Sega’s unreleased virtual reality headset has been resurrected

Sega’s unreleased virtual reality headset has been resurrected

The big picture: The late 80s through the mid-90s was a fascinating time in the video game industry. While popular history might initially suggest otherwise, frontrunners Nintendo and Sega were more than willing to take risks in search of the next big thing.

Nintendo rolled out the Super FX coprocessor to boost graphics capabilities in select Super Nintendo games and even worked with Sony on an unreleased prototype console that would ultimately become the PlayStation. Sega, meanwhile, was delving into optical-based gaming with the Sega CD and pushing graphics to the next level with the 32X add-on for the Genesis.

Both companies also explored new ways of interacting with games. Nintendo rolled out the Power Glove and Super Scope accessories and the Virtual Boy “3D” platform. Sega experimented with virtual reality as well, though its peripheral, the Sega VR, never made it into production for home consoles.

As Rich Whitehouse, the head of digital conversation with The Video Game History Foundation, recounts, Sega’s proposed headset shared a lot in terms of fundamental design with today’s VR headsets. The problem is that it was never released, so what little we do know about the hardware comes from patent documents, marketing material, firsthand accounts and trade show appearances.

If you’re at all interested in this sort of thing, I’d highly recommend checking out Whitehouse’s blog post. It goes into great detail about how he was able to reconstruct the game and emulate it running on a Sega VR headset.

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random game quote

King Kong
Play as Jack. Play as Kong. Embark on an epic adventure created in collaboration with Academy’s Award-winning director Peter Jackson and based on the Universal Pictures’ film. Survive as Jack in a world crawling with predators and live the legend as Kong.

— Nintendo Gamecube

Random Retro game Music

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