Deadly Battle
New Player
The Tetris lawsuit between the "Big N" and Atari finally deprived the latter of the opportunity to regain supremacy in the video game console market and to make a legendary comeback. In its place, Nintendo faced another rival, a confrontation that would last for many years and would have a strong influence on the entire future development of the game industry.

Sega refused to cooperate with Nintendo in any way from the beginning. It had already had success in the arcade markets, as well as with the Master System console, which, though it was far from being a star in the sky, still managed to find its niche in Europe unlike Nintendo and other manufacturers and sold six million copies there. In addition, it had good video games like Phantasy Star, the first part of the popular series, with an elaborate world and elements of space opera. The next step was the launch of the Sega Genesis, known in Europe more as the Mega Drive, and in Russia more as the Mega Drive 2 (although it is not the next generation, but the second technical revision).
The original Sega Genesis and plastic cartridge boxes.
Like many companies of the time, Sega initially originated during the arcade era. It started with a company called Standard Games, whose main sources of income were arcade machines for American sailors. In 1952, the company begins to operate in Japan under the name Service Games of Japan, but until the mid-60s, its business was sluggish on the background of Rosen Enterprises, a company that dealt with document photo machines and music machines for bars. Its founder was the American David Rosen, who remained at the helm. In the course of their merger, Sega Enterprises appeared, whose name was just formed from the first letters of the previous one: SErvice and GAmes.

Later, the company opened its first arcade, in the early 80s released its first 8-bit arcade machine, and in 1982 there is its first game console, the SG-1000, which although not up to the Famicom, but in fact, marked the beginning of Genesis. To challenge the main market monopoly of its time, the company needed radical and daring solutions. At that point, the antitrust agencies had already taken on Nintendo, and the company saw this as the best entry point into the market to wage war for leadership in the home game console segment. That's not to say Sega was successful from the start - in Japan, the Genesis came out just in the midst of Super Mario Bros. 3, which finally turned Nintendo into a global giant. The collaboration with McDonald's, which allowed adding Mario toys to the children's combo dinners "Happy Meal" only strengthened the position of the character of the legendary series of games, making it more popular than even Mickey Mouse - the main mascot of Disney. In total, only Super Mario Bros. 3 sold over 17 million copies worldwide.

In 1990, Genesis begins the conquest of Europe and the USA, and Michael Katz, a former Atari employee, becomes the head of Sega of America, the console came with the beat 'em up Altered Beast, and Katz had an ambitious goal from Sega president Hayao Nakayama to sell one million consoles by the end of the year. To achieve it, Katz focused on aggressive marketing, with the wordplay slogan "Genesis does what Nintendon't" (meaning Genesis can do what Nintendo can't), and the exact opposite policy from the one Nintendo had pursued - lining up celebrities and media personalities, which included such superstars as Michael Jackson, starring as himself in Moon Walkers, Michael Jordan, Shaquille O'Neal, and John Madden. Another innovation was to allow companies to rent games and sign contracts with companies that were willing to release games for Sega. One such allied company was Electronic Arts (EA), which released American football simulator John Madden Football for Sega and ended up getting some of the most preferential terms from the platform, compared to what Nintendo policy usually set for developers. Nevertheless, Sega executives still considered Katz's performance unsatisfactory - even though Genesis managed to sell half a million copies, it was still far from the numbers Nakayama had hoped for.
Tom Kalinske next to Sonic, Sega's main mascot.
Company executives decided to put Sega head Tom Kalinske, who had previously achieved impressive success at Mattel (already mentioned earlier in connection with the famous Barbie and its attempt to enter the handheld video game market) and later worked at Matchbox, which produced toy cars. When Kalinske and his family were on vacation in Hawaii, Sega Japan CEO Hayao Nakayama flew in and offered to head Sega of America (SOA). Straight from Hawaii, Kalinske flies to Japan and, seeing the new console, realizes that they now have a good chance of surpassing Nintendo.

The first thing Kalinske did was to come up with a new strategy that would allow Sega to make a serious rival to the monopoly company. It consisted of several things at once:

  • First, to increase, not decrease, the aggressive advertising campaign against Nintendo, as well as to rework marketing that would position the Genesis as a console for a more mature teenage audience rather than entertainment for children;
  • Second, lower the price from $189.99 to $149.99;
  • Third, create a recognizable character that could outshine Mario and become the most recognizable face of the brand.

In addition, Kalinske planned to create an in-house studio to develop video games in the United States.
Faster than sound
Yuji Naka, the game designer who worked on Phantasy Star and the Master System version of OutRun, developed a character design featuring a blue hedgehog capable of moving at supersonic speeds. Naka believed that the dynamic and daring gameplay, coupled with Genesis' 16-bit technology, could revolutionize the perception of platformers and make the game look nothing like the ones that were on store shelves at the time. Inspired by the roller coaster, he created a game that was capable of delivering unprecedented speed. It took SOA and SOJ a long time to find common ground on how the game's protagonist should look but, eventually, SOA got the green light on all the edits put forward: Sonic the Hedgehog rolled up and pushed off giant springs, his image was stripped of sharp fangs, involvement in a rock band and a Madonna girlfriend, and the cover of blue barbs made him a serious threat not only to his virtual foes.
Sonic the Hedgehog.
Reimagining the gamepad and the paradigm shift
Sonic the Hedgehog was supposed to be the game that would come bundled with the console. The policy of selling a major hit in this way was very much at odds with SOJ's vector, but Nakayama continued to believe that Kalinske's solutions should be the optimal driver for Genesis sales in the states. So the Sonic the Hedgehog box replaced Altered Beast and, by the holiday season of 1991, Sega sales were outpacing Nintendo, something that hadn't happened since 1985 - Nintendo then released Battletoads from British Rare, a beat 'em up[1] about three space humanoid toads that was memorable for being excessively hardcore even for its time and still considered one of the most challenging ever made.

In the rush to conquer the market outside of Japan, Sega was also involved in porting arcade games - one example of poor ports is Zero Wing - a 1989 game that came out on the Sega Mega Drive in the early nineties and subsequently spawned many memes online with the phrase from the original screensaver "All your base are belong to us".
...Sonic the Hedgehog sold 15 million copies, and the company got the cherished mascot and the series of games, forever cementing the main character's status as its symbol. The company continues to be associated with his name even 25 years later...
Welcome to the next level
Sega had an impressive advantage at the start of the console - unlike the NES, Genesis already had 16-bit technology and was a much better performer. Sega also put a lot of emphasis on marketing and the fact that their games were not for children. Its representatives organized a big mall tour to show retailers audience loyalty by giving them a chance to see everything with their own eyes and touch the console to the public and the press. To gain favor with Wal-Mart[2], who due to pressure from Nintendo at first refused to work with Sega, the SOA team placed ads on all the billboards along the way to one of its largest malls in Bentonville and put their own spot right across the street, where potential customers would constantly gather and play. Of course, under such pressure, even Wal-Mart was forced to acknowledge and find shelves for the console, which was gaining more and more popularity. Once the retailer gave in, the rest of the smaller retailers began to pull in as well. SOA was so uncompromising in its promotions that even university campuses had a specially hired person walking around with a console and playing, creating an image of a "cool" and "youthful" console.
Sonic the Hedgehog 2.
"Welcome to the next level" is the slogan developed by the advertising agency Goodby, Silverstein & Partners for their pitch to Sega, presenting a potential customer with a wall of TVs connected into one screen and preparing their employees to answer the trickiest questions about games. They were responsible for many of the commercials for the company, including the whole series with the brand name screaming at the end and the scandalous commercial. They also did that commercial where the Nintendo console could barely drag itself, tied up behind a small van, while the Sega console took off abruptly with a Formula One car. The company came up with such a marketing ploy as "blast-processing" technology that supposedly allowed their console to run faster, held a championship at Alcatraz for Sonic the Hedgehog with a grand prize of a hundred thousand dollars, and became the first company to make a world premiere of their next hit game Sonic the Hedgehog 2 with a simultaneous launch, calling the event Sonic Tuesday (a kind of wordplay where Tuesday is consonant with the number two) and selling 12.5 million copies.
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.
Both companies desperately competed with each other by releasing exclusives for their consoles. Whereas on Nintendo it was games like Super Mario Kart, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, Super Metroid, Super Mario World, Pilotwings, F-Zero, Final Fight and Street Fighter II, incidentally one of the major exclusives at the launch of the SNES[3] - the company's next console, which also moved to 16-bit, ActRaiser, Ninja Gaiden, Raiden and Snake Rattle 'N' Roll, games based on the eponymous animated series Duck Tales and Chip 'N Dale: Rescue Rangers[4], then on Sega it was Sonic the Hedgehog and Comix Zone, a strong lineup of sports games at the forefront, as well as Ecco the Dolphin, Gunstar Heroes, Beyond Oasis, Aladdin, NBA Jam, Earthworm Jim, Shining Force, Golden Axe, Out Run, Shinobi, Streets of Rage, Jungle Strike, the already mentioned Phantasy Star and several other games, which have been remembered for a generation, not to mention Global Gladiators becoming the game of the year and made for the McDonald's brand, which only recently before these events had put in a Happy Meals toy with the popular Nintendo mascot.
Birth of the rating system and the transition to a 3D dimension.
The starting point in attempts to conquer 3D graphics on consoles can be considered Star Fox - a space shoot 'em up in a universe with anthropomorphic animals. When Dylan Cuthbert from Argonaut Software worked on the production of a 3D game for the Game Boy, the company did not have permission. But there was the Game Boy itself, whose chip was hacked and was able to program the first 3D demo called Eclipse for a portable platform from Nintendo. Six months later, the company learned about the work on the project and invited the Argonaut team to Japan. After Miyamoto demonstrated the capabilities of SNES, Cuthbert's idea was to embed a chip for processing three-dimensional graphics in cartridges. Super FX on the coprocessor GSU-1 was developed by Argonaut and allowed to fly to the 3D, but Miyamoto still did not like that the player needed to think about what was happening from all sides. The Japanese torii gate, located on the way to the Fushimi Inari sanctuary in Kyoto, became a reference in order to show the player the exact direction in flight, and the main totem animal - the fox - became the prototype of the protagonist of Star Fox - Fox McCloud. In 1993, Star Fox was released and broke the world record for sales speed, selling over half a million copies, and as a result, its total sales amounted to three million copies.
Star Fox.
One of the most important events, in addition to the industry's big jump in the performance race between Sega and Nintendo, was the hearings on violence and cruelty in games held in the U.S. Senate. One of the main triggers for this was the release of Mortal Kombat in the same year, a popular fighting game on arcade machines that featured blood and violence in all kinds of abundance, including fatality - special combinations that allowed the losing player to be killed in the most subtle and brutal ways, like ripping out the spine of the opponent's character. As the "Mortal Kombat" unfolded on televisions across the country, it continued with an even more fierce force between the two companies. Nintendo, which had always maintained a policy of strict limitations, released a version of the game on the SNES where the ability to conduct fatality was completely cut out, and blood was repainted green.

Sega, on the other hand, had always been far more loyal and, with the focus on older audiences, released the game in its original form - this resulted in the latter selling better by a 2-to-1 ratio, giving Sega a 55% market advantage at this point. To deal a blow to the competitor, Nintendo initiated congressional hearings, where the Sega version of Mortal Kombat was particularly hard-pressed, as well as Night Trap, released in 1992 on its Sega-CD expansion for games on the then-nascent CDs. The game was an interactive horror movie where the player had to save girls from vampires. Howard Lincoln on Nintendo's side relied on the differences between the Mortal Kombat versions and the cut of violent Sega games, while Bill White, who had previously moved to their main competitor's company, made counterarguments that included their own rating system. In response to Lincoln's lunge about Sega having a Justifier light gun, White showed a similar Super Scope 6 light gun from the SNES. As a result of the hearing, the court ruled that the companies should settle themselves.
The unprecedented popularity of the Mortal Kombat series, as well as the previously unseen level of cruelty, became the catalyst for the appearance of the ESRB age rating system.
So in 1994 comes the age rating system, which is still used by game publishers today - Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB), which in turn finally untied the hands of video game developers - thanks to the introduction of the rating system, from now on they can release any products without fear, provided the packaging indicates the age category. The second part came out on the SNES already with a full set of the original version, moreover - a series of Mortal Kombat firmly and for a long time managed to gain a foothold: it came out the legendary movie, books, comic books, TV series, and cartoons, and today the shelves are already an eleventh game of the series, which feels good, both on PC and on modern consoles.
The ESRB designations are found on video game packages.
The ESRB designations are found on video game packages.

What goes into the system:

  • "EC" (stands for "Early Childhood") - is the minimum rating boundary and means that the game is suitable for children 3 years and older and does not contain material that parents might consider inappropriate. Products with this rating are originally designed for children and are usually educational games. Some more sophisticated educational games may be rated "Everyone."
  • "E" (stands for "Everyone") - the content is quite suitable for the age category of 6 years and older; such games may also be enjoyed by adults. Games with this rating may contain minimal violence, mostly of a cartoon style.
  • "E10+" (stands for "Everyone 10 and older") - projects with this rating may contain a bit more cartoon or mild violence, or somewhat explicit scenes, or a minimal amount of blood.
  • "T" (stands for "Teen") - the game is suitable for ages 13 and up. Projects in this category can contain violence, obscene scenes, crude humor, moderately explicit sexual content, blood, or infrequent use of profanity.
  • "M" (stands for "Mature") - the game content is not suitable for teens under the age of 17. Projects with this rating may contain quite brutal violence, a lot of blood with dismemberment, obscene sexual scenes, or crude profanity that is undesirable for younger audiences.
  • "AO" (stands for "Adults Only 18+") - game content for adults over the age of 18 only. The maximum rating category, these products may contain lengthy scenes of brutal violence and/or very explicit sexual content, as well as nude scenes.
  • "RP" (stands for "Rating Pending") - the product has been sent to the ESRB and is awaiting a rating. This logo is only used in promotional presentations and game demos before the official release date.

The Sega-CD never really caught on with the mass audience, and neither did the Sega 32X, another expansion device for the original console (which would now be called without refinement just a removable CD drive) released by the company in 1994. It was meant to be a kind of transition between the fifth generation, the full 32-bit Saturn console, and the next generation, which was about to be released from its main competitor. Big N initially abandoned the use of CD drive on the next generation, leaving cartridges. The industry was gradually moving to CDs, which promised new possibilities, but Sega, as we already know, had begun conquering that niche back in 1992. At first, Nintendo was going to fight back by teaming up with Sony to try to release a hybrid console called the Nintendo PlayStation, but, according to their agreement signed back in 1988, Sony not only had to develop the Super Disc format but would also retain certain rights over it. It turned out that Nintendo would have ceded control of software licensing to Sony, something the company absolutely did not want to do, and when in June 1991, at the CES (Consumer Electronics Show), Sony announced its Play Station, compatible with the SNES, and the next day of the show Nintendo stunned everyone by announcing its partnership with Philips, which publicly humiliated the potential partner.
More Powerful than God
Sony engineer Ken Kutaragi originally started the development of this project because of his desire to bring the company to the home console market. After the incident with Nintendo, he headed a new division of Sony Computer Entertainment and went on to make history as the "Father of the PlayStation." When Nintendo first approached Sony for the opportunity to find technology to help fight its arch-rival, the company's management did not want to seriously consider the story of the production of components for the console at all and, at first, refused. Without management's knowledge, Kutaragi continued to negotiate with Nintendo, taking the contract and developing the Sony SPC700 audio chip. Nintendo developers were delighted with it, but Sony executives, on the other hand, did not appreciate the engineer's initiative. The question of dismissal was about to be put, as they say, in a nutshell, but the company's executive president Norio Ohga intervened. It was he, who after the incident, was furious with Nintendo's antics and decided to open a new department to strike back, giving Kutaragi all the necessary resources to create the most innovative console on the market, code-named PSX.
The PlayStation is the first console from Sony.
The funny thing is that prototypes of the Nintendo PlayStation did exist and, one of them was found in 2015 and sold in 2020 at a Heritage auction for a record $360,000, becoming the most expensive item from the world of video games in history. Panasonic tried to enter the video game market with the 3DO console but failed to carve out a niche due to its high $699 price tag and small game library. Neither could the TurboGrafx-16 with a CD-ROM from NEC which sold less than a million copies, nor the Atari Jaguar which still used cartridges and had probably one of the worst gamepads in the history of video games, let alone the Nintendo Virtual Boy - the forerunner of modern VR - the red pictures it played made you dizzy and Virtual Boy didn't have much to offer at its launch. The ergonomics of the console, which was similar to a submarine's periscope, was worth nothing. Still, the point in this confrontation was to be put by a new player, who would later make another revolution in the gaming industry.

On the Los Angeles Convention Center stage in 1995, the highlight of the first Electronic Interactive Technology Expo, E3, was the announcement of new consoles. Tom Kalinske announced a price of $399 for the Sega Saturn, and from the opponents, only one phrase was inserted during the presentation of the PlayStation by Steve Race - "$299". This console would be the beginning of a new era that would finally launch the process of mass transition to 3D and games on CD media. As Tom Kalinske originally thought, due to the complex architecture and high price, Sega Saturn couldn't win this race either, eventually selling less than 10 million copies. And disagreements between SOA and SOJ on key decisions would force him to leave the company in 1996, shortly before the company's final note. The Nintendo 64 would do a little better with 30 million copies, but it would not compare with Sony's first console, which would sell a hundred million copies worldwide and become the most popular console of its generation.
Tekken 3.
Why should this console be considered so significant for the industry? Well, first of all, as mentioned earlier, it marked the beginning of the transition to full 3D. Unlike the clumsy Virtua Fighter from game designer Yu Suzuki's 1993 Sega Saturn, which was not a very good looking console compared to the last 2D games of that time (a lot of people were ready to believe in the future of 3D graphics and the words from the "More Powerful Than God" commercials in 1995), it was ahead of all other consoles in the market, and the company was not shy about declaring it most unambiguously. In addition, the marketing campaign of the new console was invested as much as 2 billion dollars, and its gamepad, DualShock, later became the first device with two analog sticks, the presence of which would eventually set the standard for all future generations as consoles and, in general, game controllers. Even now it's the most convenient way to control the camera and objects in a three-dimensional environment (except maybe the computer mouse, and that's not always). From that same 1995 to 1997, Namco released "its answer," straight from the arcade machines, Tekken, whose third installment became very popular with the PlayStation audience. In its strategy, Sony, like its noisy Sega predecessor, targeted an older gamer audience. It gave rise to many series and studios that got their start with it and are still doing great. For example, the futuristic racing game Wipeout from the British company Psygnosis, which PlayStation bought out, included the soundtracks of bands like The Chemical Brothers, Leftfield, and Orbital, and its worldwide sales totaled 1.5 million copies.
Crash Bandicoot.
At the same time, the legendary Crash Bandicoot from one of the best studios of our time Naughty Dog, and Spyro the Dragon from Insomniac Games, which later will also prove itself many times, working on AAA titles, are released. Fan fact is that these studios were across the street and often tested each other's games. No wonder Spyro the Dragon even had a hidden demo of Crash Bandicoot: Warped, the third part of the platformer about a funny animal that resembled a mix of a fox and a coyote. Just as Crash Bandicoot: Warped was later on a demo version of Spyro the Dragon. These popular platformers, as of 2020, have been re-released in several parts each and remade from scratch to meet the new graphics standards of our time on the new generation of consoles and PC. And they received their continuation and sequels more than once.

Gradually, games for PlayStation began to flirt with cinematography - to get a full production in scripted scenes, which often served the story and diluted the gameplay, as well as a full professional voiceover. The company was betting on both the Japanese and American developers. In 1996, Capcom marked the beginning of the series of survival horror about zombie apocalypse Resident Evil (in Japan it is known as Biohazard) from the famous producer and game designer Shinji Mikami, who had released in this genre similar games of Dino Crisis series, having replaced zombies with dinosaurs from Jurassic. At the same time, Core Design released the first game in the series, which began the adventures of tomb raider Lara Croft, whose bust size kept many fans of the first game (as well as a number of subsequent games in the Tomb Raider series) on their toes. Lara fell in love with the media, becoming almost one of the first heroines of the main role in the video games, and gained popularity not only among the overwhelming male but also the female audience. Even the fashion house Gucci paid $30,000 to publisher Eidos for a virtual Miss Croft to showcase their clothes. Her image was broadcast through real models, and the energy drink manufacturer Lucozade used it for their ads.

In 1997, Square, the company that had previously made games for Nintendo, exclusively released the legendary Final Fantasy VII on PlayStation, a game on three CDs (the international version includes a fourth, which includes additional materials) with a huge duration at the time, a detailed world and dashingly twisted plot, which can be described as a "techno-tale," but most importantly - this game strongly influenced the development and popularization of the JRPG genre, games, which had previously been rare guests outside of Japan. Towards the end of the same year, one of the biggest racing franchises Gran Turismo by Polyphony Digital is released. Thanks to realistic graphics, believable physics, and a huge number of licensed cars, the game received high scores from the core press (to be exact, the overall score on Metacritic was 96/100) and sold 10 million copies, gaining a large fanbase and new installments of the series on each of the next generations of PlayStation.
Metal Gear Solid.
In 1998, Konami released the first game of another legendary stealth-action series Metal Gear Solid - a spectacular spy action game and successor of the Metal Gear series from the previous generation of consoles, which was made under the guidance of the now legendary game-designer Hideo Kojima. It set new trends for the genre, set its own standards, and is forever enshrined in players' memory as one of the best spy action games ever released on consoles. In 1999, the company began another series, which also contributed greatly to the survival horror genre. Their in-house studio Team Silent released the first installment of Silent Hill, where, unlike Resident Evil's static camera angles, the camera is now fully three-dimensional, and the fear of sudden "jump scares" is replaced with a lingering atmosphere of the unknown.

Throughout the lifetime of the PlayStation, the console has hosted such popular games and series as Syphon Filter, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, Twisted Metal, Tony Hawk Pro Skater, Mortal Kombat, Medal of Honor, Doom, Quake, Driver, Need for Speed, Mega Man, Parasite Eve, Alone in the Dark, Clock Tower, MediEvil, Die Hard Trilogy, GTA, Diablo, Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain, Destruction Derby, Oddworld, Carmageddon, MDK, Tenchu, Soul Edge, many sports simulations like WWF SmackDown!, Pro Evolution Soccer, Madden NFL, immortal FIFA and a lot of games in different franchises, popular among teenagers, like Spider-Man, X-Men, Harry Potter and other titles, which by 2007 together with various software gathered about eight thousand, and the console was on the market for 11 years. The Nintendo 64 also had a lot of good games, for example, Super Mario 64 of 1996 was the first platformer game that, unlike Spyro and Crash, allowed you to move freely through the game world. Also, Golden Eye 007 - the game based on the popular franchise about the secret agent James Bond and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - the best game in history according to Metacritic were released on it.
Final Note
The final note from Sega is the Dreamcast, the company's last home console. At the time of its release, Tom Kalinske had already left the company, and Hayao Nakayama and David Rosen had left their positions, although they were still with the company. 1994 saw the release of the failed Saturn, which Sega began to make at a loss, dropping first to $299 and then $199, but even this couldn't save the company, as its main competitor Sony had already taken over 47% of the home console market. Enduring huge losses, the company still decides to take a new step and, at the end of 1998, released a new console in Japan with a concise name Dreamcast. Despite 80 thousand pre-orders and a successful sales launch, Sega managed to deliver only 150 thousand consoles, which were immediately sold out on the first day of sales.

At the time of its release, the Dreamcast was the most advanced system on the market, using 128 bits and its unique GD-ROM format as media - unlike the 650 megabyte CD-ROM, this format allowed for 1.2 gigabytes onboard, but even more incredible - a removable memory card that could be used as a small mini console with an LCD screen (VMU) and even a removable 56k modem for going online and playing online. A year later, the company stormed the U.S. and by the end of the year sold a million consoles, which was considered at the time the best start in the country market ever, in addition, its cost was lower than that of the PlayStation console at the start - only $199. The console itself was accompanied by a line of eighteen games, which also gave Sega an advantage.
Sega Dreamcast.
The end of the Dreamcast was hasty - due to huge mistakes made by top management and failed marketing, Sony's next console outplayed the Dreamcast before its release thanks to backward compatibility with PlayStation games and the added DVD player feature.

The last home console from Sega managed to release legendary and just good games, including Soulcalibur, Dead or Alive 2, Crazy Taxi, Jet Grind Radio (known as Jet Set Radio in Japan), Resident Evil: Code Veronica, JRPG Grandia II, and Skies of Arcadia, Sonic Adventure, Metropolis Street Racer, reanimated Ecco the Dolphin, NFL 2K, Sonic Adventure and the legendary Shenmue I-II and Virtua Fighter 3 by Yu Suzuki, where the QTE system (which stands for Quick Time Events) first appeared. This mechanic works as follows: in the scripted scene directly on the screen appear buttons and combinations that need to have time to press the allotted time. Depending on the success or failure of the scene changed dramatically - in some modern games QTE, by the way, is still used. Something similar was implemented in the game Dragon's Lair - an interactive cartoon game in which the plot cuts were adjusted according to the player's actions. In 1982, the company Cinematronics sold ten thousand machines with it in less than three months, and the game itself was already using laserdiscs for data storage.
By the second half of 2000, the company had launched SegaNet, with the legendary Sonic Team's ChuChu Rocket! and NBA 2K among the first online Dreamcast games, followed by Bomberman Online, Phantasy Star Online, Quake III Arena, the entire 2K2 line from Visual Concepts and Unreal Tournament. In 2001 Sega finally stopped supporting the Dreamcast, failed to recover from the shock, left the home console market for good, and remained in the industry as a publisher and developer of games for other platforms, including the same arcade machines. Generally speaking, the company was saved by sincere love and belief in Dreamcast by its president Isao Okawa, who first invested $40 million of his own money, then gave a $500 million loan, and shortly before his death forgave the company all its debts by giving away $695 million worth of stock.