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Archive for April 21st, 2010


So you want to work at SEGA? Part 3: New Chapters – and cake.

It has now been almost two years since I came to work at SEGA – a fact that hit me as I looked through an old notebook earlier this week. “…Has it really been that long?”, I wondered silently. Ever since I flew out for my original job interview, I’ve kept journals of my time and experiences here – and today, I’d like to post up one more journal, publicly, to snapshot my mind and my experiences at this exact moment in life.

It is amazing how much can change within two years – and how quickly. To say that my view of SEGA as a company remains the same would be like saying that I no longer have an enormous love for cake and dessert. (Both would be incorrect statements, and at least one would be far less delicious.)

As a fan living out a dream to work at the company I had always wanted to work for, my perception – and reaction – to the things I saw was admittedly unique. I can still remember how happy I was when I began my first day here, trying hard not to grin from ear to ear; months later when I heard that Ryo Hazuki was being considered for All-stars racing, or when we pulled off our first big community event with Phantasy Star Zero.

Likewise, I can also vividly remember the times when decisions have been made that I have not fully agreed with. (Perhaps a little too strongly, at times.) Learning to understand the dual perspective of both passionate fan and logical businessman has taken time, and is a lesson that I continue to learn every day.

More than anything, I find myself dreaming of a future where SEGA is filled with the fans who grew up loving everything that SEGA was. Fans who share a passion and a dedication that is unrivaled – and who can compliment that passion with enough brains, logic, and courage to create great success. I am aware my dreams are likely impossible, but reality has never stopped me from dreaming before.

One of my other big goals in life was to one day visit Japan – a hope that was realized last year when I was fortunate enough to attend the Tokyo Game Show. I owe a great many thanks to the people who helped make that happen, and who were kind enough to take me in and make my first trip to Japan one that I will never forget. They know who they are – thank you all, once again.

From Seattle to New York, D.C. to San Diego, Los Angeles to Tokyo… and now and then to a small town called Joplin, Missouri, I have traveled more in the last two years than ever before in my life – and I have enjoyed every moment of it.

I don’t know what the future will bring, but I do know that regardless of what happens, there are always more adventures to be had.

So, besides knowing that one day this author will look back on this with nostalgic eyes, I write also to show the more human side of what life at SEGA is like, and to offer encouragement to all of you who see yourselves here someday. It is always easier to give up halfway and pretend to be happy – but it is also always worth it to see one’s dreams through to the end.

After all…

You may just find yourself in good company.

Here’s to new chapters.


Alpha Protocol at Destructoid- Day 3 – Konstantin Brayko

Alpha Protocol - Brayko

Today is day 3 of our Alpha Protocol trailers on Destructoid with a new video featuring Konstantin Brayko. Enjoy!


Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Now Available on iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad

What’s that? You would like the chance to take one of the most awesome Sonic games ever with you wherever you go? Well, we can grant that wish — the Genesis mega-classic Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is now available on the Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad!

Also coming is a free update to the game, which will enable full multiplayer — play together through single player levels and Sonic and Tails, or go head-to-head in the classic versus mode!

Sonic the Hedgehog 2Click here for a preview of the game and for information on how to purchase it!

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 - iPhone

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 - iPhone

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 - iPhone


After Burner Climax Takes Off On Xbox 360 and PSN!

Get ready! The wait is over, and one of the most indelible arcade experiences of the past decade is now available for download, in glorious HD: After Burner Climax has taken off, releasing today for Xbox Live Arcade and tomorrow, April 22nd, for PlayStation 3 over PlayStation Network.

After Burner Climax

Additionally, we can now announce that there’s some great extras also available with the game — including premium themes for both PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Additionally, the Xbox 360 version will have two exclusive gamer icons, and two avatar awards — a slick looking t-shirt with the distinctive After Burner logo, and a solid gold helmet. That last part is italicized for awesomeness — here, check out a picture, along with the other avatar award item:

ABC - Xbox 360 Avatar Award
ABC - Xbox 360 Avatar Award

I’ve already rhapsodized quite a bit about this title, but just to rehash: After Burner Climax was released in 2006 on the high-powered “Lindbergh” arcade hardware. With 20 stages and fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants branching missions, this is what an arcade game is meant to be like — I keep saying, as good as the screenshots look, the game looks even better at full throttle. For me, the After Burner series has always balanced the extreme difficulty of quarter-hungry arcade-bred beasts, and the intuitive straight-ahead fun of really good air combat games.

After Burner Climax also features three flyable fighter planes, all officially licensed: Pick from the Northrop Grummand F-14D Super Tomcat, or the Boeing-manufactured F-15E Strike Eagle or F/A-18E Super Hornet. The different fighters do have different balances in-game, and that combined with the branching mission adds a hearty amount of replayability to the title.

After Burner Climax
After Burner Climax

After Burner has a feel all its own, and while the best of today’s home computers may be capable of better graphics, there is a fluid grace to how excruciatingly gorgeous this game looks in HD. It’s one of the best looking games I’ve ever played and the thrill of accelerating through a narrow canyon is something that I indelibly think of when I think of “arcade action” games. Home gaming has of course become far more popular over the years, and we’re seeing fewer and fewer real life arcades — After Burner Climax really is a slice of that old arcade experience though, and it fits perfectly on the consoles.

After Burner Climax is available for Xbox Live Arcade for 800 MS Points, or via the PlayStation store for $9.99. Additionally, check out these awesome premium themes available for both consoles. The Xbox 360 theme is available now and the PSN theme should be available in early May:

After Burner Climax - PSN Theme
After Burner Climax - Xbox 360 Theme

Lastly — my lead-in line for this blog, “Get Ready” was actually a reference to the first After Burner game I played, and the first of the series to appear on a console — After Burner, on the SEGA Master System. One of my favorite games from the era, it’s worth linking to a video of the first stage (complete with the digitized instruction to “get ready!”). Enjoy this nostalgic reminder of After Burner’s origins.

I’m very excited to see this game show up on consoles. Take the the skies and enjoy this unique and awesome arcade experience!