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Sega Saturn Appreciation and Emulation Thread

cireza

Member
Jun 1, 2014
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Oh, I will pick it up for sure. He's asking me $80. I still feel like I'm an imbecile for not getting it while I was in Paris for Japan Expo - I found it for €50 in one of those retro shops near Place de la Republique. European (or, rather, French and British) shops have much better Saturn stocks than here in the States.
This was one of my first game on Saturn, and I played a ton of it. My nickname on internet is actually taken from a villain in this game, with one letter changed. Just shows how much I love this game.

The game does not teach you its mechanics too well, so some things will be a bit difficult to understand. But once you understand the rules of the game, everything makes perfect sense. It is a game that rewards intelligence in both placement/reach and understanding your enemies and their skills.

I will come back with advice when you will actually play it ;)
 

Komatsu

Formerly 'enlyzer'
Oct 17, 2016
384
656
570
Between Chicago and NYC
This was one of my first game on Saturn, and I played a ton of it. My nickname on internet is actually taken from a villain in this game, with one letter changed. Just shows how much I love this game.

The game does not teach you its mechanics too well, so some things will be a bit difficult to understand. But once you understand the rules of the game, everything makes perfect sense. It is a game that rewards intelligence in both placement/reach and understanding your enemies and their skills.

I will come back with advice when you will actually play it ;)
OK, I got it! Will start playing it tonight. Thanks so much for the help!

--

BTW, fellow Saturners, I was thinking: should we perhaps start our own SEGAF community?
 
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cireza

Member
Jun 1, 2014
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OK, I got it! Will start playing it tonight. Thanks so much for the help!
Ok, a few quick tips.

1) In this game, each character has 2 to 4 skill category. Each skill actually provided a set amount of experience for this category when you use it. So you should frequently reorganize your skill menu and include the latest ones.

2) You should not always use the latest Defense skill. Each Defense skill has its own use and even if it is important to raise your experience by using the latest skill, only do this if the situation is adapted. DEF reduces damage, CVR makes a character take damage instead of another (no damage reduction), CTR returns damage only on Physical attacks and does not reduce damage taken, Evade raises the chances to dodge etc...

3) After a few battles you will be free to wander the world to find the remaining characters. The game level automatically scales, so you can do whatever order. This will probably be a bit difficult, and you don't gain form raising your levels. Just make a choice and try to stick with it. I like to go west in Dragoon Kingdom first.

4) All characters max at level 30. You should use a mixture of all so that everyone gets levels. It is not difficult to have them all at lv 30.

5) Equipment is important (weapons, armors, shields) you should try to keep upgraded as much as possible, but don't invest in an armor that is too expensive for little gain. It is not worth. You will find a lot of chests with items. Some weapons are cursed or will have specific effects, you will have to try by yourself to see what works and what does not.

6) Characters are heavily influenced by the ground and how they can move. Try to stay on the paths, or it might be difficult and some characters will get a bit stuck.

7) Always take a look at the enemy types before acting. There are generally two or three enemy types at once, not more. Click on them and look what they do. What kind of defense they use. They will always use their defense skill after moving if they could not attack. Don't go physical on an enemy that has Counter, use Fireball or Freeze instead (ATK skills).

8) The game is difficult and weak characters ARE weak. Always expose the stronger ones. Never advance too much to avoid exposing needlessly your characters.

9) Don't waste your MP in ATK skills with Saura, only do it when you feel like you will not need healing anymore. I don't like to rely too much on items, but there are healing items though so count on them if you need.

That's already quite a lot of things. Hope this helps.
 
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Komatsu

Formerly 'enlyzer'
Oct 17, 2016
384
656
570
Between Chicago and NYC
Ok, a few quick tips.

1) In this game, each character has 2 to 4 skill category. Each skill actually provided a set amount of experience for this category when you use it. So you should frequently reorganize your skill menu and include the latest ones.

2) You should not always use the latest Defense skill. Each Defense skill has its own use and even if it is important to raise your experience by using the latest skill, only do this if the situation is adapted. DEF reduces damage, CVR makes a character take damage instead of another (no damage reduction), CTR returns damage only on Physical attacks and does not reduce damage taken, Evade raises the chances to dodge etc...

3) After a few battles you will be free to wander the world to find the remaining characters. The game level automatically scales, so you can do whatever order. This will probably be a bit difficult, and you don't gain form raising your levels. Just make a choice and try to stick with it. I like to go west in Dragoon Kingdom first.

4) All characters max at level 30. You should use a mixture of all so that everyone gets levels. It is not difficult to have them all at lv 30.

5) Equipment is important (weapons, armors, shields) you should try to keep upgraded as much as possible, but don't invest in an armor that is too expensive for little gain. It is not worth. You will find a lot of chests with items. Some weapons are cursed or will have specific effects, you will have to try by yourself to see what works and what does not.

6) Characters are heavily influenced by the ground and how they can move. Try to stay on the paths, or it might be difficult and some characters will get a bit stuck.

7) Always take a look at the enemy types before acting. There are generally two or three enemy types at once, not more. Click on them and look what they do. What kind of defense they use. They will always use their defense skill after moving if they could not attack. Don't go physical on an enemy that has Counter, use Fireball or Freeze instead (ATK skills).

8) The game is difficult and weak characters ARE weak. Always expose the stronger ones. Never advance too much to avoid exposing needlessly your characters.

9) Don't waste your MP in ATK skills with Saura, only do it when you feel like you will not need healing anymore. I don't like to rely too much on items, but there are healing items though so count on them if you need.

That's already quite a lot of things. Hope this helps.
Thanks so much, particularly for tips #2 and #4. I never worry too much about cross-party leveling and would never assume that one should use earlier DEF skills. Game is pretty interesting so far though the story does feel a bit generic compared to other great Saturn RPGs like Shining 3 and Saga.
 

cireza

Member
Jun 1, 2014
4,647
1,264
560
Thanks so much, particularly for tips #2 and #4. I never worry too much about cross-party leveling and would never assume that one should use earlier DEF skills. Game is pretty interesting so far though the story does feel a bit generic compared to other great Saturn RPGs like Shining 3 and Saga.
Story is nothing special. I love the overall atmosphere though, the game uses a lot of fog and cloud effects, and the soundtrack is a bit on the calm/mysterious side.
 

DT MEDIA

GAF's Resident Saturn Omnibus
Jan 7, 2018
449
491
405
Chicago, IL
www.dtm-arts.com












Some new photos of World Series Baseball 98 on Saturn, absolutely one of the greatest videogames for the system. Every owner should have a copy in their library, no questions asked.

I was thinking to myself that this game is probably my all-time second-favorite sports videogame, after the legendary NHL 94 on Genesis & Sega CD. Its pitcher/batter interface has never been surpassed and is a key reason for its continued appeal. But what I really admire are all the little details and flourishes that make this game so great. The player animations are remarkably fluid and natural, filled with little nothing moments like a baseman shuffling his feet, a player punching his glove, a pitcher wiping sweat off his brow or shaking his head after giving up a home run, or a batter who kicks up dirt in frustration after getting struck out.

I've been playing WSB98 for twenty years, and there are still new things that just pop up and surprise me. Yesterday, I played an exhibition match between my Minnesota Twins and the Chicago White Sox, a fairly close 2-1 game where I got two homers but struggled to move men on the bases (it's really tough to advance runners against the computer player). In the top of the 9th inning, I had runners on 2nd & 3rd bases. I swing at a pitch at a bad angle and hit a grounder straight towards the pitcher. It's about as easy an out as you can get. However, this time, the ball hits the ground hard and bounces right over the pitcher, past his reach and right between two infielders, rolling into that perfect sweet spot into the outfield. My runners scramble home and I score two runs, which pretty much seals the game.

I've never seen that happen before. Ever. The game is full of those little moments. Sega did such a fantastic job and you can see their years of experience in crafting a masterwork.

After Sega's corporate restructuring around the time of the Dreamcast launch, all of their software studios were scrambled or reassembled into new semi-autonomous studios (Hitmaker, Smilebit, United Game Artists, Overworks, etc.). As a consequence, the software teams responsible for the highly successful World Series Baseball and Worldwide Soccer series were disbanded, and Sega Japan never created another soccer of baseball title ever again. Everything from that point forward was outsourced to Western developers, with far less impressive results.

I can imagine how amazing a Dreamcast World Series Baseball 99 & Worldwide Soccer 99 would look and play, continuing the sublime gameplay but with spectacular 6th Generation visual flash and polish. Instead, nothing. That still doesn't make any sense, especially after the beating that Saturn received in the West due to a severe lack of sports games at the start. But that's Sega for ya.




P.S. Here's EGM magazine scan that features a short capsule review of World Series Baseball 98. As is often the case, I find myself wondering if these guys even bothered to play the game at all, or if they just watched one staff member play for thirty seconds before scribbling down their notes for the review. An 8/10 is nice, but lower than MLB 98 on Playstation? Were these guys high? This one page summarizes the whole era perfectly, when everybody and their pet dog became hardcore Sony fanboys while treating Sega and Nintendo as a mild nuisance.
 
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DT MEDIA

GAF's Resident Saturn Omnibus
Jan 7, 2018
449
491
405
Chicago, IL
www.dtm-arts.com








Here are some shots of Shining Force 3: Scenario 1 from my playtime yesterday. I'm absolutely loving this game and am especially thrilled at the chance to finally enjoy the entire trilogy of the saga. I do wish I had bought this title back in 1998, because it's an absolutely smashing adventure game.

I am finding myself preferring the Strategy-RPG style to turn-based RPGs, with a better sense of action and managing your growing army, knowing where to attack and how to group players together. It's all so much more engaging than simply waiting your turn to press "X," and I really look forward to each battle. The friendship feature where teammates who battle together boost one another's powers is a nice touch, and it really stings when one of my characters get knocked out and I lose all those friendships. I also enjoy all the minor characters that I need to rescue, which may figure in later scenarios. Unfortunately, I have a nasty habit of getting these people killed.

Here is a scan of EGM's review, which was given very generous scores. Kudos to them for begging Sega to bring us Scenarios 2 & 3, which absolutely should have happened. That 18-month dead zone between Saturn and Dreamcast was absolutely deadly to the company's reputation, and releasing a small number of key Saturn games during that period would have helped build relations with the fans. Heck, by the year 2000, the internet was aflame with rumors of a "Dreamcast 2, "as everybody was convinced Sega was about to dump them yet again. Yes, a few more Saturn releases in '98 and '99 would have cost money, but that's a bargain compared to lost reputations.


 
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