September 9th: a date that will forever be remembered by North American gamers. Why? Because this date saw the release of two of the industry’s most historic and revered gaming consoles. That’s right, it’s the anniversaries of both the Sony PlayStation and Sega Dreamcast.
Released 20 years ago, the Sony PlayStation ushered in a new era of gaming which is still being felt today. The introduction of games which sported 3D polygonal graphics changed how the public saw gaming. This was no longer a hobby for children, as now games were able to be depicted in a more realistic and exciting way. This was the world’s first “sexy” console and it became an instant phenomenon. Without PlayStation, gaming as we know it today would simply not exist.
Personally speaking, I was never actually a fan of the PlayStation. I was a die-hard Sega fan and the Saturn was all I needed. I have to admit to secretly wanting a PS though. When I saw games like Final Fantasy VII and especially Metal Gear Solid, my mind was blown away. Not only did the Sega Saturn not have these titles, but no game on that system LOOKED as good as those. It wouldn’t be until the PS2 era where I finally played these titles for myself.
The other big release of this date is the Sega Dreamcast. This was the first “next-gen” console of the era. Where PlayStation brought polygonal graphics onto the scene, Dreamcast took that to the next level with more powerful technology. Games like Soul Calibur actually looked better than they did in the arcade, and other titles like Virtua Fighter 3 were nearly identical. The Dreamcast also introduced the first modem in a console which allowed players to play online for the very first time. Though it didn’t live long, the Dreamcast laid the groundwork for much of what we enjoy today as well.
The Dreamcast will always be my favorite console. This was the first console I ever bought myself and which I saved up for. I took that day off school just so I could spend the entire day playing it. Soul Calibur, Sonic Adventure, and eventually, Crazy Taxi, and Shenmue took up a lot of my time in the late 90s/early 2000s. It’s a shame that the Dreamcast died out because it really had the best lineup of games at the time and was revolutionary in terms of its hardware.
I know you guys have fond memories of these systems yourselves. Please share with us some of your experiences in the comments below!