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SEGA is a video game company that is notably famous for their SONIC THE HEDGEHOG series. They are the publishers and owners of the Hatsune Miku -Project DIVA- and Project 575 series. Though started in 2009, the Hatsune Miku -Project DIVA- franchise is one SEGA's longest lasting and successful series, and one of the few that still has games being made, and Miku has since been one of SEGA's mascots. SEGA's main mascot is Sonic The Hedgehog, the titular protagonist of the series of the same name. SEGA was once a first-party gaming company that mainly competed against Nintendo, but eventually exited the console manufacturing business when their consoles sales couldn't keep up with the sales of the other consoles, becoming a third-party gaming company. They are a subsidiary company of Sega Sammy Holdings Inc. as of 2004.
Company origins (1940–1982)Edit
SEGA's roots can be traced back to a company based in Honolulu, Hawaii named Service Games, which began operations in 1940. In 1951, Raymond Lemaire and Richard Stewart moved the company to Tokyo, Japan to develop and distribute coin-operated amusement-type games such as jukeboxes and slot machines. Within a few years Service Games began importing these machines to American military bases throughout Japan.
In 1954, David Rosen, an American officer in the Air Force, launched a two-minute photo booth business in Tokyo. This company eventually became Rosen Enterprises, and in 1957 began importing coin-operated games to Japan. By 1965, Rosen Enterprises grew to a chain of over 200 arcades, with Service Games its only competitor. Rosen then orchestrated a merger between Rosen Enterprises and Service Games, who by then had their own factory facilities, becoming chief executive of the new company, SEGA Enterprises, which derived its name from the first two letters of SErvice GAmes.
Within a year, SEGA began the transition from importer to manufacturer, with the release of the Rosen designed submarine simulator game Periscope. The game at that time sported innovative light and sound effects, eventually becoming quite successful in Japan. It was soon exported to both Europe and the United States, becoming the first arcade game in America to cost 25¢ per play.
In 1969, Rosen sold Sega to Gulf+Western (now known as Viacom), remaining on however as CEO of the Sega division. Under Rosen's leadership, Sega continued to grow and prosper, and in 1972 G&W made SEGA Enterprises a subsidiary, and took the company public. SEGA's current logo dates back to 1976. In 1976, they released a large screen TV, SEGA-Vision (not to be confused with their portable media player, SEGA Vision). SEGA prospered heavily from the arcade gaming boom of the late 1970s, with revenues climbing to over $100 million by 1979.
Entry into the home console market (1982–1989)Edit
In 1982, SEGA's revenues would eclipse $214 million, and they introduced the industry's first three-dimensional game, SubRock3D. The following year, an overabundance of arcade games led to the video game crash, causing SEGA's revenues to drop to $136 million. SEGA then pioneered the use of laser disks in the video game Astronbelt, and designed and released its first home video game console, the SG-1000 for the second generation of home consoles. Despite this, G&W sold the U.S. assets of SEGA Enterprises that same year to pinball manufacturer Bally Manufacturing Corporation, and in January 1984 Rosen resigned his post with the company.
The Japanese assets of SEGA were purchased for $38 million by a group of investors led by Rosen, Robert Deith, and Hayao Nakayama, a Japanese businessman who owned Esco Boueki (Esco Trading) an arcade game distribution company that had been acquired by Rosen in 1979. Nakayama became the new CEO of SEGA, Robert Deith Chairman of the Board, and Rosen became head of its subsidiary in the United States.
In 1984, the multibillion dollar Japanese conglomerate CSK bought SEGA, renamed it to SEGA Enterprises Ltd., headquartered it in Japan, and two years later, shares of its stock were being traded on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. David Rosen's friend, Isao Okawa, the chairman of CSK, became chairman of SEGA.
In 1986, SEGA of America was poised to take advantage of the resurgent video game market in the United States.
SEGA would also release the SEGA Master System and the first Alex Kidd game, who would be SEGA's unofficial mascot until 1991, when SONIC THE HEDGEHOG was created and it's title protagonist Sonic The Hedgehog became SEGA's official main mascot. While the Master System was technically superior to the NES, it failed to capture market share in North America and Japan due to highly aggressive strategies by Nintendo and ineffective marketing by Tonka (which marketed the console on behalf of SEGA in the United States). However, the Master System was highly successful in the UK, Australia, New Zealand, and Brazil with games still being sold well into the 1990s alongside the Megadrive and Nintendo's NES and SNES.
The following voicebanks were released as part of SEGA's Project 575 series. As such the only way to obtain their voices is through the games Utakomi 575 for PS Vita and Utayomi 575 for iOS.
SEGA has released a few prize figures, mainly featuring the Crypton Vocaloids.
- Main article: SEGA figurines/Gallery
Other Noticeable Franchises Edit
- SONIC THE HEDGEHOG (1991)
- THE HOUSE OF THE DEAD (1996)
- NiGHTS (1996)
- Space Channel 5 (1999)
- JET SET RADIO (2000)
- SUPER MONKEY BALL (2001)
- Yakuza (2005)
- BAYONETTA (2009)
- Sonic The Hedgehog (main mascot) (SONIC THE HEDGEHOG)
- Dr. Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik (SONIC THE HEDGEHOG)
- Hatsune Miku (初音ミク -Project DIVA-)
- NiGHTS (NiGHTS into Dreams)
- AiAi (SUPER MONKEY BALL)
- Ulala (Space Channel 5)
- Bayonetta (BAYONETTA)
- SG-1000/SEGA Game 1000 (1983)
- SEGA Master System (1985)
- SEGA GENESIS/MEGA DRIVE (1988)
- SEGA CD (1991)
- SEGA 32x (1994)
- SEGA Game Gear (1990)
- SEGA Saturn (1994)
- SEGA Dreamcast (1998)
- Official Website (Japanese)
- Official Website (English)
- Official FaceBook Page
- Official Twitter Account
- Official YouTube Channel