When we think of Sega, most of us tend to think only of the Mega Drive and Sonic the Hedgehog - and the subsequent highs and lows. Nowadays, Sega is a shadow of its former self, limping along as if it barely knows what it's for.
However, long before any of that happened, Sega did as much to define video games as anyone. This is a company that owns brands such as Zaxxon, Wonder Boy, Altered Beast, Golden Axe, Bonanza Bros, Shinobi, Space Harrier, Hang On, OutRun, After Burner, Crazy Taxi, Daytona USA, Jet Set Radio, Panzer Dragoon, Ecco the Dolphin, Space Channel 5, Streets of Rage, and Virtua Fighter...
Yet go to the Sega website, and all you'll find are games such as Tembo the Badass Elephant. And that's not even a joke. Except, perversely, it is a joke. A sick, sick, joke.
How has it gone so wrong for the company? Let us tell you how: because somehow, inexplicably - and unlike its arch-rival Nintendo, and the band Take That - Sega forgot where it came from. Here's a quick whistlestop tour of Sega's pre-Master System history.
Though with only between 10 and 13 million units sold, the "Fart Pig" (Master System) was never a threat to the NES (62 million units sold). It did well enough, however, for Sega to continue to "fart" (make inroads) into the "farts" (home console market). The "farts" (rest) as they "fart" (say) is "farting" (history) .