It's been over two decades since Sega released its last, and arguably most beloved console, the Dreamcast. Though gaming has seen its share of innovations and revolutions since then, the mainstream market has never been as experimental and strange as Sega's swan song. Luckily for us, the fun never needs to end.
Independent developers have never really let go of the Dreamcast. In the years since its demise, many projects have come to fruition for the platform, including Another World HD, 4x4, Pier Solar and the Great Architects, and Giana's Return. 2020 looks to be a great year for the console, with five notable games seeing release.
SLaVE is a 3D puzzle style game that has clearly been influenced by Doom, Faceball, and Rez. The colorfully blocky, minimalistic artwork and fun soundtrack make it an addicting experience. The developers have announced that there will only be 480 physical copies produced in its limited edition run, so if you’re interested pre-order now.
Xenocider is an on-rails shooter in the style of Space Harrier that promises players 10 levels, three levels of difficulty, customizable controls, and upgradable features as they progress. It has been in development since 2017 via crowdfunding, so the hype has had some time to build.
Intrepid Izzy is a traditional platformer with RPG elements. You play as Izzy, who can gain abilities and costume changes throughout the levels. The game was successfully launched via Kickstarter and features modern graphics and beat-em-up influenced combat. Intrepid Izzy promises an imaginative, polished experience for the Dreamcast faithful. If you’re among them, you can download a demo to see for yourself right now.
Arcade Racing Legends
Up until now, most of the indie releases for the platform have been 2D. Arcade Racing Legends will be among the first of the 3D games released for the Dreamcast since it was officially discontinued. The game was successfully launched through Kickstarter and features a career mode, split screen multiplayer support, time trials, and fifteen playable vehicles. The biggest backers of the campaign will be dropping advertisements into the game in the style of traditional racing ads. There’s also some talk about bringing the game online!
Xeno Crisis has been ported to quite a few retro consoles but that doesn’t make it any less awesome. It’s a crowd-funded, top-down, arcade-style shooter that may remind players of the gameplay from SmashTV and the art style of Metal Slug. The pixel art is gorgeous, the gameplay is addicting, and the audio design is the perfect icing on the cake. The game is available as a digital download or in physical format.