Friday, July 30

SG-1000: from the arcade to the home, this was Sega’s first console | Digital Trends Spanish

Before the Master System and the Sega Genesis there was the SG-1000, which debuted in July 1983. It is the first desktop console developed by Sega, which sought to move its video games from the arcade rooms to the homes of thousands. of players.

Sega began experimenting with home gaming devices in 1982 as the arcade market was declining. The first model he developed was the SC-3000, a computer with an integrated keyboard. However, when the company learned that Nintendo was planning to release a gaming-only console – the Famicom – the house of Sonic began development of the SG-1000 in parallel.

Sega first conducted a limited market test and finally, in 1983, released the SG-1000 in Japan. This console, also called the Mark I, played 8-bit games, displayed 16 colors, and used a Z80 processor, a popular chip used in various home computers and the ColecoVision console.

Until the end of the year 83, the console had 21 games, unlike the competition that only had nine. Because of that, as a percentage of the Famicoms were recalled due to circuit failures, the SG-1000 racked up 160,000 units in sales that year. The figures even exceeded the expectations of the company, which expected to sell only 50,000 units.

The spontaneous success of the SG-1000 prompted Sega to continue working on desktop console development, so a year later, it released the SG-1000 II (also known as the Mark II). This replaced the previous version’s hardwired joystick with two detachable controls, in addition to the huge black cartridges that contained the games. In this way, the Sega My Card memory cards emerged, which were used in Sega consoles until 1987.

The joy did not last long for Sega, because in 1984 its console was surpassed by the Famicom. By that year, the Nintendo console had better hardware and had increased its catalog of games by releasing third-party titles. No SG-1000 game could compete with the classic Donkey kong, even though Sega tried with Congo Bongo. Also, the SG-1000 never officially arrived in North America, unlike the Famicom that arrived in that region with the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). That was the end.

Sega fans are probably the ones who most remember or know about the existence of the SG-1000. However, although great titles do not stand out in its game catalog, it included Girl’s Garden. This was the first video game programmed by Yuji Naka, who would later program Sonic the hedgehog.

On the other hand, despite its short life, the SG-1000 has the merit of being Sega’s first video game console. Thanks to that inexperienced and limited first step, the company continued into the home console market and laid the foundation for its later hardware. Thus, over the years, gamers were able to enjoy the Master System (Mark III) in 1985, the Mega Drive (Sega Genesis) in 1988, the Sega Saturn in 1994 and the Dreamcast in 1998.

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