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101 Amazing Sega Mega Drive Facts

The story of how Sega came to dominate is part historical accident, part savvy marketing and part slap in the face to the idea that globalism has erased all regional differences in taste. Sega itself has gone through many twists and turns since its World War II-era founding. In the mids, it merged with another game company to become Sega. Around that time, though, home consoles began to appear on the marketplace—and Sega, bought again, moved its headquarters to Tokyo.

Sega, though, did several things right with Brazil, a country with roughly two-thirds the population of the U. Nintendo ignored the market but Sega built a licensing agreement with Tectoy , a powerful local toy manufacturer. That agreement ensured the Sega would always have a backer in Brazil. And because Nintendo had ignored the market at first, NES piracy was rampant by the time it got there. Rather than giving up on the system, the company adapted its approach, coming out with continually updated versions of the device and even producing new games long after the system had faded from view everywhere else.

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Brazil is one of the largest markets in the world for video games, but because of a set of strict import taxes designed to ensure that locally built products get preference in the market, piracy has become rampant. Microsoft gets around this problem with its Xboxes by creating factories to build consoles locally. As a result, the Xbox One, while still more expensive in Brazil than in the U. By the way, the exchange rate between the Brazilian Real and the U.


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The result of the economic climate is that older consoles tend to stick around a long time. The Brazilian version of the year-old Playstation 2, first produced locally in , was the only version worldwide to receive its own version of Netflix , and its ownership rate still ranks above other more recent consoles in the region, such as the Playstation 3, which first went on sale locally in The locally-produced Xbox is the most widely owned console in the region, however, with Research from the developer Sequoia , meanwhile, finds that prior-generation consoles, such as the Xbox and PS3, remain the consoles of choice for most gamers—though the Xbox One and PS4 are gaining ground.

Modern game manufacturers tend not to release sales numbers for local markets such as Brazil. Things are so challenging for modern game-makers that Nintendo announced it was leaving the Brazilian market earlier this year, citing local import taxes and financial rules that made it difficult for the company to run its eShop online store.

101 Amazing Sega Mega Drive Facts

In the end, the Brazilian video game time warp might have as much to do with solid business fundamentals as anything else. By letting us know your country we can show you books that are relevant to you.


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  • Toggle navigation. New to eBooks. Games Console History Series.

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    Filter Results. Last 30 days. Last 90 days. For instance, did you know that there was a Genesis Model 3?

    It was actually manufactured by Majesco instead of Sega. Ever wish your Genesis could play cassette tapes? If you can imagine a weird, useless Genesis variation, it probably actually exists.

    Brazil Is an Alternate Video Game Universe Where Sega Beat Nintendo - Atlas Obscura

    I would not be the slightest bit surprised if an official Sonic-playing toaster is a real thing somewhere out there in the world. Sega may have long since abandoned the system, but dedicated fans continue to produce new games for the console. The reality is, the race was much closer than you think, and in fact Sega outright won the war in the Americas and Europe.

    Now, Nintendo did triumph on a worldwide basis. According to official numbers from Nintendo, the Super Nintendo sold around 49 million units worldwide. Sega was less forthcoming about sales, and for years the most quoted Genesis number was 29 million, but that figure was lifted from a single quote from The Genesis continued to sell well for years after , and more recent estimates put the number of Genesis units sold at closer to 40 million. The reason Nintendo had a higher worldwide tally was entirely down to Japan, where the Super Famicom outsold the Mega Drive on a nearly 4-to-1 basis.

    Meanwhile, in the Americas the Super Nintendo ended up selling So there you have it — the bit wars which was mostly a western thing were officially won by Sega.

    Yes, the words Blast Processing were dreamt up at a marketing meeting, but the idea behind those words — that the Genesis was a much faster machine than the SNES — was absolutely true. The SNES had other things going for it, like a greater range of colors and fancy Mode-7 3D effects, but the Genesis was undeniably the speedier system.