I'm about to tell you something that will make you sad. 30 years ago, SEGA entered the U.S. console market as a first-party publisher with the Master System. That's not the sad part; the sad part is that they exited the U.S. console market 15 years ago. That means SEGA has been a third-party concern in the U.S. for as long as they were a console-maker. What a reality we've made for ourselves, huh?
On a related note, it's been nine years since the Retronauts podcast put together its original SEGA Master System retrospective (back in the 1UP.com days). And for nine years, people have been complaining about how terrible that episode was. I saw someone post angrily about it last month! That's a long time to hold on to resentment over someone's opinions about video games, but the Internet has an alarmingly long memory sometimes. Well, Master System fanatics, you may relinquish your grip on that incandescent rage, because this week we circle back to the Master System, and this time we've stocked up the show with SEGA experts.
Not only that, but we recorded this episode live in front of a studio audience to insure that if we went off-message, furious SEGA defenders would pelt us with fruit, bottles, and assorted other garbage. This episode was recorded live at Midwest Gaming Classic last weekend, which accounts for the somewhat polluted sound quality; MGC panels took place not in an isolated room but rather in a large open space which was also being used as the hotel bar and restaurant at the time. Despite the background noise, though, the conversation comes through. We also recorded the second half of the episode (wherein we discuss the best Master System games) in a much quieter space.
But just to go a step above and beyond, we also flew in both special guests for this episode at our own expense. Greg Sewart (formerly of Electronic Gaming Monthly, currently of SEGA chronogaming series Generation-16) and Dylan Cornelius (author of Sega Does) flew in from opposite ends of North America to ensure that the Master System would receive its due. What other podcast goes to such extremes to guarantee fair and balanced coverage? I submit that no other podcast does, because frankly it's a ridiculous thing to do. So please enjoy our ridiculousness.
Jeremy and Bob hit the mean streets of Milwaukee to talk about the SEGA Master System on the eve of its 30th anniversary. Featuring special SEGA expert guests Greg Sewart and Dylan Cornelius.
So, there we go. A respectful look back at the Master System. You Master System guys can bury the hatchet now, alright? My one regret about this episode is that this excellent Shmuplations article looking back at the origins of the SG-1000 and Master System didn't go up until after the panel. Not that we got anything wrong, but knowing some of this material would have made the panel even better. Well, there's always the Master System 40th anniversary episode....
Thanks to 249 Studios for recording our live presentation, and to Evan Amos for the header image.