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Press release: 1996-05-15: Sega Entertainment Inc.; new Sega company; new kind of PC gaming

From Sega Retro

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This is an unaltered copy of a press release, for use as a primary source on Sega Retro. Please do not edit the contents below.
Language: English
Original source: The Free Library


LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 15, 1996--To date, arcade gaming and PCs have been oxymorons.

Enemies, at best. Put the two together and you get slow frame rates, choppy animation, low polygon counts and 2D sprite-based characters. In short, PC arcade titles have lacked punch but, surprisingly, lead in PC gaming sales.

This situation is a huge opportunity for Sega Entertainment Inc., the new PC gaming company with family ties to the worldwide leader in arcade gaming. Sega Entertainment is redefining PC arcade gaming with a new category of titles featuring high frame rates, 3D characters and environments rendered in real-time, high polygon counts, detailed texture mapping and emotion-triggered gameplay that is unmatched by competing action/arcade PC games.

"With arcade gaming at an all-time high and action software grabbing the largest share of the PC games market, there is a sizable audience eagerly awaiting this new level of interactive entertainment only we can deliver on the PC," Bill White, senior vice president and general manager, Sega Entertainment, said. "Our arcade-to-PC lineup is specifically geared for the new mass market consumer who has made the powerful multimedia PC a household standard."

Sega Entertainment was formed in March 1996 through a joint venture between Sega of America and SOFTBANK Holdings Inc. While other U.S.-based Sega companies focus on home gaming console, portable systems and location-based entertainment, Sega Entertainment has aligned itself to address specific retail, sales, distribution and marketing requirements of the PC gaming industry.

Why Target PC Arcade Gaming

PC gamers want high-end action titles. According to research from PC Data, action gaming was the leading category of PC games in 1995. While former category leaders (Adventure/Role Playing Games and Strategy/Simulation Games) dropped in sales over last year, action gaming grew by 59 percent from 1994 to 1995.

Sega Entertainment is planting its arcade-to-PC stake in relatively virgin territory. Of the top 10 PC games companies, not one has the arcade heritage and dedicated team of programmers Sega Entertainment brings to the industry.

Through advances in PC programming, the company can create arcade-perfect translations that run "native" on Pentium 90-100/Windows 95 PCs that do not require any added hardware acceleration. Sega Entertainment sees long-term opportunity in the Pentium/Windows 95 home PC platform, with sales expected to grow 52 percent this year and 38 percent next year to a total installed based of 36 million by 1997, according to IDC and Link Resources.

Sega Entertainment will release five arcade-to-PC games over the next year: "Virtua Fighter PC," "Daytona USA," "Virtua City PD," "Sega Rally Championship" and "Manx IT Superbike." All represent the highest coin-drop games in Sega's arcade machine lineup. In the future, the company may leverage new arcade games under development at Sega GameWorks, a collaboration between Sega, MCA and Dreamworks SKG.

More New Content

In addition to arcade-to-PC titles, Sega Entertainment is supporting sports and "family fun" product lines under which it will bring Sega's top sports and character-based games to the PC. Popular characters, such as Sonic and Garfield, will debut this year on the PC as part of the company's family fun line.

The company is also completing its first original title starring a 3D version of Sonic in a high-resolution edutainment title to debut this fall. The title will propel Sega Entertainment into the educational software market, which had the highest year-over-year revenue growth from year end 1994-1995, according to PC Data.

Sega Entertainment is a new joint venture between Sega of America, the arm of Tokyo-based Sega Enterprises Ltd. responsible for the development, marketing and distribution of Sega videogame systems and videogames in the Americas, and SOFTBANK Holdings Inc., one of the world's largest distributors of computer software, peripherals and systems, as well as Japan's largest publisher of computer-related magazines and books.

Sega Entertainment is responsible for creating, marketing and distributing PC-based entertainment which utilizes Sega's arcade and console-based games and characters. The company has headquarters in Redwood City, Calif.

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CONTACT: Dan Stevens

Sega Entertainment Inc.

415/802-3996

or

Seema Rahman

Manning, Selvage & Lee

213/782-6600 ext.252
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