SEGA Talk Podcast #53: Fantasy Zone (1986)

Opa-Opa takes center stage on a SEGA Talk podcast as we discuss his breakout game Fantasy Zone! We delve into the game’s development and the interesting decisions made by designer/director Yoji Ishii (of Flicky fame) that led to such an iconic and unique shoot ’em up (or STG if you’re in Japan). We also discuss Brazilian music, Monty Python and Gradius for very good and on-topic reasons.

Support us on Patreon! Get early access, tell us what games to cover, and have your SEGA memories read at the end and more!

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If you want to give us feedback, suggest a topic for the next podcast or want to ask a question for us to answer on the next episode you can add  them as a comment below or send theme directly to our email. Make sure you use subject line ‘SEGA Talk’ and as always, thanks for listening!

Data Discs Announces Shenmue II Vinyl Soundtrack and Optional Slipcase

Data Discs have announced the followup to their 2015 release of the original Shenmue score on vinyl. Shenmue II will be joining the Data Discs line with a selection of tracks from SEGA’s Sound Team. The release is presented on 180g vinyl with original cover art and two lithographic prints. The editions include: 180g Light Translucent Green and Orange (Limited Edition), 180g Light Translucent Green and 180g Classic Black. Data Discs have also revealed an optional “Dragon and Phoenix Mirror” slipcase built from hardboard and coated in a matt laminated varnish made to hold both releases, and retails for £12.50.

The Light Translucent Green and Orange (Limited Edition) of Shenmue II will be up for an open pre-order until MONDAY 21st SEPTEMBER at 13:00 (UK time), and retails for £20.99. The other two editions will remain available beyond that time (while stocks last) and retail for £19.99. All editions have an estimated shipping date of January 2021. Additionally, the original Shenmue vinyl is being repressed with a January 2021 release date.

Game Gear Micro White Announced – Included with M2’s Aleste Collection

M2 has just announced, via a Famitsu stream, an Aleste Collection of games for the Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4.

The collection will include Aleste / Power Strike (Mark III, Master System), Power Strike II (Master System), Aleste GG (Game Gear) and Aleste GG II (Game Gear). Also announced, and exclusive to the upcoming collection, is a white Game Gear Micro which will include the same four games and is set to sell for ¥14,800 ($141) as part of a special bundle which will also include a white Big Window Micro, a 32-page art book, and a staff interview book. The collection is set for a December 24, 2020 release.

Sonic the Hedgehog 30th Anniversary Logo Revealed – New Merchandise Announced

SEGA has just revealed the new 30th Anniversary logo for Sonic the Hedgehog, as well as their merchandising plans for the blue blur who will turn 30 next year. The logo, playing off Sonic’s spinning feet, is very cute. As for merchandise, expect the previously revealed Sonic Encyclo-Speed-ia book from Dark Horse, as well as more creepy Pop! Vinyl figures, Jakks Pacific toys, jewelry, apparel, enamel pins, energy drinks and new Classic Sonic comic books from IDW. The IDW series will consist of a special issue and an accompanying mini series. Read the full press release after the break!

Sonic the Hedgehog Encyclo-speed-ia Hardcover Book Releasing in Time For Sonic’s 30th – Written by Ian Flynn

An Amazon listing for Sonic the Hedgehog Encyclo-speed-ia has appeared, confirming a very cool release from SEGA in time for Sonic’s 30th anniversary. The hardcover book from SEGA and Dark Horse publishing will be 256 pages long (just a little shorter than Pix’n Love Editions History of Sonic the Hedgehog book from the 20th anniversary) and most notably, the book is being written by IDW Sonic the Hedgehog lead writer Ian Flynn.

The Jetzons “Hard Times” – Inspiration for Sonic The Hedgehog 3’s Ice Cap Zone – Receiving Limited Edition Vinyl Release

Savvy Sonic fans might remember eight years ago when it was discovered that the song “Hard Times” from the group The Jetzons was the inspiration for Sonic The Hedgehog 3‘s Ice Cap Zone. The reason for the resemblance to Ice Cap Zone’s music, as detailed by our sister site Sonic Retro was that “The keyboardist of the group, Brad Buxer would work on the title, along with Michael Jackson as he confirmed in [an] interview conducted in the same year. While he does state he is not sure what material the developers used in the game, turns out to be remnants of the unreleased song.”

SEGA Talk Podcast #52: SEGA Channel (1994)

SEGA Talk is taking a break from games to talk about one of the earliest digital rental services ever to launch, the Sega Channel. How did SEGA get games beamed from you cable provider on to your Sega Genesis/Mega Drive? What was reception like and how did it work? Let’s explore on this episode of SEGA Talk!

Support us on Patreon! Get early access, tell us what games to cover, and have your SEGA memories read at the end and more!

[iTunes – Stitcher – YouTube – Play Music – RSS – Download]

If you want to give us feedback, suggest a topic for the next podcast or want to ask a question for us to answer on the next episode you can add  them as a comment below or send theme directly to our email. Make sure you use subject line ‘SEGA Talk’ and as always, thanks for listening!

EXCLUSIVE: Sonic & Knuckles Rock the Rock Revisited with Chris Tang – Beating the Previous Record!

High Score is a new documentary series on Netflix charting the history of video games. While the whole series is recommended to SEGA fans, the fourth episode in particular is a must watch. The episode, titled “This is War”, covers the console wars of SEGA’s push to outsell Nintendo in the United States. SEGA all-stars, and friends to the site, Tom Kalinske (former President and CEO of SEGA of America) and game designer and gaming tournament champion Chris Tang are featured in the episode. Chris is known best to Sonic fans as the winner of SEGA and MTV’s Rock the Rock competition in 1994.

Following the Netflix series debut, I got to talking to Chris and he revealed to me that the production of the documentary prompted him to revisit Sonic & Knuckles and redo the Rock the Rock’s finals competition run. The rules being collect the most rings in Launch Base Zone in 3 minutes as Knuckles. Chris, always the competitor, wanted to go up against himself and see if his current skills and abilities could outdo his previous win. After a day of practice, Chris fired up his recording devices and recorded this run that we are proud to debut exclusively here at SEGAbits!

SEGA Forever Pop-Up Facts Video Reveals Early “NiGHTS into dreams…” Box Art

To celebrate the anniversary weekend of NiGHTS into dreams…, SEGA has reduced the price of the Steam release by 85%, making it just $1.19! We here at SEGAbits love the original Saturn classic, as well as the holiday themed demo disc Christmas NiGHTS (so much so, we reviewed and rated it an A+.)

In addition to the sale, the SEGA Forever YouTube channel shared a cool pop-up trivia video which reveals an early design of NiGHTS in some mocked-up concept cover art. In our opinion, it’s kind of creepy, but still a very cool find. By the way, if you like clean high res art from SEGA classics, we highly recommend following SEGA Forever on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Recent posts include some great promotional renders for NiGHTS, Gain Ground art and very blocky Virtua Racing renders.

SEGA Talk Podcast #51: ChuChu Rocket! (1999)

Barry and George return to the SEGA Dreamcast era with a look back at a Sonic Team puzzle game classic: ChuChu Rocket! This beloved game has seen not only a successful online console release, but also a long history on mobile and handheld devices. Join us as we uncover stories from the game’s development, discuss what it was like playing the game on release and explore the future of ChuChu Rocket!

Support us on Patreon! Get early access, tell us what games to cover, and have your SEGA memories read at the end and more!

[iTunes – Stitcher – YouTube – Play Music – RSS – Download]

If you want to give us feedback, suggest a topic for the next podcast or want to ask a question for us to answer on the next episode you can add  them as a comment below or send theme directly to our email. Make sure you use subject line ‘SEGA Talk’ and as always, thanks for listening!

More SEGA Astro City Mini Games Revealed – Plus Accessory Kit Announced

When we first shared the news about SEGA’s Astro City Mini, it was revealed that the plug and play would include 36 arcade classics. At the time, 10 were revealed, and today we learned of an additional 13 games! The newly announced titles include:

  • Cotton
  • Shinobi
  • Shadow Dancer
  • E-SWAT
  • Crack Down
  • Gain Ground
  • Puyo Puyo
  • Columns
  • Bonanza Bros.
  • Puzzle & Action: Ichidant-R
  • Wonder Boy
  • Wonder Boy in Monster Land
  • Wonder Boy III: Monster Lair

Galloping Ghost Arcade in Brookfield, Illinois Debuts Incredibly Rare SEGA R360 Arcade Machine – Only Publicly Playable Machine in America


I’ve covered the Galloping Ghost Arcade in Brookfield, Illinois a bit here on SEGAbits. Mainly because it is just a short drive away from the SEGAbits Midwest HQ (or SEGAbits Building 2 as I will now refer to it as). The arcade opened in August 2010, and has since expanded to fill an entire block of storefront property in the Chicagoland suburb. In the past, the arcade has debuted countless SEGA classics and hidden treasures including Space Harrier, Air Bike Cop, Star Wars Arcade and Ribbit.

As the arcade nears 800 games and hits its 10 year anniversary, arcade owner Doc Mack has long wanted to celebrate the milestone by debuting the ultra rare and expensive SEGA R360. The process to obtain one has been in the works for a while, with Doc even reaching out to SEGAbits for help in finding somebody willing to part with one. Thankfully, it looks like Doc’s efforts paid off as now, for the first time in decades, a functioning SEGA R360 machine is publicly playable in America!

SEGA’s Aaron Webber Accepts Role at SEGA of Japan as Director of Strategy, Studio & Community Relations

Aaron Webber, longtime friend to the site and a legend among Sonic and SEGA fans, has had a long career with SEGA of America. Joining SEGA in 2008, Aaron worked as a Game Master for Phantasy Star Universe, an Assistant Community Manager and then as Associate Brand Manager before a brief departure from the company in 2014. Then, in 2015, Aaron returned to act as PR & Social Media Manager and then Senior Social Media Manager for the Sonic the Hedgehog brand. It was during this period that Sonic saw a social media EXPLOSION with national attention on how he and his team handled the brand’s social media accounts.

Now, Aaron has accepted a role with SEGA of Japan as Director of Strategy, Studio & Community Relations. While not much has been said of Aaron’s day to day responsibilities, he has said “besides Sonic, this means I get to support a lot of great SEGA teams – first up is PSO2 which just launched on Steam!”

We here at SEGAbits congratulate Aaron and wish him luck on his new role at SEGA’s Japan offices.