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Most impressive 3D-Games for the Sega Saturn

UnNamed

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Saturn had games from 1995 to 1999 so it was a pretty decent lifespan. We could have enjoyed a few more late hits like Virtua Fighter 3, but overall, the console demonstrated pretty well what it could do and there were many very impressive games on it.
PSone had games until 2004, but I would say 2002 was already the swan song for PSX. Saturn had most of it's support until 1998 (despite SFA3 and D&D in 1999).
 

cireza

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PSone had games until 2004, but I would say 2002 was already the swan song for PSX. Saturn had most of it's support until 1998 (despite SFA3 and D&D in 1999).
Ok, but I don't care about PS1 actually. Great if the console had games for 10 years. Saturn had games for 5 years, and 5 years is already a lot and demonstrates a lot.
 
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The FMV fad also was not so much a fad, there were parts of it that were, but by the time Sega started dropping a lot of support quickly for the Sega CD, FMV was getting better, was starting to be used in more complicated genre's like Adventure games, and was still relevant.
FMV games were the definition of a fad, even in the way you phrase your argument you concede it (Sega dropped the support because it was a fad and they saw that they wasted millions of dollars trying to make it work).

FMV getting better helped other genres for cut scenes or transitions, but it would never fix the issues with FMV based games, i.e.: lack of interaction.

The Sega CD gave the old Genesis a good boost in capabilities, allowing it to do effects that were plain impossible on any 16-bit consoles, also CDs were a big deal compared to cartridges, be it to store better quality audio or more graphics data for sprites animation or background tiles.

The few games that took advantage of its capabilities were pretty stunning:






Anyway, we should probably be celebrating the Saturn instead!
 
Jul 24, 2016
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FMV games were the definition of a fad, even in the way you phrase your argument you concede it (Sega dropped the support because it was a fad and they saw that they wasted millions of dollars trying to make it work).

Sega dropped it because they barely supported it in the first place, it didn't take off as much as they hoped, which was during the peak of the Genesis's highs, and half their FMV games on the Sega CD, where bad due to limitations, poor compression, and likely in some cases, rushed implementation.

If FMV was a "fad" then several other companies wouldn't have picked up their outputs and start adding it to various genres. You trying to place all FMV on the backs of the Sega CD just shows you never had any sound or logical argument. 20+ years of FMV isn't a fad no matter how you slice it, and Sega being one of the worst failures has nothing to do with everyone else. Even the non-FMV games couldn't save the Sega CD, it did somewhat ok at best despite releasing at the rise of CD popularity and the height of the Genesis, that says more about Sega than FMV.

Not to mention third-party multiplats performed better outside of the Sega CD in many cases on other consoles to, which again, is more of Sega's fault than whatever nonsense you're coming up with.

FMV getting better helped other genres for cut scenes or transitions, but it would never fix the issues with FMV based games, i.e.: lack of interaction.
You have no idea what you're talking about, interaction is why FMV lasted almost until the 2000's on more advanced consoles and on PC. You are stuck in the "flash" corpse killer/creature shock mindset where a ton of devs just put out Dragons lair or rebel assault clones or similar titles, games were already moving past that, Sega decided to launch their CD without any of that progression, mostly. We are talking the 92-94 time frame for Sega CD, where Under a killing moon was released, among many other games.
 
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Yeah, he doubled sales, that wasn't going to happen with the MD having a two year head start?

No it wasn't, you really don't get where Sega's position was in NA SMS to Genesis and before Sonic. If there was no Sonic, he would of at least got the Genesis to 4-5 million also he's the one who noticed the vacuum Nintendo left which helped post-Sonic and post-MK2 get that alienated crowd of gamers which Nintendo never appealed to with the NES or the SNES (although they gained with the latter as Sega fumbled the ball), and got there before NEC was able to get them (which they were about to after they fumbled at the start). Without him more than doubling sales and creating the infrastructure, and it's also due to him Sega became more agressively competitive, Sega would have been in a completely different place, the Genesis would have just sold a couple plus million perfectly fine with some modest profits while attacting gamers to their other segments and licensing out the popular games to devs to place on other gaming systems.

What's funny is even WITH him doing this, the Genesis didn't have that many sales before Sonic then they should have. The two year headstart requires context, it was basically irrelevant. Just like Nec's 3 year head start.

Sorry to break to this you, but SOJ commissioned Sonic.

What does this have to do with "before" sonic? That was the point.

The time to kill the 32X was in April 1994 when the Jaguar and 3DO were flops and SEGA Japan showed off the Saturn to the world.

Some strange history you got going here. The 3DO wasn't a flop, it wasn't even a year old yet by april 1994, and the Jaguar would literally release later that year or close to the same time, the Jaguar, despite popular misinformation, did not release in 1993 it released in 1994, 1993 was a market experiment.

Also the 32X hardware would have already been set, you would want them to just waste the R&D money and piss off more software developers which they had already pissed off multiple already? Not to mention retailers who were already preparing for the product among other issues.

Additionally, Sega still wasn't clear on the Jaguars capabilities or the 3DO's and it wouldn't have been long before Sega reacted to the PS1 and changed up their strategy.

More importantly, Sega didn't know that the "test market" in 1993 for the Jaguar was only 20,000 consoles, sure they sold every console they made but it was clear to anyone who had a sub to the outlets that put out that info that Atari did not have the money to actually manufacture enough consoles to really do anything with. the Jaguar, even if it had 10/10 legendary 1st year lineup of all time.
 
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No it wasn't, you really don't get where Sega's position was in NA SMS to Genesis and before Sonic. If there was no Sonic, he would of at least got the Genesis to 4-5 million also he's the one who noticed the vacuum Nintendo left which helped post-Sonic and post-MK2 get that alienated crowd of gamers which Nintendo never appealed to with the NES or the SNES (although they gained with the latter as Sega fumbled the ball), and got there before NEC was able to get them (which they were about to after they fumbled at the start). Without him more than doubling sales and creating the infrastructure, and it's also due to him Sega became more agressively competitive, Sega would have been in a completely different place, the Genesis would have just sold a couple plus million perfectly fine with some modest profits while attacting gamers to their other segments and licensing out the popular games to devs to place on other gaming systems.

What's funny is even WITH him doing this, the Genesis didn't have that many sales before Sonic then they should have. The two year headstart requires context, it was basically irrelevant. Just like Nec's 3 year head start.



What does this have to do with "before" sonic? That was the point.



Some strange history you got going here. The 3DO wasn't a flop, it wasn't even a year old yet by april 1994, and the Jaguar would literally release later that year or close to the same time, the Jaguar, despite popular misinformation, did not release in 1993 it released in 1994, 1993 was a market experiment.

Also the 32X hardware would have already been set, you would want them to just waste the R&D money and piss off more software developers which they had already pissed off multiple already? Not to mention retailers who were already preparing for the product among other issues.

Additionally, Sega still wasn't clear on the Jaguars capabilities or the 3DO's and it wouldn't have been long before Sega reacted to the PS1 and changed up their strategy.

More importantly, Sega didn't know that the "test market" in 1993 for the Jaguar was only 20,000 consoles, sure they sold every console they made but it was clear to anyone who had a sub to the outlets that put out that info that Atari did not have the money to actually manufacture enough consoles to really do anything with. the Jaguar, even if it had 10/10 legendary 1st year lineup of all time.

You or I don't know how many Mega Drive would be sold without Sonic. What we do know is SEGA saw a massive spike in Hardware sales after Sonic and no Mega Drive game comes remotely close to Sonic sales. Sonic was also Huge in Europe and that was a market where SEGA was totally dominated without Tom.

3DO wasn't a flop? Everyone knew it was, early in its sales its 1st year's sales were a disaster Sega was worried that the Jaguar would take away sales given the impressive spec and price point. When it was clear both the 3DO and Jaguar was no threat and when in April 1994 SEGA was showing off the finished Saturn, that was the time to have killed off 32X and just focus on the Saturn. If SEGA America was so worried about the price of the Saturn then they should have pushed for the original Jupiter plan to go along side the CD-based Saturn.


And to call a 2-year head start irrelevant is laughable. It was a lovely gift to SEGA in the west more so with various companies having enough of Nintendo contracts for development and looking to develop on other platforms and many console gamers also looking to move to 16 bit.
 

RAIDEN1

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Check this video out, this goes to show what a $h1t-show the Saturn was to work for which didn't help its "mass appeal" one bit:

 

cireza

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Check this video out, this goes to show what a $h1t-show the Saturn was to work for which didn't help its "mass appeal" one bit:

We know that you think the Saturn is shit. You have been posting this from you very first message in this topic. Some videos you posted are absolute garbage by the way.

This is not a thread for you to shit on the Saturn, this is thread to talk about its 3D games. Move on.
 
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Soltype

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This game is a perfect example of how crazy SEGA was. Yu Suzuki supposedly made this as a tech demo to see what they could possibly expect from VF3 on the Saturn. They did the same thing with VF Kids, which apparently started as a tech demo for facial animation.
 
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Alexios

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Outside SEGA some of the Saturn's best 3D games are from smaller companies (Lobotomy!) and far from AAA (which was barely a thing), it wasn't about budgets and additional work, just what the given studio was capable of pulling off and their expertise, from coding languages to low poly art.

These games' mechs, especially GFII's, wouldn't look out of place in Front Mission 3 yet these are real time faux-sims, not turn based strategy games that only ever show 3D preset attack sequences in 1 on 1 combat. There's the sharper looking Virtual On for that kind of small scenario of course.

Same goes for PlayStation at times, sure Metal Gear Solid is a thing but you also have From Software evolving from the humble King's Field to the amazing looking Echo Night, the first of which is already impressive but clearly has less than artistic character textures, which the sequel so fixed up.

Saturn not being quite as good as PlayStation in some things doesn't make it shit. Nor does it bring PlayStation close to the Model 2 that people trash the Saturn for not doing in the ports, given that was a machine that cost thousands of dollars at the time, lol. Just warped perceptions all around.

The likes of Resident Evil and Tomb Raider show the difference between the systems was hardly anything to write home about, sure you can tell them apart but not to the degree they became shit unplayable versions or anything. Close to the differences between PS3 & Xbox 360 multiplat games.

How about that 60fps Mass Destruction with water reflected splosions though! If that can happen then you can tell some devs just couldn't bother with Saturn at all leading to some rather horrendous results...

But of course Saturn was also the one affordable option (so not buying the arcade-priced Neo Geo lol) to enjoy a treasure trove of 2D games, from Capcom's finest to SNK's best, on one system. So yes, this thread is about 3D but that's not a greenlight for people to trash the whole system's worth.
 
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Danknugz

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Ahhh well. This thread remind me my deception of playing Daytona on it and seeing all that draw in pop up. Na, it was not a good 3D machine. But Powerslave was really cool!
I remember looking so forward to having Daytona at home and how disappointed I was when I saw Daytona running on Saturn in the window of Walden software. That said I still played it to death and I believe that was the game I learned how to powerslide/drift.
 

RAIDEN1

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Does Sim City 2000 on Saturn have the 3D mode of the Playstation version?

Doubt it, the game chugged on the Saturn at 2 frames per second, if there is ANY game that pushed the Saturn to its limits it is Sim City....as shown in the video...no matter what you added, floppy disc drive, cartridge expansion it still wasn't enough to boost performance..
 
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Great post! Exactly what I want to see here.

Some of the more obscure Japanese titles that aren't as known are very welcome. Homebrew games too and generally 3D games that look very good and/or push the system's 3D capabilities.

Comparisons with PS1 and N64 games are inevitable and should be done, especially for multiplatform titles, but please less talk about sales or "what if" scenarios, and more posts about games. That's what this thread is about after all.
 
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Alexios

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Speaking of Gungriffon there's a fan made sequel true to the Saturn style instead of what came out on PS2 and Xbox. It apes the retro 3D (it clearly does things Saturn couldn't, though some effects could be better too) and it doesn't just copy the gameplay but elevate it with new additions like the map you order allied units in.

I'm just sad I can't get a good gamepad configuration going to make it even more true to its roots but oh well, I guess it's meant for mouse and keyboard play anyway and you do need that extra precision and accuracy to make it out alive. There's plenty of content too with like 11 missions to get through. I've only seen a few.
 
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cireza

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if that can happen then you can tell some devs just couldn't bother with Saturn at all leading to some rather horrendous results...
This, basically. There are many instances of third party games running perfectly well or better on Saturn. Add this to all the great exclusives we got, there isn't anything that demonstrates the console was bad at 3D, rather the opposite actually.

Another example of a good port to the Saturn is Road Rash. The game runs very well and is very smooth.


Another amazing 3D game is Scorcher. The soundtrack by Jesper Kyd is fantastic.

The amount of technical stuff this game does is pretty insane. You have lighting effects for the drawing of the background in the distance. The scrolling is fast and the game is smooth. Pretty elaborated physics as well. The developers behind the game were the very talented people who worked on Red Zone and Sub Terrania for the MegaDrive.


Wipeout 2097 also has a great Saturn version :

Sonic R is definitely a showcase for the 3D of the Saturn. Background also fades-in in the distance with simulated transparency. Back then, it was very impressive. Final race is fully transparent.

Panzer Dragoon Zwei : here is 3D boss that dives into fully transparent, animated water. And everything is reflected in the water as well. Mighty impressive.
Just look at the laser sequence here, it is insane for its time (1996) :

And game maintains a perfect 30fps.

Not 3D, but still putting this here because of how impressive it is. Dragon Force, 200 animated sprites at once on a 3D plane, full screen transparencies in spells :

Pretty much the entirety of Radiant Silvergun is mind-blowing, with its incredible high quality 3D backgrounds and seamless transitions. Game is butter smooth as well.
 
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Alexios

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Saturn 3D was crap. Sluggish and no transparency effects. PS1 blew it away.
That came out in 96, 1995's F-1 Live Information/F1 Challenge doesn't often get credit but I think it looks pretty good. The Japanese version's Grand Prix mode apes F-1 TV coverage with commentary and a picture-in-picture view of what is happening elsewhere in the track, that a button sets to always on, always off or to automatically pop up when relevant (iirc). You might have seen videos where it seems to chug at a terrible pace, like your example, but it's actually the second view (mirror in the world version and/or other modes) causing it, disabling it allows it to perform pretty great:

You can check how much worse it is with it on before that timestamp and in other parts of the video. The pop in is more noticable in some of the other tracks with tall buildings and structures right as you enter 90 degree turns or similar but when you consider the 24 cars are in it's not too bad.
 
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MrA

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Doubt it, the game chugged on the Saturn at 2 frames per second, if there is ANY game that pushed the Saturn to its limits it is Sim City....as shown in the video...no matter what you added, floppy disc drive, cartridge expansion it still wasn't enough to boost performance..
the playstation version also ran at like 2 frames a second, cpu bound games we're bad news for saturn and psx

This, basically. There are many instances of third party games running perfectly well or better on Saturn. Add this to all the great exclusives we got, there isn't anything that demonstrates the console was bad at 3D, rather the opposite actually.

Another example of a good port to the Saturn is Road Rash. The game runs very well and is very smooth.


Another amazing 3D game is Scorcher. The soundtrack by Jesper Kyd is fantastic.

The amount of technical stuff this game does is pretty insane. You have lighting effects for the drawing of the background in the distance. The scrolling is fast and the game is smooth. Pretty elaborated physics as well. The developers behind the game were the very talented people who worked on Red Zone and Sub Terrania for the MegaDrive.


Wipeout 2097 also has a great Saturn version :

Sonic R is definitely a showcase for the 3D of the Saturn. Background also fades-in in the distance with simulated transparency. Back then, it was very impressive. Final race is fully transparent.

Panzer Dragoon Zwei : here is 3D boss that dives into fully transparent, animated water. And everything is reflected in the water as well. Mighty impressive.
Just look at the laser sequence here, it is insane for its time (1996) :

And game maintains a perfect 30fps.

Not 3D, but still putting this here because of how impressive it is. Dragon Force, 200 animated sprites at once on a 3D plane, full screen transparencies in spells :

Pretty much the entirety of Radiant Silvergun is mind-blowing, with its incredible high quality 3D backgrounds and seamless transitions. Game is butter smooth as well.
The coding secrets videos on youtube are awesome at explaining the saturns problems, the system was totally nuts to code for, if you wanted decent polygon counts devs needed to use the dsp in a very specific way and each and every special effect took some crazy problem solving
 
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cireza

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The coding secrets videos
Yes I have watched them all I think. Very interesting insight in the MegaDrive and Saturn development. You had to use the DSP for advanced mathematics, but the chip was there for developers to use. They built the console for developers to use all of these components, because they knew that such calculations had to be offloaded to the DSP for efficiency.
 
Jul 24, 2016
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You or I don't know how many Mega Drive would be sold without Sonic. What we do know is SEGA saw a massive spike in Hardware sales after Sonic and no Mega Drive game comes remotely close to Sonic sales. Sonic was also Huge in Europe and that was a market where SEGA was totally dominated without Tom.

Actually after Sonic 2 Sonic sales weren't that high.

Also Europe Sonic was a success because they adopted the NOA strategy of giving it away for free so that's stilll due to Tom.

3DO wasn't a flop? Everyone knew it was, early in its sales its 1st year's sales were a disaster Sega was worried that the Jaguar would take away sales given the impressive spec and price point.

You literally don't know what you're saying and are switching histories around, Sega when in talks with 3Do didn't know anything about the 3Do yet and they put out their demos later than Atari, if Sega saw the 3DO was stronger than the Jaguar and more impressive they may have changed toon with releasing a 3DO machine and likely would have delayed the Saturn. It was the early Atari spec sheets and the demo's that scared Sega in regards to the Jaguar.


When it was clear both the 3DO and Jaguar was no threat and when in April 1994 SEGA was showing off the finished Saturn, that was the time to have killed off 32X and just focus on the Saturn.
Your imagination isn't a reality, it was not "clear" either weren't a threat at that time,

For jaguar it would take until the end of the year 1994 to determine it's poor manufacturing capability and niche sales numbers.

For 3DO, it would take another year (end of 95 post NA PSX sat launch) before the 3DO started being questioned for slow sales before the fire sales and game bundles started, especially since sales jumped up after the initial price cuts in 94, especially the second half, and the earlier part of 95, and it had some top rated software titles and GEX wasn't even a thing yet. But Need for Speed was and it was a big deal along with several other games like Road Rash StreetFighterIIT Super wing commander etc and then gex would sweep the rest of the year. Mags were talking about the slew of great games out coming out, and the lower prices and the interest from devs, more stores also stocked the console, and it was doing pretty decent in Japan since the 94 launch as well sooo yeah..... Easy to trash consoles back in the day with no context or education on what happened.

Regardless, the main point here is the Jaguar, which not it was not 'clear" that's why they finished and then released the damn 32x. If it was actually "clear" they would have dropped it, or made it a ill-advertised niche item that you may see in some stores while promoting the Saturn instead.

And to call a 2-year head start irrelevant is laughable. It was a lovely gift to SEGA in the west more so with various companies having enough of Nintendo contracts for development and looking to develop on other platforms and many console gamers also looking to move to 16 bit.

Sega's sales and it's library where not in a good place int hat "two-year head start" so that's a load of nonsense. Just like NEC's 3-year head start was also irrelevant. Sega wasn't competitive anywhere until Sonic, it's best selling game was MS. freaking Pac-man along with bundled sales of Altered Beast, and that wasn't even much over 2 million consoles by 1990 and then that year was also not that high, granted tom marketing strategy did give it a boost that year which gave momentum into 1991 and Sonic.

It also wasn't until hat time you saw a mass surge of developers burned by NES moving over (who were previously slowly moving to the turbografx (in japan they still were) at the time) and then some western devs who never wanted to touch the NES, also came in droves.

You're acting like the Genesis sold some significant number and had significant software interest out the gate and that two-year start helped make it substantial, that's not actually what happened, even looking at a (complete) game release list will debunk that garbage.
 
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The likes of Resident Evil and Tomb Raider show the difference between the systems was hardly anything to write home about, sure you can tell them apart but not to the degree they became shit unplayable versions or anything. Close to the differences between PS3 & Xbox 360 multiplat games.
Late PS3/360 multis sure, several early games has a big gap in the 360's favor.

This game is a perfect example of how crazy SEGA was. Yu Suzuki supposedly made this as a tech demo to see what they could possibly expect from VF3 on the Saturn. They did the same thing with VF Kids, which apparently started as a tech demo for facial animation.

? Was VF kids supposed to look graphically better than Saturn VF2?
 

Soltype

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Late PS3/360 multis sure, several early games has a big gap in the 360's favor.



? Was VF kids supposed to look graphically better than Saturn VF2?
No it started as an internal test for facial animation for VF3 arcade's development, and then they decided to flesh it out and just sell it.
 
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Alexios

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I found an ok longplay (not the greatest player in dodging or remembering the melee and limited grenades) of Gundam SS I: Blue Terror (part I of the short episodic The Blue Destiny trilogy, also shown earlier). Its final mission shows how the action doesn't miss a beat even with multiple enemies and destructible structures all over the place, thanks to the flat yet fancy VDP2 terrain. They're very simple action games compared to Gungriffon's faux-sim but they're a joy with such smooth action. Idk why they weren't more popular/enough to localise, they look like a Gundam fan's wet dream.

The next games also have a mission that's actually in an interior, though it's very basic corridors and halls with some pillars in, all square like, and the trilogy's final mission is in outer space. It's a shame they're very short even as a full trilogy with like 5 missions each. Yet the tech is advanced as it even does all the cool in-engine mission intros/progress/outros. A sequel going for a deeper experience could fix some things up (like locking on enemies/getting attacked out of visible range, more objective/enemy/mechas variety). Dreamcast's Rise from the Ashes is like a spiritual successor.
 
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Actually after Sonic 2 Sonic sales weren't that high.

Also Europe Sonic was a success because they adopted the NOA strategy of giving it away for free so that's stilll due to Tom.
SEGA in Europe was able to outsell both the NES and SNES without Tom's help, even before Sonic the Mega Drive was selling great in the UK and the Master System was huge.
Sega Japan made the call to respond to the 3DO and more precisely Jaguar in January of 1994 confirmed by both Scott Bayless and Marty Franz (read retrogamer) If you did a little bit of research you'll find out that SEGA were in talks for the M2/Bulldog hardware, not the original 3DO but fell out with Matsushita confirmed by Trip Hawkins himself in Edge magazine and SEGA's AM didn't rate the Hardware much either which is what Isao Okawa said was the main reason Sega turned down the M2 hardware
 
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UnNamed

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For me this was the best method to handle Saturn games: infinite plain for the terrain, polygons for everything else, since PSX wasted lot of polygons to draw terrain because the wobbling textures. For some reason this rarely happened, so in the end a game like Ghost in the Shell for PSX released in the same period had a better visual overall.

I begin to think Daytona CE was an underrated gem on Saturn: solid 30fps, run fast, lot of cars on track, good use of polygons. At the time D:CE was released, end of 1996, the best racing game in terms of visual was Rage Racer, which was better in terms of visual, can be really fast in the latest races, but it also used some tricks, for example to display just 2 cars on track. In the end RR was probably better, but Daytona was a good contender, for that period


 
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cireza

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For me this was the best method to handle Saturn games: infinite plain for the terrain, polygons for everything else, since PSX wasted lot of polygons to draw terrain because the wobbling textures. For some reason this rarely happened, so in the end a game like Ghost in the Shell for PSX released in the same period had a better visual overall.

I begin to think Daytona CE was an underrated gem on Saturn: solid 30fps, run fast, lot of cars on track, good use of polygons. At the time D:CE was released, end of 1996, the best racing game in terms of visual was Rage Racer, which was better in terms of visual, can be really fast in the latest races, but it also used some tricks, for example to display just 2 cars on track. In the end RR was probably better, but Daytona was a good contender, for that period


Daytona CE has very clean and smooth graphics, but there were many games like this actually. For example, Panzer Dragoon started a bit rough with FPS in the 20s, but Zwei displays a ton of stuff and remains at a very smooth 30 FPS all the time. Sega Rally is also like this, clean 3D, very smooth.
 
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RAIDEN1

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To this day it is still a what if....what if Daytona 2 came to the Dreamcast....what would it be like..
 

Kazza

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For me this was the best method to handle Saturn games: infinite plain for the terrain, polygons for everything else, since PSX wasted lot of polygons to draw terrain because the wobbling textures. For some reason this rarely happened, so in the end a game like Ghost in the Shell for PSX released in the same period had a better visual overall.

I begin to think Daytona CE was an underrated gem on Saturn: solid 30fps, run fast, lot of cars on track, good use of polygons. At the time D:CE was released, end of 1996, the best racing game in terms of visual was Rage Racer, which was better in terms of visual, can be really fast in the latest races, but it also used some tricks, for example to display just 2 cars on track. In the end RR was probably better, but Daytona was a good contender, for that period



It's nice to see someone give some love to Daytona CCE. Although lots of Saturn fans like to dump on it for not sticking close enough to the arcade version, but I ranked it up there with Sega Rally back in the day. The 3D is great too - colourful, decent draw distance, nice textures, lots of polygons moving around the screen (so many cars!).

That double whammy of the polished Tekken/Toshinden and Ridge Racer going up against the rough looking OG Virtua Fighter and Daytona at launch really left a bad (and unfortunately lasting) impression on the general gaming public. I really think things would have gone much better for the Saturn had it been Virtua Fighter Remix and Daytona CCE showing off its 3D abilities instead.
 
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Yeah but would they have been able to incorperate the huge swinging boat that you see in one of the stages I wonder..
Ahh, possibly. I am not too sure, to be honest. Daytona 2 was a graphical powerhouse in 1998 and far above anything on the console and even PC market around that time. It could've released in 2005 on the PS2 and still would've been impressive.

I think Daytona USA 2001 looks pretty good, but Daytona USA 2 has better textures, better lighting and there is much more going on in the tracks, I think it would've worked through. It is actually a missed opportunity. They could've added the tracks from Daytona USA 2 and it would've been a pretty decent package overall.
 
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Alexios

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Also we've mentioned the deficiences of Tomb Raider (which again is close enough to PS for a multiplat) but it should be noted that on Saturn it also has a slightly longer draw distance that can be quite apparent in certain areas and less in others and the underwater distortion over the PS.




I saw in a video a long corridor where the next area on the Saturn was visible and on the PS the tunnel slowly came in view but can't find it now. Saturn on the top here:

Who knows, maybe it'd perform better if they had adjusted the draw distance to match? Either way it's a well documented rushed to launch game, there are even tweaks and fixes in the later Japanese version.
 
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RAIDEN1

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Also we've mentioned the deficiences of Tomb Raider (which again is close enough to PS for a multiplat) but it should be noted that on Saturn it also has a slightly longer draw distance that can be quite apparent in certain areas and less in others and the underwater distortion over the PS.



Who knows, maybe it'd perform better if they had adjusted the draw distance to match? Either way it's a well documented rushed to launch game, there are even tweaks and fixes in the later Japanese version.
We all know that when it came to draw distances and transparencies the Saturn had its work cut out...
 
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SEGA in Europe was able to outsell both the NES and SNES without Tom's help,
You're moving the goal posts, the fact is that in EUROPE< Sonic was a success because they adopted Toms model from SOA.

Sega Japan made the call to respond to the 3DO and more precisely Jaguar
"respond" Sega never responded to the 3Do you have no idea what you're talking about, 3Do APPROACHED SEGA (not the M2 thing which is something that hasn't been verified because of contradicting claims) to make original 3Do hardware, Sega passed, like;y because, again 3Do didn't have any demo's or whatever out yet. Jaguar did, and when Sega saw the early Jaguar stuff as it was preparing for a marketing release, they got spooked and that's why the 32X was born, and by the time the 32X was finished there was NOTHING anywhere showing from japan company Sega's, with no inside information, point of view, that the Jaguar would "obviously" failed. That wouldn't be obvious until the end of 1994 when it was clear Atari couldn't afford to make many consoles despite their "killer apps" which they also could barely afford to make many copies of.

That claim makes even less sense for the 3DO.

It's easy to look back and make up a scenario that didn't happen without looking at the realities of the time and looking at things from the view of the companies during that time. It was only obvious the 3Do was in "trouble" end of 1995, and only somewhat since it ended up getting a massive sales boost from GEX and several other games going into fire sales to combat the PS1, which only stopped a few months in 96 because 3Do was a startup and didn't have the cash, which led to the cancellation of the M2 by the 3DO company. Funny enough, that is also around the same time whatever delusions people had about Saturn success or comebacks started falling apart.
 

MrA

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We all know that when it came to draw distances and transparencies the Saturn had its work cut out...
Saturn version has the longer draw distances, I don't quite get your obsession with trying to derail this thread, like your reference to sim city 2000, while the video was a fun insight video, was only presented as if it was some sort of condemnation of the saturn, meanwhile the ps1 version, which came out after the saturn port so they had the benefit of learning from the saturn port, ran just as poorly and had missing graphics, there is no need to console war for something that was decided decades ago
 

Alexios

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The two Touge King the Spirits games have pretty good draw distance too, most of the time. It's hard to find footage that isn't 240p or doesn't have the driver ram every wall in the course so I've timestamped a Sega Lord X video mentioning them. If only Initial D had been more like these two!

Also I don't know what is going on, maybe the upscaler this guy uses causes it or something, but in this video which is from real hardware it's like the second of the two games has very nice non-mesh transparency on the windows? Maybe the emulators above wrongly turn it back to mesh?

The last timestamp is Drift King. I know the PlayStation version has a higher draw distance etc. (edit: after playing both I have to say I prefer the Saturn version, it feels smoother, less sluggish and when seen fullscreen polygon seams and texture warping are very apparent on a PlayStation) but the 2D backgrounds move smoother on the Saturn and it's a great game worth playing anyway. I like how it controls even with the d-pad though it supports the 3D Control Pad (but not the Dual Shock/Analog Controller on the PlayStation), drifting is super satisfying, like Sega Rally mud sliding.
 
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Alexios

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Screenshots of this were posted but here it is in motion. I can't tell if the PS version has an edge in draw distance, if so it's tiny. Anyway, it first came out near the Saturn's launch and has a style similar to the likes of Gungriffon yet moves fast & smooth (and it's PAL, in the US it's Thunderstrike 2)!

Pretty crazy little ol Saturn had so many awesome cockpit sim-esque games. I wish AMOK had a cockpit view to complete the collection alongside other lesser stuff like Blam! Machinehead and Krazy Ivan. Who likes wasting these 32bit draw distances into rendering around your vehicle/thing?
 
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modiz

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For me this was the best method to handle Saturn games: infinite plain for the terrain, polygons for everything else, since PSX wasted lot of polygons to draw terrain because the wobbling textures. For some reason this rarely happened, so in the end a game like Ghost in the Shell for PSX released in the same period had a better visual overall.

I begin to think Daytona CE was an underrated gem on Saturn: solid 30fps, run fast, lot of cars on track, good use of polygons. At the time D:CE was released, end of 1996, the best racing game in terms of visual was Rage Racer, which was better in terms of visual, can be really fast in the latest races, but it also used some tricks, for example to display just 2 cars on track. In the end RR was probably better, but Daytona was a good contender, for that period


I think Daytona CE showed an impressive jump over the original and I still think to this day that there was untapped power in the Saturn which sadly was given up early by devs and Sega but especially late in its lifecycle devs didn't really "invest" in getting the most out of it so the whole "lifespan" argument does not mean much. I especially imagine that the TR engine could have used the hardware even better and that TR2 would have been able to run on the Saturn.
 
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You're moving the goal posts, the fact is that in EUROPE< Sonic was a success because they adopted Toms model from SOA.
Not moving any goal post. SEGA/Virgin had massive success with Master System and even before Sonic the Mega Drive was selling in huge amounts with it being the fastest-selling game system to reach a million units sold in the UK beating the ZX Spectrum record. All thanks to Nick and not Tom

You can be sure SEGA was worried about the 3DO not just because of the number of developers that were said to be onboard but because of the man who was selling it and also because EA was going to back it. The Jaguar? it was clear in early 1994 that overlooking a miracle it wasn't going to trouble any system. It sold in low numbers and vast waves of 3rd parties were not interested in supporting the system and most retail wasn't backing it much if at all either and that was reflected in the gaming press too.

Mid 1994 was when it was clear to most the 3DO was dead and the Jaguar wasn't going to roar and despite worries over Hardware delays to the Saturn it wasn't going to be delayed and it was going to launch in late 1994. That's when the 32X should have been dropped
 

RAIDEN1

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Saturn version has the longer draw distances, I don't quite get your obsession with trying to derail this thread, like your reference to sim city 2000, while the video was a fun insight video, was only presented as if it was some sort of condemnation of the saturn, meanwhile the ps1 version, which came out after the saturn port so they had the benefit of learning from the saturn port, ran just as poorly and had missing graphics, there is no need to console war for something that was decided decades ago
I'm ready to bring the tanks out for this - Saturn War is a go!!! - :messenger_grinning_squinting: :messenger_grinning_squinting: yeah I'll raise my hand up and say I am no fan of the Saturn...but I do find its history of the development of this console and the Sega CD as well as all things Sega 90s fascinating...and yes I do appreciate the likes of the Panzer Dragoons with their epic soundtracks..
 
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Alexios

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The last timestamp is Drift King. I know the PlayStation version has a higher draw distance etc. (edit: after playing both I have to say I prefer the Saturn version, it feels smoother, less sluggish and when seen fullscreen polygon seams and texture warping are very apparent on a PlayStation) but the 2D backgrounds move smoother on the Saturn and it's a great game worth playing anyway. I like how it controls even with the d-pad though it supports the 3D Control Pad (but not the Dual Shock/Analog Controller on the PlayStation), drifting is super satisfying, like Sega Rally mud sliding.
Speaking of draw distances I think more than the actual distance (which does differ) what matters is that on PlayStation stuff usually (not in messy games like Tenchu) come into view smoothly like coming out of some kind of a fog effect, from the darkness into fully lit view (but not just in dark games, light fog, whatever). On Saturn it's like that effect usually (not as evident in showpieces like Sonic R but it's still there) comes in chunks by the quads it uses on the geometry, so the furthest ahead is dark (or fogged), the next a bit less, the next a bit less, each one popping from one state to the next, until they're in normal view. Is that due to transparencies used, or some kind of color bit depth difference or what? It's mostly visible in motion but also in the Tomb Raider screenshots earlier, the darkness is much closer than Saturn's draw distance but it's a smooth darkness. The lack of such an effect on Saturn also makes things pop up more obviously, rather than showing up smoothly each object pops in big chunks or even as the whole object after you get even closer. But maybe that's not related to the fog effect. Either way it adds to the overall more sluggish appearance.
 
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Kazza

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Screenshots of this were posted but here it is in motion. I can't tell if the PS version has an edge in draw distance, if so it's tiny. Anyway, it first came out near the Saturn's launch and has a style similar to the likes of Gungriffon yet moves fast & smooth (and it's PAL, in the US it's Thunderstrike 2)!

Pretty crazy little ol Saturn had so many awesome cockpit sim-esque games. I wish AMOK had a cockpit view to complete the collection alongside other lesser stuff like Blam! Machinehead and Krazy Ivan. Who likes wasting these 32bit draw distances into rendering around your vehicle/thing?

That was an early purchase for me. I loved the first game on the Mega CD, so the buying the sequel was an easy decision. From the video, the game still looks and plays well (for an early 3D console game anyway).

Speaking of the Mega CD original, that itself was a great showcase for its host console's 3D chops:



It's interesting to compare the two. IMO, the biggest improvement in the Saturn sequel is the increased number of colours. The Mega CD always felt a little held back by the Megadrive's VDP colour limitations. That didn't matter much to me back in 1993 though. I always just assumed the green tanks and other enemies were that colour for camouflage purposes :messenger_tears_of_joy: . While polygons are generally better than sprites in a 3D game, the ones in the Mega CD game tend to scale pretty well.

Maybe I'll start a "Most Impressive 3D Games for the Mega CD/Sega CD" thread one day, but no doubt the usual suspects will use it as an excuse to argue about the downfall of Sega as a hardware manufacturer.
 
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UnNamed

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Burning Ranger was very impressive when it was released: transparencies, goraud shading, light sources, good draw distance. Tomb Raider 2 wasn't good enough while TR3 was good as well but it was released 9 months later.
 
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Not moving any goal post. SEGA/Virgin had massive success with Master System
Which was due to copying Toms Sonic bundle there is no major success in Europe pre-Sonic. Just because the Genesis did well in relative consoles sales during that time you also have to consider it didn't really have much competition either which makes your theory even more baffling. The difference in sales between Post-Sonic and pre-sonic is massive there is no reason to try and deflect and goal post move.

You can be sure SEGA was worried about the 3DO not just because of the number of developers that were said to be onboard but because of the man who was selling it and also because EA was going to back it.
SEGA Already had EA, this doesn't make sense, the fact is Sega reacted tot he Jaguar because they saw examples of what it can do along with the on paper specifications. It doesn't help there was hype about Atari dropping the Panther which already could do 3D because the Jaguar was "stronger" on top of that. Sega never got information from the 3Do early enough before they walked away from 3DO's offer/request trying to get Sega to make a 3DO console.

Also at that time the developer support wasn't known until after the info drop for the 3Do later, and even then that was only modest until AFTER 1993, which was 1993 the year Sega had already decided and were producing a console that would be ready for launch by the end of the year, which i when 3Do third party support soared 3x as much, also launched in japan that same year.

The Jaguar? it was clear in early 1994 that overlooking a miracle it wasn't going to trouble any system. It sold in low numbers and vast waves of 3rd parties were not interested in supporting the system
No, it did not "sell" in low numbers Atari could only "produce" low numbers. AVP and several other games sold out, people were waiting in line asking for where the games and consoles where and stores didn't have the stock. You are trying to apply your own made of revisionist history to what actually happened. It was only at the end of 1994 that the Jaguar was seen as done because there was no way they could produce what was needed for profits, some held on wondering what the next moves would be, got some more decent games in 1995 and also announced the CD, but that was a small niche that wouldn't really help Atari or third parties. 32X was already released by that time.

Mid 1994 was when it was clear to most the 3DO was dead

Complete revisionist delusion. NFS was all over magazines as were several other games, the price cuts were on, and the sales were picking up and they were getting more signups due to sales improvements. In 1995, they would have further price cuts, among their best performing games, and Gex which sold gangbusters. The 3DO's doom wasn't obvious until 1996, when the Saturn was on rapid decline from it's modest opening year and the PSX was taking off and 3Do had to compete with fire sales. People weren't expecting the 3D consoles to sell that well initially because of slower than expected starting sales and 16-bit being cheap and still doing well, that literally ended in 1996. No one knew where anyone was going before then. Heck just a year before in 95 some were expecting a US version of the PC_FX to come in because of that fighting demo with some believing 3D was second fiddle to FMV. Which of course they were wrong, also that demo never ended up being a real game.

Anyway back to the 32X, there was no way for Sega to know what was happening and they reacted based on that fact that happened in history. Which SOJ approved.

But regardless I don't think it really hurt the Saturn as much as some people think it did.
 
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Which was due to copying Toms Sonic bundle there is no major success in Europe pre-Sonic. Just because the Genesis did well in relative consoles sales during that time you also have to consider it didn't really have much competition either which makes your theory even more baffling. The difference in sales between Post-Sonic and pre-sonic is massive there is no reason to try and deflect and goal post move.
SEGA beat Nintendo in Europe before Tom ever joined SEGA America with the Master System. Long before Sonic , The Sega Mega Drive was selling in huge numbers in the UK and most of Europe.
SEGA didn't have EA, EA had SEGA. SEGA didn't make a penny off EA titles after Madden, thanks to Trip out thinking SEGA. It was a worry to see the former owner of EA bring out a console with heavy backing from EA thankfully for SEGA the 3D0 priced itself out of the market place, it wasn't until the M2 that SEGA began talks with 3DO but left thanks to a falling out with Panasonic (apparently) and its laughable to say that come mid 1994 everyone didn't know the 3DO was dead on its feet, it barely had 100,000 sold in the USA along and its software hardly made a dent in the sales charts, even the Sega CD could outsell it.

And sorry people were very ready for 3D and to leave 2D behind by 1995. Sadly SEGA thought many wouldn't be ready to pay for it, but they were and SONY cleaned up.
 

Alexios

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They recently released version 0.9.4 RC of the Grandia english translation, that's another good one.

Character sprites have blob shadows unlike the PlayStation port's proper sprite shape and it lacks some transparencies but the ground texturework is so much better (rather, it's proper and somehow botched on the PS), 3D structures have shadows, there are some lovely VDP2 sea effects, etc.
 
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MrMephistoX

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Kind of curious what emulator does everyone prefer? Trying to get VF Remix up and running in MedGUi and it doesn’t seem to recognize my HRAP Pro for Xbox One