What is the most underrated SEGA Dreamcast game?

Now that the console turns 20 years old over in Japan, the SEGA Dreamcast library has been dived into for over two decades, having people find buried treasure throughout the consoles library. But it still remains that a lot of hardcore users all have one or two titles that only they appreciate and no one talks about really.

So the question for this post is, in your humble opinion, what is the most underrated SEGA Dreamcast game? Of course this can have many answers and some of the choices will be personal. I could go on in this post talking about underrated games like Napple Tale, MDK 2, Super Magnetic Neo, Toy Commander, Cannon Spike, Garou: Mark of the Wolves, The Last Blade 2, Tech Romancer, Elemental Gimmick Gear, SegaGaGa, Record of the Lodoss War, Cosmic Smash, Seaman, and many more. But I want to hear your underrated Dreamcast titles and why you consider them underrated!


30 responses to “What is the most underrated SEGA Dreamcast game?

  1. Vamphaery says:

    Totally biased pick: Skies of Arcadia. To this day, the most purely enjoyable, engrossing, and replayable JRPG I’ve ever encountered. And I’ve played a ton of them, and it wasn’t my first – not by far – so it wasn’t just the newness of the genre or some such. I had already been gaming since the 80s. Imho, it’s just that good, and for its time the level of openness and exploration and sense of discovery and wonder were just unbelievable. And that’s in an era where we had games like Shenmue. That it isn’t routinely listed among the greatest JRPGs of all time – its repetitive encounter rate notwithstanding – is a crime to me lol.

    More objective (but still opinion based) pick: Seaman. Decent voice recognition, for the time at least, in a game was a huge, huge technical achievement then. Graphically and mechanically it was impressive what they achieved. And probably to this day, the most well known achievement from Yoot Saito, one of the most underrated, brilliant, and creative game designers I can think of. Just his ideas don’t tend toward mass appeal, sadly.

  2. Ben White says:

    I’d have to go with Dynamite Cop, known as Dynamite Deka 2 in Japan. A great beat em up that has mostly gone unnoticed outside of hardcore fans of the console. Still a blast to play to this day and it’s cool that they game had dlc you could download to unlock more features (even if all that content was technically on the disc, but it was free!). Would love to see this and the original game get ported to modern consoles, that’d be great.

    • Neal says:

      Yes Dynamite Cop!

      I’ve got Die Hard Arcade for the Saturn, which is the US release of Dynamite Deka. I never picked up Dynamite Cop for DC though (although I rented it several times back in the day). I’d love to see re-released of both games.

  3. Tdixpix says:

    I always loved virtual on, and I think it’s fair to call that one if the more underrated first party titles. I love it so much so that I’m building an Atari machine when custom twin sticks just to play it again.

    I’d really really love to play Segagaga too, but the lack of a translation patch has always stopped me. Looking at a script beside me just isn’t the same

  4. itsstillthinking says:

    Ecco Defender of the future, one of the most amazing games ever made from level design, music and art direction!

  5. Dhezz says:

    I second Skies of Arcadia. It’s typically overshadowed by Phantasy Star Online and Shenmue (which are also amazing), but it’s a stunning achievement in its own right. It’s one of the earliest fully 3D JRPGs. It has two fully developed battle systems. It has a vast, open, fully-realized 3D world — with no loading times when exploring it on the ship. It’s a 60-hour-long epic with a memorable world and characters. It’s superbly directed.

    Skies of Arcadia happens to have been released at a time when Sega was releasing a new groundbreaking game every month. It’s one of the more traditional games in the lineup, so it’s often overlooked, even though it was reviewed extremely highly when it was released, and is one of the highest reviewed games to appear on the Dreamcast.

    It’s my favorite game of all time.

    My second and third choices are the Space Channel 5 games (Part 2, especially) and Virtua Fighter 3tb, respectively. VF3tb was overshadowed by Soul Calibur in the West. I think this was in part due to the nature of the Dreamcast port, which was outsourced to Genki and not as graphically impressive as the arcade version, unlike Soul Calibur, which was stunning at the time.

    • Neal says:

      Virtua Fighter in general seems to be pretty underrated in the west. Mostly due to the low sales numbers of the Saturn, I’m sure.

  6. Puyo Puyo Fever. It’s the first great innovation that franchise had since Puyo Puyo Tsu, it’s the last SEGA game published for Dreamcast, it introduced a whole new loveable cast of cute anime characters, and it has an English translation built in even though it was only released in Japan.

    Best of all is it has a real arcade-style story mode; I prefer this to the story modes that the console-centric Puyos have because each stage has a unique AI which forces you to play the game differently.

    This game is definitely something people should check out now that the franchise has gotten a second wind in the west with Puyo Puyo Tetris.

  7. Elly says:

    That will be Blue Stinger, Grandia 2 and Evolution. That will be my main pick.

    • Miguel says:

      Remember Dark Savior wow I played that game for hours because it had different paths to take and different endings.
      It was hard to find in stores when it was out I only knew about it because Sega sent me demos for the Sega Saturn games at the time.

  8. Ikagura says:

    I wouldn’t say Phantasy Star Online (even if the Phantasy Star serie as a whole is underrated compared to bigger JRPG franchises)

    But Toy Commander was really fun (I only did the demo back in the day).

    I would also say that Chu Chu Rocket was a great Puzzle game that is kinda overshadowed nowadays because the Internet is more present than before

  9. Deefy says:

    My choice is Cosmic Smash!

  10. RushDawg says:

    Bangai-O is underrated both as a Dreamcast game and as a Treasure game,

    • Ikagura says:

      Treasure games are most of the time underrated (except some popular ones like Gunstar Heroes and Ikaruga) but then again I knew Bangai-O thanks to the DS version

  11. None of them… they’re all amazing!

  12. James Brown says:

    I’d agree with Tech Romancer, Super Magnetic Neo and Record of Lodoss War, love those games! Also want to add Pen Pen, I personally really love that game, Sword of the Berserk Guts Rage, Deadly Skies, Speed Devils, Red Dog, and The Nomad Soul!

  13. Neal says:

    Power Stone, obviously.

    Outside of the PSP port, Power Stone needs to be re-released so more people can play it. That game is a great arena fighter.

    Outtrigger was also a ton of fun for online play, especially if you had the Dreamcast mouse (and preferrably the keyboard too).

    Toy Commander was a great, imaginative game with a ton of game modes. Those airplane missions felt incredible at the time to me.

    But the answer is still Power Stone.

  14. Barry says:

    Hard to say. I want to pick Power Stone, but I think it is actually quite highly acclaimed and known to be a good game. Though I can see how the sequel overshadows it and the fact that Capcom has left the franchise dormant means not many modern players know of Power Stone.

    I’d say true underrated Dreamcast games include Illbleed, D2, Looney Tunes Space Race and Wacky Racers. I also feel that San Francisco Rush 2049 is forgotten and underrated. Probably one of the craziest racers on the console.

    • Neal says:

      Rush 2049 is dope, for sure.

      I picked Power Stone because, as much acclaim as it got, it’s a Capcom fighter that has been overshadowed by their other, more popular fighting game franchises, and aside from a PSP port, the Dreamcast is really the only way to play it, since it hasn’t had any major re-released for home consoles, and the arcade cabinet is nowhere to be found.

      Plus it still plays fantastically. Other games felt really good for their time, but the gameplay feels outdated. Power Stone’s gameplay still holds up.

  15. Blue Stinger. VERY UNDERRATED.

    • Miguel says:

      Don’t forget Dark Savior which makes a small cameo when you get to the theatre area you’ll see a poster of Dark Savior.

  16. am2model3 says:

    Sega AM2’s Outtrigger; since it came out Summer 2001. That game is amazing!!
    Just thinking about it makes me happy!

  17. Xavier says:

    Rival Scools/Project Justice

  18. Elly says:

    my last pick will be Shadow Man
    although not many gamers play or picked up that game i think.
    Plus during that area i think that there are many gamers probably played legacy of kain / soul reaver. So if you like adventure games play Shadow Man the first game. I would even go so far that it is a hidden gem just like exhumed of the sega saturn. d. foundry did a df retro on it, as for Shadow Man i think its available on Steam .. enjoy

  19. Rezapoc says:

    For me it’s got to be Headhunter, it’s a fantastic stealth and cover shooter that still looks decent and plays really well today but sadly got overshadowed by mgs2s hype machine.

    Evolution 1 & 2 are both fantastic as well, the random dungeons were usually really fair and the bosses were fantastic!

  20. Hman says:

    I would pick seaman 1st and secondly this game about an enraged swordsman. I cannot recall the precise name but something like Sword of the Berserker or Rage of Berserker

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