Low Pings Invade SegaNet

We bring you hands-on impressions of Sega's upcoming Dreamcast Broadband Adapter, and Sega confirms a price and launch date for the peripheral.

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Look out, modem users. There's a new breed of player out there on SegaNet, lurking from Quake III server to Quake III server in search of blood. Yes, it's true - the Dreamcast Broadband Adapter, which allows you to hook your Dreamcast up to a LAN, DSL, or cable modem connection has made its way to the GameSpot offices, and we've been using it to destroy 56K modem users for most of the day.

While the disc supplied with the unit was the Japanese version of the Broadband Passport software, it seemed extremely easy to configure, with options for IPs, subnet masks, DNS info, gateways, and all the rest of the standard network configuration data. Once we plugged our gateway's IP into the software, the unit worked like a charm. The new DC browser software is more advanced, allowing for things such as JavaScript support.

But the real test is Quake III Arena, the only game on the market that currently supports the broadband hardware. With the hardware plugged in, the game's Internet menu changed from a dial-up screen to a set of three simple options: login, password, and IP address. One click of the go button sent us a fast stream of server data, and every single one of the 500-plus Quake III servers on SegaNet came up with the highest possible speed listing.

Once we had picked a deathmatch server in Chicago, the game loaded up and we were tossed into the game with three modem users, each with a speed bar that jumped from empty to 75 percent full. As you might expect, the three modem users on the Chicago server barely stood a chance. The difference in ping times enabled us to clearly dominate, even when using the standard DC controller instead of the mouse and keyboard combo.

For users already spoiled by broadband access, Sega's new adapter is obviously a must-have. Let's hope that Sega considers rereleasing games like NBA 2K1 and NFL 2K1 with broadband access, because a full year is much too long to wait for truly lag-free online gaming.

The Dreamcast Broadband Adapter will retail for US$59.95 and will be released on January 2, 2001.

Discussion

3 comments
ssjdagas
ssjdagas

It was never sold in EU however and we also, like the Japanese, only got a 33.6k modem and not the 56k that Americans got.

Sector-7
Sector-7

The adapter was sold in America, but only in limited quantities online.

ChiefFreeman
ChiefFreeman

too bad the adapter was never sold IN America. What a waste.