Sega Does Update – Fall 2016

 

soniclego

 

Hello friends. I’m sorry if it seems like I pump out more personal updates than I do game reviews on Sega Does. It’s not intentional! My world has just been hectic for the last year. I’m still not fully recovered from both crippling loss and an overall lack of time.

That being said, I’m going to limit site/personal updates to four times a year, one for every season. Since fall started last week, I’m technically behind. So, happy fall everyone! Enjoy the update.

 

  • I’m in talks to resurrect the podcast with a different partner. Nothing’s concrete yet, but I’m excited to see what could happen. Details should emerge by the end of the month or November at the latest, so stay tuned for that.

 

  • If you’ve stuck around Sega Does for the last couple months, you’ve probably noticed guest reviewers Taylor Pinson, Peter Skerritt, and Greg Sewart. These gents have knowledge on particular Sega hardware/games that I don’t have, and their insight has been invaluable. Expect them to return in the future.

 

  • Reviews will return on Monday. I’m going to try to make it through Phantasy Star III by then, but no promises…

 

Now onto the hard stuff. Views are down. Comments have all but disappeared. Interest in Sega Does is at a low point. I’m not blaming anyone but myself for this. I’ve had a terrible time keeping up with the site due to life shenanigans. Losing the podcast was also a huge blow.

That being said, I’d like to invest time and effort into Sega Does in a manner that will draw people in. I don’t expect the blog to be a cash cow or anything, but it would be nice to see continual growth and engagement from the community.

So I have a couple questions for you, the readers:

  1. What would make you want to engage more with Sega Does, if anything?
  2. Β Is there anything about Sega Does that you wish was different?

 

Whether you comment frequently or have never commented before, I encourage everyone to leave some feedback and/or constructive criticism. The goal with this is to make Sega Does a site retro gamers want to visit, nothing more.

Thanks for all your help and support. See ya Monday!

DC

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46 thoughts on “Sega Does Update – Fall 2016

  1. Great to hear you are sticking with this ambitious project. I admire your admiration and commitment.

    My suggestion to improve the reviews since (I think) the majority of your readers are American is to limit your reviews to only North American releases. I personally don’t care about Japanese only releases so I rarely read them. It would also eliminate a lot of Brazil released Master System Games that are going to suck up a ton of your time and many readers won’t care about.

    I may get a lot of opposing opinions on this but just my thought.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I would kind of disagree, as someone who has spent hours watching Kacho play obscure Japanese titles on Game Centre CX, it’s definitely something I enjoy. I don’t think anyone would mourn the loss of cheap knock off Brazilian Master System games mind, so +1 for that.

      I guess curating the games to weed out some of the worthless ones isn’t a bad idea, just have to be careful not to overlook some funny/historic/interesting titles or go to the extreme of only reviewing the well known.

      2 cents over!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Answer to number 1 would be: Me not having to work til late at night most days, more free time etc. In other, cliche’d words, it’s not you it’s me! Life is hectic here too so I know the feeling, and miss interacting with people more often on twitter etc.

    I suppose a more helpful answer would be a bigger social media presence for the site itself. I think it could be double edged sword, I’m sure you know as well as I about the perils of being seen by thousands of anonymous people with a lot of spare time, but maybe a push for Sega Does on Twitter and the like would be beneficial in the long run, keep it fresh in peoples minds.

    Other than that, the fact that your blogs/reviews/sites aren’t already like the run of the mill, almost obnoxious outlets and “social media experts” is what attracts me and others to it in the first place, it’s a breath of fresh air, so I guess it’d be a bit of a balancing act to get it more popular without losing it’s unique charm along the way.

    As for number 2, I can’t really think of much. My childish side would like more colourful pictures to accompany posts I guess (I blame partial colour blindness, makes me love bright, 90’s garish video game colours even more), but that’s a very slight preference and the site looks absolutely fine as is. Maybe some menus could do with touching up to make it feel more like a robust interactive archive than a blog, but even suggesting that makes me feel a bit guilty because again, it’s personal preference and the site is “perfectly cromulent” as it is!

    Sorry for chewing your ear off, first coffee after work makes something something for idle hands. Good luck and hope the excellent posts continue!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dave! Thank you for the insight and the compliments. I tried making a Sega Does Twitter account, but didn’t seem to get much traction with it. I would also forget to post there, which didn’t help. I agree, it is a balancing act.

      #2 – I think the site could use a tune-up. I’ve been thinking about moving to Sqaurespace to have more space and just a cleaner look.

      Thanks again!

      Like

  3. Dylan,

    I’m absolutely the worst about leaving comments, but I still have this site bookmarked and read along – usually in digest form once a week or so as time permits.

    Have you considered additional multimedia content to liven up the site? There are a number of retro review style sites out there now. A special video now and then could shake things up. Or hell, maybe stream a Sega game playthru every so often. I don’t mean to suggest you should become a video reviewer exclusively, but they can be used to enhance a text-heavy site and make it more interesting.

    A forum or even a subreddit might be a good way to engage readers further. Comments sections are hard to keep up with and have meaningful conversation for lazy people like me.

    Anyway, keep at it. If you have socks you must be doing something right. You ever feel the need to do a Sega CD pod and want the world’s only Sega CD fan as a guest hit me up.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Cheers Matthew, I appreciate your feedback.

      And yes, I’d like to do some streaming and/or Sega videos. The problem, as always, is time or lack thereof. But videos have been on my mind to do for a long time. I should probably start with streaming first.

      Never thought about a forum before. I’ll mull that over as well.

      Like

  4. I wouldn’t worry to be honest Dylan – in my opinion you’ve been unlucky to have hit a patch of obscure Japanese games and the Sega Modem. I imagine lots of people still read, but have never experienced the game or the modem so can’t comment.

    I’ve been encouraged by the fact you’ve powered through the ‘obscure era’ – it’s impressed me that you haven’t taken any shortcuts and stayed true to the mission.

    In short, not every week can be the Sonic 25th anniversary week…but there will be other big moments like that. Just keep on keeping on. After all, how many retro sites have their own socks?

    I’ll answer the questions, now I’ve rambled…

    1 -don’t worry…once the big name games come around, everyone will be engaging. I did like the idea of videos, but I know it’s time consuming and tricky
    2 – I like things the way they are, though I do miss the podcast. It has to be right for you and the site tho.

    Remember, this is a marathon… uphill…in winter. You’re just past half way and realised you got another 13 or so miles to go…just keep running. There will be new scenery and jelly energy sweets on a mile or two.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hey man always been a fan of your work. Keep it up! I think Sega Does is great as is. I won’t lie, I’m bad about not commenting. I do read though.

    Also, had I of known you was looking for a podcast host, I would have done it! Haven’t podcasted in years and have been wanting to dip my toes back in so to speak.

    Keep it up man, you’re doing great!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I would have to disagree with limiting the reviews this sites USP is that it’s goal is to review every game on every Sega console almost a mission statement if you will.

    I know this is tough but regular site updates are a must really to keep momentum. If everyone knows once/twice a week there is going to be a new review the traffic will pick up again. I know your life’s busy but if you can perhaps fill the gaps with guest reviewers for things outside your mission statement to fill the gaps. Like Taylor for Mega LD, perhaps someone could fill the sparse times with Sega arcade game reviews as there are plenty of those to go at also perhaps post Dreamcast Sega game reviews ?

    If you can coax Greg Sewart into being a Sega arcade/post Dreamcast game reviewer that would be a real boon. Greg is awesome when he’s talking Sega and perhaps some sort of link up with his Generation 16 YouTube series ?

    If you can rekindle the podcast I think that always helps create a community spirit.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the feedback, Sut. I know a gentleman who should be tackling Sega’s arcade lineup for me in the next couple of months. That should be great.

      But I agree, filling up the days I can’t post anything will help tremendously.

      Like

  7. Personally, I like things the way they are.

    I’d hate to see you stop covering foreign games, especially since your reviews of SG-1000 stuff was how I first came across this site.

    I think the number of comments has more to do with the game being reviewed than anything else. There’s just so much anyone can say about a Japanese-only mahjong game or an edutainment title about the Egyptian Pyramids.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. There is nothing I want to see other than what you’ve already identified. Namely timely updates. If I were you I’d look ahead, and see something like Phantasy Star 3, start playing months in advance maybe take notes. And continue to review games in the meantime. It would make much less dead time in between reviews. Because with the Genesis, there will be a lot more involved games like RPG’s and strategy games. Budget time Acordingly. Of course I’d like the podcast back. I also appreciated more pictures.

    And of course keep the Japanese exclusives, your reviews are the best on those.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. First off, I’m very glad you’re still continuing with the site, I enjoy every article, no matter how obscure, inpenetrable, or obsolete the topic.

    I’m very glad you’re looking at reigniting the podcast – it is certainly the #1 thing I would look to add back in. Having the platform for more of a discussion on the games and hardware was and excellent companion – and reading some of the comments out on it was also an excellent way of keeping readers invested.

    I will certainly admit I am sad at the loss of Sam in the podcast though – having a British spin on things was very welcome, in particular with the Master System coverage (especially for games to come!). Although, perhaps that’s more true due to my location, where the situation was very similar to in Britain. Extra segments like the Game Over game and the year-end game rankings were also very entertaining. I hope some of this spirit and perspective can still be a part of the podcast.

    I think maybe if you are willing to make this less of ‘your’ site, having extra reviewers to cover some more of the ‘bulk’ games may be useful to keep the articles flowing. They could potentially even join in on the podcast. There’s nothing stopping you from revisiting games that they have reviewed, and adding your own spin on things, of course. Completely understandable if that’s a path that you don’t want to go down, just a thought. I’m not even sure if I would like to see it happen, to be honest. I’m happy with even a slow rate of articles.

    I also completely reject the idea of skipping non-NA (or any!) games, this is an adventure through the catalogue, and all of it is valuable.

    I feel this didn’t really answer your questions directly, but hope it is useful in some way.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey fluxcorenz, thanks for the comment!

      Sega Does launched with the podcast, so the blog and the podcast really complement each other. Whenever the podcast has gone away for a few months, I can tell it has a negative effect.

      Having Sam be in charge of the podcast was a Godsend, and I’m sorry he won’t be involved either. This next podcast will certainly be different, but as long as we can keep it fresh, I think it will be something that people enjoy.

      As for getting other reviewers in here, yes, I think that’s a fabulous idea – particularly for systems, peripherals, and genres that I’m unfamiliar with. That’s starting to happen already, and I see it happening more in the future.

      Like

  10. I have been on this site for a while now. I really enjoy reading the reviews. I disagree with limiting the reviews to North America.

    I am from New Zealand. Over here the master system 2 was more popular than the NES. There is alot of master system games that get no coverage on other sites due to being European only releases. I am looking forward to those reviews.

    Also the Japanese reviews crack me up. It’s comedy gold when you make up the plots.

    Keep it up man.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the feedback and the compliments, John! As frustrating as it can be to venture through some of the Japanese games, the more I consider it, the more useful I think it is to have a perspective on Sega games released outside North America – particularly since Sega had a huge impact in Europe, Australia, Brazil, New Zealand, etc. To ignore that would be to ignore a large part of the company’s history.

      Like

  11. Hi Dylan,

    Thanks for all the hard work you put into Sega Does. To be honest, I don’t remember how I came across your site, but I know that the moment I found it I added it to my Feedly sites (my Google Reader replacement, I suppose), to keep up with all the new posts.

    I am not someone who would necessarily visit the site per se, as I can read everything from RSS, usually on my phone, so I don’t really know if that’s tracked on your end, but I can say that I read most if not all of your articles avidly. It’s great to find out about these old gems – or sometimes questionable or passable releases πŸ™‚

    I don’t mind the current levels of engagement, as I know life does get in the way, but of course if there’d be more frequent content, I suppose I’d be more than happy with more things to read more often. πŸ™‚ I still don’t think I’d drop by and comment, as I’m not that kind of participant anywhere (or, well, in rare places, and certainly infrequently). With work commitments and then family time with two small kids, I’m just happy I do get the time to read these updates when they come up! I did, however, make the point of coming here and comment as I wanted you to know that your work is very much appreciated, and I would certainly miss it if it stopped being produced.

    It’s the right length, the right type of content, and overall enjoyable to keep up with. Sometimes you’ll flag a game I hadn’t thought of playing and I’ll make a note to try to get it in the future, or will look into it a bit more.

    And if you go back to podcasting, I’ll look into it – I wasn’t a follower at the time you apparently had the podcast, but I am a podcast listener, so that would certainly be something I’d listen to at least on occasion.

    Sorry if it’s not the answer you’re looking for, but it kind of is the answer I have for you at this point in time. πŸ™‚

    Thank you and keep up the good work.

    Liked by 1 person

      • By all means, Dylan – thanks for putting all of this together. I am always inspired by people who are passionate enough to take on these undertakings, as they are extremely valuable from a historical and cultural standpoint, and also because they take a lot more effort than any of us imagines.

        All the best, and have a great weekend!

        Liked by 1 person

  12. I’ve been a reader since the first half of the Questicle days, so despite the recent downtime I know this blog is still in good hands. Honestly I have no issues with how things are being handled now, and I’m also really excited that there’s a possibility of the podcast being reborn. One of my favorite things about being a retro gaming enthusiast is seeing other people enjoy and talk about these old, sometimes forgotten games, and your content delivers so much on that front. Thank you for all your hard work so far and into the future. A lot of us will still be there along the way.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Hey Dylan,
    I think you’re doing a great job. This is a labor of passion and you’re willing to let us share in its fruits (for free !!!)! So that means you’re not indebted to us, but we are indebted to you! So for me you don’t have to change anything!

    I still read every blog post with a lot of pleasure. It is true though that I don’t comment as frequently as I used to. But that is not due to diminishing quality or interest. I’m just less familiar with the Mega Drive library than the Master System Library and as such I’ve less to say about it. Another reason for my absence in the comment sections sometimes, is that I still have to play/finish a lot of the games for the first time and I don’t want to spoil the eperience by reading reviews beforehand. That’s why it took me so long to comment on “Miracle Warriors” and why I won’t be reading the long awaited “Phantasy Star 3” post – anytime soon at least :).

    Some suggestions (but feel free to ignore them):
    – Through your Questicle project you have required a vast expertise on the NES. So why not apply it more often on this blog? I know this is a SEGA blog, but through comparisons (framing the bigger picture) our understanding of all SEGA could still be greatly enhanced

    _ expanding upon that first suggestion (framing the bigger picture): How were some games/genres/content/themes received back in the day? How did they fit in to the wider culture of gaming/multimedia/leisure/ history. Why did something work in Europe but not in America? … To summ it up, I think a big “think piece” once in a while would be a great addition!

    Now that last suggestion would obviously require a lot of in-depth (perhaps even professional) research As this is a non-profit enterprise, I guess that might be way out of the scope of this project. So I doubt whether I’m being helpful here πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I wanted to offer you some encouragement on the site, because I know it can be hard with a project like this. You’ve obviously slogged through the entire NES library, so you know the score, but with my own Game Boy review project, I’m over a year into it, and I’ve barely reviewed a dozen or so games. Some of that is due to lack of time, and some of it is my own perfectionist tendency shining through, where I don’t want to release a review until I know it’s right. I hate deadlines with stuff like that, and self-imposing them usually just results in a sub par “product” that I’m not happy with. So while my output isn’t where I want it to be, at least I can say that I’m proud of each review I’ve written, even if I can go back later and find glaring omissions (like no mention of “Mode B” in my Tetris review!). I wouldn’t get too hung up on posting content too often. I know site engagement is important, and I’m no expert, but don’t put yourself out to try and achieve that.

    First and foremost, I would really hate to see you drop Japanese games. That’s part of the reason I read your site, though I rarely comment on those posts, mostly because I have little or no familiarity with those games. But I enjoy your western take on them, and as you start to get to some of the later stuff, I’m guessing you’ll have an interesting perspective on that stuff. Specifically, the “Yellow Label” and “Red Label” Saturn stuff from Japan. That’s a deep well, my friend, and one that I don’t envy you diving into, but I’m endlessly curious about some of that stuff, despite my better judgment, so to do so vicariously through your brave venture is something I eventually look forward to. Don’t give up on the pursuit of Japanese games, because I really enjoy that aspect of the site.

    A resurgence of the podcast would be fantastic. I will miss Sam’s sense of humor, but ultimately, I enjoyed the succinct explanation of games you provided, and having a 2nd perspective to counterpoint would be great, as it has in the past. If whomever you partner with could bring back the music episodes, that would be great, though I won’t hold my breath. Those were a bit slanted toward the Dreamcast era, and didn’t include enough great 8 and 16-bit stuff, though I get why. Not everyone wants to listen to SMS and Genesis game tunes on their own. Either way, I enjoyed the podcast a lot, and would love to see it make a return. That would definitely help with engagement.

    I generally only comment when I have something of value to add, so for games I’ve never played and don’t care about, or stuff I have no perspective on, I don’t comment. Most of those would end up being filler comments like “I’ve never played this game, sounds like crap” or similar detritus. I do try and comment as much as I feel the need, though I certainly don’t have the depth of perspective on games like Sean has. I only owned a handful of Genesis games from the time I bought the system until I was an adult with disposable income, so aside from a few games I played at friends’ houses, stuff I rented, or games I’ve acquired since I’ve started ardently collecting, I’m not always going to be able to add much. But I try to do what I can, so I hope that’s apparent.

    One suggestion I might have is to mirror your content elsewhere. I mirror most of my Game Boy reviews on RFGeneration.com, because I’m a staff writer, but I also do so on SkirmishFrogs.com, though I purposely post them there WAY after I do so on my own site, so it’s always months behind. It’s another way to get your content out there, and then maybe put something at the end of each post noting that it was originally written on “date x” and link to the original article so folks know where it’s coming from. It has certainly helped with engagement on my stuff, getting more eyeballs on it, and getting more comments. I don’t get ANY comments on my actual “official” blog, and usually only see comments on the other sites, though that could be due to the whole Google account thing, since mine is on Blogspot. I rather dislike WordPress, but I tolerate it on Skirmish Frogs because of the community engagement there, so to me, it’s worth getting my stuff out there in additional forums just so it gets read. Just a thought.

    In any event, I’m glad to see you’re still plugging away at this project, and I hope you continue to find the motivation to do so. I know I look forward to reading your reviews, even if I only check the page every 2 or 3 weeks and read them en masse. Keep up the good work!

    Liked by 1 person

      • It looks like I’m unanimously overruled on skipping the Japanese only releases which is totally cool! After all someone mentioned it is your mission statement to review review every single Sega game released so that makes sense not to start cherry picking.

        I’ll look forward to reading all the Master System Brazil releases to see if any hidden gems were released there for my favorite system.

        Liked by 1 person

  15. > What would make you want to engage more with Sega Does, if anything?
    I know you’ve discussed it before, and have stuff in the works, but the podcast is what really brought me into the fold here. Hearing the music, the chatter, and the memories, are what would move me to the blog post for discussion. (Sadly I joined right as the podcast was ending).

    All of that said, I love this project, especially as a Sega exclusive collector.

    >Is there anything about Sega Does that you wish was different?
    Perhaps some sort of trivia or ‘quest’ at the end of the segment. Maybe something that would get folks to fire up the old console/emulator and dig into the game again and incite a bit of participation and opinion comments.

    Just some thoughts, have a great one!

    -Bruce

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Hey Dylan, I’m late to the party as usual.

    I always look forward to your posts and have your site permanently open on my phone. Like Josh, I tend to stockpile reviews so I can read a few at once. Sometimes I forget you need page hits so I read them via email. Like many, my natural inclination is to only comment when I have something halfway meaningful to say (emphasis on “halfway”!). Like most, I REALLY don’t want you to drop the non-US coverage, particularly given my affection for late-era SMS games. I wouldn’t be traumatised if you did short reviews or batch reviews for the more inscrutable foreign language games, but there are some diamonds amidst that rough so it’d be a shame for you to skip them wholesale. I think it’s an excellent idea to continue to include and expand the range of guest reviewers – so far they’ve each been a great complement to your style.

    I’ve never listened to the podcast as I usually read Sega Does in bed over coffee at 5am while my wife is still sleeping, and never have a set of earbuds close to hand, but I’ve always felt remiss about that. It’s really clear how much it has meant to you and others though, and I can appreciate how impacted you are by its breakdown. Hopefully you can revive it without incurring an unsustainable workload, but take heart that your site is still compelling without it.

    Really, the only thing that bugs me is infrastructural, rather than content-related – I find the commenting process on this site really cumbersome (having to enter name and email each time, then check the “receive updates” box, then open the confirmation email, click on the confirmation link, close the confirmation page, then delete the confirmation email – for every comment). Maybe I need to revisit the sign-up options…

    Keep up the good work Dylan – you’re travelling a long road and it’ll be punctuated by the occasional dry patch, but you’ll always have a devoted core of readers.

    Rom.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the thoughts, Rom! I always appreciate your encouragement.

      I’ll have to look into the comment posting. I wonder if anyone else has had any issues? This is the first I’ve heard of it, but maybe you’re just the first one to speak up about it.

      Like

      • You’re welcome!

        Re the comment process – it’s fairly painless if I decide not to be notified of further comments, but that feels like a bit of a missed opportunity. I’m not sure how direct replies are affected, mind you.

        Liked by 1 person

    • If you sign up for a wordpress account you don’t need to log into the comments every time. When you visit the site you are logged in. Or if you have an auto fill option on your browser if will function roughly the same. Honestly I haven’t logged in in years. If I somehow log out, I hope I remember my password.

      As far as updates, if you subscribe to one of the RSS feeds, you can view all post and comment updates. The yahoo RSS feed currently is working in the browser. Or you can download an app like feedly to follow the comments. Feedly has the bonus of offering site updates in highly sytlized presentable manner.

      Liked by 1 person

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