Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Where are they now? - Sega


Well it's been pretty quiet today in terms of gaming news so about time for another "Where are they now?". I remember playing an old CGA game on my old Multitech MPF-PC/700 which took advantage of the fact I had a joystick and it was called "Buck Rogers: Planet of Zoom". Apparently, the game had very little to do with the archaic sci-fi franchise of the same name except that you got to fly around in a spaceship. Digging up information on this obscure game has proven scarce and the only information I could get about the developers of this game was that it was developed by Sega, which I'm sure you're all aware has a huge history but I'll try and point out some interesting facts about its early history :).

Sega started off as "Standard Games" in 1940 (not exactly a title to encourage confidence in how fun your games are if you ask me) in Hawaii. In 1951, they moved to Tokyo, Japan and in 1952 renamed their company to "Service Games of Japan" (you can start to see where they got the abbreviation Sega from ;)).

During the 50s and 60s Sega started to specialise in making coin-operated games and did so well for itself that by 1982, its revenues were in excess of $214 million. A year later, Sega released its first video game console, the SG-1000. It was this year that Buck Rogers was also released.

I won't bother with the late 80s-90s onwards since that recent history is probably more familiar to most of you (i.e. how it became a hardware manufacturer in competition with Nintendo and then its exit from the market resulting in it focusing on software again). Needless to say, Sega has been doing rather well for itself as a software publisher in recent years so it was a good decision in retrospect.

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