Saturn V08

From Sega Retro

This short article is in need of work. You can help Sega Retro by adding to it.

The Saturn V08, also known as the Riva TNT and NV2, was a joint project between Sega and NVIDIA that was worked on during some point in either 1995 or 1996. The V08 was designed as a potential successor or upgrade to the Sega Saturn, however it was not revealed publicly by any of the parties involved, and only came to light after interviews with former members of Sega Technical Institute in the mid-to-late 2000s.

The V08 was an extension of the graphics technology seen in the Sega Saturn console, continuing to use the quadrilateral polygons but with fewer limitations than the Saturn's VDP1. The V08 is suspected to be NVIDIA's effort to utilise its NV2 graphics card technology in console form - the NV2 being a planned successor to the NV1, itself based on Saturn hardware.

While NVIDIA were keen to pitch the concept to Sega, who in turn explored its use for a short period, ultimately the company rejected NVIDIA's NV2 technology in favour of the work being pioneered by 3Dfx. Primarily this was due to a desire for triangle-based 3D rendering (as was quickly becoming the standard in the industry), but NVIDIA's fate was sealed when its NV2 prototype failed to work in a demonstration[1].

The V08 name likely comes from "Mutara V08", the name of the NV2 chip (NV2, strictly speaking, being the code number).

The secretive nature of what became an unfinished project means little is known about the V08. The infamous Sonic X-treme was briefly developed for V08 hardware[2] before being moved to stock Saturns[3] and the PC.

Following the cancellation of the NV2 project, NVIDIA began work on what would become the RIVA 128 chipset (NV3); Direct3D-compatible PC graphics technology that debuted in 1997.

List of games