It’s that time of year again, yes it’s the Dreamcast’s 17th Birthday in the United States because who remembers 14/10/99 the European date compared to the nicely sounding 9/9/99.
You might be thinking I did everything I could last year for the 16th anniversary of the consoles launch, well no.
If you know me in any way I will tell you the Dreamcast is the best console of all-time but is it really? A recent chat with EofGizmo before a recording an episode of Pod of War got me thinking about game consoles and why the Dreamcast time is the best but it’s not the best it’s my favourite.
There is a difference as take the NES which has recently turned 30, now if I was maybe 10 years old that would have likely been my first system and I would have been introduced to Castlevania, Mario, Mega Man, Metroid, Zelda to name a few.
Those would have shaped my gaming life and looking back now at the NES, I would have tons of nostalgia for the system. I could possibly say that’s the best consoles ever not just for games but what it did for the industry as a whole.
If you think of it seriously most of the library of NES doesn’t hold up and the games that do can be played elsewhere such as the Wii U which hardly anyone will say it’s the best console ever but why not as it can play all of the Wii’s library meaning you great games such as Super Mario Galaxy, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword and The Last Story along with the Virtual Console which includes Super Mario 64, Ocarina of Time, Yoshi Island, Super Mario Bros 3, Fire Emblem and we have the downloadable games plus the systems own unique library.
All that makes the Wii U sound awesome, yet none of that will make it consider the best or peoples favourite as it will lack that nostalgia, that je ne sais quoi or the IT factor.
To me the Dreamcast has that, yeah sure the 200+ library in the PAL region is rather small, some of the games aren’t great or haven’t aged well, no decent football game, no EA support, the best games for the most part have been ported elsewhere, the systems can be a bit temperamental.
With all that said people will look at Super Mario Bros 3 be it on a Wii U via the VC as a NES game and will always will, which makes the NES great.
When I look at Crazy Taxi, Dead or Alive 2, Jet Set Radio, Marvel Vs Capcom 2, MSR, Power Stone 2, Resident Evil Code: Veronica, REZ, Shenmue I&II, Skies of Arcadia, Sonic Adventure 1&2, Soul Calibur, Space Channel 5, The House of The Dead 2 for instance along with countless others they make me smile and give me great fun whilst playing them.
Numerous other things as well such as playing Virtua Tennis with a Fishing Rod is so daft but fun, the historical value of the Dreamcast might not mean a lot but is nice to look back a go this had a built in a modem and I use connect to the internet long before I had a PC via the Dreamcast, the community is maybe the biggest as you have sites such as The Dreamcast Junkyard who keep the system alive along with numerous studios still making games for the system for what will be 18+ years later by the time some of them come out.
The Dreamcast might not be the best but it is my favourite and to me that’s all that matters.