Consoles have killed the arcade? Apparently Sega begs to differ. A subsidiary of Sega, Sega Amusements, is launching a new online platform called ALL.Net; connecting bars, arcades, and entertainment centers across the US including the Sega owned Gameworks.
With ALL.Net making its full debut this fall, Sega says it "is designed as a platform for online entertainment services" and "empowers players to compete in massive multiplayer tournaments". The first game to use the powers of ALL.Net will be Extreme Hunting 2 – Tournament Edition, the sequel to Sega's thriving coin-op hunting series.
Games will use ALL.Net to compete in national tournaments, play against one another, and be part of an online ranking system. Although this is new to America, online systems like this have been used in Japan on games like Virtua Fighter and Virtua Striker since 2004.
Sega will be offering ALL.Net online kits for all of its existing and future editions of the games, which already totals over 17,000 units in the market. While arcades are not half as popular as in the past, in Japan, arcades are visited much more often and Sega is hoping to replicate this success in the States.
A rep from Sega states, "This marks an exciting future for the amusement industry as it allows players new avenues for game interaction, gives local establishments new sources of revenue, and creates a platform from which future Sega titles can be linked"
A listing of future games to incorporate ALL.Net is not yet available, but be sure to check MyGamer.com for details as they are released.
-By David Mackiewic (firstname.lastname@example.org)