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Former Sega CEO: Company's Fall From Grace Not "Inevitable"

There was a time when Sega was one of the industry's major players.

In fact, for a while, it was Nintendo vs. Sega in a battle for industry supremacy. Now, though, Sega appears to be teetering on the brink of oblivion.

The company just experienced a major shakeup that involved job losses and the closure of their San Fransico office. Now, former Sega of America chief executive Tom Kalinske has spoken out about the downward spiral. In a new GamesIndustry International interview, Kalinske, who was Sega of America CEO during the '90s, says says Sega suffered from poor decisions.

"It was not inevitable. It could have been avoided if they had made the right decisions going back literally 20 years ago. But they seem to have made the wrong decisions for 20 years."

Kalinske added that one of the main reasons he quit in '96 was because the board rejected his idea of a Sega/Sony collaborative game console. Sega and Sony would've shared the cost of a new system, had the plan worked out. He said he thought it was the "stupidest decision ever made in the history of the business." In retrospect, he was probably right.

At the end of the day, though, Kalinske believes Sega still has some energy left. The company won't go the way of Atari because "you have to really make a lot of mistakes to kill a strong brand." Yeah, well, how strong is Sega's brand right now...?

Tags: sega, video games, gaming industry, sega games

2/23/2015 9:34:18 PM John Shepard

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Comments (6 posts)

Bonampak
Monday, February 23, 2015 @ 10:59:32 PM
Reply

Some people think that SEGA's problems originated with the Aliens: Colonial Marines or Sonic Boom debacles. But as anyone who's been gaming for a while knows,their troubles are as old as console gaming itself.

As kalinske points out (and as is featured in the book "Console Wars"), SEGA JP and SEGA USA never, ever were on the same page.

"A house divided against itself cannot stand".

It's not really surprising that SEGA is quickly becoming the next Atari.

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Rachet_JC_FTW
Tuesday, February 24, 2015 @ 5:50:43 PM

yeah thats true sounds a bit like self sabatage abit aye

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WorldEndsWithMe
Monday, February 23, 2015 @ 11:09:27 PM
Reply

Sega is in a bad spot. I think they should relaunch with Dreamcast 2 and all the sega projects can only be found there. Sonic, Shenmue 3, Bayonetta, whatever else you can resurrect.

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DemonNeno
Tuesday, February 24, 2015 @ 4:35:09 AM
Reply

Sega is done. Even its mobile games are nothing short of a cash grab. Sonic Dash? My son plays it on his Nabi 2 and GOD DAMN! $90 for a ring collection for power ups that wouldn't put a dent in a week's worth of power ups?

They need to stop clinging to the baitware. Not sure if it stands a chance anymore. It's not strong enough of a brand to cling to their exclusive content that's no longer relevant.

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ethird1
Tuesday, February 24, 2015 @ 11:04:21 AM
Reply

Put a fork in that pork junior, Sega is done.

Last edited by ethird1 on 2/24/2015 11:04:39 AM

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Rachet_JC_FTW
Tuesday, February 24, 2015 @ 5:49:24 PM
Reply

well i definately think that it was poor decision making that brought them here its almost gunna take some brillant calls and a miracle at this point to keep sega around for another 5 or 10 years or even up to 2 years cos they ain't doing so well atm

happy gaming

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