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While cleaning out our basement I happened upon my Sega Dreamcast and just couldn't help take this much beloved console out for a spin. I have nothing but the fondest memories of this system which I picked up launch day back on September 9th, 1999 and enjoyed right up to it's early demise in 2001.
Despite not having a large, personal library of games for the system the memories I have of my time with my Dreamcast prove that it was quality over quantity. Just let Claptrap show you
When reminiscing about the Dreamcast, the first thing that comes to my mind are the endless Soul Calibur tournaments my friends and I used to wage in my parents basement. "Winner stays on" was the only rule as we fought to rule the basement. At times, the fervor was so intense that it's impressive we managed to remain friends throughout the matches.
Despite all the enhancements the Soul Calibur series received over the years it was never quite able to recapture these Dreamcast 'glory days' for me. Even when the action was taken on-line it just wasn't the same as a battling it out in a room full of friends.
Next up is all the 'crazy money' that was made with Crazy Taxi 1 & 2. My ears are still ringing from hours upon hours of Bad Religion and Offspring blaring as I raced to get my passengers to their destinations. I was never very good at this game, but I loved it none-the-less.
One thing I loved about the Dreamcast was its sheer 'bizarre' factor which reached a pinnacle with the release of Seaman. To date, this is still probably the strangest 'game' I have ever played and despite the improvements we have seen in voice recognition in gaming, I have yet to have odder conversations.
A virtual pet simulator I suppose, Seaman is an experience that is almost impossible to describe. I may actually fire this game up again just to document its high level of insanity.
Not satisfied with the building tools of the US released Coaster Works, I imported a copy of Jet Coaster Dream 2 from Japan. The biggest motivation for me here was the fact that you could run your coaster even if you hadn't completed the track. If I recall correctly, the game even scored you based upon how many people got sick, threw up or were killed on your creation.
It was a guilty pleasure of mine to see a full roller coaster leave the station, only to return with one or two nauseous souls left on-board. Sick, twisted and I loved it.
Ok, confession time. I still have yet to finish Shenmue let alone pronounce it correctly (Shenmū). I remember being completely enthralled by Ryo's quest and how immersive the game felt. Unfortunately I just didn't spend the time to see the game through to it's completion. I've held on to it all these years with the hopes of eventually finishing it up – I just wonder if my save game is still around.
House of the Dead 2 was the game that prompted me to hook my Dreamcast up when I uncovered it during the basement cleanup. It had been so long since I last played a light gun game that I just couldn't resist the chance.
Light guns are the genre I miss the most in current generation consoles. I suppose I could have picked up a Wii and settled for that, but I would have loved instead to have a current gen gun & game for my Xbox 360.
Despite the rough graphics and horrible voice acting, House of the Dead 2 was still a lot of fun. Will probably give the game a few more rounds before packing my Dreamcast up again.
Ok, now we're in the Dreamcast nitty-gritty for me with Space Channel 5. I had a mild obsession with this game, it's soundtrack, and it's main character Ulalala back in the day.
Up down up down chu chu chu!
I picked up the Space Channel 5 special edition for the PS2 and the Dreamcast collection for the Xbox 360, but my heart will always belong to the Dreamcast version.
Last but not least is my all time favorite Dreamcast title, Jet Grind Radio. I can't even begin to fathom the amount of times I picked this game up and played through it from start to finish in one sitting. Who knew a bunch of cell shaded, jet skating 'rudies' cruising around and spray painting Tokyo-to could be so much fun.
I would like to say I picked this game up on a whim, but according to the evidence I had in fact pre-ordered it. Not sure what led me to do that, but I am certainly glad I did.
Jet Grind Radio was my first exposure to cell shaded graphics, and the effect just blew me away. Paired with an absolutely stellar soundtrack, it was no wonder I couldn't get enough of this game. To this day, Jet Grind Radio is still one of my top 5 favorite games of all time.
Part of me is hoping that all the hype surrounding Jet Set's re-release prompts Sega to revisit the franchise. I would even be happy to settle for a re-release of the sequel, Jet Set Radio Future.
I feel like I should have an honorable mention section here as well, as more games graced my Dreamcast than I still have in my collection today. Games like Resident Evil: Code Veronica, Carrier, and Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2 are all still fondly remembered.
I might actually seek out a few new games to add to the collection, as there are plenty of Dreamcast gems I missed like Toy Commander.
Like I said, such great times with my Dreamcast. Thanks for taking this trip down memory lane with me and thanks to Claptrap for modeling in all the photos.