Sega Reveals Prototype Nomad Handheld For The First Time Ever

In a YouTube video examining the history of Sega's consoles, the company showed the prototype to the Sega Nomad, which has never been revealed publicly before now.

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Most of us are still stuck indoors for this long winter, and Sega is putting together some amusing videos in the style of a college lecture that teach you the history behind the former console giant. In the first talk, Sega producer Hiroyuki Miyazaki showed a prototype for the handheld Sega Nomad for the first time publicly.

As Miyazaki reveals in his lengthy lesson, Sega referred to many of its hardware projects by planet codenames, a trend that was first established by the release of the Sega Saturn in 1994. When Sega was working on the Nomad--which is a portable version of the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive that you could take on the go--it was called the Sega Venus, and its prototype looked a bit different than the final product. This video series is promoting the Sega Test, an event that celebrates the 60th anniversary of Sega, which will challenge fans on their knowledge of the long-running gaming company.

The Sega Nomad was arguably one of the best portable systems of its day thanks to the fantasy library of games on the Genesis, though it did have one fatal flaw: It required six AA batteries to play, and the console would eat them up in two to three hours. That's a lot of juice for not a lot of game. (The Nomad did have a rechargeable battery pack that you could purchase, and some intrepid fans have even modded their Nomads to install more modern battery cells.)

In the video, Miyazaki says that he was not able to find any evidence of a Sega Pluto project in the company's records. However, this is seemingly contradicted by the existence of at least two Sega Pluto prototypes in the wild. According to their owners, the Sega Pluto was going to be a version of the Sega Saturn with networking capabilities built in.

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