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Sega Channel: Digital Distribution Before Its Time


In 1994 the Sega Channel was released in North America and it was absolutely mind blowing. The year it was released I was 8 years old and I donít remember exactly how I came to acquire the Sega Channel, but I do remember playing it. I was the owner of a Sega (obviously) rather than the Super Nintendo, and the Sega Channel was the one thing I had over my friends that were Super Nintendo owners, oh youíre playing Super Mario World? Iíll just go pick one of the 50 games that I received at the beginning of the month. I even remember waking up 2 hours early for school on the days that the new games were downloaded to the Sega Channel at the beginning of the month; it was like getting 50 games for Christmas, except it happened every month, wonderful.

When Sega Channel started there was a 25 dollar installation fee and it was 15 dollars a month, for 50 games a month. Letís put that in to perspective, anyone that plays an MMO or pays for Xbox Live monthly understands what monthly fees are all about. World of Warcraft is 15 dollars a month, the same as the Sega Channel, except it is just one game. The Xbox Live monthly fee is $7.99 month to month if that is how you pay, and that is literally just to get the premium content, you still have to pay for the downloadable games, we sure have come a long way.

With services such as Steam, PSN, and Xbox Live everyone now has access to digital content as long as you are near an internet source and a lot of people in the gaming industry see digital download becoming the main way us gamers get our games. When the so called ďdigital futureĒ gets here just remember one thing, the Sega Channel started it all.
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About overrated44one of us since 11:23 PM on 06.23.2009

Born in 1986 one of my first childhood memories is sitting around a television with a controller in my hand playing Super Mario Bros in front of my family, close to the end of the game my father had to take the controls to beat the final levels, but I got there. I love games and the industry and I am taking my love for video games and putting it in to text, from my brain to your eyes. I write for and I am trying to find my way in to the gaming journalism industry.
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