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Sega Saturn System - Video Game Console

Platform : Sega Saturn
4.5 out of 5 stars 113 customer reviews

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2 new from $499.99 49 used from $54.99 15 collectible from $89.95

Product Description

Sega Saturn Controller: 3D Control Pad. Precision-engineered to intensify the 3D-gaming experience, the Sega Saturn 3D Control Pad delivers the ultimate in smooth and dynamic control. A revolutionary analog thumb pad reacts to your every impulse and brings you the new standard in game control. Features: Spatially engineered for dynamic 3D gameplay Ergonomic design provides optimum control and precise maneuvering Use the analog thumb pad for unsurpassed 3D gameplay - or use the mode switch to select standard digital control Pulse-sensitive analog thumb pad enables precise movement at breathtaking speeds Standard D-pad/six button set-up allows compatibility with most Sega Saturn games Official Sega product

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Customer Reviews
4.5 out of 5 stars 113 customer reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
Best Sellers Rank #12,608 in videogames
#1 in Video Games > More Systems > Sega Saturn > Consoles
Pricing The strikethrough price is the List Price. Savings represents a discount off the List Price.
Product Dimensions 12 x 12 x 12 inches
Media: Video Game

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By N. Durham HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on July 14, 2002
The Sega Saturn achieved much success overseas, but it never really took in America thanks to Sony's Playstation. Originally designed as a replacement for the aging Sega Genesis, the Saturn was to be designed to be the ultimate 2-D system, that was until Sega learned of Sony's plans. However, there are a lot of good qualities about the Saturn: the game library features over 300 games, the Saturn system itself is the most trouble free system ever made, the 3-D Analog controler (which was an early prototype of the Dreamcast controler) was the best on the market, the best conversions of 2-D games are on the was the first system to introduce online play... and it's library of RPG's is fantastic. All in all, the Saturn may have not been the best system, but it was pretty good...
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I own or have owned many game systems. Nintendo, Super Nintendo, Genesis, Playstation, Game Gear, Nomad, and now Gamecube and PS2. But My two favorite systems are undoubtedly the Dreamcast and the Saturn. And my favorite of the two is undoubtedly the Saturn.
The saturn was a well-built machine. Despite its internal workings being less than perfect in some ways (it was designed to work with squares rather than triangles when rendering, and had multiple processors sharing the main load) it also had some surprisingly good ideas (like built in memory for game saves and an expansion slot for memory upgrades and save backups). But what really impressed me about the hardware is the fact that even though the machine has been extinct for years, every one that I've encountered works perfectly. Now I'm sure that some of them just plain gave out, or were dropped or something. But I have never had a Saturn not load a game. I have never seen a Saturn freeze up or crash. I have never seen one stutter while playing movies. And my playstation started doing those things years ago (I finally had to get rid of it and pay for a replacement). Also worthy of mention is the fact that the original saturn controller is what I consider to be the finest designed controller in all of video game history. I fits my hand PERFECTLY. Playing games like Panzer Dragoon II, or Rayman with this controller is simply amazing. And speaking of Panzer Dragoon II...
The Saturn had what I consider to be the greatest selection of games ever. The best version of Rayman (my favorite side-scrolling game ever) is on the Saturn. Radiant Silvergun (what many consider to be the best shooter ever) is for Import Saturn. Nights into Dreams (the greatest game Sonic Team ever made) is for Saturn.
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Excerps from [...]

Performance "gap"

Another popular theory on why the Saturn failed to capture the masses' interests is that it didn't have comparable 3D performance to the PS1. The Saturn, is significantly more powerful than the PS1 in 2D capabilities, but it is also able to run at higher resolutions (640x224, 704x480), and capable of higher resolution and color count textures with less effort. The Saturn is more capable of these things because it has 66% more Video RAM. On the Saturn, as is true on any hardware, more RAM allows for higher color, higher resolution texture mapping, and higher screen resolution. Combine this with the specs directly from Sega and Sony's web pages, showing that both systems were capable of similar polygon performance, shows clearly that the Saturn was no slouch in the 3D department either.

The catch is that Sega achieved comparable polygonal performance with the Saturn by including more processors in the Saturn, which made development more difficult at first than it would be on the more simple PS1. In addition to having better developer support from Sony than Sega gave for the Saturn, and better more mature development kits, the PS1 also had built in special effects in the form of transparency and gouraud shading. This allowed the PS1 to generate lightsourcing and transparent special effects or polygons with a minimum hit to the system's polygon performance. Since the Saturn had to generate these effects through sheer processing muscle, developers of Saturn games usually had to lower the resolution to 320x224 in order to program effects similar to those on the Playstation.
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The Sega Saturn was orginally planned and concieved as a replacement/update for the 16 bit Genesis system. It was to have the best 2-D graphics of it's day, better than anything Nintendo was workign on. Then, Sony entered the game with the PlayStation which introduced the idea of 3-D console capabilities. Sega decided to change the focus of the Saturn towards a 3-D experience. Therefore the internals of the Saturn were redesigned to accomodate the shift in planning. The system launched before the PlayStation, early 1994 in Japan, and May of 1995 in the U.S. At first intital sales for the console looked pretty good, and going into 1996 the Saturn was out-preforming the PS. The early Saturn days saw some great software such as Panzer Dragoon, Daytona USA, Sonic 3D Blast, and Nights into Dreams. The PlayStation however also had great games, and by the end of 1996 had caught up with Saturn in sales. In 1997 the PS took firm control of the lead with the release of Final Fantasy 7 an amazing game that increased sales of the PS exponentially. While the PS was soaring, the Saturn began declining, the games werent as good, several titles that should have been brought over from Japan were not localized, and the system gradually lost support among 3rd party developers. By mid- 1997 the Saturn began its fall from grace. 1998 saw some of the last great games come out for the system, these included Panzer Dragoon Saga, Shining Force 3 and Burning Rangers. With the annoucement of the Dreamcast, Sega's next-gen console, the Saturn was essentially dead in the U.S. Sega stopped supporting it in the fall of 98'.
All in all you could say the Saturn was a failure.
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