The Dreamcast was Sega's swan song, sadly being discontinued after only a few short years on the market (Sega made the announcement that they would be abandoning the hardware in January of 2001, only 15 months after its launch in North America). The last home console Sega ever released certainly made its mark on the industry, as well as the gamers who owned one back in the day. Although its time in the spotlight was short, the Dreamcast managed to amass a library full of unique, quirky, and memorable games that helped to give the console the cult classic status it enjoys today. While many of the system's best games have since been ported to other platforms, there are still quite a few great games that can only be experienced on the Dreamcast. So in order to highlight a few of the best original games the Dreamcast still has to offer, we've compiled this list of the top 10 best exclusive games for the Sega Dreamcast! The rankings are a little arbitrary due to personal tastes, and since we were limited to 10 games there were plenty of deserving titles that had to be left out, but with that in mind, here's our list of the top 10 best Dreamcast games that are still exclusive!
A game that has become almost legendary amongst Dreamcast fans, Illbleed slipped through the cracks when it originally came out as a late Dreamcast release, but this very strange and unusual survival game has since become a highly-sought after cult classic for the system (which means that it unfortunately is now a very expensive game to buy today). Breaking tons of new ground in the genre, the game features a unique mechanics like having to scan all over the environment for deadly traps as you make your way through the levels, as well as monitoring not just your health but also your heart rate and adrenaline levels, and trying to make sure you don't bleed out when injured. The game is renowned for its insane B-movie style, with tons of blood and gore, hilarious tongue-in-cheek horror-comedy settings, and some of the most entertaining storylines, cutscenes, and voice acting ever seen in a horror game. Think something like Dead Alive in video game form. If you're a fan of survival horror and own a Dreamcast, Illbleed is an absolutely essential title for the system, and it's still exclusive to Sega's last console.
Another survival horror exclusive for the Sega Dreamcast, D2 is the third and final entry in the D series of games, following D and Enemy Zero. While the plot and setting are completely unrelated to either of the earlier games in the series, the game features plenty of gameplay similarities and shares some of the same "digital actors", which was one of the developer WARP's signature game design concepts. Taking place in the snow-covered mountains of Canada, D2 has you playing as Laura, a survivor of a plane crash who must survive the harsh environment that just so happens to be crawling with humanoid mutants that are out for blood. It's a survival horror game that takes a few pages from its predecessors in the series, with on-rail first person point-and-click adventure style gameplay when indoors, although outdoor segments now play like a traditional third-person horror adventure game ala Silent Hill. And speaking of Silent Hill, D2 has some very similar vibes to that classic series with its plot, themes, atmosphere, and stilted voice acting. It also features some light RPG mechanics with random battles that take place in first-person shooting segments, which award you with experience points so you can level up. Oh, and did we mention it's a hunting simulator, too? D2 is a bizarre and eccentric horror tale, and one of the most unique experiences on the Dreamcast. For fans of the genre, this is a must-play.
Daytona USA 2001
A souped-up remake of the arcade classic, Daytona USA 2001 is a Dreamcast exclusive racing game that delivers all of the pulse-pounding arcade action you know and love with a fresh coat of paint and lots of new content. Featuring all of the tracks from the original arcade game, the Saturn/PC remake Championship Circuit Edition, and three all new tracks, Daytona USA 2001 expands on the legendary arcade racing game while remaining faithful to its source material. The upgraded graphics for this Dreamcast version make it look even better than the arcade game, while the soundtrack still boasts all of the fan favorite classic music tracks the game is famous for. The handling is a little different from the original and can take a bit of time to get used to, but Daytona USA 2001 is a spectacular fast-paced racing package that offers all the thrills from the arcade game, and then adds even more!
The Sega Dreamcast was full of arcade-style action games, and Dynamite Cop is a great microcosm of the Dreamcast experience. When it comes to 3D beat-em-up games, it doesn't really get any better than this. The game is chockful with over-the-top action, allowing you to use almost every item in the environment as a weapon - beyond the typical guns and knives, you can also brandish arcade cabinets, loaves of bread, pepper shakers, and whatever else you can find strewn about the levels. The story, setting, and characters are pure B-movie cheese, as you and your pet monkey suplex pirates wearing turtle costumes, fight a krakken on board the ship, and launch tactical nukes at your enemies. Dynamite Cop is just a great game all around, with the only complaint being that it's pretty short, but you and a friend can have hours of fun playing this one over and over again in two-player co-op.
Record of Lodoss War
Record of Lodoss War is a Dreamcast exclusive action-RPG that is very similar to the Diablo games. Based on the anime series of the same name, you take control of a long-dead warrior resurrected by a wizard to help defeat a goddess of destruction. Along the way, you'll battle all sorts of enemies like zombies, skeletons, magicians, and ogres in real-time combat to gain experience points and find loot like new equipment. It's a really well made RPG with a lot of depth while also managing to still be approachable for new players. The game is pretty long with a lot of quests to complete, and while it can feel a little grindy sometimes, if you're looking for some solid action-RPG adventuring for your Dreamcast, Record of Lodoss War is definitely one to check out.
Sword of the Berserk: Guts' Rage
Based on the classic manga and anime series Berserk, Sword of the Berserk: Guts' Rage is a hack-n-slash game in the same vein as Devil May Cry, with a strong emphasis on cinematics and storytelling. The game features an original story that was written specifically for the game by Berserk's creator Kentaro Miura and is considered canon in the series, so fans of Berserk are definitely going to want to check this one out. The game's story and voice acting are both great, which is a good thing as you'll be watching a lot of cutscenes here. When the game does cut to the action, you'll be fighting hordes of enemies in a combat system that's extremely fun and satisfying while also offering a surprising amount of depth - there are a ton of weapons at your disposal, and while swinging your giant sword is definitely the most enjoyable part of the combat, sometimes it's best to put it away and engage in some hand-to-hand brawling or long-range crossbow attacks, as the sword can be difficult to wield in cramped environments. Action-packed and bloody as all hell, Sword of the Berserk: Gut's Rage remains an excellent Dreamcast-exclusive hack-n-slash/interactive movie full of fan service. And you don't have to be familiar with the manga or anime to enjoy it, either, as this was my introduction to the Berserk universe back when it came out, and I've been a Berserk fan ever since.
If you're familiar with the Dreamcast at all, then you already know about SoulCalibur - It's one of the consoles most iconic games as part of the system's launch day lineup in North America and Europe, and was the first title in what would go on to become one of the most popular 3D fighting game series of all time. The game blew away everything that came before it when it came to graphics, showcasing smooth character models, detailed 3D environments, and some extremely pretty lighting and particle effects. It was a great pick-up-and-play fighter that wasn't too intimidating for first time players, but also featured a lot of depth as well for those who were interested in truly mastering it. SoulCalibur pretty much redefined 3D fighting games when it came out, and it still provides a phenomenal fighting game experience.
Published by Sega and developed by French developer No Cliché (led by the legendary creator of Alone in the Dark Frédérick Raynal), Toy Commander is one of the best Dreamcast games ever released, and it's still only available on Sega's swan song console. It's a mission-based vehicular combat/racing game that has you take control of various toy cars and planes as you fight the rogue toys who feel neglected because you no longer play with them. The game totally captures the essence of whimsy and imagination of a child playing with his toys, offering tons of unique missions to play through each with their own playable vehicles and objectives, along with unique level designs that take place in the various rooms inside your house. With great graphics, tight controls, a realistic physics engine, and tons of missions to complete, Toy Commander provides hours of entertainment and is one of the system's most charming titles. Honestly it's pretty surprising that Toy Commander was never ported to any other platform, but that's just as well - it just feels at home on the Sega Dreamcast, and I couldn't imagine playing it on anything else. If you own a Dreamcast, you owe it to yourself to play this amazing game.
Released as a launch game for the Dreamcast in both North America and Europe, Blue Stinger is a survival horror adventure game that became one of the console's most recognizable and best-selling games. It's a fully 3D action-adventure game in the survival horror genre, released at a time where having true 3D environments as opposed to fixed, prerendered backgrounds was a pretty big deal. Unlike its contemporaries, the game focuses on combat, rewarding you for taking on enemies, rather than running away from them, as you'll earn money from killing zombies which can be used to buy more ammo, weapons, and healing items. This is a horror game that was unlike all of its peers at the time, providing an action-oriented gameplay experience with colorful, lively environments and a bombastic soundtrack that blends perfectly with its silly, B-movie horror-comedy plot. It's one of the most fun horror games ever made, playing way more like Dead Rising than Resident Evil. You get tons of over-the-top weapons at your disposal to use against some truly awesome-looking enemies that seem like they could have come straight out of Dead Space, and one of the most original stories of any game back then. Blue Stinger is a definitive Dreamcast classic, an amazing horror game that belongs in every collection.
Elemental Gimmick Gear
It was very hard to narrow this list down to just 10 titles, and there were plenty of other great exclusive Dreamcast games like Super Magnetic Neo, Metropolis Street Racer, Carrier, and Draconus, that unfortunately didn't make it onto this list purely due to lack of space. For even more great Dreamcast exclusive games, check out our complete list of games that are still exclusive to the Dreamcast.
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