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The retrospective of discoveries for 2023 from Sega Dreamcast Info

Updated: Jan 1

The year 2023 was generous in terms of Dreamcast prototypes. Admittedly, there were no major Unreleased discoveries, but the quality of the prototypes was there for all to see, with rarely seen betas offering a glimpse behind the scenes of video game development.

The Dreamcast Unreleased in 2023

Worms Pinball Dreamcast (February 23, 2023, First Release) with developer interview: Worms Pinball, a pinball simulation featuring mischievous earthworms - a surprising spin-off of the franchise - was planned for SEGA's latest console. Infogrames, in charge of its publishing, finally decided to cancel the Dreamcast port as its development was close to being finalised. Everything was based on the same code as the PC version because Worms Pinball is in fact a Dreamcast port (under Windows CE) of Pinball Addiction on PC.

Half-Life Dreamcast (February 27, 2023, New Prototype) with journalist interview: If there are still people who don't know Half-Life, here are a few lines about this fabulous Doom-like game. Throughout the game, you play as Gordon Freeman, a scientist from Black Mesa working for the American army in a top-secret research complex. During an experiment, a terrible incident occurs. A space-time rift is opened, allowing a number of aliens to enter the secret base. This is now the most recent GDI available for this Unreleased game from Gearbox.

Quake 3 Arena Dreamcast Japanese version (July 2, 2023, First Release) with interview and Making-of for the console's Online: After the success of John Carmack's last game on PC, SEGA wanted to hit hard by offering a Dreamcast port of Quake 3 Arena. The intent was to create a game that would be an online showcase for the Dreamcast, and this Doom-like game was identified as perfect to achieve this. It was supposed to be the first online game for the console. This Japanese prototype of Quake 3 Arena would have been burned about 2 months after the release of the game in the West (late October/early December 2000). The translation seems to be complete without being able to check if it is 100% correct.

Propeller Arena Dreamcast (September 5, 2023, 6 New Prototypes) with Making-of: Propeller Arena, originally known as Propeller Head Online or Propeller Arena Battle 2045, is a Dreamcast-exclusive aerial combat game that puts the player in command of old World War II birds competing in tournaments in the distant future. Seven Propeller Arena Dreamcast prototypes are now available for free download from the game's redesigned homepage (Making-of). There's an alternative version (a must-try), an E3 version, a Debug Menu version and more.

The important Dreamcast prototypes of 2023

Sonic Adventure Tournament Disk Dreamcast (April 2, 2023, First Release) with interview and Making-of for "The Sega Dreamcast Mobil Assault Tour" event: A new version of Sonic Adventure (Tournament Disk) has been discovered. This prototype was used for the competition during the event "The Sega Dreamcast Mobil Assault Tour". As part of the Mobile Assault Tour, the "Sega Dreamcast Championships" was created. The championship took place in Las Vegas and was hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, with a special performance by Blink 182. Some of the organizers describes to us the event.

Sega Smash Pack Dreamcast (April 30, 2023, First Release) with interview and Making-of: Sega Smash Pack Volume 1 Dreamcast, is a collection of emulated Mega Drive games, which contains 12 titles including 10 relatively niche ones that were on SEGA’s 16 bits console: Sonic the Hedgehog, Vectorman, Altered Beast, Golden Axe, Revenge of Shinobi, Streets of Rage 2, Columns, Phantasy Star 2, Shining Force, Wrestle War, Sega Swirl and Virtua Cop 2. Its programmer and producer tell us the history of the Mega Drive emulation on DC and the behind the scenes of its development.

Crazy Taxi 2 Dreamcast (June 1, 2023, First Release): In terms of development, Crazy Taxi 2 has been built on the foundation of the first title, with many of the same gameplay mechanics and features being retained. However, the developers have introduced a number of new features (such as picking up multiple people at once) and improvements to make the game more engaging and exciting for players. Three new prototypes of Crazy Taxi have been preserved and archived. In one of the builds, a Debug Menu allows you to modify the view as you wish. If you don't know Crazy GTAxi 2 yet, it's time to discover it.

Grandia 2 Dreamcast (June 15, 2023, First Release): Presenting an early prototype of Grandia 2 on Dreamcast, dated 3 months before the final Japanese version. The differences are numerous, with many textures missing, whether on a level element or on the entire map. Beautifully realized, with a perfect combat system and an atmosphere so pleasant that it's hard to let go of the controller before the credits roll, Grandia II is one of the Dreamcast's greatest successes. Although it doesn't quite match its predecessor, it demonstrates the mastery of Game Arts in the 2000s. All in all, Grandia 2 is a must-have, one of the first truly mastered 128-bit RPGs.

Skies of Arcadia E3 Dreamcast ( 4 novembre 2023, First Release): Introducing a prototype used during E3 2000 for one of the Dreamcast's greatest RPGs, the famous Skies of Arcadia. It's a demo with a historical interest and a few special features. Released on October 8, 2000 in Japan, Eternal Arcadia quickly established itself as one of the most memorable RPGs of its time. Acclaimed by gamers and the press worldwide, the game soon became one of the Dreamcast's most memorable. Two decades later, gamers and developers alike are still talking about it. While it is far from perfect, it remains a fantastic experience and an ultimate classic.

The main articles dedicated to video games for 2023

The history of No Cliché and its original Dreamcast games, from Toy Commander to Agartha... not forgetting Toy Racer, with interview, making-of and prototypes to download: No Cliché was a development studio created in 1997 by SEGA, and supervised by Frédérick Raynal. As in 1997 Delphine Groupe had decided to sell Adeline Software, Frédérick Raynal took the opportunity to point this out. For the first collaboration with No Cliché, SEGA wanted a multiplayer game with a target audience of 14 year old boys (teenagers). Agartha wasn't going to be for the moment, as the Japanese company didn't want an adventure game as the first software with the French team.

Memories of The Flinstone in Viva Rock Vegas Dreamcast (its prototypes and White Label) with interview and Making-of: Some games smell of suffering, others don't. Flinstones on the White Queen is one of those that had a chaotic development. In just eight months, the small F. F. team assigned to the project had achieved the impossible, delivering a game to its publisher Swing! Entertainment Media AG. It was no mean feat - nothing had gone exactly to plan. The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas on Dreamcast is a cancelled (Unreleased) car racing game, developed by F. F. and to be published by Swing! Entertainment, and distributed by Virgin Interactive Entertainment. It is based on the 2000s film of the same name, itself inspired by Hanna-Barbera's famous Flintstones franchise.

Stampede on Dreamcast and PC , the Unreleased which was to let us experience the life of a shepherd with interview and Making-of: In 2018, the Dreamcast community learned of an aborted project called Stampede, a well-kept secret for many years. The aim of the game was to use and give instructions (stop, bark, sit, etc.) to the faithful canine companion to bring sheep, and later other exotic animals, into an enclosure and prevent them from leaving, all within a given time limit. Each type of animal had its own set of characteristics: speed, intelligence, tendency to gather, weight, ferocity etc...

Happy New Year 2024 and best wishes to all!


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