It’s been awhile. When I started my Cartridge Corner blog four years ago, the goal was to write about every single video game console and game I had in my collection. It took a couple of years, but I did it. Then I began writing about whatever I wanted. New additions to my collection. Top 10 lists. Best soundtracks, video game music, box artwork, collecting goals. In depth reviews of games I finally had the time to play. The list goes on.
In 2019, I started a music podcast about Prince’s song lyrics. Then Covid-19 hit in 2020. Then my family moved from St. Louis to Cleveland this past summer. Recently, I began taking freelance writing jobs for other people’s books and websites. So my actual video game playing time has taken a backseat, but so has writing for this blog. Without a clear direction and goal, writing about video games seemed like an afterthought. I’ve still been adding games to my collection when the mood strikes. There are always games I want to play and as a collector, while emulation is convenient and cost effective, it doesn’t cut it for me personally.
Despite all of the pushes and pulls for my free time, the act of unpacking all of my video games and consoles and organizing them in my new home office space, has in a way, reinvigorated me to play and write again. For reasons that are mainly arbitrary, the Sega Dreamcast is the console I pulled out my collection to plug into my CRT television first. I guess it makes sense, having spent much of the last year and a half diving deep into Sega’s other consoles, the Master System, Genesis, Sega CD and 32X, that the Dreamcast would be next. Sorry, Saturn. Your time will come soon.
Like with any console that I’m collecting for, the goal is to have the best and most unique games in my collection. As much as I enjoy the Dreamcast when I play it, I don’t have a huge library of games. Less than 20 in total, but I do have some cool and unique accessories. Accessories such as the microphone for use with Seaman as well as the Dreamcast keyboard and mouse, both with their respective boxes.
Once I purchased the keyboard accessory, which I highlighted in my last Dreamcast post from Feb 2017, I knew I needed to add Typing of the Dead to my collection. Typing of the Dead is simply a skin of The House of the Dead 2, but swapping out the controller or light gun shooting mechanic with typing out words on your keyboard to kill zombies. It’s a pretty cool concept for a video game and one that any secretary or skilled typist can master.
Another game I added to my library since 2017 is Power Stone. A Capcom fighter, this game, along with its sequel, is another one of the more unique and popular titles for the Dreamcast. I haven’t spent a lot of time with Power Stone but the little I’ve played has been impressive from a gameplay, music, and graphical standpoint.
A poorly kept secret is that I’m a sucker for horror movies. Anyone that follows me on twitter (@CartCorner) knows this as I tweet about horror/slasher movies almost as often as I tweet about video games. This love of the macabre extends to video games as well. It started with Castlevania and Friday the 13th on the NES and as the technology developed, the scares grew greater and more intense. Games like Resident Evil, D and Silent Hill paved the way, so I’m always looking out for other scary games that provide good gameplay along with thrills and chills.
That brings me to my latest addition to my Dreamcast collection, Illbleed. Developed by a company called Crazy Games and released late in the Dreamcast’s lifespan in April of 2001, this is one of the more expensive titles for the system’s library. Normally, I don’t bother with the outliers that cost an arm and a leg and seem to only be expensive because of their perceived rarity, and not because of their quality. Based on what I’ve read online, Illbleed probably isn’t going to be the next Resident Evil: Code Veronica, but its concept intrigues me. Each game level represents a different movie theater and the entire game is meant as a B-movie homage, which is right up my alley. I’m looking forward to playing this game at some point and happy it’s now in my collection.
One thing I’ve noticed since I last wrote about the Dreamcast in early 2017, is that the system’s games seem to be spiking in price. I’m not terribly surprised by this. It’s a natural progression for games that were available for systems 20-25 years ago, to be the latest nostalgia whimsy. Four to five years ago, the Sega Saturn was getting all of the attention. Now the collecting fervor seems to have reached the Nintendo 64 and the Sega Dreamcast. Considering the DC was the final console released by a manufacturer that a lot of adult gamers hold in high regard doesn’t hurt its collectibility either.
I don’t know how many more games I’ll add to my Dreamcast collection when it’s all said and done. I love the system and it has a ton of great titles available, but the lack of nostalgia I have for it will always hinder my desire to continue to buy games. There are a handful of games I would still like to own as they seem to represent the Dreamcast experience to the fullest.
- Samba de Amigo complete with maracas
- Marvel vs. Capcom 1 & 2
- Dynamite Cop
- Power Stone 2
- Jo Jo’s Bizarre Adventure
- EGG Elemental Gimmick Gear