Rumor: Shenmue HD Remasters are real says Just Add Water CEO

shenmueOver on the infamous video game messaging board, NeoGAF the CEO of Just Add Water confirmed  that the Shenmue HD Remasters of the first two titles are real. First you’d ask yourself who the development team ‘Just Add Water’ really is. Well, I did some journalistic google searching and found their wikipedia page:

Just Add Water (Development) Ltd., doing business as Just Add Water, is an independent video game developer based in Otley, West Yorkshire, United Kingdom. Founded by Stewart Gilray in 2006, Just Add Water has worked on different titles for the PlayStation 3 and PC, notably the Oddworld series. They have teamed up with Oddworld Inhabitants, to recreate the series in high definition as well as working on new installments in the series.

The Just Add Water CEO didn’t confirm anything outside of a short ‘Oh, it’s real… :-)’ message, so we made this a rumor considering that he could just be kidding with fellow board members. Though you’d think someone that is a CEO of a company that specifically ports old games wouldn’t be joking about Shenmue HD Remasters being the works. Considering Shenmue news is serious business to fans that have been waiting for SEGA to port the games since forever. Maybe Shenmue HD Remasters will be shown off in some form come E3 next month? What are your thoughts about SEGA possibly doing Shenmue HD Remasters of the first two games? Would you purchase them again? Let us know in the comments below.

SEGA News Bits: Sonic Forces Custom Character Reaction

Sonic Forces custom character creator was revealed this morning, making this the 3rd game play style in the game. If you guys didn’t know, we discussed a Sonic Forces custom character (mostly as a rumor) in a couple of our past videos and now it seems that its actually true.  On this SEGA News Bits we discuss our thoughts on the Sonic Forces custom character game play, talk about the Sonic fan creation community, check out some hidden Easter eggs found in the trailer, and much more. So tune in to our special SEGA News Bits talking about Sonic Forces custom character reveal. What are your thoughts on Sonic Forces‘ using a custom character as its third gameplay? Let us know in the comments below.

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SEGA News Bits: SEGA Plans Revival of Major IPs

On this SEGA News Bits, George and Barry discuss the recent news of SEGA of Japan announcing the revival of major IPs during their “Road to 2020” business presentation. What franchises could they be referring to? Find out as we dig through the news archives to uncover an old survey that just might hold the answer!

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Sonic Forces reveals third gameplay style – a character creation system!

Who called it? For the past month or two, we’ve been speculating that the third gameplay style in Sonic Forces is a character creation system not unlike Phantasy Star Online. Today, SEGA and the Sonic the Hedgehog YouTube channel revealed just that! Per the video description:

In a world where Eggman has taken over, even two Sonics will need some help. For the first time in the series’ history, create and play as your own custom character in the war to take back the planet.

The third character seems to play like both modern and classic Sonic, but with the added ability to use gadgets like flamethrowers and grappling hooks. Also revealed was a gameplay sample of the unnamed avatar in action, which you can see after the break. What are your thoughts on this reveal? Let us know in the comments below!

[UPDATE] We’ve added the press release as well, found after the break, which details the customization system and what animal species you can expect. Also, we’ve added some new screens and concept art!

SEGA plans “revival of major IPs” on its “Road to 2020”

Sonic___SEGA_All-Stars_Racing-PCArtwork4539Sonic_Racing_GroupSEGA plans “revival of major IPs”, which is a phrase that a lot of SEGA die hard fans have been waiting to hear from the company in a very long time. SEGA revealed this strategy when the company did their “Road to 2020” business presentation. If you look at the ‘Segment / Business Strategies’ on their latest fiscal report, it highlights the following big points:

Packaged Games Field (example titles: Total War: Warhammer, Yakuza 6: The Song of Life, Football Manager 2017, and Persona 5)

  • Expand existing IPs and obtain new IPs for North American and European PC games
  • Build revenue base by being entrusted with outsourced development
  • Challenge for new IPs
  • Revival of major IPs
  • Effective utilization of development engines

Digital Games Field (example titles: Puyo Puyo!! Quest, Hortensia Saga, Chain Chronicle 3, and Phantasy Star Online 2)

  • Create titles that will become global hits
  • Establish digital marketing business
  • Expand overseas publishing business
  • Maintain profits through long-term operation of existing titles
  • Develop next-generation titles

If you notice, they have a nice section where they highlight that they are planning not only original IPs but also SEGA plans “revival of major IPs”. But what would SEGA consider a “major IP”? One of the challenges SEGA has with reviving IPs is that they want them to be ‘global hits’, so what titles do you think are considered ‘global hits’? SEGA plans “revival of major IPs”, do you believe it or is it a ‘wait and see’ sort of thing?

[via: Gematsu]

Round Table: Should the Yakuza franchise end after Yakuza 6?

RoundTableYakuza6The Yakuza franchise has been the longest running new franchise launched by SEGA since going 3rd party, with the first one being released in Japan back on December 8, 2005. The franchise has received seven main entries, one remake, a bunch of spin-offs, and even a full featured length film. SEGA has made a huge deal about the franchise coming to an end, in the past, but seem to have continued churning out games. Yakuza 6 promises to be the end of Kazuma Kiryu’s story while at the same time SEGA has promised that the franchise would continue after Yakuza 6. On this week’s Round Table we ask should the Yakuza franchise end after Yakuza 6?

Fan creates Sonic Mania Studiopolis Zone Winamp skin

Sonic Mania is a game that embraces old school aesthetics, so it is fitting that fellow SEGA and Sonic fan Ineedmorcowbell created a Sonic Mania skin for the old school program Winamp. Initially released in 1997, Winamp is a freemium media player for Windows, Android, and macOS. If you had a computer between 1997 and now, chances are you downloaded this program and still have it on your machine. What Ineedmorcowbell’s skin does is turn the entire player into Studiopolis Zone.

Ineedmorcowbell has this to say about the project:

After watching game play of Sonic Mania’s Studiopolis Zone, and seeing the Hornet Van. I felt like it needed to dance! This whole project was built around getting that Van to dance! From there, I designed how all the windows and standard features would be reskinned. There is all kinds of animations like the clouds moving, or lights glowing, to the projector playing different animations that react to the music.

All the sprites for this skin have been redrawn by myself! I used the debut, and various game play videos to collect the sprites to use, then redrew them in a much lower resolution. Similar to the original Genesis games. To produce a much crisper look then just using them straight from the videos. The only things that I didn’t redraw were some of the animations for the projector that use the developer logos and intro for the game. Christian Whitehead was redrawn because the original design was very seizure inducing. The Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles Head was done in illustrator.

I spent a lot of time and work really hard on this, so let me know what you think!

You can learn more about the skin and download it here. If you have any questions or comments for the creator, you can chat with him in our forums!

Swingin’ Report Show #87: Sonic the Hedgehog 25th Anniversary Art Book – Cook & Becker CEO Maarten Brands

The SEGAbits Swingin’ Report Show is back, bringing you an interview with Maarten Brands, CEO of Cook & Becker who is behind the upcoming Sonic the Hedgehog 25th Anniversary Art Book! In this, his first public interview talking about the book, Maarten goes into the history of the international art dealership Cook & Becker, how the SEGA partnership began and what fans can expect from the Sonic art book.

The book releases soon and comes in two editions, which you can pre-order now:
SONIC THE HEDGEHOG 25TH ANNIVERSARY ART BOOK – COLLECTOR’S EDITION
SONIC THE HEDGEHOG 25TH ANNIVERSARY ART BOOK – STANDARD HARDCOVER

[Download] [RSS] [iTunes] [Archive]

Vanquish releasing to PC on May 25th – watch the announcement trailer and pre-order now

We’ve long sung the praises of Platinum Games’ Vanquish, so you can guess that we here at SEGAbits are very excited to see the announcement of the game coming to PC. When the game released in 2010, it earned an A grade in our written review.

Set to release May 25th, and available to pre-order now on Steam, the PC version of the game promises a fully unlocked framerate, HD resolutions up to 4K and all DLC. What more, if you own Bayonetta on PC you get 25% off Vanquish and pre-ordering gets you a Deluxe Digital Edition which features a digital art book, OST sampler, avatars, and wallpapers.

So what are you waiting for, pre-order Vanquish today!

Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap getting physical PS4 release by Limited Run Games

WonderBoyLimitedRunGamesWonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap, the remake to the 1989 SEGA Master System cult classic will be getting a physical release this summer by Limited Run Games. This physical version of Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap will be exclusive to the PlayStation 4, will come in a standard and regular editions. Limited Run Games tweeted that the physical release will be coming sometime this summer and haven’t given us an update on when we can pre-order.

If you would like to get a physical version of Wonder boy: The Dragon’s Trap, make sure you are ready to pre-order the day it goes live because these releases sell out fast. I mean, look at a list of games they have published that are no longer available.  I’m glad that Dot Emu and LizardCube listened to fans who wanted a physical release and made it happen. For those who asked for a physical release, I hope you guys pick up a copy of Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap this summer. But I have a feeling this is going to sell out rather quickly. What are your thoughts on Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap getting a physical release on the PlayStation 4? Are you picking up a copy?

We will keep you updated on this and Night Trap’s Limited Run Games releases.

SEGAbits presents The Top 100 SEGA Games

top100sega

At long last, The Top 100 SEGA Games list is here! Those who follow the site know that this ginormous list has been a long time coming. Back in October 2015 we began gathering top 25 lists from the SEGAbits community and the SEGA fan community as a whole for what was at the time intended to be compiled into a list of top 50 SEGA games. The reason for a list was a reaction to a certain big name gaming site that released a top 100 video games list without a single SEGA title. How IGNorant.

Seeing as a ranked top 25 list is a lot to ask, we gave fans all of 2016 to submit lists that followed strict guidelines. Games had to satisfy two of the following: be published by SEGA, be developed by SEGA, IP owned by SEGA. Also games had to be released between 1960 and October 19th, 2015. Once the lists were collected, we had over fifty lists of top 25 games. That’s over 1,250 entries covering nearly 300 games! Now, after six months of compiling, counting, sorting and writing up descriptions we are finally very happy to present to you The Top 100 SEGA Games!

Special thanks to the SEGAbits writing team for pitching in to tally votes and write descriptions when I felt that the task was impossible. And of course, special thanks to SEGA for making the games we love.

Contest: Puyo Puyo Tetris Physical Copy Giveaway – Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4

puyotetris contest

Surprise, we’ve got another contest going on! This time it’s for the puzzle crossover game, Puyo Puyo Tetris. A game by SEGA that combines the long running Puyo Puyo series with the world famous Tetris, in a fun fast mixture where you can play either Puyo Puyo or Tetris, or maybe even both! Puyo Puyo Tetris was originally a title released back in 2014, but recently got a release outside of Japan for western fans to try out for themselves for the Nintendo Switch and Playstation 4.

With this contest, we’re going to do things slightly differently. Unlike our past contests, the copies we’re distributing are physical copies, and we’re distributing both the Playstation 4 and Nintendo Switch versions. There are exactly 5 copies of each version, and a lucky 10 winners can potentially get their hands on a Puyo Puyo Tetris copy for free.

The contest is running on both SEGAbits.com and Twitter.com/SEGAbits, meaning that you can enter in both to double your chances of winning. Should a winner be selected more than once, we will select another winner in one of the contests so that nobody gets more than one copy of the game.

Here’s how to enter:

SEGAbits.com: In the comments section of this post, tell us your favorite Puyo Puyo or Tetris moments. The games, the characters, your experiences, anything is fair game. When leaving your comment, please use a valid email address in the email field so we can contact you. Email addresses are not public. Also it’s recommend to specify which version you want to prevent potential confusion.

Twitter.com/SEGAbits: Retweet the contest tweet and follow SEGAbits on Twitter, and tell us your favorite Puyo Puyo or Tetris moments and mention “Switch” or “PS4” so we know which version you want to win.

The contest will last until May 15 next week at 5PM EST, and this applies to American regions only. Best luck to everyone who’s involved!

Also don’t forget that the Bayonetta PC code giveaway contest is still running until May 11th, so contribute to that too if you have not yet.

 

Unseen64 looks into the cancelled Sonic Extreme

No this isn’t the infamous Sonic Xtreme originally developed for the SEGA Saturn but cancelled due to development hell. Sonic Extreme was a cancelled skateboarding game originally pitched by a development studio called Vision Scope Interactive, which as the name suggested involved Sonic characters preforming skateboarding tricks and races similar to the famous Tony Hawk Pro Skater series involving hover boards. A prototype of the game was originally found in a Xbox devkit and leaked on the internet in 2011.

Liam Robertson, a known contributor to the website Unseen64 that specializes in beta and cancelled video games, decided to investigate further into how the game was originally pitched by contacting Vision Scope Interactive employees. The results includes how the opportunity came to be due to helping with developing the CG cutscenes in Sonic Heroes, how the prototype was quickly assembled and pitched, and it’s connection to the similar Sonic Riders released years later.

What Sonic Extreme might have been if it became a full title is unknown, but it’s nice to know more information about another curious case in Sonic’s history.

Review: Puyo Puyo Tetris (Nintendo Switch/Playstation 4)

SEGAbitsReview_PuyoPuyoTetris

A Puyo Puyo game, released in the west. Such a strange sentence to type out in the context, due to the Puyo Puyo franchise being one of those notorious cases of a series being stuck in Asian shores with maybe the rare localized title or import title that quickly comes and goes. The last time a major Puyo Puyo game was in American and European territories was the 2004 title Puyo Pop Fever, and since then the series has been quiet. Aside from the occasional table scraps like the port of Puyo Puyo Tsu on the Wii Virtual Console, the version of Puyo Puyo Tsu in SEGA 3D Classics Collection, and the Puyo Puyo 39 minigame in Hatsune Miku: Project Mirai DX, the series has otherwise been absent.

But that all changed with Puyo Puyo Tetris, a game that has existed since 2014 on multiple systems. Unlike other Puyo Puyo games prior, Puyo Puyo Tetris gained notable attention in western territories for years. It might be a case of a silver lining in an otherwise rough year for SEGA or the controversial practices the Tetris brand has been associated with, or just it being a very fun game, but regardless Puyo Puyo Tetris was requested for localization for quite a while. But now it is 2017 and we finally have the game in western shores, more specifically for the popular Playstation 4 and Nintendo’s recently released Nintendo Switch.

After such a gap between the game’s original launch in 2014 and the 13 years since the last time a major Puyo Puyo title was released in the west, is Puyo Puyo Tetris the comeback that has been long overdue, or was there a reason why western fans were were denied Puyo Puyo for so long?

SEGA News Bits: Bayonetta PC Sales Discussion

Bayonetta released in early April to PC, and on this SEGA News Bits George and Barry take a look at the sales figures. Are Bayonetta‘s numbers Heaven or Hell for SEGA? What games could we see released next? Find out on this witchy News Bits! Want to win a copy of Bayonetta for PC? Enter our contest which runs through May 11th!

If you enjoy our SEGA News Bits segments and want to support us: Give us a sub and give this video a like so it shows up on more like minded fans YouTube recommendations. You know, how that new YouTube algorithm is.