My Life with SEGA becomes a Junker in Hideo Kojima’s Snatcher for SEGA CD

That’s right, SEGA fans! Andrew Rosa is finally reviewing one of the most sought after SEGA CD titles ever produced, Hideo Kojima’s Snatcher! The cyber-punk graphic adventure’s yet to see an English translation since its appearance on SEGA CD, and very few copies were produced, so there’s no denying that Snatcher‘s value to gamers and collectors alike is exceptionally high. Join Andrew as he examines Hideo Kojima’s sophomore effort.

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Next week on “My Life with SEGA”: the premiere of the short film “Nothing Else Matters”, the follow-up to “Theater of the Eye”. After the break check out a teaser trailer!

SEGA Tunes: Space Channel 5 resurrects Ken Woodman’s Mexican Flyer

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While SEGA music fans celebrate the likes of Jacques, Naganuma, and Mitsuyoshi who created hours of original tracks for iconic SEGA games during the Saturn and Dreamcast eras, its important to remember that SEGA has also relied heavily on pre-existing music licensed for their titles. Samba de Amigo, for example, used contemporary tracks from the likes of German pop group Bellini, Chumbawamba, and Santana, as well as classic music from the 50s and 60s including tracks from the Gipsy Kings, Perez Prado, and Quincy Jones. Jet Set Radio and Jet Set Radio Future also featured several licensed tracks, so many that subsequent re-releases were once in fear of losing iconic tunes thanks in large part to the fact that Crazy Taxi‘s HD release scrapped the original game’s soundtrack which featured Bad Religion and The Offspring. SEGA learned their lesson with Crazy Taxi, however, as the mobile release of the game reinstated the original soundtrack and Jet Set Radio‘s HD release promoted the fact that the soundtrack was largely intact in their marketing of the game.

Internal SEGA development team United Game Artists, known for Space Channel 5 and Rez, put music at the forefront of their titles. Music not only played a part in enhancing the mood, it was a vital part of gameplay. Sure one can play Jet Set Radio or Samba de Amigo with the speakers muted (why would you want to though?), but muting Space Channel 5 or Rez? You might as well unplug the console. Throughout the month of May, SEGA Tunes we will be focusing on both the original and licensed music featured in United Game Artists games. This week, we’re kicking things off with a classic.

This is Saturn Season 2 is here, with a look at SEGA’s 3D Control Pad

This is Saturn returns after an extended hiatus!

This time, we’re delving back into the world of SEGA peripherals, with SEGA’s 3D Control Pad for the SEGA Saturn. The pad was bundled with copies of NiGHTS into Dreams… and is often something associated closely with the Saturn’s legacy; but has it earned its place as part of the Saturn legend? Find out, as Tracker takes a gander at this old piece of kit.

This is Saturn is a video series created by British teenager Liam ‘TrackerTD’ Ashcroft, aiming to give an alternative and in-depth look at the good, the bad, and the ugly of SEGA Saturn gaming, all whilst maintaining a somewhat strong accent.

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Year of the Developers: Experience synesthesia with SEGA’s United Game Artists

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This month we are proud to celebrate the unique and musical driven games of United Game Artists (ユナイテッド・ゲーム・アーティスツ). The team was made up of members of SEGA AM6 and headed by Sega AM3’s Tetsuya Mizuguchi. Unfortunately, the team was short lived and only released three titles under the ‘United Game Artists’ banner. Regardless, those three games have made such an impact on us gamers that we are still talking about them over a decade later.

The Music of JSRF: Singing a Tune that’s both Unique and Familiar

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Jet Set Radio and Jet Set Radio Future were two incredibly different games, each with a style all its own.
Considered by some to be a sequel and by others to be a reboot of the original, Jet Set Radio Future set itself apart from its Dreamcast predecessor in a variety of ways, one of which being its incredible soundtrack.

In celebration of Smilebit month, I sat down and listened to the Jet Set Radio Future soundtrack in its entirety, taking it all in and really trying to gauge why it seems both so alike, and yet so different, from the tunes that made up the music of its predecessor.

Classic SEGA Magazine Corner: GameFan says SEGA’s Jet Grind Radio is “the next BIG THING”

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As Smilebit Month comes to an end, we crack open one more classic magazine for a look at what gaming journalists thought of a SEGA classic. GameFan magazine was quite a unique publication at the time. From 1992 to 2000, GameFan not only covered general gaming news, but also anime, manga, and featured extensive import coverage. It really was the perfect magazine for gaming fans who were also steeped in anime and importing the latest and greatest RPGs and generally more off the wall titles. So, of course, it was only fitting that SEGA’s Jet Grind Radio received the GameFan cover treatment for their August 2000 issue and had a four page preview and interview with the then unknown Smilebit team.

A look back at Smilebit’s Gunvalkyrie – an underappreciated SEGA classic

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In the West, SEGA’s Smilebit has become synonymous with the Jet Set Radio games, and for good reason. Like Sonic The Hedgehog to the Genesis and NiGHTS into Dreams to the Saturn, the original Jet Set Radio became one of the Dreamcast’s defining games, showcasing unique graphics and reinventing a video game genre. As SEGA left the hardware market in 2001, internal developers announced which consoles they would favor and Smilebit fittingly ended up with Microsoft’s Xbox.

I say “fittingly” because it only made sense that a developer known for pushing the graphical envelope would choose the Xbox, given Smilebit members’ propensities for expansive worlds in past titles like Team Andromeda’s Panzer Dragoon Saga and the first Jet Set Radio. While Jet Set Radio tried to conceal the fact that the game actually consisted of several small areas linked by clever tricks allowing the Dreamcast to load the next area as the player skated to the another section of the map, on the Xbox Smilebit could truly create expansive and detailed worlds. Utilizing the Xbox’s power, Smilebit did just that with Jet Set Radio Future, Panzer Dragoon Orta, and Gunvalkyrie.

My Life with SEGA kicks putty butt in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers for Genesis and SEGA CD

The power is on this week as Andrew Rosa revisits the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers on Genesis/Mega Drive and SEGA CD.

But the action doesn’t stop. For the first time, our Green Ranger worshiping SEGA boy will be reviewing Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie, also on Genesis.

It’s time to get back in action! Like this video? Subscribe to the SEGAbits YouTube channel!

SEGA Tunes: Jet Set Radio Future and The Latch Brothers

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Jet Set Radio and its sequel Jet Set Radio Future are often cited as having some of the best music to come from SEGA thanks in a large part to Hideki Naganuma and Richard Jacques. While in-house talent played a large role in creating such memorable soundtracks, the soundtracks also consisted of licensed music from artists that included Guitar Vader, Cibo Matto, Deavid Soul and others. This week on SEGA Tunes (the feature formerly known as Tuesday Tunes) we’re focusing on a third type of Jet Set Radio music contributor: The Latch Brothers.