The Day Sega Saved NVIDIA

Wow… this is a story I had never heard.

Shoichiro Irimajiri gave us Dreamcast, and this is an amazing act of kindness that created a juggernaut.

Kinda hate burying this in the Hardware forum, but I’m not sure it belongs in Games.

Thanks. Very interesting. So did Sega just eat that 5 million?

Did that sacrifice kill Sega or Shoichiro Irimarjiri’s career? I was around for the dreamcast but the details of those console battles are a little foggy.

Yeah, I’m really curious about the details there. Was that $5M a gift or a loan?

From what I can see, it was essentially a gift. Nvidia asked for payment for the work they were doing that didn’t work out and Sega paid.

Irimajiri was in charge for a few years but Sega was losing money and he resigned I believe. He also is the reason we got all those awesome Dreamcast games. That’s when Isao Okawa came in and decided they had to become a third party publisher.

The Dreamcast certainly didn’t kill Sega. Sony and Nintendo, maybe, but Sega’s products were always pretty good. They just couldn’t find the magic sauce after the heyday of their toe to toe battles with Nintendo in the 80s and early 90s.

Sega’s leadership killed Sega.

The consoles were technically fine, but feuding between the US and Japan branches led to a lot of destructive decisions.

I had a Dreamcast and an OG XBOX. I was a rebel.

Yeah, though the fog of time has blurred things a bit, if memory serves and in my mind Nvidia was just another player in the 3d card field in the mid 1990s (I was a 3dfx elitist myself, so I was like “nVidia? Who cares about them?”)

And then the GeForce showed up…

I had one of the Riva 128s, and it was pretty good. But 3dfx was where it was at in those days.

The article, near the end:

Nvidia’s next project, the Riva 128, was a commercial hit. It then released the GeForce 256, the world’s first GPU. Microsoft then selected GeForce to power its Xbox console, and the rest is history

So this incident is before 3D cards were a thing. I’d heard of the Riva 128, but this was even before THAT, so I have to admit, when this happened, I’d never heard of Nvidia.