Would you like to see Microsoft buy Sega?

Back in 2002, a rumor surfaced that Microsoft would be buying Sega. This didn’t happen (of course), but a partnership between the two companies produced several exclusive Sega titles on the original Xbox (Jet Set Radio Future, Crazy Tax 3, Shenmue 2, Panzer Dragoon Orta chief among them).

Several years later, both companies find themselves in unique positions. Sega has been restructuring and reducing staff since 2013, closing several offices in the process. They’ve sold off several internal development studios and have shifted their focus primarily to other mediums. At this time, the only console games they seem to be focused on are Total War, Sonic, Football Manager and Hasune Miku.

Microsoft, meanwhile, has had a solid grouping of first party titles and a lower price point than the PS4, yet Sony’s system is still outselling Xbox One by a substantial margin. Microsoft can take a “slow and steady” approach, continuing to put out great exclusives, but the fact that they spent 2.5 billion dollars on Mojang tells me that they do want to make a splash. They do want something that will turn heads and really give them a big reason for gamers to choose them instead of Sony.

There are a few companies that appear to be limping along that MS could purchase, but of those, Sega makes the most sense to me. They have a massive library of IPs that MS could get developers working on through a vast array of genres.

Do you think that something like this would be a good idea, and do you think it would help Microsoft in the long run?

If you’re curious about what titles Sega has (whether you don’t know or simply forgot), here’s the list, more or less:

Action / Platformers:
Sonic the Hedgehog
Ecco the Dolphin
Alex Kidd
Clockwork Knight
Gunstar Heroes
Comix Zone
Jet Set Radio
Space Channel 5
Toe Jam & Earl
Hatsune Miku

Hack n Slash:
Altered Beast
Golden Axe
Streets of Rage
Dynamite Cop

Crazy Taxi
Daytona USA
Sega Rally
Virtua Racing
Sega GT
Sega All Stars Racing
Ferrari F355 Challenge
Hang On
Monaco GP
Out Run

Eternal Champions
Virtua Fighter
Fighting Vipers
Virtual On
Fighters Megamix
Last Bronx

After Burner
Space Harrier

Chu Chu Rocket
Super Monkey Ball
Puyo Puyo

Condemned: Criminal Origins

Kinect-Capable Games:
Samba De Amigo

Strategy / RPG’s:
Skies of Arcadia
Phantasy Star Online
Shining Force
Dragon Force
Magic Knight Rayearth
Panzer Dragoon Saga
Total War
Valkyria Chronicles
Blazing Heroes

On Rails / Shooters:
Virtua Cop
House of the Dead
Panzer Dragoon

Virtua Tennis
World Series Baseball
Virtua Striker
Sega Bass Fishing
Football Manager

My apologies if any of these are owned by other companies and Sega just published them. I’m fairly certain that’s not the case though. I didn’t include Bayonetta, Rez, Mad World, The Conduit and the 2K sports games (NHL, NBA, NFL) because I assumed those IPs were owned by other companies. That might include Virtua Tennis and World Series as well, but I’m not certain.

How about it though… Do you think that MS could bring some of these franchises back? Modernize them? Release classic versions of these games on XBL? Would having a bunch of new versions of these games get more people interested in Xbox One?

I don’t know about any of you, but I played a lot of those games at various points in my life. I’d love to see a lot of them return, and think that most, if not all of them, have potential.

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I always figured Nintendo would grab Sega. They already have Sonic right?

Nah, Sega still owns Sonic as an IP, but they’ve licensed him to Nintendo for a few specific projects such as the Olympics games and Smash Bros.

I think on the surface, Nintendo would make sense because they make some similar titles in certain genres but that’s kinda the problem that I’d see. Genre overlap. Sure, if Nintendo had unlimited resources, I’m sure they’d love to have Sega’s library, but since they’re not in phenomenal shape (not bad, but not great either), I can’t imagine they’d jump at the chance to get a lot more of what they have (and would have to pay to develop and publish).

MS meanwhile seems to have the need for as many exclusives as they can get their hands on, the need to make a big splash and perhaps the need to shed the shooter only label and fill some genre deficiencies that Sega could certainly fill. Plus they presumably have the money to make a purchase happen AND see things through on the developer/publisher side of things.

Just how I see it anyways.

I’d love to see new Golden Axe, Streets of Rage, Condemned, and if done in a first person shooter (non-lightgun) format, House of the Dead games!

I’m also looking forward to the new Total War: Warhammer game, as a long time fan of Warhammer it really looks awesome.

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I recall a similar thread in the old forums, but it was regarding MS purchasing Capcom, not Sega - as such, I’m interested in seeing where this conversation goes. :slight_smile:

I’ve sorta come to the epiphany that, as genre-deficient as Xbox might seem, the rest of the industry is doing absolutely no better. It’s just a generational thing…and also a side effect of game dev being so expensive, and hence risk-laden, these days, that somehow making a AAA platformer – the default genre of game, if you ask me – is too risky of a thing to do with one’s capital.

I get the impression that most people haven’t noticed, like there’s been a boiling frog effect for those who have stuck with gaming through-and-through. Call me for my nostalgia goggles all you want, but I’m pretty sure I could get a fine game of every current genre and more if I went back to my trusty old N64.

lol, I probably started that one too! :grin:

Capcom would make sense, but I just don’t know if they have the franchises that Sega has. For one thing, they’re in bed with Sony on Street Fighter, which appears as though it’s going to be a platform, so right there, you’re taking out one of the bigger franchises for at least a little while.

As much as people love Mega Man, you’d be looking at putting out a game against Mighty No 9, which I can only assume will be a fairly good game. If MS were to put out a Mega Man game and it wasn’t as good as the game the creator put out… I dunno. That might be a bit embarrassing.

After that, you’ve got (in order):

Ace Attorney
Bionic Commando
Black Tiger
Breath of Fire
Chaos Legion
Clock Tower
Code Name: Viper
Dark Void
Dead Rising
Deep Down
Demon’s Crest
Devil May Cry
Dino Crisis
Dragons Dogma
Final Fight
Ghosts 'n Goblins
God Hand
JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure
Little Nemo: The Dream Master
Lost Planet
Monster Hunter
Plasma Sword
Power Stone
Red Earth
Resident Evil
Rival Schools
Son Son
Saturday Night Slam Masters
Star Gladiator
Steel Battalion
Tech Romancer
Varth: Operation Thunderstorm
Viewtiful Joe
Zack & Wiki

That’s a really solid list. A great list, in fact. When you take away some of the older games and the more obscure titles that weren’t overly great though, the list of franchises that I see that have a ton of potential, and aren’t already over-milked to the point of strained cost/benefit… I’d still say that Sega’s list is better.

Still though, that’s an awesome list, and if MS announced tomorrow that they have acquired Capcom, I’d be over the moon, no doubt!

Yeah I get that many devs and publishers are becoming risk averse in the face of rising costs. I mean, the fact that Square Enix called the last Tomb Raider game’s sales disappointing (or something along those lines) when I’m pretty sure it sold somewhere in the neighborhood of 5 million copies is insane (for example).

But I do think that there’s a growing medium between AAA and indie titles. Killer Instinct is probably a pretty good example. I think that the more risk averse companies out there could find a way to bring some of their titles back without having to spend triple A dollars. At least, that’s what I’m trying to convince myself of at the moment. :grin:

As for overall genre deficiency, I think that there are some genre’s that Xbox has never been particularly good at. I don’t think it’s just the fact that Xbox One is still relatively new or that some genres have fallen out of vogue (though I’ll admit that both of those are contributing factors, I don’t think they tell the whole story).

During the original Xbox, they dipped their toe in the platformer waters with Blinx, Voodoo Vince, etc. They tried the fighting genre with Kakuto Chojin. On the 360, they dipped their toe in the JRPG waters with Blue Dragon and Lost Odyssey.

I think that those were all excellent games, but when you’re not really known for doing something (these two genres, for example), I think it might be a bit harder to convince people that your system’s “the place to be” for that thing to the point where you’re actually luring fans of those genres in large numbers.

Xbox’s reputation for being “the shooter console” has been helpful to them in the last few generations, but I think Sega could really help in filling out the rest of their genres with some really good, quality titles from IPs that are more or less known commodities.

In the past, I think that MS relied a good deal on multiplatform games to fill out a lot of genres and I really don’t think that’s going to work as well this time around. As you said, more 3rd party publishers are becoming more risk averse due to high development costs. Plus, unlike the last generation, MS isn’t playing with a lead, they’re playing from behind. To me, that says that they need more exclusives, more reasons to own their system as opposed to PS4, which means it might behoove them to take another chance along the lines of the Mojang purchase.

As for pulling out the trusty old N64 for a lot of those genres, I hear ya. I collect Saturn, PSone, Dreamcast PS2, original Xbox and Gamecube games. Lot’s of awesome stuff in those console’s libraries!

Don’t get me wrong, I love what Microsoft did by acquiring Rare. However, to this day, it pisses me off that Nintendo just left Rare out to dry when they had Rare to thank for some of their most memorable games. On the other hand, I would pray that Nintendo has since learned a hard lesson from that ordeal and actually acquired the rights to Sega. With a true Wii successor on the way (Coedename Nintendo NX) after the dismal Wii U, it would be awesome to see what Nintendo does once they finally enters the next generation of consoles. I’m almost certain that this system will not only match the power of the xbox one and PS4, but in all likelihood, exceed them as well. *Sidenote, if this does not come to pass, I will lose all faith in Nintendo, lol! But seriously, Sega just seems more at home with Nintendo than any other system.

I have played and still own most of these games. Truly, I wish MS would buy certain IP from Sega and bring them back to life. Or fund certain sequels like Sony and Capcom did with SFV.

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I still don’t get this sentiment. Why would Nintendo want more of what it already has? If anything, shouldn’t Nintendo be out there trying to bring EA and Ubisoft and Activision and other 3rd party publishers back in to the fold? Let them make the shooters and the action games and the western RPGs while Nintendo makes the platformers and all the stuff that they do so well?

Plus, no offense to Nintendo, but money-wise, would it make sound financial advice for them to go out and get company who’s IP’s they’d likely have to farm out to developers and also develop from within? It’s not like Sega still has all of those teams that were putting out awesome titles back in the Genesis through Dreamcast era. No Visual Concepts, no Smilebit, no Overworks etc (if I’m remembering correctly). Is AM2 still around even, in some capacity?

So while I agree that Sega could help, I just get the feeling that MS would make more sense since they have both the money and the genre difficiencies that Sega could help fill. Just my two cents though.

Money is not an issue for Nintendo, how do you think they’ve been able to produce some of the most memorable disasters and still be in the game. Anyone remember the virtual boy? They have around 22.2 Billion dollars to throw at whatever they want.

The Virtual Boy came out twenty years ago. How is that relevant to Nintendo’s current ability to put out “disasters” and still be in the game in 2015?

Again, I’m not saying that Nintendo’s in dire straits. They’re not. But they’re not in the best situation either. Their best system right now is the 3DS, which has fierce competition from a mobile market that’s only getting bigger. Meanwhile, the Wii-U has been one of their biggest failures in a long time, and that’s coming off of the Wii, which trended down sharply at the end of its cycle.

Given those issues, the financial future isn’t bleak, but there are a lot of unknowns mixed with some negative financial indicators. Consumer trust levels are eroding a bit. A lot of people were turned off by the insane amount of shovelware on the Wii as well as the lack of 3rd party support. That plus the end of the motion control era added up to some weak sales for the Wii U. A lot of fans think that 3rd parties have abandoned Nintendo and that’s a problem because, as the Wii U (and the Dreamcast before it) has shown, you can’t put out a console and be the only company that supports it.

Look, this isn’t an attack on Nintendo or their fans. I have a Wii-U, a Wii and I previously owned a Gamecube and an N64 before that. I’m not anti-Nintendo by any means. But if they’re trying to get a new system developed and out the door with some good games, a lot of money will be tied up in trying to make their launch successful and keep good games coming down the pipeline. I don’t know how much they can afford to spend on an outside company as big as Sega and their IPs that they can’t really develop themselves at this point.

That’s just the way I’m reading things though. If you disagree though, more (Nintendo) power to ya. :grin:

I’m of the opinion it’s not so much MS is a risk averse company in actuality I’d say they are less risk averse than most companies. It’s more in the fact the biggest titles to their name happen to be shooters they don’t make shooters anymore than Sony does or any other publisher for that matter except Nintendo. We see them producing games like Sunset Overdrive, Scalebound, Zoo Tycoon, as well as many other smaller titles. Most of their studios in fact don’t even make shooters at all. There has been a ton of great non-shooters on Xbox, but of course MS isn’t going to pick up the franchise if they don’t sell.

We’ll agree to disagree. I just don’t feel that Sega has anything to offer Microsoft that they don’t already have. But then again, I supposed the same can be said about Nintendo. As far as the virtual boy, it’s relevant because just like the Wii U, it’s also one of Nintendo’s overall failures. They’ve learned from their mistakes and are entering a new era of both platform and mobile gaming. I’m not a Nintendo fanboy by any means, I don’t even own a Nintendo console at this point in time; but I do have very fond memories of my Wii and the systems before that. My only case and point is this, Nintendo has been strengthening their relationship with Sega for quite some time now and if my memory serves correct, I don’t recall ever seeing a Sega franchise character in any of MS’s AAA titles. Nintendo on the other hand has several and I hope that to one day see a Mario/Sonic platformer. Anyway, I know that Sega is sooo much more than just Sonic, however, Sonic has and always will be their flagship. Nevertheless, for as I believe it’s only logical for Nintendo to own Sonic, you obviously feel the same regarding MS. For as much as we can sit here and debate each other on the merits of one company over the other, it’s all pointless speculation. We’re both entitled to our opinions and I respect yours.

Yeah that’s fine, no problem at all. I feel that Sega has a lot of games in genres that MS doesn’t do particularly well, but that Nintendo already does well. That’s where I see the value for MS as opposed to Nintendo.

Virtual Boy was a failure when it came to reading the market and so was the Wii-U. Those things just happen sometimes regardless of how much a company learns from their mistakes. Sometimes the best ideas can either be before their time, too expensive or simply not click with an audience. Nokia’s NGage would be a good example of those things.

Yeah, but during the original Xbox generation, several Sega titles came out exclusively on the Xbox, though I’ll certainly grant you that was a long time ago, I’m just saying that the relationship was there at some point.

I don’t know if I think it’s logical for MS to own Sonic specifically anymore than I’d think it’d be more logical if Nintendo owned it. I’ll certainly agree that Sonic’s been a decent number of Nintendo games recently. I also agree that this is pointless speculation. The crux of my argument is that MS needs a company like Sega right now and that Sega would fit their needs for a variety of reasons and all of that is completely independent form what I think Nintendo needs or what Sega could do for them.

If anything, I think that Nintendo needs to get back it’s 3rd party support. They can’t be seen as being the only developer for their own console going forward. I don’t know if buying Sega would solve that problem, though it certainly might help if they were able to put out a good number of games for both companies each year. I don’t see that as being overly realistic though based on how long it takes Nintendo to put out some of their own games.

After MS buys SEGA, next MS console will be the MEGA32XBOXCDONE 33 1/3.

Just kidding. I’m not sure it’d benefit MS, but from a player stand, yeah sure, buy everything so I can play everything in my xbox. Shenmue, new streets of rage, sonic… all of it.

I like Sega and wish they’d be back at their best, but to be honest I’d prefer it if MS just focused on it’s own IP’s and made them the best games possible.

Yeah we could have Sonic, Daytona or Golden Axe , but I’d rather have a new Banjo, PGR and Lost Odyssey.

I have never been a huge fan of Sega’s IPs, although there are lots of things on that list that I enjoyed. I did own a Dreamcast and truly loved it - but mostly for a handful of great third party games including 2K football, Crazy Taxi - which was really unique and fun at the time but just doesn’t hold my interest anymore, and Soul Calibur (which was a system seller for Dreamcast) - as well as SF III.

I don’t really care about corporate buyouts per se, but I would be really pleased to see them make whatever sort of arrangements need to be made to get some good games onto the X1 platform - be that Bayonetta type arrangements or flat out buying things.

Considering that Sega is owned my Sammy under the Sega-Sammy Holdings company, it’d be far too cost prohibitive to ever try and buy Sega.

Could they afford it? Yes. Would it be worth the cost? No.