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Former Sega Employee Reveals Sega Pluto Prototype Console

samzenpus posted 1 year,4 days | from the not-quite-there dept.

Games 79

An anonymous reader writes "A new Sega console has been revealed, albeit it an old one that never made it past the prototype stage. The console is called the Sega Pluto, and apparently only two prototype units were ever made. As for what's inside the Sega Pluto, it looks to be a modified Saturn that includes the NetLink 28.8kbit/s modem as standard. It allowed Saturn consoles to be linked up using a dial-up connection for multiplayer gaming. A disc has also been found by another user that is an internal Sega Saturn CD-R that holds a terminal specifically for Pluto."

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79 comments

Coincidence? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43490923)

The gaming community has announced that the Sega Pluto has been downgraded from a console to a prototype. This will have no affect on its controllers' designation as peripherals.

Re:Coincidence? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43490987)

What?

Re:Coincidence? (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491099)

that whoosh you hear is the sound of vacuum heading for a certain trans-neptunian object and out into the Kuiper Belt

Re:Coincidence? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491121)

If a tree falls in a vacuum, does it make a sound?

Re:Coincidence? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491277)

The tree or the vacuum?

Re:Coincidence? (1)

GrumpySteen (1250194) | 1 year,4 days | (#43493217)

Absolutely. Anything that would cause a sound in an atmosphere will still cause that sound to propagate through the wood. You just wouldn't be able to hear it unless your head was pressed against the true due to the lack of an atmosphere to transmit the sound to your years.

Re:Coincidence? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491393)

yeah but imagine a Beowulf cluster of these running Linux, or indeed in the USSR Linux running a Beowulf cluster of plutos, in tandem with raspberry pis.

Wait, there's more: Every second node has an Arduino

Re: Coincidence? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43494001)

You forgot to mention bitcoin.

Re:Coincidence? (1)

Picass0 (147474) | 1 year,4 days | (#43493543)

Part of the confusion is there really has never been a clear definition of "console", it is a rather vague and overly broad term.

Nethack (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43490937)

With amazing 8-bit ASCII graphics!

Re:Nethack (2)

jones_supa (887896) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491237)

ASCII is 7-bit.

Re:Nethack (1)

craigminah (1885846) | 1 year,4 days | (#43492011)

7 bits = $0.875

Six degrees of seperation say we can do the math to make this into XBox 360 or something more clever.

Re:Nethack (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43492961)

Extended ASCII has become sufficiently widespread that it is interchangeable with ASCII in all but the most meaninglessly pedantic of social environments.

Since Slashdot is the most meaninglessly pedantic social environment using variants of the English language, I concede your point.

Re:Nethack (1)

BitZtream (692029) | 1 year,4 days | (#43494165)

Extended ascii is widespread but undefined and different depending on location. Ascii is nearly universal and defined the same everywhere. Ascii in France is the same as Ascii in Texas. Extended ascii in France is not the same as extended ascii in Texas ... nor is it the same as extended ascii in England, Germany, or (insert long list of variations on extended ascii here).

Ascii is ascii, when people talk about it, thats what they are talking about. They aren't talking about double horizontal line with one left facing vertical line on top.

Just because you are ignorant of why the word is used as it is doesn't mean you get to change the usage. Crawl back in your hole and stop telling people they are pedantic because of your ignorance.

if only it had had a network socket (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43490947)

it would probably have ridden the broadband boom as a interesting niche gadget and still be available today even in a cheapo form.

(yes there was an add on but it was too expensive and hard to get to work)

Re:if only it had had a network socket (1)

tonywestonuk (261622) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491071)

The dreamcast had a network socket..... that didn't help it.

Re:if only it had had a network socket (1)

mr_jrt (676485) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491199)

Kind of. The BBA is a bit of a rarity due to low home networking penetration back then, so no it didn't help it back then, but it might have done had it been a bit more commonplace.

Re:if only it had had a network socket (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491201)

The dreamcast had a network socket..... that didn't help it.

The dreamcast had a dialup modem, with all the drawbacks that implies. The network addon arrived later, was expensive and hard to get. If it had come with a built in ethernet socket it would have become a far more usefull gadget when broadband arrived and still be useable today.

Re:if only it had had a network socket (1)

Sockatume (732728) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491583)

They stopped making the Dreamcast in 2001. If you assume that the console was still "alive" at that point - which is pretty goddamn generous - that means that it was out of the race far too early to enjoy widespread broadband adoption.

Re:if only it had had a network socket (1)

s0nicfreak (615390) | 1 year,4 days | (#43495367)

They didn't stop making the Dreamcast because it died. The Dreamcast was actually doing pretty well. It just wasn't enough to get SEGA out of their debt (by that point, there was pretty much nothing they could do to get out of it), so they had to kill it.

Re:if only it had had a network socket (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491429)

it would probably have ridden the broadband boom as a interesting niche gadget and still be available today even in a cheapo form. (yes there was an add on but it was too expensive and hard to get to work)

That's unlikely. You seem to forget how long ago this all was now. Assuming the Pluto was created around- or shortly after- the time the Saturn came out (i.e. the mid-90s), that was the point when the Internet was only *just* becoming known to the public and consumer access becoming more widely available. At that point, those who *did* have it at home would almost all have been accessing it via dial-up.

Sure, there might have been a few rich and enthusiastic geeks with early broadband, ISDN and the like, but not enough to make it worth Sega caring about at that point. (Bear in mind I'm talking about home access, not university labs, who I assume *would* have a dedicated line- but back then you certainly wouldn't have got an Ethernet connection in your dorm).

If Sega *had* offered this, it likely would have been LAN (not Internet) oriented.

Affordable consumer-oriented broadband (ADSL and cable) services only really started being offered in a widespread manner in the early-2000s, and didn't really start taking over from dial-up until around the middle of the last decade. The Saturn had already flopped and been succeeded by the Dreamcast in the late-90s, and even the Dreamcast might have been pushing it to rely on widespread broadband ownership. So expecting it to have worked in the Pluto is just implausible.

There was a network / WAN ver of UMK3 in mid 90's (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491561)

There was a network / WAN ver of UMK3 in mid 90's in arcade's and other sites with games. It used T1 lines It was a head of it's time.

Re:There was a network / WAN ver of UMK3 in mid 90 (1)

BitZtream (692029) | 1 year,4 days | (#43495085)

It didn't use 'T1 lines' ... alright, I don't know that. What I do know is that a T1 would be atleast 1000 times overkill for that game if the code was fucking horrible. A good modem connection would work for several players, latency being the only POSSIBLE concern. For one player on each end, a modem (28.8 at that point was common) would be over kill.

A T1 is also a government regulated circuit, its not bound by an SLA, its bound by law to be reliable, and as such, costs ridiculous amounts of money compared to all other forms of connectivity.

Re:There was a network / WAN ver of UMK3 in mid 90 (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | 1 year,4 days | (#43500283)

they did use T1's back then it's was just about the only way to get network in to a nice it used very little of the pipe.

It's was live play. Back then you also had golden tee on dial up that I think only made calls once a day.

Dial up lag is to high and it was linked to a Server back end.

Re:if only it had had a network socket (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491573)

Affordable consumer-oriented broadband (ADSL and cable) services only really started being offered in a widespread manner in the early-2000s, and didn't really start taking over from dial-up until around the middle of the last decade.

I disagree. Broadband was the precursor (or even was) the dot-com boom. Look at the stocks of all the DWDM & optics companies.

I had a cable modem in '97. 1 meg modems were available from Bell Canada then, and by 1998 Nortel claimed $1B in sales: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1-Meg_Modem#History

So, *you* might have gotten broadband in the early 2000s, but mass availability was underway years before that.

Re:if only it had had a network socket (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43493723)

Broadband was the precursor (or even was) the dot-com boom. Look at the stocks of all the DWDM & optics companies.

Which would have been based on profits those companies thought could be made in the future, not what people were using *right then*. For example, the 3G frequency auctions in the UK (that lots of companies paid silly money for around the turn of the millennium) didn't lead to networks in use for another three or four years, and took even longer for them to get cheap enough for mass adoption.

And, from the article you linked to:-

"By October 1998 Nortel claimed more than $1 billion in sales which, in their words, had "the potential for more than one million end-user lines."

So, they had the *potential* for "more than one million end-user lines", which was at most still a very small proportion of the worldwide (or North American?) market. Yes, things were available by then, and I'll agree with you that far, but that's really pushing things to the very earliest point, long before it was the norm.

And even *that* is by "October 1998", around four years after the Saturn first launched in Japan, and shortly before the Dreamcast came out. And that was the point I was making; regardless of how early one wants to cut off the beginning of the mass consumer adoption of broadband, it was several years after the dial-up mid-90s when the Saturn/Pluto would have come out.

Re:if only it had had a network socket (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43493449)

Sorry I wasn't clear I was referring to the dreamcast. It came out just as ethernet sockets in computers dropped from expensive to ubiquitous. Lots of households were using them for internet connection sharing with a dial up modem in the 90's before broadband routers became common.

But mainly the dreamcast would have become more useful even as its production costs fell rather than the reality that by 2001 when it was canceled it was built in obsolete.

NRA Teapartier Bomber Caught! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43490967)

Hey douchebags, there is actual news happening right now. Looks like one of them died with his Gasden flag t shirt on, his last words were "I love the NRA, hold my beer and watch this!".

Other one on the loose!

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BIMiuAMCMAAvhY6.jpg:large

Fucktards.

Re:NRA Teapartier Bomber Caught! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491017)

Reports of military grade explosives. Damn than NRA!

If Obama had a son...

Re:NRA Teapartier Bomber Caught! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491051)

The real fucktards are those who employ the logical fallacy of 'guilty by association' whenever a nutjob does a thing, then runs amok posting about it everywhere like a loon.

Re:NRA Teapartier Bomber Caught! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491067)

I know you are but what am I?

Re:NRA Teapartier Bomber Caught! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491053)

Of course this is news for nerds, the bible thumping NRA loving teaparty mad bombers were possibly planning another operation at MIT when they were ID'd and that's what lead to all this.

You stupid fucks appear to be behind the curve a bit.

Hope they catch #2 soon.

Police are currently attempting to draw him out of his hiding place by playing Brad Paisely music over their speakers. They have also constructed an elaborate snare-trap, baited with ribs, high-end fishing equipment, and Bibles.

In case the situation should escalate, they've deputized a civilian to act as a Hostage Crisis Negotiator. That civilian? You guessed it, Jeff Foxworthy.

Obviously we're going to have to have a national conversation, lecturing one side about their celebration of and propensity for political violence. But alas it will not be the side which makes unrepentant terrorist murders university professors, nor the side which celebrates Che Guevera and Yasser Arafat and even the German leftwing terrorist group Baader-Meinhof. (Margaret Cho declared herself a fan of the female terrorist in that partnership -- and no, I'm not kidding.)

Re:NRA Teapartier Bomber Caught! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491143)

Reports of Chechen and Turkish Tea Party NRA members.

Tea partiers love BBQ turkey you know.

Re:NRA Teapartier Bomber Caught! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491203)

Chechen baggers.

Makes sense as the brave warrior placed his bomb right next to a couple of kids.

Boy this is going to put a crimp on Obama plans for undocumented Democrat amnesty bill being voted on today in the senate, ya think?

Segagaga? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491055)

The timing is suspicious. Can anyone fill in details on how this fits into the Segagaga [wikipedia.org] game?

(Back in the day, Sega devs regarded Sony as the EA of Japan.)

How long before Sega asks for it back? (1)

Viol8 (599362) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491087)

Strictly speaking it was never his to take (though I'd done the same) so they could shout intellectual property and ask for it back or sue him since I'm sure it won't take them too long to figure out who he is as there were only 2 prototypes and I doubt many people had access.

Back in a company I worked for in the 90s there sat a lonely unwanted tower PC sized DEC Alpha. I still wish to this day that I'd quietly taken it home with me but it would have been a bit obvious trying to lug something over 2 foot high plus a 21 inch CRT monitor past security!

Re:How long before Sega asks for it back? (3, Informative)

SteveFoerster (136027) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491163)

Just look like you're supposed to be doing it. This works suprisingly often.

Re:How long before Sega asks for it back? (1)

nomorecwrd (1193329) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491395)

There's a story about a famous old clock that sat above the booths of a bank here in Chile. The bank used this clock as a kind of trademark, you could see it on every leaflet, every catalog and almost every paper this bank issued

One day, two guys appeared with blue overalls, helmets, and a stepladder.

Acting absolutely normal they remove this clock for maintenance reasons.... no one ever saw the clock again! there was no maintenance scheduled... it was the perfect crime!!

Re:How long before Sega asks for it back? (1)

cusco (717999) | 1 year,4 days | (#43492209)

Four guys stole the gold angel from the top of the Mormon Cathedral here a couple of decades ago. Took them days to set up the scaffolding, arrange to lower it to the ground, etc. as they removed it for "cleaning". The replacement is larger but only covered in gold leaf.

Re:How long before Sega asks for it back? (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491495)

Just look like you're supposed to be doing it. This works suprisingly often.

Not only that, but often times you're supposed to be doing it!

I once rode my bike past a man in a tool belt who was attempting to open the large telecom relay box in my neighborhood. His truck displayed the prominent logo of AT&T, as did his shirt. He was confusedly prying at the box's lock with an obviously wrong key while on a cell phone proclaiming, "Well if it is one of ours, it's not any key they issued me!" An hour later I returned along the same path via my bi-wheeled transport, and there sat the man relaxing on the sidewalk, leaning against the relay box. I nodded a polite acknowledgement then offered, "Break time, eh?"

"No, can't get into the damn thing. Waiting on someone to come with the key," was the reply.

"Pop the hinge pins out?", I offered. He shook his head, "Can't do that, just have to wait". As I rode off I called back, "Well, that's the box for my block so good luck."

Later that evening my Internet went down. It stayed down for two days, so did everyone else's Internet connections on my block, some land lines went down too. I saw first one additional worker -- then later several workers in the AT&T garb at the box over the course of the outage. Eventually they left, connection resumed, and I noticed the relay housing was adorned with a bright new lock.

The next evening, while walking the dog after dusk had fallen and the streets had grown quiet, I saw a man wearing a plain gray shirt, denim jeans, a hard hat, and a well stocked tool pouch walking my way towards the relay box with a large pair of bolt cutters slung over his shoulder. There was no vehicle in sight. As I walked past pretending not to notice I heard him muttering like, "...morons. ...fix 'em good this time." Instead of making the corner at the end of the block I waited and watched quietly as the man cut the lock from the box and snapped a huge padlock into place with a shackle the size of one you'd use to secure a motorcycle or RV with.

I said nothing and called no one later. Despite uniforms, I could tell clearly: This man was the only one to service the box who knew what the fuck he was doing.
I met the fellow again at a neighborhood meet and greet. He lives on the next street over, and works nights doing some kind of IT work from home.

Re:How long before Sega asks for it back? (2)

cusco (717999) | 1 year,4 days | (#43492167)

You mean like these guys?

"http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/09/04/1062548967124.html"

On the night of Wednesday, August 27, [2003] two men dressed as computer technicians and carrying tool bags entered the cargo processing and intelligence centre at Sydney International Airport. . .

Inside, they spent two hours disconnecting two computers, which they put on trolleys and wheeled out of the room, past the security desk, into the lift and out of the building. . .

the two mainframe servers held thousands of confidential files, including top-secret communications between customs investigators and the AFP and ASIO.

Re:How long before Sega asks for it back? (1)

AVryhof (142320) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491171)

If you don't sneak it, and just act like you know what you are doing, you could probably have even gotten them to help you carry it out.

Re:How long before Sega asks for it back? (1)

Sduic (805226) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491231)

The console is called the Sega Pluto, and apparently only two prototype units were ever made. The one you see in the gallery above is owned by a former Sega of America employee who somehow ended up with it on his desk at Sega. When he got laid off the Pluto was placed in a box and taken home.

"You wasted how much on this boondoggle? I want you AND your pet project OUT OF HERE!"

Re:How long before Sega asks for it back? (1)

necro81 (917438) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491661)

When he got laid off the Pluto was placed in a box and taken home

I don't condone stealing, but there is a certain justice to this. It's a bit like Milton finally being reunited with his prized red Swingline (pop culture reference [youtube.com] ).

Re:How long before Sega asks for it back? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491359)

Strictly speaking it was never his to take (though I'd done the same) so they could shout intellectual property and ask for it back or sue him since I'm sure it won't take them too long to figure out who he is as there were only 2 prototypes and I doubt many people had access.

Strictly speaking, I'm curious if anyone at Sega really gives a shit.

Back in a company I worked for in the 90s there sat a lonely unwanted tower PC sized DEC Alpha. I still wish to this day that I'd quietly taken it home with me but it would have been a bit obvious trying to lug something over 2 foot high plus a 21 inch CRT monitor past security!

All you had to do was wait for the mass RIF. Back in the dot-bomb days, when that hammer fell, I never knew so many employees owned trucks and SUVs...took their goddamn 6' fake plants with them they did...

Re:How long before Sega asks for it back? (1)

KiloByte (825081) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491443)

Taking it home, while strictly speaking not ok, is something that shouldn't raise much noise after all those years. On the other hand, he intends to publicly sell it, which may make Sega rightfully angry.

Re:How long before Sega asks for it back? (1)

operagost (62405) | 1 year,4 days | (#43496621)

You could probably get one on eBay now for a few hundred bucks... plus $100 for shipping. "Tower PC sized" indicates an 800 to me, although it could also be a DS20 (which WOULD still cost you a grand). Neither one is quite 2 feet high, though. Any of the servers over 2 feet high were far wider than any tower PC.

Incredible! (4, Funny)

VortexCortex (1117377) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491131)

I just can't believe all the consoles coming out of the woodwork just to compete with OUYA!

Re:Incredible! (1)

Quakeulf (2650167) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491433)

I think the Ouya has a real competitor on its hands now. You could say it's bog, like Sonic the Hedgehog.

Re:Incredible! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43494185)

Lol OUYA is already DoA

Re:Incredible! (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,3 days | (#43506517)

A Saturn with a modem is still a better console than an Ouya. It has games people actually like, like Symphony of the Night and Mega Man X 4.

Coming 4th Quater 2013 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491195)

Hyperdimension Plutonia

Featuring the usual copious amounts of well animated breasts.

Re:Coming 4th Quater 2013 (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43491379)

One of the new characters in Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory is named Plutia.

Hmmm...guy wants to sell avoiding ebay? (1)

Bearhouse (1034238) | 1 year,4 days | (#43491345)

FTA:

"The one you see in the gallery above is owned by a former Sega of America employee who somehow ended up with it on his desk at Sega. When he got laid off the Pluto was placed in a box and taken home."

So, it stole it when he was fired.

"[the guy] is also considering selling it due to the predicted high value of the unit."

Sounds like he's itching for a PM on that forum. Good luck with that dude; hope it's not a SEGA-sponsored sting.

Ah Sega Gremlin and Williams (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43492149)

Anyone up for a game of Astro-Blaster or Williams Defender... probably not because you are weak and play Gorf or Vanguard instead! I love the baiters bring it on slashdotters!

Modem? Don't have a phone jack. (1)

BlindMaster (2262842) | 1 year,4 days | (#43492701)

Not sure why we are still using modem. I only have a wireless phone, so I am not sure how I can use the modem to connect to someone.
I think a powerful bluetooth device that can allow me connect to someone through my phone (through apps?) and manage my home electronics would be a better idea. Part of the home theatre solution.

Sega Uranus (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,4 days | (#43494237)

That also never made it past the planning stage...

Player1: Please Plug Joystick In Uranus.

cheap jordan shoes handbag store (-1, Offtopic)

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cheap jordan shoes,Air max shoes,sunglasses sale (1)

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