N64 Magazine Presents: World Of Nintendo

Or is it? Fans of high-quality gaming will mourn the loss of a one-time gaming giant. Still, said enthusiasts should soon be slavering when they consider the possibility of some of Sega’s better back catalogue and current innovations making it onto next-generation Nintendo consoles. Gunstar Heroes on GBA, anyone?

Historically, it can be argued that Sega have produced the best pure action titles the arcades and consoles have ever seen. The list of first-rate titles is impressive. For starters, try Shinobi, Virtua Tennis, Sega Rally, Strider… These types of games can only do Nintendo’s portfolio a wealth of good. Sony already have a sizeable stock of arcade titles, though the quality is not always premium. Microsoft? Surely EA will take care of their mediocre sports title needs (ooh, I’m such a bitch). Nintendo, however, in some people’s eyes lack the ‘cool’ titles imbued with gaming goodness which Sega produce so well. Seems like a match made in heaven, doesn’t it? There’s bad news, though…

The current state of play is that, for some reason, Nintendo aren’t happy with the idea of Sega coding for Gamecube. However, with at least a couple of GBA games on the cards, it looks like this might change. It’s not a tremendously trying task to port games on other platforms (principally PC, and therefore probably Xbox) due to Gamecube’s developer-friendly coding software. So why the reticence, Yamauchi-san?

What does all this mean? With one less contender in the ring, gamers will be less inclined to splash out on a system only to have it squarely beaten up by the opposition. And that’s a good thing. Unless, of course, Sega have a hard time knocking together decent efforts on other people’s hardware. At the very best, it could mean that Sega and Nintendo join up to defeat the forces of crap gaming, thus delivering excellent games to the masses at bargain prices and in massive quantities.

Excuse me while I choke back the bile, since this clearly won’t be the case.

At the very worst, Sega could lend a modicum of credibility to those companies (nameless, of course) who profit by hurling whiffy, well-marketed cash-in trash to the idiot hordes. And we’d all come to think that because Sega are coding for, the black box is actually quite good.

As ever, the truth is sure to lie somewhere inbetween. It’s going to be an interesting one, the upcoming console war. A less action-packed war, doubtless, without Sega’s input, but with such a powerful company’s affections yet to be fully wooed by its competitors, it’ll be a curious one.

Alan Maddrell Every Friday, members of N64 Magazine – the UK’s best-selling independent Nintendo magazine – wil be ruminating and cogitating on a wealth of different subjects. If you wish to comment on World of Nintendo, then email me and all feedback will be collated in Big Wednesday. Which, naturally, you can read on Wednesdays.