All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Tue, July 31 2018 10:00 PM UTC +00:00.
Bitmap Books are proud to present an official visual tribute to the iconic SEGA® Master System home console
Use this space to cheer the creator along, and talk to your fellow backers.
Have a question?
It would be great to have the original Sega and Sega Challenge newsletters included! I have copies if scans are needed.
I used to run one of the original SMS fan sites back in 1996 (alongside the PAF Sega Page), long taken down. I have full, complete, and mostly mint condition US game set. I'm really looking forward to this book, thank you for making it happen!
wow, Tony Takoushi!
I remember how exciting his columns were in C+VG when he created "Mean Machines" as a 2 page spread. Talking about the exciting and semi mythical Japanese Game Scene.
Can't wait to read his thoughts all these years later.
To me he was the birth of console gaming to a young wide eye'd home computer user.
Whatever happens the book will have at least 400 pages so don't worry
+1 for more pages instead of ribbon bookmarks.
Just my opinion, I'd rather you drop the ribbon bookmarks and just add more pages. I'm really excited for the book (I got both fantastic nintendo books) but this is an added expense that you could let go of for more content.
+1 for the thick slipcases on the other books! I would love it if they would look somewhat more identical.
@Stephanie Woor – Thanks Stephanie - that's changed now
Hey Sam, just a heads up that the text in the Kickstarter still talks about the old stretch goals though the graphic had changed (e.g. slipcase at old goal)
Re slipcases - I'm on it.
+1 for slipcases for previous books.
@Sam Dyer - I assume when we're talking about 'slipcase', we're talking about the hard outer slipcase that came with the SNES/NES books and the new/upgraded C64 books?
I'd definitely be interested in a slipcase for the ZX Spectrum and Amiga books... Amiga had a thin outer slipcase but just not as nice as the thicker ones.
It'd really be nice to make the collection all match nicely on the bookshelf...
You could also maybe make the slipcase an add-on. I mean, i'd pay to have a slipcase, heck, you could even make a lenticular slipcase add-on. Now of course it's my opinion only but i think it could be great to do it like that so that there is some consistency between the books.
Sam, you could arrange it so that you would need like a "minimum amount of orders" to print the slipcases? You could take orders or bookings for the slipcases but they would only be printed if the orders reached 1000 är something like that? I saw that system being utilized somewhere. I can't remember where though.
@Johan Lagerdahl – I'm currently looking into this. The problem is that to print slipcases separately to the book, in low-numbers is incredibly expensive. So much so that I'm struggling to meet my desired sale price of £10,. Anymore and it starts getting silly. Hopefully I can work something out. Sam
Oh god, i wish i had know about these books sooner. Well, better late than never :)
Every 16 pages goal is eight delicious SMS classics being covered in the book ✌
+1 for Penguin Land, and Zillion II, of course!
And, guys, do you remember Cyborg Hunter? :)
I really like the slipcase to the books although not all of them has that. Do you think it would be possible to add that to the earlier books somehow?
Oh, and if you're taking suggestions for what games to add - Asterix.
Love your work, guys. Looking forward to this and the book you're publishing on point-and-click adventure games. So fortunate that we can still celebrate old school gaming well into the 21st century.
Yo, just backed you guys. I missed your other books, but I'm happy to come on board for this one! Best of luck!
Also Zillion please!
Please give us some Penguin Land and Black Belt. So many memories playing those.
YES! Another 16 pages
Another stretch goal down to finish the week, at £85k total - great to see!
*Fantasy Zone, sorry for the spelling mistake
I'd love it if the following games were included:
- Alex Kidd in Miracle World
- Alex Kidd in Shinobi World
- Psycho Fox
- Phantasy Zone
- Enduro Racer
- Dynamite Dux
Speaking of graphics, maybe Time Soldier's last boss deserves to be in the book (it's a big robot/cyborg!)
Some great suggestions here guys!
I thought I should share this for the SEGA lovers out there as this just launched an hour ago! (Hope it's OK as I've backed both books!) - https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/darrenwall/sega-arcade-pop-up-history…
I just love the fast paced graphics of Power Strike 2. Also the Bruce Lee port from 2015 looks very nice.
Personal favourite SMS graphics may be Fantasy Zone II, which is sort of sad considering one of the reasons it's now known is for a superb remake that kind of exists because the SMS version was in some way disappointing when there should have been an arcade sequel.
Still, it's very creative, colourful and there's great variety in the scenes. It's exactly what you think about when you think about the system's best games I think.
(Also, I kind of prefer Sonic 1/2 to Chaos visually - when I think of Chaos, I think of repetition and washed out palettes. The layouts themselves are great, of course).
I would say that the Master System graphics break down into three distinct era's. In the systems infancy games tended to be very restricted on memory, with games typically coming in at 32K to fit on the Sega Card format. This limited the graphical scope of games and resulted in small sprites and re-used assets. Games like the Great Sport series, Teddy Boy and Ghost House sum up this era.
Increased cartridge space and the introduction of basic memory mappers ushered in the Mega Power era. In theory this was to help push the arcade experience at home, e.g. out Run and After Burner, but I think this era is best exemplified by games that tended to favour cleanly defined graphics that are still distinctly 8-bit in origin, e.g. Alex Kidd in Miracle World, Phantasy Star, Wonder Boy III, etc.
Near the end of the systems life there was a push to bring Mega Drive games over to the system and some developers pulled of some incredible stuff like Road Rash, Desert Strike and Mortal Kombat. Perhaps the best example of the transition from the middle to late era is Sonic 1 compared with Sonic Chaos.
Sonic 1 is clearly designed more with the Master System's base limitations in mind, i.e. sprites are kept small and the geometry is simplified. On the other hand Sonic Chaos tries to replicate the Mega Drive games with larger sprites and the advanced level geometry, i.e. loops de loops, corkscrews, etc. chaos is an impressive visual effort, but Sonic 1 is arguably the better game. It plays smoother and a big part of this is that it doesn't push the system past its limits, but instead relies on very well designed sprites and backgrounds to capture Sonic's style without the more showy elements.
Either way it would have been hard to imagine graphics like Sonic Chaos or Mortal Kombat on the system in the early days of the Great sport series!
- I really love Psycho Fox, too: I played this game soooo much! :D And it has great graphics, indeed... as well as Wonder Boy III, of course.
- I also hope to see Penguin Land in the book, since I have fond memories of this game :)
- R-Type also has impressive arcade-like graphics on our lovely Master System! (as well as a cool soundtrack, of course)
A few other SMS games with great graphics that haven’t been mentioned so far are:
Championship Hockey and Alf definitely don’t make the list 😂
@Jon Walker - Psycho Fox is my favourite game of all time! Such an under rated game.
When you consider it was released in 1989 it makes the graphics even more impressive.
It might be personal nostalgia, but the easy-on-the eyes graphics of PsychoFox always impressed me on the Master System. They had a cartoonish quality that made it very clear what was what, and no issues with objects and backgrounds etc. being difficult to tell from each other. I found it very crisp for the Master System, and I love the game.
Of course it came out post-Genesis so few played it (I played on a Genesis Power Baser Converter after ordering direct from Sega since no one locally sold MS games anymore when it came out).
I definitely think it looks better than when it was re-tooled with new graphics and levels and called "Decap Attack" on the Genesis, which replaces your throwable bird companion with your own head, but is obviously the same engine. Not a terrible game, but despite being on later generation hardware, I find PsychoFox to be much easier on the eyes (and I think it is better overall as far as level design, etc.). It also had its fair share of hidden things throughout levels to discover.
Asterix Secret Mission and Deep Duck Trouble would get my vote for most stunning graphics.
Are you going to be getting into a least a little on the Master System's often used, seldom supported FM sound? My understanding is one Japanese model supported it. However, many games, including 1 or 2 not released in Japan, support the enhanced audio.
I modded my US Master System and added an FM sound board. Almost exactly 50% of my physical cartridge collection supported it, and I was blown away at how much clearer the sound effects and music were. Music sounded more like a decent synthesizer, and sound effects that were beeps and boops became swooshes and grunts. It is one of the best modifications I've done, and it is amazing how much decent sound was locked away in these carts and seldom/never heard.
I feel like it deserves at least a paragraph or two :)
Which game/s do you think had the best graphics on the Master System?
I'll go first with Sonic Chaos. Really stunning graphics and animation. Almost looks like a Mega Drive game
@Bonaf – Mario! Love those backgrounds. They look so cool like that
@Sam - I like the "when" rather than "if" there in relation to the N64, PS1, etc.!
That's a great project !
As a long time lover of the Master System, I couldn't be more delighted ;)
BTW I'm currently working too on a SMS-based project : a fighting game involving many Sega characters from the SMS games. I won't tell more about it here but it's not the adequate place to make self-promotion, so I'll just add a visual in the tone of this kickstarter :
Here are together all the stages/arenas from my future game (can you spot the odd one out ?).
@Stephanie Woor – I'm with you on polygons. I don't think they look particularly good in print. Will have to give some serious thought how the games are presented when the series moves into the N64, Saturn PS1 era.
@Nicolas - they're in. Great games.
Hoping to see Kenseiden, Golvellius, and Aztec Adventure in the book :)
Hoping something on the Asterix and Mickey Mouse games makes the cut once licensing is dealt with. They're a little corner of the Master System library that would be acknowledged in the perfect version of the book.
If and when we get to a Mega Drive visual compendium, risking controversy - I'd rather the Mega CD and 32X were left out (perhaps for a short 'add-on' compendium... hopefully it wouldn't require its own power supply). There would be loads of MD stuff to cover, and it would keep the whole thing more visually cohesive (no FMV games, virtually no polygons).
Thanks for all your hard work on this Sam, it looks amazing so far.
@bastien larriaga – that's an interesting question and something we'll look into
@Axel Niesen – haha, thanks (I think)