September 22, 2000
The first Sega Rally set a whole new benchmark for arcade racing. With blindingly fast graphics and gameplay to match it set a standard that has rarely been reached since it's arcade arrival over four years ago now.
When Sega Rally 2 was released in the arcades in mid 1998 initial impressions were that the game is a little on the slow side. However, after playing the game for a while it soon becomes apparent that this game is so far ahead of any other racing game that it can truly be called a masterpiece.
On the 18th September Sega of Japan announced that Sega Rally 2 will be a Dreamcast launch title in Japan, this was later changed to a January release date. Fortunately Sega Rally 2 will be more then just the arcade game. Sega have announced that the home version of Sega Rally 2 will have 6 new tracks and at least 4 new cars which will be exclusive to the Dreamcast. The Dreamcast version also features a split screen mode to allow for 2 player racing. Additionally, Time Attack, Car Settings, Records and Replay modes will be available.
Sega have also confirmed that Sega Rally 2 will use of the Dreamcast's modem. Not only can you compete agains other people through dedicated servers but Sega of Japan indicated that it's will be possible to keep records of your best track times, win/loss records and more on their web site.
Another feature in this game is the 10 year championship mode. In this section of the game you compete on four tracks per year, and due to different years, the weather and time when racing on the track change. It must be said that the night time stages look particularly impressive, and very difficult.
After the very poor showing at the Tokyo Game Show in late 1998 Sega apparently scrapped that version of the game and began again. They have poured people into development of Sega Rally 2 with teams of developers working in shifts 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on the game in order to improve it to a level where it is acceptable as top class title for the Dreamcast. Fortunately Sega look to have done something right because even the usually harsh Weekly Famitsu in Japan gave the game an overall rating of 90%.