The Sega Master System is a third-generation home video game console manufactured by Sega. It was a remodeled export version of the Sega Mark III, the third iteration of the SG-1000 series of consoles, released in Japan in 1985 and featured enhanced graphical capabilities over its predecessors; the Master System launched in North America in 1986, followed by Europe in 1987, Brazil in 1989. A Japanese version of the Master System was launched in 1987, which has additional features over the Mark III and other regional variants of the console, namely a built-in FM audio chip, a rapid-fire switch and a dedicated port for the 3D glasses. A cost-reduced model known as the Master System II was released in 1990 in North Europe; the original Master System models used both cartridges and a credit card-sized format known as Sega Cards. Accessories for the consoles were released such as a light gun and 3D glasses designed to work with a range of specially coded games, which were sold separately or available in certain bundles.
The Master System II redesign removed the card slot, turning it into a cartridge-only system and was incompatible with the 3D glasses by proxy. The Master System was released in competition with the Nintendo Entertainment System, it had fewer well-reviewed games than the NES, a smaller library, due to Nintendo licensing policies requiring platform exclusivity. Despite the Master System's newer hardware, it failed to overturn Nintendo's significant market share advantage in Japan and North America. However, it attained more success in Europe and Brazil; the Master System is estimated to have sold at 13 million units, excluding recent Brazil sales. Retrospective criticism has recognized its role in the development of the Sega Genesis, a number of well-received games in PAL regions, but is critical of its limited library in the NTSC regions, which were dominated by Nintendo's NES; as of 2015, the Master System was still in production in Brazil by Tectoy, making it the world's longest-lived console.
In the early 1980s, Sega Enterprises, Inc. a subsidiary of the American conglomerate Gulf and Western, was one of the largest arcade game manufacturers active in the United States, with company revenues of $214 million by mid-1982. A downturn in the arcade business starting in 1982 negatively impacted the company, leading Gulf and Western to sell the North American manufacturing and licensing of its arcade games to Bally Manufacturing; the company retained its Japanese subsidiary, Sega Enterprises, Ltd. as well as Sega's North American research and development division. With its arcade business in decline, Sega Enterprises, Ltd. president Hayao Nakayama advocated that the company leverage its hardware expertise to move into the home console market in Japan, in its infancy at the time. Nakayama received permission to proceed; the first model to be developed was the SC-3000, a computer with a built-in keyboard, but when Sega learned of Nintendo's plans to release a games-only console, they began developing the SG-1000 alongside the SC-3000.
The SG-1000 was first released in Japan on July 15, 1983, at a price of JP¥15,000. It was launched on the same day. Shortly after the launch of the SG-1000, Gulf and Western began to divest itself of its non-core businesses after the death of company founder, Charles Bluhdorn, so Nakayama and former Sega CEO David Rosen arranged a management buyout of the Japanese subsidiary in 1984 with financial backing from CSK Corporation, a prominent Japanese software company. Nakayama was installed as CEO of the new Sega Enterprises, Ltd. Following the buyout, Sega released another console, the SG-1000 II, for ¥15,000, it featured a few hardware tweaks including detachable controllers. The SG-1000 II did not sell well, leading to Sega's decision to continue work on the video game hardware used for the system; this resulted in the release of the Sega Mark III in Japan in 1985. Engineered by the same internal Sega team that had created the SG-1000, the Mark III was a redesigned iteration of the previous console.
The CPUs in the SG-1000 and SG-1000 II were Zilog Z80As running at 3.58 MHz, while the Mark III, SC-3000—a computer version of the SG-1000—and Master System feature a Z80A running at 4 MHz. The Mark III and Master System have a slot for Sega Card software without any need for the Card Catcher add-on that the SC-3000 and previous SG-1000 consoles required. According to Edge, lessons from the SG-1000's lack of commercial success were used in the hardware redesign of the Mark III, the console was designed to be more powerful than the Famicom. For the console's North America release, Sega restyled and rebranded the Mark III under the name "Master System", similar to Nintendo's own reworking of the Famicom into the Nintendo Entertainment System; the "Master System" name was one of several proposals Sega's American employees considered, was chosen by throwing darts against a whiteboard, although plans to release a cheaper console referred to as the "Base System" influenced the decision. Sega Enterprises Chairman Isao Okawa endorsed the name after being told it was a reference to the competitive nature of both the video game industry and martial arts, in which only one competitor can be the "Master".
The futuristic final design for the Master System was intended to appeal to Western tastes. The Sega Mark III was released in Japan in October 1985 at a price of ¥15,000. Despite featuring technically more powerful hardware than its chief competition, the Famicom, the Mark III did not prove to be successful at its launch. Difficulties arose from Nintendo's licensing practices with thi
Chromadepth is a patented system from the company Chromatek that produces a stereoscopic effect based upon differences in the diffraction of color through a special prism-like holographic film fitted into glasses. Chromadepth glasses purposely exacerbate chromatic aberration and give the illusion of colors taking up different positions in space, with red being in front, blue being behind; this works well with the sky, sea or grass as a background, redder objects in the foreground. With computer-controlled etching, the technology to create thin plastic sheets with thousands of microscopic ‘prism’ lenses that can magnify or diffract light can be made. Since violet light has more energy than red, bends more when refracted, some lenses can distort an image if they don’t focus all of the colors at the same point; this distortion is called chromatic aberration. One type of film etching creates lenses that deliberately exaggerate this aberration, separating the colors of an image into different convergence points in the visual field.
It’s a patented process called ChromaDepth™. Glasses with ChromaDepth™ diffraction lenses create an artificial visual depth. “Warm” colors, toward the infrared end of the spectrum, appear closer, ‘cool” colors toward the violet end appear further away. Any 2D media piece in colors can be given a 3D effect as long as the color spectrum is put into use with the foreground being in red, the background in blue. From front to back the scheme follows the visible light spectrum, from red to orange, yellow and blue; this means. As a result, ChromaDepth works best with artificially produced or enhanced pictures, since the color indicates the depth. Unlike anaglyph images or polarization, creating real-life ChromaDepth pictures without manual enhancement is impossible, since cameras cannot portray true depth. However, this gives ChromaDepth images a distinct advantage: unlike stereopsis-based schemes that require two images, ChromaDepth contains depth information in one image, which eliminates the ghosting seen in other schemes when one attempts to view them without 3D glasses.
Thus, ChromaDepth images can be viewed comfortably and legibly without glasses though the 3D effect will not be perceivable without them. ChromaDepth™ 3-D was invented by US researcher, Richard Steenblik, after he noticed that the bright colors on the screen of a TEMPEST video game seemed to lie in different depth planes; this triggered a quest to make this effect, known as chromostereoscopy, into a practical method for producing 3D images. In the course of eight years of after-hours experimentation, Mr. Steenblik created plastic prisms, glass double prisms, Fresnel prisms, liquid optics using glycerin and Chinese cinnamon oil held in wedge-shaped glass cells; these liquid glasses worked well, but were not suited for mass production. Mr. Steenblik and his business partner, Dr. Frederick Lauter, were about to give up when a new optical development came to their attention. Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology had developed binary optics, it was clear that binary optics provided the answer!
Optical devices use refraction, or diffraction to move light around. Optics which use refraction, such as lenses, are designed to reduce refraction; the binary optics found in ChromaDepth™ 3-D glasses, combine refraction and diffraction to make thin optics that act like thick glass prisms. After two years of development work with MIT, the ChromaDepth™ 3-D production solution was found. ChromaDepth™ lenses were first used commercially in June 1992. In 1997, American cable TV network Nickelodeon distributed Chromadepth glasses at Blockbuster Video and through some Kraft products, which could be used for special 3D segments on new programming that September, terming the glasses "Nogglegoggles" and the 3D format "Nogglevision". Rock band KISS utilized the Chromadepth process for an alternate verson of the music video for their 1998 single Psycho Circus, releasing it on VHS at that time with a free pair of glasses for viewing. Chromadepth glasses were utilized for the VH1 series I Love the'80s 3-D, with free pairs of glasses available at Best Buy locations.
Chromadepth glasses have been used and distributed for some haunted house and Halloween attractions for added visual appeal featuring custom glasses for patrons. Numerous books, special publications, promotional giveaways, children's toys have been released with or intended for use with Chromadepth glasses as well, notably including Crayola and Melissa & Doug's lines of 3D art and toy products, Disney's line of 3D Toy Story 3 products, among many others. 2D-plus-depth ChromaDepth Patent Chromatek company web site Oregon State University Daily ChromaDepth 3D Blog 3D ChromaDepth Animated Music Scores
Blade Eagle 3-D
Blade Eagle 3-D is a vertical rail shooter video game and published by Sega and was first released on March 26, 1988 in Japan for the Mark III as Gold Cartridge, December 31, 1988 in North America and in Europe. Players fight against hundreds of robot warriors equipped with particle beam weapons; the game is played from the bird's eye view. The players mission is to blast through nine levels of various 3D terrain, shooting aliens and ships on three different planes. One of the buttons is used to cycle through the three planes. Along the way, there are several bosses; the ones drop a power-up, which the player can use to upgrade the ship. Some of the power-ups include laser beams. Another power-up gives players an extra ship on their side; the first one joins the fight ones go into reserve. Blade Eagle is designed for play in conjunction with the Sega 3-D Glasses. Blade Eagle 3-D can be played for free in the browser at the Internet Archive
Anaglyph 3D is the name given to the stereoscopic 3D effect achieved by means of encoding each eye's image using filters of different colors red and cyan. Anaglyph 3D images contain two differently filtered colored images, one for each eye; when viewed through the "color-coded" "anaglyph glasses", each of the two images reaches the eye it's intended for, revealing an integrated stereoscopic image. The visual cortex of the brain fuses this into the perception of a three-dimensional scene or composition. Anaglyph images have seen a recent resurgence due to the presentation of images and video on the Web, Blu-ray Discs, CDs, in print. Low cost paper frames or plastic-framed glasses hold accurate color filters that after 2002, make use of all 3 primary colors; the current norm is cyan, with red being used for the left channel. The cheaper filter material used in the monochromatic past dictated red and blue for convenience and cost. There is a material improvement of full color images, with the cyan filter for accurate skin tones.
Video games, theatrical films, DVDs can be shown in the anaglyph 3D process. Practical images, for science or design, where depth perception is useful, include the presentation of full scale and microscopic stereographic images. Examples from NASA include Mars Rover imaging, the solar investigation, called STEREO, which uses two orbital vehicles to obtain the 3D images of the sun. Other applications include geological illustrations by the United States Geological Survey, various online museum objects. A recent application is for stereo imaging of the heart using 3D ultra-sound with plastic red/cyan glasses. Anaglyph images are much easier to view than either crossed-view pairs stereograms. However, these side-by-side types offer bright and accurate color rendering, not achieved with anaglyphs. Cross-view prismatic glasses with adjustable masking have appeared, that offer a wider image on the new HD video and computer monitors; the oldest known description of anaglyph images was written in August 1853 by W. Rollmann in Stargard about his "Farbenstereoscope".
He had the best results viewing a yellow/blue drawing with red/blue glasses. Rollmann found that with a red/blue drawing the red lines were not as distinct as yellow lines through the blue glass. In 1858, in France, Joseph D'Almeida delivered a report to l'Académie des sciences describing how to project three-dimensional magic lantern slide shows using red and green filters to an audience wearing red and green goggles. Subsequently he was chronicled as being responsible for the first realisation of 3D images using anaglyphs. Louis Ducos du Hauron produced the first printed anaglyphs in 1891; this process consisted of printing the two negatives which form a stereoscopic photograph on to the same paper, one in blue, one in red. The viewer would use colored glasses with red and blue or green; the left eye would see the blue image which would appear black, whilst it would not see the red. Thus a three dimensional image would result. William Friese-Green created the first three-dimensional anaglyphic motion pictures in 1889, which had public exhibition in 1893.
3-D films enjoyed something of a boom in the 1920s. The term "3-D" was coined in the 1950s; as late as 1954 films such as The Creature from the Black Lagoon were successful. Shot and exhibited using the Polaroid system, "The Creature from the Black Lagoon" was reissued much in an anaglyph format so it could be shown in cinemas without the need for special equipment. In 1953, the anaglyph had begun appearing in newspapers and comic books; the 3-D comic books were one of the most interesting applications of anaglyph to printing. Over the years, anaglyphic pictures have sporadically appeared in comics and magazine ads. Although not anaglyphic, Jaws 3-D was a box-office success in 1983. At present the excellent quality of computer displays and user-friendly stereo-editing programs offer new and exciting possibilities for experimenting with anaglyph stereo. A stereo pair is a pair of images from different perspectives at the same time. Objects closer to the camera have greater differences in appearance and position within the image frames than objects further from the camera.
Cameras captured two color filtered images from the perspective of the left and right eyes which were projected or printed together as a single image, one side through a red filter and the other side through a contrasting color such as blue or green or mixed cyan. As outlined below, one may now use an image processing computer program to simulate the effect of using color filters, using as a source image a pair of either color or monochrome images; this is called image stitching. In the 1970s filmmaker Stephen Gibson filmed direct anaglyph adult movies, his "Deep Vision" system replaced the original camera lens with two color-filtered lenses focused on the same film frame. In the 1980s, Gibson patented his mechanism. Many computer graphics programs provide the basic tools required to prepare anaglyphs from stereo pairs. In simple practice, the left eye image is filtered to remove green; the right eye image is filtered to remove red. The two images are positioned in the compositing phase in close overlay registration.
Plugins for some of these programs as well as programs dedicated to anaglyph preparation are available which automate the process and require the user to choose only a few basic
Rad Racer released in Japan as Highway Star, is a racing game developed and published by Square for the Family Computer in 1987. In this game, players drive a Ferrari 328 or a generic Formula One racing machine through a race course; the game was released for the Nintendo Entertainment System in North America and Europe months after its debut on Family Computer. The game was part of an attempt by Square to make 3-D games, was followed by several other games using the same technology; the game sold 2 million copies, is considered one of the best racing games on the NES, but was criticized as being derivative of other racing games from the period. Players can choose between two types of car to race. Rad Racer players can activate a 3D mode during play by pressing the "Select" button and wearing 3D glasses. Players could use the Power Glove to control their vehicle; the idea of Rad Racer is to rally through its checkpoints before the timer expires. The player's car crashes if it collides with a road tree at any speed.
Cars hit from behind slow down and cars hit from the side are jettisoned in that direction. Crashes make it more difficult for the player to reach the check point. There are eight different levels of increasing skill. If time runs out, the vehicle can continue to coast for a while. If time runs out and the car fails to coast through a goal before coming to a stop, the game is over; the game came packaged with 3D glasses which could be worn to give the player the illusion of three dimensions. At the car selection screen, the player can pick one of two cars: a Ferrari 328 or an F1 racing machine, similar in appearance to the 1987 Camel-sponsored Honda/Lotus 99T Formula One car. Both cars have a maximum speed of 255 km/h. In-game, "turbo" can be activated by pressing the up button to boost the car's speed, disengaged at any time by releasing the button. Pushing down on the joypad can allow the player to select between three types of background music or none at all; the main reason for the development of the game was that Square owner Masafumi Miyamoto wanted to demonstrate Gebelli's 3D programming techniques.
It was programmed by Nasir Gebelli and supervised by Hironobu Sakaguchi, featured music by Nobuo Uematsu, all of whom contributed to Final Fantasy in similar roles. In 1987, few racing games existed for the NES, Rad Racer was seen as Square's answer to Sega's Out Run. In Japan, it is one of the few titles for the system designed for use with Nintendo's Famicom 3D System peripheral for 3D experience. In 1990, Square followed up with an exclusive North American sequel, Rad Racer II, it differed little from the first version, players considered the gameplay inferior. As one of the NES's premier racers, Rad Racer was met with favorable reviews and enjoyed commercial success. In their article The History of Square, GameSpot conceded that "Rad Racer bears more than a passing resemblance to Out Run," but went on to say that "it's more than just a clone" and credited the game with "effectively convey the proper sense of speed." Though the 3D effect created some sense of depth to the gameplay, it was hindered by a pronounced screen flickering.
The article concluded that the game "stands on its own as a fine racing game." According to Sakaguchi, Rad Racer and The 3-D Battles of WorldRunner sold "about 500,000 copies, good." Despite the efforts of Square Co. to make unique games with 3D features such as Rad Racer and 3-D Worldrunner, high sales, the company was in financial trouble. These events are, Final Fantasy. Rad Racer was ranked number 57 on IGN's Top 100 Nintendo Entertainment System games, was called "iconic" and one of the NES's premier racing games. Rad Racer appeared in a scene in the movie The Wizard. Rad Racer II was released in 1990. Rad Racer at MobyGames Classic Game Room HD - RAD RACER for Nintendo NES review Classic Game Room - RAD RACER II review for NES
Stereoscopic video game
A stereoscopic video game is a video game which uses stereoscopic technologies to create depth perception for the player by any form of stereo display. Such games should not to be confused with video games that use 3D game graphics on a mono screen, which give the illusion of depth only by monocular cues but not by binocular depth information. Stereoscopic video games have been available for several years for PCs through the Nvidia 3D Vision and other platforms including AMD HD3D, DDD TriDef that use compatible hardware and active shutter 3D glasses. For video game consoles, stereoscopic 3D support must be built into each game. Potential stereoscopic game support is available, for instance, on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Xbox One, Wii U and PlayStation 4. Nintendo 3DS is designed for autostereoscopic games. Although no longer considered a key feature for successful game development by as many as during the stereoscopic 3D hype in 2010, stereoscopic support for video games is still considered a minor enhancement to video games.
One of the reasons for the technology's lack of success was that the surprise effect wears off. A study at the University of Derby showed that converted 2D games do not transfer well to stereoscopic 3D and concluded: "... games targeted to stereoscopic 3D audiences and devices must be designed from the start with stereoscopic 3D in mind." Therefore, stereo video games must have elements that can only be achieved in S-3D for a proper stereoscopic immersion. For example, in the game Super Stardust HD, asteroids stand out from the plane, it serves a fundamental purpose. Super Mario 3D Land is another example for easier navigation and furthermore the game plays with depth, e.g. with Escher-style perspective puzzles. Developers need to mind perceptual problems such as stereo window violations and occlusion of virtual objects. Another scientific paper showed that S3D vision can measurably change player behavior depending on actual game design. Recent developments of consumer virtual reality headsets such as for example Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, PlayStation VR, Open Source Virtual Reality include stereoscopic support as one of their features.
The entire development trend of games and other software for such head-mounted displays remains to be seen. There are two primary rendering techniques employed in stereoscopic video games: 2D + depth rendering, dual rendered 3D; this technique generates a second point of view from a single rendered image. It has an upper limit. 2D+ can be compared to 2D to 3D conversion techniques for 3D films. Several video games for Xbox 360 and PS3 used this method; this technique renders two images. It creates the best stereoscopic effect but has double system requirements for graphic rendering and higher production demands. Sega released the world's first commercial stereoscopic video game, SubRoc-3D, in 1982; this arcade game introduced an active shutter 3D system, jointly developed by Sega with Matsushita. In 1983, the first model of the TomyTronic series of gaming laptop LCD game & watch-type stereoscopic 3D was released by Takara Tomy. A 3D imager for the console Vectrex vector, a pair of 3D glasses using a rotating color wheel synchronized with the display was released by Smith Engineering in 1984.
In 1987, the shutter-based SegaScope 3D Glasses for the Sega Master System was released, the Famicom 3D System for Nintendo's Famicom was launched only in Japan but met with limited success. The Taito Z System arcade game Continental Circus, the first stereoscopic 3D racing video game released in 1987; the SegaScope 3D, Famicom 3D System and Continental Circus all used active shutter 3D glasses. In 1988, the X-Specs 3D glasses including 3D game SpaceSpuds for Amiga were brought out by Haitex. In 1991, the Sega VR was announced and demonstrated, a virtual reality helmet, never distributed. In 1993 Pioneer released the LaserActive system which had a bay for various "PAC's" including the Sega PAC and the NEC PAC; the unit was 3D capable with the addition of an adapter. The Virtual Boy was brought out in 1995, a console equipped with a virtual reality helmet that provided a stereoscopic rendering of 384x224 pixels per eye in monochrome and for which 12 games were available in late 1995. Marketing was a dismal failure and production was halted in late 1996.
SimulEyes PC VR goggles, bundled with the game Descent: Destination Saturn, was released in 1995. In early 1997, Sega demonstrated an early glasses-free 3D display system, called the Floating Image System, it displayed 3D imaging based on a multi-layer parallax system, was presented by Sega AM3's general manager Hisao Oguchi. Metabyte produced Wicked Vision the first driver that made a half-resolution stereo of more than fifty gaming PC 3Dfx Voodoo2 graphics card with infrared glasses H3D in 1998. A year Elsa Revelator released a similar driver for Direct3D that provided full resolution for stereo 3D on different graphics cards; the Nintendo Gamecube had been built with Stereoscopic capabilities in mind, however the cost for the liquid crystals technology were prohibitively expensive at the time to make commercial sense. In 2001, NVIDIA brought out a driver based on Elsa technology that supported different types of glasses and screens, but only with their own graphics cards; the PUD-J5A for the PlayStation 2 was released in 2002, which incorporated virtual helmet technology and was sold on the internet in Japan.
It weighed 320 grams, used two screens of 108,000 pixels