Zeer interessant nieuws uit het Sega kamp. Zoals bekend was, was de Dreamcast Sega's laatste echte console. Velen dachten dat Sega zich puur op de software ging richten, maar vandaag is er eindelijk duidelijkheid gekomen omtrent de situatie met de Dreamcast. DailyRadar tipte een stuk van de sluier.

According to statements made at Sega's executive games summit, the Dreamcast as we know it today will not exist in two years. But, Sega says, "the platform remains central to our plans going forward." Confused? Read on.

In an effort to streamline costs, focus on content and position Sega for future growth, the company is planning to "evolve" the Dreamcast platform, said head of corporate communications Charles Bellfield. "Will we ship a box like that in two years?" he asked, gesturing to a Dreamcast. "No."

The company plans to develop a small, single-chip version of the Dreamcast technology, and make that available to technology partners for insertion into things like DVD players and set-top boxes. Thus, playing Dreamcast games wouldn't be limited soley to using the current Dreamcast hardware.

The company is also looking for ways, said Bellfield, to ensure that the Dreamcast platform can be made available at almost no cost. "Think of it like a cable box or digital satellite dish," Bellfield said. "You pay to get the content, but you don't pay for the hardware."

Finally, much was made of the Dreamcast's ability to scale its hardware power: adding more RAM, more powerful processor and more powerful graphics hardware to the platform would be trivial, said Bellfield, but he shied away from calling anything "Dreamcast 2." "That implies the old, console way of thinking," he said in response to a question, "and we're moving beyond that."

He was keen to point out that all of the existing Dreamcast APIs, development enviroments and libraries would continue to be used by developers. What would change would simply be how much they could get out of the technology, thanks to speed, RAM and graphic enhancements.

Would current Dreamcasts be able to play games written for enhanced Dreamcast technology? Questions about forward compatability (playing new games on old systems, as opposed to backwards compatability, playing old games on new systems) haven't been answered yet, he said, but he implied that it was entirely withing the realm of possibility.Sega neemt een zeer riskante stap hiermee, maar mocht hun plan lukken zijn ze de concurrentie een stap verder.