I know what you're thinking. You're thinking that this post will relate to the design shift from white to black in the old US of A-NTSC land. Well, you'd be wrong, I'm not going to talk about that. It's already common knowledge and well understood, though I will just quickly mention that it's supremely handy that both designs use a standard 10.2mm CD jewel case with a clear plastic tray. These are dime-a-dozen and can easily be replaced if you want to return your collection to showroom condition.
|Nope, not going to talk about these.|
|Early and late releases aren't much different, apart from the giant Dreamcast banner on the latter. |
Did they think that a larger font was going to solve all their problems?
|PC Engine on the left, Dreamcast on the right. |
Also notice the similar placement of company logos too, although I'm
probably starting to sound like Jesse Ventura.
After hunting through my collection though, I started to notice a small black tray infestation amongst all my gleaming white Japanese releases. How could this be? Why would Sega deny me uniformity in my collection? It seemed that the problem was limited to games released in 24mm double CD jewel cases, but not always, only some of the time.
Now, I'm not sure whether myself or the seller I bought these games from replaced the broken or damaged white plastic case in which the game was originally sold with a shiny, new and more readily available black case, but a quick search seems to indicate that these games are always found in black cases. The decisive indication is that Shenmue is always in a black case, so it would seem that while 95% of Japanese games conform to the white standard, sometimes particular releases would stray from this uniformity.
|Here are some of the culprits.|
The only commonality that I could deduce from these six games as to why they were black while other double cd Dreamcast releases were white was that perhaps games with a darker theme - such as the war simulator Advanced Daisenryaku 2001, the werewolf themed visual novel Interlude, and the blood splattered interactive movie es - could opt to go with a black case instead to match their dark soul. es is also worthy of note, as it has 3 discs, which meant a standard white double case wouldn't hold all of them, which could also indicate a reason for turning black.
However, my theory was thrown out of the water when I looked at D2 - a dark game with 4 discs in a white plastic case.
|That's right! Even our beloved Shenmue, one of the dreamcastiest of Dreamcast games, is guilty |
of shunning the white case standard.
Being the OCD, anally retentive nut that I am, I could not let this stand. I was also curious to see how these games would look in a respectable white suit, so I started by testing Shenmue out in D2's case.
Much better, it now seems even more Shenmue-ier than ever, thanks to the power of the white plastic. What about the especially dark looking es, would it also look good in white, or would it contrast too greatly against the game's angsty dark tone? Let's find out:
They look much better, and the itch at the back of my skull is starting to ease. Now to tackle the rest of these renegades. Luckily, my supplier also has white double cd jewel cases for sale, but I've run out of white inner trays at the moment and am waiting for a re-up. I also need to buy some extra copies of D2 for that unusual quadruple CD white case to fix all my copies of Shenmue. Handily, D2 came out in 4 different flavours, so I can plug some holes in my collection at the same time.
While I'm waiting, I'll just go and re-fold my socks and order my sock drawer by colour and size. Hmmm, that picture isn't hanging straight, I'll have to remember to go tear up the carpet then...
|I used a spare flip tray to account for the 3rd disc.|
|You're next jerks! You will soil my collection no more!|