New Yakuza remake trailer details new “Majima Anywhere” system

SEGA Japan’s upcoming Yakuza remake for Playstation 4 (due out January 21st, 2016) isn’t just some ho-hum rerelease of the original game in HD, it is a full-on remake with new modes and visuals that fall in line with the franchise’s latest releases. SEGA’s recent trailer, seen above, showcases how shiny and new the classic game looks and details a new “Majima Anywhere” system. “Majima Anywhere” is pretty much what it sounds like, as fan favorite character Goro Majima will emerge from just about anywhere to randomly attack Kazuma Kiryu. The developer’s reasoning for these attacks are because Goro wants “to awaken Kiryu’s intuition” after his ten year prison stint and because he wants “to enjoy more fights.” Also revealed, Goro will have four fighting styles to choose from: “Dancer” (rapid hitting), “Fight Master” (balanced), “Slugger” (hard hitting), and “the Mad Dog of the Shimano.”

Randomly fighting Goro is said to be the only way to unleash Kazuma’s “the Dragon of the Dojima” fighting style and if players clear certain conditions they’ll be able to use some of Goro’s moves as “Heat Actions.”

[Source: Tinfinite]

Unboxing: Rodea the Sky Soldier Limited Edition (Wii U, 3DS)

While yes, this is not a SEGA product, it IS the long awaited action adventure game from Sonic the Hedgehog co-creator Yuji Naka. Naka and his studio Prope had been working on this game for quite some time, and it has been an equal (if not more) amount of time that the game has been delayed. In fact, the game is so old it had to be ported from the Wii to the Wii U! Naka has been pretty vocal about being disappointed with the Wii U and 3DS versions of the game, urging players to try the original Wii version as that is the version he and Prope truly developed.

Having said that, I bought the Nintendo 3DS version. Mainly because the Limited Edition was about $20 cheaper and included the exact same extras. So ignore which version of the game I bought and check out what bonuses came with the NIS America produced Limited Edition version of Yuji Naka’s long awaited Rodea the Sky Soldier!

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SEGA Japan trademarks SEGA Cyclone dev kit and “Liberation of the Blue Sky”


Two new SEGA trademarks cropped up today from Japan: “Soukuu no Liberation” (Liberation of the Blue Sky) and “Sega Cyclone Development Kit.” No other information was given at this time, so we can only speculate as to what these two are. The first is most likely the name of a game. Some have speculated that “Liberation of the Blue Sky” is a Skies of Arcadia game, but the only reason is the mention of a sky and let’s all remember that the franchise was Eternal Arcadia in Japan. More likely, it it a new IP and if I was a gambling man I’d place my bets on mobile or arcade.

“Sega Cyclone Development Kit” is more interesting, as it is clearly a development kit (duh) for a piece of hardware called Cyclone. SEGA arcade fans might find the name familiar, as there exists a piece of motion sim hardware SEGA utilizes called Typhoon. It is possible that this is an update to the motion simulator, or another arcade related thing such as a new board. Or *sigh* it’s a new console… but honestly, after eight years of SEGA blogging and following the company since 1991 I can honestly say that I do not think this is a home console.

[Source: Gematsu]

SEGA News Bits: First impressions of the indie SEGA Dreamcast game Pier Solar

2015 sure has been a great year for indie SEGA Dreamcast games! We’ve seen shmups, odd puzzlers, vikings, and now we’re seeing an RPG by the name of Pier Solar and the Great Architects. While Pier Solar released way back in 2010 to the SEGA Genesis/Mega Drive, the recent Dreamcast port features improved graphics, new scenarios, and special extras that take advantage of the Dreamcast’s unique capabilities (VMU mini-games!). As seen in my recent unboxing, the game’s packaging is beautiful. Now, in this latest episode of SEGA News Bits, I talk with George about my first impressions of the game.

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Unboxing: Pier Solar Japanese packaging for the SEGA Dreamcast

The long awaited Dreamcast release of Pier Solar has started to arrive in mailboxes, and I was so impressed with the packaging that I knew it had to get the unboxing video treatment. This isn’t the first SEGA console the game has released to, back in 2010 the game hit the Mega Drive/Genesis and I shared an unboxing of the reprint edition. The Dreamcast version I present to you today is a first edition in the Japanese style packaging, other versions include US and PAL, but seeing as how most indie Dreamcast releases emulate the Japanese packaging, I went with this style and don’t regret it in the slightest. A lot of effort went into this release, and it really makes modern game unboxings look like crap by comparison. Seriously, who wants to see somebody opening a Wii U game where all you get is a disc and a slip of paper telling you to read the digital manual.

You can buy Pier Solar on several platforms. The Dreamcast and Mega Drive/Genesis versions are sold out at the moment, but more may be available in the future. Check out the official site for more details. Like this video? Subscribe to the SEGAbits YouTube channel.

Valkyria: Azure Revolution teaser trailer and new screens release

A lovely new teaser trailer has released giving us our first good look at the recently announced new entry in the Valkyria Chronicles series, Valkyria: Azure Revolution. In addition to the trailer are eight high res screenshots (seen after the break) that show off the heroes and enemies of the game in combat. It looks like the CANVAS engine is back, however some fans are weary that the new game is dropping the strategy RPG elements and is going for a more traditional RPG approach. At this point, we don’t exactly know how Valkyria: Azure Revolution will play, but at least we now have a better idea of how it looks.

But hey, the original game will be receiving a PS4 remaster in February 2016, so SEGA isn’t brushing the old gameplay under the rug. And who knows, it could turn out to be a great game, even if it isn’t a direct gameplay followup to the originals. I recall fans bemoaning Phantasy Star Online before it released because they made the switch from turn based to an action RPG, and yet now the original PSO is beloved and considered by many to be one of SEGA’s best games.

More on Valkyria: Azure Revolution as we hear it, and in the meantime enjoy the trailer!

The History of Sega Japan R&D, Part 4: The Current Sega


The executive team, Hideki Okamura (Left), Hisao Oguchi (Middle) and Takayuki Kawagoe (Right). These men have been responsible for risque games such as Segagaga, Jet Set Radio and also Sega Saturn and Dreamcast marketing in Japan. With these man, the unique corporate culuture of Sega would continue.

The executive team, Hideki Okamura (Left), Hisao Oguchi (Middle) and Takayuki Kawagoe (Right).

In 2005, Sega was back in the black in all areas for the first time in a long time. The Sega Sammy structure was completed, and the next generation home consoles were ahead. Like in the formation of twelve new R&D studios in 1998, executive management had a reset. Long time executives Hideki Sato and Hisashi Suzuki retired from Sega, after their thirty – or even in Suzuki’s case – forty years of service.

Masano Maeda & Naoya Tsurumi
Masano Maeda & Naoya Tsurumi

As mentioned in Part 3, Hisao Oguchi would atain the highest executive position which he held until 2008 where he received even wider responsibilities as Chief Creative Officer of Sega Sammy.

Then there is Masano Maeda, who joined in 1991. Madea was responsible for building a new Western management team that made crucial partnerships and buyouts of Western companies, like Creative Assembly, Sports Interactive and Secret Level On a side note: the amount of games developed for Xbox 360 amount to roughly forty games, and on PC to about sixty games. On the Dreamcast, the amount comes to fourteen, and old PC releases amount to sixteen.

SEGA and LINE announce mobile RPG Fortisia for Android and iOS

SEGA has just announced that they are developing a new mobile RPG entitled Fortisia, due out for Android and iOS. The game is being jointly developed with LINE, a Japanese mobile company best known for their chat application that has since grown to include games. While LINE’s past games are more geared toward casual gamers, the hope is that Fortisia will draw in “mid-core” and perhaps even hardcore gamers.

Fortisia is described as a 3D action RPG and will feature multiplayer with up to four players. While players will be able to design their own characters, as is typical with most action RPGs, one unique element to the game is that the game’s weapons (called “Fortis”) contain the spirits of warriors which can be called upon to aid in battle. It is said that there are 400 of these weapons, and they are obtained via a gacha system (think capsule toy vending machine).

You can check out the game’s official site here for more screens and details.

[Via: &]

Puyo Puyo!! Touch announced for Japanese mobile

SEGA Networks has revealed Puyo Puyo!! Touch, an upcoming game for mobile devices. The game is, at the moment, Japan only and given SEGA West’s recent reskin of Puyo Puyo Quest!!, it is debatable if this would ever release in the West. Unless of course kids are scrambling for more Cranky Food Friends games.

The game is in the same vein as Candy Crush, where players drag Puyo to clear other Puyo. The game differs from Puyo Puyo Quest!! in that it is a linear adventure. The game also features a cast of characters from past Puyo Puyo games including: Ringo, Arle, Amitie, Sig, Carbuncle, Rider, Skeleton-T, Schezo and Ms. Accord. There is no release date as of yet, though players can now register for the game.

For more screens and videos, check out the official SEGAbits forum topic. Thanks for FlareHabanero for the news tip!

Famitsu releases screens of Valkyria: Azure Revolution and Valkyria Chronicles Remastered for Playstation 4


It was announced yesterday that the Valkyria Chronicles franchise was to live on with a fourth title in the series, Valkyria: Azure Revolution, and a remastered release of the original Valkyria Chronicles with both titles releasing to the PS4 in Japan in 2016. Today, Famitsu has released screens of the upcoming games to their website in anticipation of their full magazine article which is said to hit Japanese newsstands on November 19th. Check out the gallery after the break!

Watch this fan translated Making of Shenmue Japanese TV special from 1999

During the release of Shenmue, there existed quite a few interviews and TV specials about the game that sadly never received proper translations. Thankfully, with nothing but time on their hands between the release of Shenmue 2 and the announcement of Shenmue 3, several fans have since translated these insightful looks at the making of the game.

Recently, Shenmue Dojo member Switch went above and beyond and translated an hour long “Making of Shenmue” TV special into English, French, Spanish, and German. The special, which can be seen above, is perhaps the longest most in depth look at the game at the time of its release. As an added bonus, it also features a rare look inside SEGA during their final years as a first party developer. Thanks to Ziming of Shenmue Dojo for sending us the special!

Hyperdimension Neptunia VS Sega Hard Girls gets a debut trailer

Fans of both Sega Hard Girls TV Show and Compile Heart’s JRPG Hyperdimension Neptunia are in for a real treat with the upcoming crossover video game. The game has you playing as IF-chan along with a new character named Sega Hatsumi as you travel back in time to Sega-based eras to recover long lost history. Above is the debut trailer for the game, if you missed the opening movie you can find that here.


Hyperdimension Neptunia VS Sega Hard Girls: Dream Fusion Special hits Playstation Vita on November 26 in Japan. No western releases have been announced.

[Source: Gemastu]

Schtserv’s Phantasy Star Online private server officially offline

SchthackservAs we all know Phantasy Star Online has been disconnected offline years ago. The official servers are gone, but Schtserv’s private servers remained, allowing not only Dreamcast Phantasy Star Online gamers to play anyone around the world but also PC and Gamecube. I remember his site was forbidden to talk about on the official SEGA forums way back in the day, which doesn’t surprise me one bit.

From the FAQ posted on their Facebook page asking IF the servers are officially closed:

Yes & No. If you want another type of answer, who knows? Even we staff members don’t know, in the end it is up to Crono to make the call on if it’s going to return or not. However for now, YES the server is officially closed, unless another topic is made in the future.

The domain name is now going to a Hostgator splash page. If your looking for alternative Phantasy Star Blue Burst servers, you can always check Ultima and Ephinea. Did you ever play on Schtserv’s private servers?

[Source: RetroCollect]

Custom Sega Dreamcast bios aims to improve experience

You are probably sitting there thinking whats a bio and why should I give a damn? I mean, you have been playing your beautiful SEGA Dreamcast games just fine without these custom, fancy fan bios. First what is a bio? Well, you know that information that the system loads before it boots your game? That’s it.

What does this revised fan bios replace? Let’s check the list! 

  • Region free: boot GD/CD from any regions
  • No VGA flag check: no matter if the game supports the VGA output, the lets it boot
  • Bootfile extent check: allow a game to boot even if its bootfile, more commonly called 1ST_READ.BIN, is not located on the outer part of the disc
  • SEGA License screen skip
  • MIL-CD/backup direct boot
  • Black fade-in color while booting from menu
  • No VMU copy-protected file check

I tend to play my Dreamcast in VGA mode like most (cool) people, so the idea of just skipping the check on boot might be a good thing for me.The issue? the method for installing takes some talent with a soldering iron, something that I just don’t have.

[Via: RetroCollect]