Sega: ages of innovation

Innovation is king. Right? Wrong.No matter how great an idea is, if it's too early for the man/woman on the street to appreciate, or for technology to deliver properly, it's never going to succeed. Could Microsoft offer Xbox Live over a 33.6k dial-up modem connection? Could Nintendo sell DS Lite if it only had one-hour battery capacity? Of course not. The jury's still out on Wii as we wait to see how it develops on its initial promise, but the risk there is the same. Innovation is a risky business - and it's been the downfall of many developers. Such as Sega.

Sega was king. In the early nineties, theGenesis was the console to have, before it was challenged by the Super Nintendo. But then something went wrong. Just as Nintendo lost its near monopolous grip on the industry, so Sega suffered from a string of failed consoles and financial losses, until it pulled out of the hardware market altogether in 2001.

With a whole generation of gamers growing up knowing Sega only as a third-party developer/publisher, GamesRadar looks back to the days when Sega was the biggest name in gaming -whenits groundbreaking ideas were up to a decade ahead of their time. Ideas that almost cost it everything it had.

Justin Towell

Justin was a GamesRadar staffer for 10 years but is now a freelancer, musician and videographer. He's big on retro, Sega and racing games (especially retro Sega racing games) and currently also writes for Play Magazine,, PC Gamer and TopTenReviews, as well as running his own YouTube channel. Having learned to love all platforms equally after Sega left the hardware industry (sniff), his favourite games include Christmas NiGHTS into Dreams, Zelda BotW, Sea of Thieves, Sega Rally Championship and Treasure Island Dizzy.