Sega Is Getting Back in the Game, Sort Of…

Before becoming a company focused on producing software, Sega was also a hardware giant producing game consoles like nobody’s business (except for Nintendo). After years of going head-to-head with that other game console giant though, it all went downhill for Sega, beginning with the ill-advised concept of Genesis console add-ons Sega CD and the 32X, continuing with the release of the Saturn, and culminating with the underperforming sales of the vastly underrated (and now considered classic) Dreamcast.

The Dreamcast’s huge potential for a company comeback notwithstanding, Sega opted to bow out of the console wars and instead concentrate on making various software and arcade games (which it has done with great success for the most part, although that’s a topic best left for another discussion). However, the company has decided to get back in the hardware business, if only for a little while; but not in the way that you think.

In a partnership deal with Japanese retailer Ebten, Sega has recently announced that it will be releasing notebook PCs with themes recalling its old consoles (and one with a generic Sega theme). The consoles in question are the Dreamcast, the Saturn, and the company’s masterpiece the Mega Drive (that would be the Genesis to us here in the States).

Customizability is the name of the game, and all four themes will be interchangeable on the laptops. More than that, Sega will be releasing four different base models, with each laptop featuring different specs configurations. First up, we have the light model, which sports an Intel Pentium 2020M CPU, an Intel HM76 Express chipset with integrated HD4000 graphics, 4 GB of DDR3 RAM, and a 500 GB hard disk drive.

Next is the standard model, which has under its hood an Intel Core i3-3120M CPU, 8 GB of DDR3 RAM, and a 1 GB NVIDIA GeForce GT650M GPU. It also carries the same Intel HM76 Express chipset as the light model (including the HD4000 integrated GPU), as well as the 500 GB HDD.

Finally, we have the high-spec model and the premium model. Both house an Intel Core i7-3630QM CPU, an Intel HM76 Express chipset with the HD4000 integrated GPU, a 1 GB NVIDIA GeForce GT650M dedicated GPU, and a 120 GB solid state drive. While both models seemingly have similar specs, the premium model is expected to have additional features. Not many details have been disclosed at this time, although it is reported to have a Blu-ray writer optical drive.

In ascending order, the laptop models will be priced at ¥99,750 ($1,069), ¥131,250 ($1,406), ¥162,750 ($1,744), and ¥194,250 ($2,081). No word yet if the gadgets will be coming stateside, but import enthusiasts may want to consider shipping one here. Whatever the case, this is definitely good news for Sega aficionados, and video game nostalgists in general.