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Official Bleemcast! Press Release Discovered

There are tonnes of articles detailing the fate of bleem! for Dreamcast (aka bleemcast!) online. Just do a Google search for the term and within a few minutes you'll be a bonafide expert on the subject. If you simply can't be bothered though, here's a potted history: creators of the popular PC PlayStation emulator bleem! decided to create a version for the Dreamcast. It was going to come in three different packs - A, B and C and each disc would allow you to play a selection of different PlayStation games on Dreamcast with enhanced visual fidelity.

A few single game discs were officially released (Gran Turismo 2, Tekken 3 and Metal Gear Solid), but Sony successfully shut the bleem! operation down before the main bleemcast! packs could be released, also scuppering the company's plans to release so-called 'bleempods' (PlayStation controller adapters) and dedicated 'bleempads' - PlayStation controllers with Dreamcast connectors on the end. There are plenty of renders of these accessories and bleempacks floating around the interwebs, and below is an image I shamelessly copied from one such Google search:
What you've probably never seen though, is the official FAQ/press release sent out by Jane Ayer Public Relations on behalf of bleem!, a document answering many questions about the software and the planned peripherals (click to enlarge).

This particular specimen was shared to the Dreamcast Junkyard Facebook group by member Comby Laurent and reproduced here with permission. The envelope is dated May 2000 and was sent by Jane Ayer PR (a company that still exists, as far as I can tell) to Cliff O'Neill of defunct gaming website mpog.com. I did a search of mpog.com on the good old Wayback Machine focussing on May and June of 2000, but I couldn't find any evidence that this press release was actually used to report on bleemcast! or its impending planned release. A version of bleem! for Dreamcast did eventually leak and can be found online, burnt to a CD and used (with varying results) to play a number of PS1 games on your Dreamcast, but it's quite an early build and compatibility isn't 100%.
While the document doesn't really tell us anything we didn't already know about bleemcast! it does go into the particulars of using copied PlayStation games on a Dreamcast and also (rather worryingly) states that some people had asked whether bleem! would work on Dreamcast games, and make them look better too. No, really.

Anyway, just thought the Dreamcast community might like to see these pages. Thanks to Comby for allowing us to reproduce these here.

1 comment:

Anthony817 said...

Interesting read for sure! It is always nice to preserve history like this.