Happy 24th Birthday, Sega Saturn: The Console Doomed By Its American Launch

The Sega Saturn turns 24 today, having been released in the US on May 11, 1995 - but it was far from the launch that was hoped for.

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FallenAngel198435d ago

On the bright side at least Saturn sold more than N64 in Japan despite getting killed off sooner

bouzebbal35d ago

Loved this console.. It had an amazing software and a superior 2D than PS one.. Also had the best Dpad for fighting games, the big fashion back then.

Ratchet7534d ago

And yet symphony of the night was by far superior on playstation.

Escamotage34d ago

100% Agree in regards to the D-Pad. I'm assuming you're talking about the US model 1 controllers with the circular indentations in the D-Pad? Also, the six button layout on the face of the controller was perfect for Capcom fighting games.

Definitely one of my favorite controllers.

rainslacker34d ago (Edited 34d ago )

Saturn was around for quite a while in Japan, and had a pretty large catalog of support. Even after the Dreamcast came out, the Saturn was a haven for lots of anime RPG's and visual novels, not to mention tons of shooters. Same thing happened with the PC-Engine, and it was quite popular long after it's prime in the market.

ElementX35d ago (Edited 35d ago )

Sega released too much hardware. The Master System, Genesis, Sega-CD add on, 32X add-on, Saturn, and Dreamcast. Not to mention the two consoles before Master System, also the Game Gear and Pico. It seemed like every couple years there was something new and I think consumers were tired and/or confused by all of it.

Bane3535d ago (Edited 35d ago )

That too but also the people at the head of the company wasnt running sega right like they should've

Razuel35d ago

i upgraded from 32x, i was like [email protected]$. Undo please.

JonTheGod34d ago

I traded my 32X into CEX last year with 16 games. Totalled over £800 credit when I was done. Knuckles Chaotix alone was £140!

Seraphim35d ago (Edited 35d ago )

I'm not sure it was consumers being tired and confused. When the largest player in the rental business refuses to carry your games it's kind of a killer as well. Scratch that, you're DOA. Especially at that time. Blockbuster refused to stock Saturn games. For kids and parents who, at the time, often relied on rentals, this was detrimental. When I learned this my Saturn went to collecting dust and the Playstation being my primary console. Granted I still bought the occasional Saturn game and played it but that was the key factor of Sega becoming an afterthought. Same applies to all my friends and acquaintances w/ the exception of one.

There is also the fact it was no longer Nintendo vs Sega anymore as Playstation stepped in the ring.

Now I'll agree Sega went heavy handed with the Master System and it's add-ons trying to push the boundaries but at the same time, Master System, Saturn, Dreamcast all launched w/in a typical console cycle. Master System/SNES, Saturn/N64/PS, Dreamcast/PS2/XB.

Projekt734d ago

The Dreamcast not having any rental games at the time seriously hurt it. I absolutely loved my Dreamcast. I’ve always bought every system I could, but the Dreamcast had a special spot in my heart. I bought it the week it came out and was really surprised by the 3D capability at the Time compared to my PS1, N64, and Saturn. I actually loved Sonic Adventure. You just couldn’t rent anything from places like Blockbuster and unfortunately there were some real crap games on it also. There were some great games though as well. I think In 99 probably I had subscribed to something like GameFly. I’m not sure if that was it at the time, but this was the beginning of mail order game rentals. That was the only way I could try games out first. I think the rental block alone hurt the system the most. I think it could have done pretty well in the States if not for that. The first year or so of PS2 I didn’t see quite the jump that I saw between the Dreamcast and the PS1. I’m just thankful I had a good enough job while In collage to get all the awesome next gen systems at the time. GameCube, PS2, and Xbox. Though I still fired up the Dreamcast all the time. I don’t remember the FTP servers/BBS I was a member of at the time, but once the Dreamcast became capable of playing burned CDs, I got a lot more use from it. Code Veronica Was a huge stand out for me when I was able to burn a copy. Otherwise I just couldn’t get games for it back in the day living in Daytona beach.

Razuel34d ago

oh ya, nobody.. not even mom and pop rentals carried saturn games.

PlatinumKing198235d ago

I loved the Saturn. I can remember for Xmas as a teen i choose this over the first Playstion.

jagermaster61935d ago ShowReplies(1)
deno35d ago (Edited 35d ago )

Same here. The Saturn was my go to system back then. I had streetfighter alpha 2 gold, Saturn Bomberman, Virtua Fighter 2, fighting vipers, clockwork knight, bug too, Gradius Gaiden, resident evil 1 and many more

mcstorm35d ago

I lived the saturn the nhl games were amazing on it to. I find it funny that 3 of the consoles I like the most were discontinued in the saturn dream cast and the amiga32.

rainslacker34d ago (Edited 34d ago )

Magic Knight Rayearth needs a port to modern systems...remake or classic release.:) It'll never happen sadly. Working Designs is defunct now, and I doubt anyone else will pick it up. Probably a reason we don't see more Lunar ports/re-releases.


I always like the PS1...had the Japanese version the week it released in Japan. Paid a premium. But for a while. the Saturn was my favorite console. Had lots of cool anime games I loved.

awdevoftw35d ago

It's too bad. People at the time wanted 3d, even as horrible as it was on the ps1 and n64 and Saturn, but the Saturn was the BEST 2D machine on the market at the time. The Japanese releases were far superior to the American releases, as there were alot more 2d fans over there. I ended up importing alot of Saturn games at the time.

BigTrain34d ago

Indeed. I hated the first generation of PS1 3D games. Jet Moto, Jumping Flash, etc. Grainy blocky games with a 2D digital pad to control them with, huh?! Who wants this crap? Apparently everybody. That system took off. Granted, they came proper with the dual shock and the second generation games were far superior, but I to this day miss 2D gaming. I'd pay anything for a hand drawn 2D Capcom fighting game on any system we have out today, except for the Switch of course, lol.

deno35d ago

We're old heads now. 😀

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