Sega Dreamcast Mini, More Mini Consoles Teased In Famitsu Magazine, Next Mini Console Won't Release Before 2022
I'd buy a Dreamcast Mini with Moero! Justice Gakuen, Segagaga, Napple Tale, and Hundred Swords in a heartbeat.
This week’s Famitsu magazine, released on October 8, and officially titled the Weekly Famitsu Magazine October 22, 2020, Issue, includes a special interview for the release of the Game Gear Micro, where the subject of a Dreamcast Mini was brought up.
The interview is with two key persons of the Game Gear Micro project: Classic Hardware Producer Yousuke Okunari, who also led the Mega Drive Mini project, and Products Sales Department Team Manager Aiko Matsuda, who most notably makes many Sega goods.
Throughout the four pages long interview, Yousuke Okunari and Aiko Matsuda explained the Mega Drive Mini was supposed to be the only project of this kind Sega wanted to finalize. But seeing the console’s positive reception and achievements worldwide, Sega decided to let Okunari make more Mini projects. The Game Gear Micro project is the first step and the first challenge the team faces, and it needs to be a success for the project to continue and for Okunari to keep making Mini console proposals to the Sega higher-ups.
Yousuke Okunari is technically an outsider not from Sega. He most notably mentioned that the Astro City Mini, announced in July 2020 for a December release, was actually in planning phase inside Sega for far longer than the Mega Drive Mini. What pushed the Astro City Mini project forward was the success of the Mega Drive Mini.
In the interview, Yousuke Okunari explained every Sega hardware is under consideration for future Mini console plans. It doesn’t necessarily mean every single console will get a Mini version, but everything is on the table:
Yousuke Okunari: “If you asked me “what are you planning to do now?”, our project is just starting so I’d answer “we’re in the planning stages, considering every console for possible Mini consoles”. Sega fans are all imagining which Mini console we’ll do next, but you should know that we’re considering them all. Of course, It doesn’t mean we’ll actually make them all. But it also means we’re considering things Sega fans wouldn’t even imagine.”
Yousuke Okunari also explained everything comes down to money, and that the next Mini console will be a bigger, worldwide project. As such, it will take longer to release. The next Mini console will not release around that time of the year in 2021. However, it will be announced in around a year, if everything goes well:
Yousuke Okunari: “In the Hardware business, a considerable amount of money moves when starting a project, so at first we’ll proceed with the most realistic plan. Game Gear Micro is only sold domestically, so we were able to make it fast. I think our next project will be on a bigger, worldwide scale. So this means the next Mini won’t release around that time in 2021, as in only two years after the Mega Drive Mini. We can’t make it that fast (laughs). In any case, if everything goes well, we’ll be able to make announcements around that time of year in 2021.”
Then, Yousuke Okunari brought up a Dreamcast Mini. However, he stressed out it might not necessarily be the next Mini console Sega releases. They’re literally considering everything:
Yousuke Okunari: “Probably, the new Mini console we’ll make will be similar in concept to the Mega Drive Mini. Maybe it’ll be the SG-1000 Mini, maybe it’ll be the Dreamcast Mini…”
Famitsu Journalist: “Or maybe it’ll be the R360 Mini”.
Yousuke Okunari: “That’s what I mean (laughs). Right now, maybe even an Inu no Osanpo Mini might be green lighted”.
That’s all the important bits from the interview.
㊗遊べるマスコット『 #ゲームギアミクロ 』本日発売🎊
— セガ公式アカウント🦔 (@SEGA_OFFICIAL) October 6, 2020
Announced at the Sega Fes 2018 alongside the new PS4 Sakura Taisen game, the Mega Drive Mini released in September 2019 and was a worldwide success.
The Game Gear Micro (four different types with different games) was announced for the Sega 60th anniversary celebrations in June 2020, and was released exclusively in Japan on October 6.
The Dreamcast was the final console released by Sega in 1998, and was home to many incredible games such as Eternal Arcadia, which celebrated its 20th anniversary on October 5, 2020.
The R360 is a motion-based arcade cabinet released by Sega in Japan in 1990. It had two games, G-LOC: Air Battle, and Wing War. A new version of G-LOC: Air Battle was released on Switch in 2020 as part of Sega Ages.
Inu no Osanpo is a dog walking simulation released on Sega Naomi in 2001, exclusively in Japan. The Naomi is long story short the arcade version of the Dreamcast.
Lastly, it’s important to note the Sega Saturn, the console preceding the Dreamcast, didn’t get a Mini version yet. Okunari stressed out they’ll go with the plan that will make the most money though, so they might not necessarily follow release order, and might go for Dreamcast Mini next. In any case, this is definitely exciting. If nothing goes wrong, in 2021 around that time of the year, Sega should announce the next Mini console. I’m looking forward to it.