pirate Dragon

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    Here's the post-release games to make the Top 20 chart. It's possible that some niche games released which didn't make the chart, but considering the complete dearth of releases you'd expect owners to be buying up any old crap. Next to no releases until late August.

    Week Ending
    92.05.09 Super Soccer
    92.05.09 Super R-TYPE
    92.07.11 Super WWF Wrestlemania
    92.08.22 Lemmings
    92.08.29 Super Smash T.V.
    92.08.29 UN Squadron
    92.09.12 The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
    92.09.26 Street Fighter II

    Street Fighter II was air-shipped in "to beat the 'pirates' " (actually grey importers) according to Power Up! in the Daily Mirror.
     
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  7. Pirate Dragon

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    Exactly the same thing happened with NES/SMS. Nintendo drip fed their older games, holding their latest releases back, whilst Sega released every available game at launch, and new releases as soon as they were ready.
     
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  8. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    Today on "weird Dreamcast software": ISAO Promotion Disc by Seaman

    [​IMG]

    I've tried tackling the Dreamcast's internet infrastructure a few times, but it's far too confusing, especially in Japan. Luckily Seaman's here to help us:



    erm


    Yeah from what I can tell, this is 15 minutes of talking about Isao.net, which took over responsibilities as the main Dreamcast ISP in Japan... or something. This is an actual Dreamcast disc that exists.
     
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  9. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    Since I guess there's more interest in than I thought:

    I've been a subscriber for years, and knew nothing about Master System Flintstones. Of course I'm going to drop what I'm doing to get juicy "paint the wall" information on the wiki.

    It's a fascinating specimin:
    https://segaretro.org/index.php?title=File:The_Flintstones_SMS_EU_Manual.pdf&page=22
    "Hints" for levels 2 and 3 are little more than "PLAY THE GAME"

    The Flintstones (Master System)/Reception
    And not amazingly awful reviews from the press either. The average isn't "great", but it's a long way off the bottom.
     
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  10. Pirate Dragon

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  11. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    Something that only becomes an issue when you're trying to be wiki-accurate - the wacky screen resolutions of the Sega Saturn:

    [​IMG]

    I was replacing this screenshot on the wiki when I realised Mednafen saw this as 704x448 (well okay 704x480 - it's complicated). But every pixel on the screen is doubled, so surely Battle Arena Toshinden URA should be running in the 352x224 mode?

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Yeah no this game is weird. Some bits are rendered in 352x224, others in 704x448. There's interlacing, there's sprite scaling, there's that checkerboard pattern to simulate transparencies - there's all sorts.


    Meanwhile the game this was based off, Battle Arena Toshinden 2 for the PlayStation...
    [​IMG]
    512x240

    Which means the Saturn delivers both a higher and lower resolution image than the PlayStation at the same time.


    I get the feeling this might be a difficult concept to explain to newcomers.
     
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  12. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    And the award for nicest loading screen goes to...
    [​IMG]
    Steep Slope Sliders

    "Please stay"

    of course I will ♥♥♥


    The Western releases are more boring. And yes they removed the Star of David, just in case you get converted or something. idk

    also because I'm a child
    [​IMG]
    you can indeed pull off a stiffy. Or "stify" as this version calls it. The arcade game supports the chicken salad.
     
  13. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    https://segaretro.org/User:Black_Squirrel/Sandbox3

    This might not lead to anything, but I've been experimenting with possible changes to the front page - not dissimilar to Sonic Retro's, but randomised (though note: Mediawiki is not very good at generating random numbers). We have so many pages now it's probably overwhelming for new visitors, so here's a jumping off point and an explanation of some of the things we do.

    I'm sure the formatting and wording could be tidied up.
     
  14. Ted618

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    For a while now, the Sega Forever brand has been repurposed, no longer existing for repackaged mobile ports but instead to farm social media interactions and amplify fan content for Sega games, particularly the older stuff. To their credit, they do share some interesting content from the archive from time to time while marking anniversaries -



    This SegaWorld London promotional video isn't entirely new, as a rip of it has been out there for years. However this upload is A) significantly higher quality and B) a slightly different cut, as it seems to have been sourced from France. Besides a few French screens, there's more footage of the original Yokohama Joypolis location, as well as some IMAX ride films (worth noting that though the Trocadero did have an IMAX cinema, it wasn't in SegaWorld).
     
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  15. Asagoth

    Asagoth

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    wiki stuff... and a beer... or two... or more...
  16. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    Before we had decent standards in OpenGL and DirectX, graphics card manufacturers did their own thing. NEC spent the second half of the 1990s pushing their "Power VR" line.

    I can't tell you how the Power VR story goes in any great detail, but from what I've read, the early cards were kinda crappy (but cheap!), then they got better, the technology found its way into the Dreamcast, and it later became... something dull in the laptop or handheld space or whatever.

    But in Japan...

    [​IMG]

    ...it was big enough to get a library of Power VR-specific PC games. Like this obscure version of Virtual-On, to make life difficult.

    Speaking of making life difficult, we have a (broken) NEC wiki, because the company made consoles and computers in the 1980s. So what happens when you've built a PC graphics card for games and are trying to market it to a Japanese audience?

    [​IMG]

    "PC 3DEngine" designed to use their SuperGrafx "Super Graphics Library".

    [​IMG]

    So it was technically possible to play Cyber Troopers Virtual-On on your NEC-designed PC 3DEngine graphics card. I wasn't even looking for this*.


    I genuinely don't know if this is in scope for NEC Retro. It's technically a NEC platform with its own set of games, but I don't envy the person who has to track down half a dozen Japanese exclusives that they probably can't play.

    ...because none of these things made it out of Japan, right?

    [​IMG]

    Terrifying.




    *what was I looking for?

    [​IMG]

    This hateful thing. The Cyber Troopers Virtual-On "Fetish Machine Catalog". Hopefully to verify that it doesn't exist and it's all a horrible joke.
     
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  17. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    Sega Retro:Todo/Publications
    Sega Retro:Todo/Publications/Third-party

    Every few months I come back to this task - to get pages up for every Sega-related book I can find. Apparently I've been doing this for seven years, and I've tackled almost all of the low hanging fruit - now I'm left with things I don't understand (or can't find scans/details about).


    Things I need:

    - Someone to check my translations, as some of these books have really weird titles.
    - Somene to tell me what a "fan book" is. Because we've a few of these and I don't know what they are.
    - If there are magazine supplements here, they will need to be treated differently. I can't tell if any are.
    - Clues to what half this stuff actually is. I'd prefer to have a bit more detail than just "XXX IS A BOOK", "YYY IS A BOOK" etc.
    - Details on anything missing

    In some cases there might be full scans on archive.org too. I can't keep up with everything.


    I've done hundreds already - these are just the scraps.
     
  18. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    Looking for something else brought up this wonderful creature:

    [​IMG]
    https://segaretro.org/File:Sega_SlotMachine_Leprechaun.jpg

    Sold at auction back in January as a "full size Leprechaun". How do they know???

    It's not unusual to see slot machines stuck into cowboys (one armed bandit), but I've not seen a Leprechaun before. A British model too - can't be too many of these out there.
     
  19. Overlord

    Overlord

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    At a guess, I'd say that was for an Irish market. We basically used the same currency up until decimalisation (and arguably up until 1986 when they started doing different coin designs to Britain).
     
  20. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel

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    Modern technology is fun.

    You see when people dick around on YouTube, it's hard to appreciate how early 3D games differ between consoles. Because Mednafen can do both PS1 and Saturn, and I know vaguely what I'm doing, we can see exactly how things are.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Croc: Legend of the Gobbos already shipped in a semi-broken state on Saturn, but it's only with side-by-side shots that it begins to look... unfinished. Even if ignore the higher resolutions and wider field of view on PS1, the Saturn's missing things, like animated company logos and fonts that don't suck. And both versions were released around the same time (the PS1 about a month or two before the Saturn, even).


    This is from 1997 so you'd expect the PlayStation to be streaks ahead when it came to 3D, but the Saturn isn't as far behind as you might think. It's just fewer pixels on the X axis a few lighting changes (and it loads slightly faster). It's the menus that look a bit rough.
     
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