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Shenmusings of Ryobots, Niaowu, and Shenmue III's Uncertain Legacy

Ryo Hazuki is an android, right? I’ve suspected it for a while but after finishing Shenmue III recently, I'm going all in on the Ryobot theory. It explains too much not to be canon.

Ryo has always been a bizarrely stilted and stoic character, of course. That much isn’t news. Yet after accompanying him for every waking minute across three games – games which depict the painstaking minutiae of everything from longshore crate logistics to the mid-‘80s weather record of the Kanagawa Prefecture – Ryo still has not pooped.

In fairness, few protagonists in fiction are forthcoming about their physiological functions. But, unlike Ryo, they at least behave in ways that can be reasonably interpreted as human-like. Meanwhile, Ryo acts less like a person and more like an emotionally unavailable animatronic, programmed in the languages of kung fu and non sequiturs.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to knock him. The technology behind Ryobot was very impressive for 1987.

Oh, and did I mention the shared consciousness between Ryo and his friend, Shenhua? She is also an android, probably, in addition to being the unwitting mascot of a junk food brand for some reason.

OK. The point of this write up is not to espouse the incontrovertible theory that Ryo is a semi-sentient robot, even if it is also that. Back when it came out in November 2019, I had put about a dozen or so hours into Shenmue III before dropping off of it. After leaving him in stasis at Hotel Niaowu for a full calendar year, I recently (and finally!) caught up on Ryo’s journey to date. I also realized we hadn’t yet discussed the game in-depth on the Junkyard since its release. With all that, I’m really here to work out my thoughts on Shenmue III in hopes of making some sense of its place in the series’ legacy. But first let’s take a step back, and into the shoes it hoped to fill…

As for many fans, the first two Shenmue games were formative for my interest in gaming. For a medium where kinetic action and instant gratification shaped the bedrock of most gaming experiences, it was oddly refreshing – if jarring – to play something with such love for mundanity and contempt for players’ impatience. Ironically, it was my own impatience that led me to buy the Japanese version of the original Shenmue, several months before its western release. I couldn't say why; I didn't even speak Japanese. Hell, I was barely pulling a passing grade in English class.

Yet, even then, my 14-year-old mind was blown by Shenmue’s unabashed indulgence in the ordinary. I was taken aback by its audacity to let me knock on neighbors’ doors, chug orange Fanta*, and stalk an entire community of busy folks for no other reason than because I could. When the events of Shenmue II set Ryo loose to explore Hong Kong, seeing it all scale to a bustling, urban setting was revelatory all on its own. Shenmue I and II’s detailed and lively locales immersed me in their astonishing sense of place and community. They felt like genuinely bustling locations that could believably exist without me. They also challenged any assumptions that video games always had to be, well, game-like. Through its novel approach to worldbuilding and interactivity, Shenmue invited me to inhabit its worlds – not only as a player – but as a resident and visitor.



* Vending machines in the Japanese version of Shenmue were stocked with licensed Coca-Cola products rather than our beloved “Jet Cola” and “Frunda” off-brands (also, was Bell Wood a person, or...?)

Yu Suzuki and AM2’s magnum opuses offered a remarkably ambitious and unorthodox vision for what video games could be and how players could engage with their spaces. In bankrolling their vision, Sega rebuked all conventional wisdom that big budget games ought to be marketable and fiscally viable. Shenmue I and II were neither – or at least not either enough – and Sega paid a steep price. Beyond failing to recoup its massive development and marketing costs; beyond its eventual retreat from the hardware market; Sega presented a perennial Exhibit A for the downsides of risks to an increasingly risk-adverse games industry.

After that, it seemed unfathomable that we would ever return to Shenmue’s amazingly ambitious, immersive, and bustling world. Nearly two decades later, we still haven’t.

Review: Xenocider

Full disclosure: The Dreamcast Junkyard has been reporting on the development of Xenocider pretty much since we learned of its existence, and prior to that we reported on Retro Sumus' previous foray into indie dev, Ameba. Over the years we have built up something of a friendship with Carlos Oliveros and the development team working on Xenocider. However, in the interests of transparency and 'ethics in games journalism,' we will not be giving Xenocider a free pass. This review will be conducted with the same unbiased cantankerousness as you've come to expect here at the Junkyard. With that out of the way, on with the review!

Retro Sumus first appeared on our collective radar way back in November 2014, when the Spain-based indie developer announced a visual novel starring a down at heel detective trying to solve a mysterious, supernatural murder. That game was Ameba, and since it was first introduced to the community it has been put on the back burner. Not because of any kind of internal turmoil, development hell or the game quietly becoming vapourware; but because Retro Sumus turned their attention to another project that was initially going to play second fiddle to Ameba. That side project appeared to hold more appeal to the development team and as they pivoted away from Ameba, the projects switched places with the former going into hibernation and Xenocider - the other game - stepping into the limelight.

Now, almost 7 years later, and after a number of huge revisions and an entire lore being created, Xenocider has finally landed on the Dreamcast. A bespoke, independently developed title, created and sculpted for the best part of a decade to run exclusively on Dreamcast hardware and utilising a game engine built from the ground up. You really couldn't make this up. And now, at long last - and much to the relief of the long-suffering dev team, no doubt - Xenocider is finished. It's real, it exists, it is playable on an actual Dreamcast...and by jove it's glorious.

As my learned colleague Mike Phelan alluded to in his comprehensive Arcade Racing Legends review, it would be quite easy for us Dreamcast fanatics to frothingly praise any and every new game to hit the console as a marvel, a wondrous and near perfect experience, simply by virtue of it being a game released for the Dreamcast. To proclaim everything as amazing, awesome, fantastic (or to use any number of other equally meaningless superlative descriptions) is far too easy these days; to turn a blind eye to a game's shortcoming and to give it a free pass simply 'because it's on Dreamcast.' I am all too aware of this trap, and I refuse to fall down into it. I am a hard man to please and I don't believe in sycophantically announcing every new Dreamcast game as the greatest thing since sliced bread.

With this in mind however, I'm quite confident in saying that Xenocider, for all its faults - which we'll cover later - still manages to elevate itself to the upper echelons of the Dreamcast indie library and sit proudly up there alongside stuff like Xeno Crisis, Alice Dreams Tournament, Leona's Tricky Adventures, Wind & Water Puzzle Battles and Sturmwind. That's because this is a game crafted with obvious love and devotion not only to the Dreamcast, but also with a devilish wink and a nod to other games it clearly takes inspiration from; simultaneously offering a refreshingly original take on the sci-fi shooter genre while presenting the discerning Dreamcast gamer with a hoard of gameplay modes, and as many extra bells and whistles as you'd normally expect to find in a current gen title.

Before we get to the game itself, it's worth mentioning the love and care that has clearly gone into creating the whole Xenocider package. From the excellent bespoke cover art drawn by DC Comics' Agustin Padilla, to the quality of the printed booklet and covers, to the artwork on the game disc itself (and on the bonus music CD if you have the two-disc special edition), everything about Xenocider's physical appearance exudes an air of professional attention to detail that is fantastic to see in an independently developed Dreamcast game; and like the JoshProd, Bitmap Bureau, Yuan Works and Duranik titles which came before it, the faux NTSC or PAL styling of the boxes means Xenocider will slot nicely in alongside its contemporaries on any discerning Dreamcast owner's shelf of indies.

So what of the actual game then? Well Xenocider is essentially an 'into the screen' run and gun shooter much in the style of retro favourites such as Space Harrier and Sin & Punishment. I'm not remiss to use those two titles as comparisons as Retro Sumus themselves have often cited those games as inspirations for Xenocider. Here though, you take on the role of Xara, a cybernetic Oppenheimer - quite literally a destroyer of worlds - who must planet hop through the star system, wiping out all lifeforms in her wake before eliminating an end of level boss...and ultimately the very planet itself. Pretty hairy stuff, we're sure you'll agree, and it's upon learning the main objective of the game that the title starts to make more sense. Furthermore, to reveal quite why all this death-bringing is going on would be to reveal spoilers...so we'll say no more.

Evangelion typing tutor Translation Complete! Taxi 2 and Doraemon Next?

A little over ten days ago, I posted a write up on the Junkyard about a very exciting English translation patch for the rather niché but very cool Neon Genesis Evangelion typing tutor Neon Genesis Evangelion -Typing E Keikaku-. In my post I explained how the earlier stages of the game were fully playable to non-Japanese speaking players, while levels 5 and 6, along with the game's bonus stage, were not. Translator Derek Pascarella had explained translating these particular stages would be a pretty daunting task to undertake. Well, it only took him nine days to crack! This means the game is now completely playable in English!

If you would like to read Derek's detailed explanation of how he did it, check out his patch notes here. As for grabbing yourself the completed patch, you can do so at the GitHub Repository here. So grab your DC keyboard, and make sure read the Patch Notes before you patch it/play it!

With one completed project under his belt, Derek definitely has a bright Dreamcast translation career ahead of him! And he's not slowing down anytime soon. He seems to already be on the lookout for his next translation project. One of the games he's been looking into is the Japanese-excusive Boku Doraemon, a delightfully colourful little game featuring the well-known blue robot cat that sees players exploring a really nice-looking 3D world and playing mini games. DCJY writer The Gagaman wrote a good piece about it many moons ago, so if you want to learn more, check that out. Anyway, below is some proof of concept footage that Derek put up on his YouTube channel. He did stress to me, however, that this translation is still early doors, and that there are some technical hurdles that still present themselves that could pose the risk of putting a halt to the project.

The other game in Derek's sights, is the rather infamous french-exclusive Taxi 2 - Le Jeu. Based on a movie that you might have seen if you're French, this game is notorious for being really expensive, and really crap. While a language barrier is the least of this game's problems, it's still cool to see any Dreamcast game translated. Derek let me know that this project is more likely than Doraemon at this moment in time. Check out the work in progress footage below.

If you're wondering why Derek has chosen such obscure games to translate as his first few projects, he addressed this in a comment on his Doraemon video: "part of translating a game is feasibility. While I do have a development background, there are many unique things about working on Dreamcast and Saturn translations. As a result, I'm starting with proof of concepts and also "cracking" games that are easier to understand from a technical perspective. I only just started getting into doing these translations". If you'd like to follow Derek in his translation journey, you can find his Twitter here.

Are you excited for these Dreamcast translation projects? Have you ever experienced the direness that is Taxi 2: the game? Sound off in the comments below!

DCJY welcomes DC-UK founder Caspar Field

In the latest episode of our podcast DreamPod, we were lucky enough to be able to (virtually) sit down with the former Deputy Editor of Edge Magazine Caspar Field. Let's be honest though - most of us know him as the man who launched the iconic Dreamcast magazine DC-UK; and who then went on to launch the short-lived (but equally excellent) Mr. Dreamcast magazine.

Here, in episode 87 of DreamPod, regular hosts Andrew, Tom and Mike chat with Caspar about his time at Edge, the beginnings and end of his tenure at DC-UK, the Mr. Dreamcast project, his successful career in the games industry, the launch of the Dreamcast, the tank shooter Red Dog and its potential PS2 sequel...and a host of other random things you've probably never heard about before.

Huge thanks to Caspar for appearing on our podcast, huge thanks to the graphics maestro Lewis for his artwork, huge thanks to Andrew for sorting this interview, and huge thanks to you lot for listening to our podcast (hint: you don't want to miss this one!).

Be sure to follow Caspar on Twitter, and remember you can find all of our previous episodes on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and pretty much every podcatcher out there. If you like what you hear, feel free to subscribe and give us a review. Cheers!


Retrospective: Bang! Gunship Elite

I love a good sci-fi shooter. The massive scope of interstellar wars, huge capital ships blasting the crap out of each other and swarms of nimble little fighters darting between the carnage. It's every kid's dream scenario and one above being a fighter pilot. Why settle for flying a jet through a planet's boring old atmosphere when you can pilot a warp speed space fighter through the stars, dodging asteroids and putting plasma torpedos down the exhaust chute of a small moon space station? No brainer, really.

I've played loads of these types of games over the years, on an assortment of consoles, and for the most part they all adhere to a familiar template. Usually played from a cockpit view, with a useless 3D radar display, 360 degree movement that can prompt the evacuation of one's stomach via the oral cavity, and some honest to goodness blasting action. Colony Wars, Rogue Squadron, Darklight Conflict, Starlancer, X-Wing, Yager, Spirit of Speed 1937, Battle Engine Aquila, Star Fighter 3000, Elite Dangerous, Star Wars: Squadrons...I could go on. Note I also used the term 'sci-fi' and not 'space' shooter. That's because some of these games take place within the atmosphere of a planet and thus render my opening paragraph null and void. But y'know. I'm just looking out for the pedants among us. And the fighter pilots I probably enraged with my flippant comments on their awesome jobs.

Anyway, the point of this is that the Dreamcast played host to a number of sci-fi shooters, with one of them even taking place not in the vacuum of space, but under the waves of some unnamed digital ocean (see Deep Fighter). I did take a brief look at the various sci-fi shooters on the Dreamcast several years ago, but I thought it was a good time to take a more in-depth look at one of those titles, and one which doesn't really get a lot of air time these days. Air time. Space. Geddit? Sigh. Anyway, let's take a gander at the rather oddly titled Bang! Gunship Elite.

I find it interesting that enigmatic developer Rayland Interactive decided to call their game Bang! Gunship Elite, rather than just Gunship Elite. The addition of the exclamation hints that they may have been expecting you to actually shout "Bang!" before pronouncing the rest of the title like a normal human would. To be honest I'm fine with that, and from now on any time I say the name of this game aloud, I shall indeed either be bellowing "Bang!" at the top of my voice (socially distanced and from behind a mask, of course); or inflating a balloon before popping it with a pin. 

If nothing else, that'll cement Bang! Gunship Elite in the psyche of anyone who knows me; or indeed anyone who sees me walking down the street with a handful of balloons in one hand and copy of the game in t'other. Actually, the more boring explanation for the addition of the Bang! bit is that the game was - judging from an early Rayland Interactive page I found on the Wayback Machine - originally going to be titled 'Big Bang' or something similar.

I feel I've gone off on a bit of a tangent here, so let's get back on the correct flight vector. Bang! Gunship Elite is a space-based sci-fi shooter for the Dreamcast and Windows that was only released in North America. This is especially curious because developer Rayland Interactive was based in France. If anything you'd have thought the game would have been a PAL exclusive if nothing else, but no. It was published in the US in December 2000 by Red Storm Entertainment and received fairly average reviews, and to be honest having spent a few hours playing the formulaic campaign it's not hard to see why.

Before we move on to the game itself though, it's worth talking about Rayland Interactive some more, simply because there is virtually no information about the fate of this outfit anywhere online. It seems that prior to Bang!, Rayland developed a vehicular combat title called Mad Trax that was released on PC in 1998. This was followed in 2000 by Bang! Gunship Elite and a nomination for 'best start-up' at the Milia 2001 interactive media expo. According to the remnants of their website on the Wayback Machine, a further title called ZooLooz was also in production, but I can find no information on it or further evidence that this game was ever finished or released. After May 2001, Rayland Interactive simply ceases to exist.

Retrospective: Stunt GP

Way back in the mists of time, I took a look at the various radio controlled car racing titles on the Dreamcast. It may surprise you that there are no less than three different games featuring such toy vehicles battling for supremacy on miniature circuits in the Dreamcast's library; with Toy Racer and ReVolt complementing Stunt GP in the virtual toy box. This time though, I'm turning my attention squarely on Stunt GP, as it is a game I am very fond of and which doesn't really get a lot of time in the limelight. That's about to change though, as we navigate the plastic highways and byways of Team17's often overlooked foray into the international sport of bashing radio controlled vehicles around a deserted car park.
Released exclusively in PAL territories, Stunt GP joins titles like Giant Killers and Headhunter on the list of games that were never officially released in the rest of the world, and as such I wonder just how many people even know the game had ever seen a Dreamcast release. Stunt GP did receive a PC release and a later PlayStation 2 port, but the Dreamcast game is something of an oddity especially when you consider that Team17 released its other Dreamcast titles worldwide. 
Of course, the Wakefield-based developer is better known for its Worms franchise on Sega's little white box; with Worms World Party still being regularly played online via the magic of DreamPi. It's also worth noting that while Team17 developed Stunt GP, the game was published by Eon Digital Entertainment. Doing a bit of Googling, it appears that Stunt GP was due to be published worldwide by Hasbro but for some reason the deal fell through and Eon stepped in. I'd love to know more about why an NTSC release never happened, and who knows - maybe somebody reading this can shed some light on that particular mystery.


Either way, coupled with the lukewarm reception for the more widely-known PlayStation 2 variant, this PAL exclusivity is potentially the biggest reason for Stunt GP's relative lack of visibility on the Dreamcast. To my eyes, this is a great shame because - in my humble opinion - Stunt GP is actually one of the most enjoyable 'kart' style racers on the system.

The A-Z of Dreamcast Racing Games: Another New Dreamcast Book Releasing in 2021!

I wanted to share with you a personal project that I’ve been working on over the past few weeks behind the scenes, and hope to release this year for the Dreamcast community: a new physical book titled The A-Z of Dreamcast Racing Games.

This book will cover all 50 racing games ever released on the Dreamcast (as well as a few extra that never actually got released), featuring a retrospective review of each game as well as some insight and interviews from the original development teams of select titles. There will be some additional content included as well (I’m not giving away everything just yet!) and it will be the ultimate companion for any Dreamcast fan who loves racing games.

I’ve made a conscious decision not to go down the traditional crowd-sourcing route for this book and instead will be self-publishing via Amazon. This decision enables me to keep costs down as low as possible, not having to commit people to up-front orders and additionally, makes the book readily available to anyone worldwide. It also means that the book will be published in a format that is not too dissimilar to a cheats book from back in the 90s, which I must admit I really like!

You can now watch us on Twitch and shout at us on Discord!

It's 2021 apparently, so we thought we might as well at least attempt to remain relevant and 'down with the kids.' That's the term the kids use right? I wouldn't know, being almost 40 years old and still using a Nokia 3310 to send texts and play Snake as I wait for my VHS tapes to rewind before I take them back to Blockbuster. 

Anyway, enough of that balderdash. People apparently enjoy things called Twitch and Discord these days, so we've gone and created one of each. A Twitch and a Discord. Why somebody hasn't combined the two to create 'Ditch' I don't know, but that seems like the eventual evolution; the final form if you will. A single website where you can watch videos and scream at people from behind a veil of anonymity. I could make a billion dollars with an idea like that. Um.

So yes. Please head to our Twitch channel to occasionally watch various members of the team play Dreamcast games; and head over to our Discord server to chat with us and other like-minded Dreamcast fans about all things Dreamcast, Sega, and just gaming in general if you like. As an added bonus you can also access it on a Nokia 3310. Actually, that's a lie - just like the cake. Sorry.

Streaming schedule

As well as Twitch, we'll also be making more use of our existing YouTube channel to stream too, with Kev streaming on the last Thursday of every month. Here's the deets!

  • Twitch: James will be streaming a community voted DC game on Saturday 23rd January,  8PM GMT
  • YouTube: Kev's Video Game Book Club. Streaming Sega GT on Thursday 28th January, 8PM GMT

We'll mainly be announcing upcoming streams on Twitter so make sure you follow us there too. Cheers...and enjoy!

Neon Genesis Evangelion typing tutor for Dreamcast now has an English Translation!

Neon Genesis Evangelion is considered to be one of the greatest anime series to ever exist. I wouldn't know, because disgracefully, I've never watched it. If you are a fan, you may be excited to know that not one, but three Evangelion games graced Sega's beautiful white box of dreams, exclusively in Japan. You will probably then be disappointed to hear that unfortunately, two of them are typing tutors, and one is a visual novel; two genres that are pretty much impenetrable for non-Japanese speakers. Well, worry not, as the first of the two typing tutor games, Neon Genesis Evangelion -Typing E Keikaku-, is getting translated by a clever chap called Derek Pascarella. 

Developed and published by Gainax in 2001, Typing E Keikaku makes use of the Dreamcast's keyboard peripheral to teach typing. It's no Typing of the Dead, but it's bound to be appealing for fans of its beloved anime source material. For the most part, the game is QWERTY-keyboard friendly, and typing sections of the game can be easily understood by non-Japanese speakers - some levels ask you to spell English words, while others use Romanji spellings of Japanese words. Derek released version 1.0 of his patch today, which translates all menus, options, dialog boxes and screens in the game. Other than some short sequences of spoken dialogue, levels 1 through 4 are translated. 

Levels 5 and 6, as well as the bonus level, have only had their menus translated - they are currently not playable by non-Japanese speakers as the game asks the player to type words written in a mixture of Kanji and Katakana/Hiragana. The game expects the player to know how to construct Kanji characters with a combination of Katakana/Hiragana. In the readme Derek released with the game, he stresses how translating these levels of the game are going to be very challenging, but for now we can enjoy the very playable first four levels. So dust off your Dreamcast keyboard, and download the patch using the link below. Oh, and give Derek a follow on Twitter, so you can thank him for his hard work, and keep up to date on this ongoing translation.

Readme: Click Here.

Patch: Click Here.

GitHub Repository (for future patch updates): Click Here.

Patch gameplay footage: Click Here.

Retrospective: Surf Rocket Racers

Developed by CRI Middleware and released by Crave Entertainment in late 2000 in Europe and early 2001 in the rest of the world, Surf Rocket Racers picked up where Nintendo’s Wave Race 64 left off, and brought the world of jet skiing to the Sega Dreamcast. Confusingly, in Japan the game was published by CRI and released under the title Power Jet Racing 2001, meaning that in a tenuous way it could actually be considered a first party title (what with CRI, CSK and Sega's convoluted business relationship during that time).

Surf Rocket Racers is a lesser-known Dreamcast title that I stumbled upon recently as part of research for another project I’m currently working on, and it instantly appealed to me as a fine example of an arcade racer. If you’re bored of racing cars around street circuits, then this might just be the racing game you’ve been looking for.

Players must select one of the various characters on offer to start their jet skiing career. The usual suspects are on offer and you can decide if you want top acceleration, speed or handling whilst compromising the others. “Ryan” is the Super Mario of the group who has average stats in every category and thus a great starting point. Controlling your rider is about as simple as you could make it; with the right trigger being used to accelerate and the analogue stick being used to steer. A flick of the analogue stick in a direction will pull off a trick when jumping off a ramp, and that’s all there is to it.

I was slightly disappointed to discover that there aren’t too many tracks to race on, but there is enough variety across the different locations and routes here to keep you entertained. Racing takes place in venues such as the Bahamas, Manhattan, Rome and the Amazon. Each location has a short and medium route and each has a very unique and distinct colour palette and style. The background detail on each course is particularly impressive and as you ride past things like the Statue of Liberty or as dolphins jump out of the water in front of you, you can’t help but sit up and take notice.

The Dreamcast Junkyard's New Year's Resolutions for 2021

Happy New Year! It's 2021 at last and we can finally put what has been an incredibly tough year for everyone firmly behind us. As is tradition straight after Christmas, New Year's resolutions start flying about around how you're going to eat better, workout more and save your money. But not here at the Junkyard! All we're interested in is what promises we're all going to make towards our favourite white box.

We'll kick things off with recently anointed Father of the Junkyard, Tom who has lots more lovely Dreamcast content planned for us this year:

"I guess my main resolution for 2021 would be to try to get back to being more prolific when it comes to creating articles and video content for the Junkyard. 2020 was a bit of a weird one, as even though working from home initially gave more time to spend on content creation, work stress really ramped up and sucked the creativity out of me in a big way. Spending all day at a computer and then having the prospect of doing the same in the evenings really stopped appealing after a few weeks and my motivation suffered. I'm hoping that 2021 will herald a return to some kind of normality and allow for us all to have a better work/life balance; no longer feeling like the days are one long workday after the other with no respite."

Next up is friend of the Junkyard, Dreamcast developer and creator of the wonderful Dreamcast Now service, Luke "Kazade" Benstead:

"Err resolutions... I guess actually finish and publish my first Dreamcast game (Swirling Blades), but also make more time to play Dreamcast games with my daughter. I'd also love to add an official Sega branded fishing controller to my collection. Finally, give Dreamcast Now a refresh, it's getting on a bit now!"

A new fishing rod is on the horizon for Kazade.

Junkyard staffer Lewis wants to get more involved with the ever expanding Dreamcast indie scene:

"My Dreamcast resolution for next year is to buy and play more indie games. For the longest time, the only Dreamcast indie game I've owned has been Fruity. I don’t know why, I just happened across it one year and now I own it. It wasn’t until I got involved with the Junkyard that I started hearing about the plethora of current and upcoming indie releases for the system. I’ve always been solely focused on collecting the official releases, but with the hype around the Dreamcast being a “current gen” system as of late, I felt that I can’t miss out on being part of its current renaissance. I ordered a copy of Alice Dreams Tournament the other day after it was recommended in our DCJY Advent Calendar Twitter series, and look to get more in 2021. I’ll also be looking out for Kickstarters and other opportunities to support the Dreamcast indie scene!"

Next up is DreamcasticChannel owner, Dreamcast streamer and all-round good egg, pcwzrd13:

"My New Year's resolution is to beat Super Magnetic Neo. I've attempted it several times in the past and given up, but this time I mean it! This game will not get the best of me! I've beaten some of the hardest games in existence, including but not limited to Contra, Contra: Hard Corps, Ninja Gaiden, and Red Dog: Superior Firepower! I've even conquered a Spelunky hell run! Gosh dang nabit, I can do this! I may take out a few Dreamcast's in fits of rage but luckily I have plenty of spares... Of course I'm kidding. I would never harm a Dreamcast, but I will beat Super Magnetic Neo! Mark my words!"

Super Magnetic Neo, one of the DC's toughest games?

For Kev, this year is all about racking up the hours actually playing his Dreamcast:

"In 2020 I significantly cut back my spending on all games and Dreamcast ones in particular, however, my one big outlay was for a GDEMU Dreamcast, whilst I have been enjoying this I haven’t used it as much as I would like, so my 2021 goal is to try and play at least one hour of Dreamcast a week, particularly as that GDEMU machine came preloaded with a stack of games that I have never played, including some of the higher places titles from the DCJY Top 200 games list."

As for me, 2021 will be about ticking off a couple of games that have been on my backlog for a while:

"My Dreamcasting goal for 2021 is to finally get around to playing two games that I can't believe I've managed to go twenty years without playing. The first one is the rather bizarre Pen Pen Triicelon. An often forgotten launch game, Pen Pen (as it was titled in Europe), was something that I thought looked gorgeous back in the day, but not something I wanted to play. It's time to make amends. The second game is Ecco the Dolphin: Defender of the Future. When I was younger, I loved Ecco on the Game Gear and always thought of that dolphin as an equal to Sonic as the SEGA mascot of the 90s. The Dreamcast sequel looks outstanding and has always been a game I've wanted to play, but never got around to."

Defender of the Future will be my first Ecco experience since the Game Gear.

And there we have it. What about you? What's your Dreamcast New Year's Resolution? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter.