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December 8, 2003

Random thoughts... Sega... Sony...
   [ posted by: R.I.P ]
Reading all of the Sega news today, and listening to all the fan boys doing their respective system bashings caused my wife to make the observation that Sega was truly successful at one thing. They absolutely succeeded in making Nintendo "un-cool" to a generation of gamers. It's almost reasonable to speculate that they made it possible for Sony to step in and grab the 16-24 market by so successfully defining it. Sheesh, if I ever want to brainwash a market segment I should lookup the guy who did Sega's PR back in the early nineties.
On an unrelated thought about Sony and brainwashing. I would appreciate it if they would publish accurate sales figures that reflect the fact that most PS2 owners who bought their system when it first came out and have played it regularly, are now on their second system, and in some rare cases, their third. Our PS2 which we bought on launch day finally died last month. We had one of the oldest still running systems of everyone we know except for one person... and that person's PS2 is on it's last leg, failing to autoboot any game discs (you can only boot games by going into the system manager and selecting the disc after it is detected).
One has to wonder if using short lived hardware, which has in turn caused increased sales numbers, was in the original design specification for the PS2. I am infuriated because Sony not only refuses to acknowledge failure rates just as they did with the original PlayStation, but they also strong arm anyone who tries to speak out on the issue like they did recently with Capcom. It really isn't fair to the other manufactures who have very low hardware failure rates.

Sega, a division of Sammy
   [ posted by: R.I.P ]
If anyone was hoping for a recovery by Sega, you can pretty much forget it. CSK in their never ending quest to dump Sega from their asset list has indicated today that they have sold all of their shares to the second-rate game publisher Sammy. Sammy who makes all of their money from Pachinko gambling will use their controlling 22.4% shareholding in Sega to help expand their arcade business, and have indicated that they will be looking to expand their shareholding in the future, thereby increasing their lock on the company.
Unfortunately I see this as going from bad to worse before anything good happens as Sammy appears on the surface to have pushed through this purchase as revenge for their snubbing back in May of this year. Several Sega brass have already lost their jobs and I expect most of the senior Sega management to be booted as well over the coming months. You can probably also toss whatever positive guidance was still left in the company that was working to make Sega profitable again. I find it hard to imagine Sammy providing any real guidance themselves since their video gaming track record pretty much sucks barring a couple of rare exceptions.
This is a very sad day indeed.

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