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History of Sega in Serbia and Montenegro

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History of Sega in Serbia and Montenegro
Official Sega distributor(s): Comy (1990-1991), IVC (1992-199x), ActiveMagic (199x-199x), Videotop (2004-2010), Computerland (2010-2015), Videotop (2016-2018), Iris Mega (2018-present)

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Between 1992 and 2003, Serbia and Montenegro were unified as a single state known as the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY); not to be confused with the earlier Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY) which in the 1990s was in the process of breaking up into its pre-communist constituents). From 2003 the state was known as "Serbia and Montenegro" before both halves declared independance from each other in 2006.

Socialist Yugoslavia

Socialist Yugoslavia did not belong to the Warsaw Pact. A small amount of Sega, Nintendo and Atari games and consoles were sold here.In the 70s Yugoslavia was one of the countries where Sega imported its game machines.The only known company that sold Sega Master System was Comy, which began importing the console from 1990.[1]

Serbia and Montenegro

Mega Drive popularity

Print advert in Svet Kompjutera (SCG) #136: "Januar 1996" (1996-xx-xx)

The situation began to change after 1992. At the same time, famiclones appeared, such as Terminator 2, which was similar to the Sega Mega Drive and the Pegasus console. Since this year, IVC became a distributor[2] which, apart from selling Master System, released Mega Drive and Game Gear.

In 1994,Serbia and Montenegro saw released of Mega Drive II. The console was provide to various amusement parks where it served as arcades. In the middle of the same year, the most popular domestic suppliers such as DigiTech and Beosoft (who also represented Nintendo in the region) began selling the consoles. All sales moved slowly, but in early 1995, when Amiga computers which were popular in Yugoslavia went in crisis, sales of Sega consoles jumped sharply. In 1995-1996 Mega Drive was the most-popular console on the market. At the time ActiveMagic became representative and distributor of Sega in FRY. Seeing the popuality of the console, Sega Mega CD II and Mega Drive 32X were released, but they remained niche. Another phenomenon that appeared in the country were the places called Segoteka. In February 1996 there were 600 of them in the country. Other major distributors who promoted Sega were Biosfera Media and KonTiki. Also Sega Klinci show was created at that time.

Mega Drive Serbia3.jpg

Print advert in Svet Kompjutera (YU) #130: "Jul/Avgust 1995" (1995-xx-xx)
also published in:

Mega Drive Beosoft.jpg

Print advert in Svet Kompjutera (YU) #133: "Oktobar 1995" (1995-xx-xx)
also published in:

Mega Drive clones

In Yugoslavia, one of the original Mega Drive console models was the Asian market model, which were quite difficult to find. It was sold in two variants: the green box model (from 1994) and the black box model (from 1995). The European version of the console was more popular on the market. Such variants of consoles caused a large influx of unofficial consoles that were difficult to distinguish from the original.

The first problematic copy was the Asian version reworked to break the regional blockade. It looked the same as the original, but it differed in the serial number.

The most dangerous clone was the Taiwanese console, which, like the original, was sold in green boxes. However, it was of poorer quality and displayed a worse sounds and image on TV. That is why it was cheaper than the original. It differed in the serial numbers from the original.

Sega sa buvljaka (eng.Sega from the flea market) was also popular. It was a famiclon that had a black pistol that looked like a light phaser. It was sold in a green box, but on the cover it had a gun.

Another clone was Star Drive II which looked like the less popular in the country Sega Mega Drive model I. Similar to it was another clone called Saba which was inferior in quality. Rumors have it that in 1996 the successor of the 8-bit Pegasus called Power Pegasus appeared.

Another problem was pirated copies of games, which in addition to the originals were also sold by Beosoft, Digitech and Biosfera Media.[11]

Saturn and Dreamcast

Sega Saturn first appeared in retailers in December 1995 who were probably counting on higher sales due to the popularity of Mega Drive. Larger sales were expected to start from May 1996. Unfortunately, most players switched from Mega Drive to PlayStation and later Saturn had to compete with Nintendo 64. Stores preferred to sell the new N64 than the failing Saturn.

In 2000, Sega Dreamcast appeared at local distributors like Beosoft.[12]

2004-present

In 2004 Sega started cooperation with Videotop.From 2010 to 2015, Computerland was a distributor of Sega in Serbia and Montenegro. Videotop return in 2016 as a distributor of Sega in all former Yugoslavia [13]In 2017, Videotop became the property of Computerland Group.[14] In 2018, Videotop was acquired by Colby which also belongs to the Computerland Group.The distribution was taken over by Iris Mega.

References

  1. Svet Kompjutera (SCG) #73: "Oktobar 1990" page 45
  2. Svet Kompjutera (SCG) #90: "Mart 1992" page 40
  3. AS Magazin-Video Igrice, "Jul-Avgust 1995" (SCG; 1995-xx-xx), page 10
  4. Svet Kompjutera, "Septembar 1995" (YU; 1995-xx-xx), page 32
  5. Svet Kompjutera, "Novembar 1995" (YU; 1995-xx-xx), page 84
  6. Svet Kompjutera, "Decembar 1995" (YU; 1995-xx-xx), page 90
  7. Svet Kompjutera, "Januar 1996" (YU; 1996-xx-xx), page 92
  8. Svet Kompjutera, "Februar 1996" (YU; 1996-xx-xx), page 77
  9. Svet Kompjutera, "Mart 1996" (YU; 1996-xx-xx), page 92
  10. Svet Kompjutera, "April 1996" (YU; 1996-xx-xx), page 92
  11. Svet Kompjutera (SCG) #137: "Februar 1996" page 84
  12. Bonus (SCG) #7: "7/2000" (2000-09-25) page 82
  13. http://www.videotop.si/en/videotop-je-postal-uradni-zastopnik-zaloznika-sega/
  14. http://www.videotop.si/druzba-iris-mega-d-o-o-kupila-druzbo-videotop-skupina-d-o-o/
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