October is coming!! So, I have a small bit of Sega ephemera for you.
Some games know they're dumb, and they embrace that. Illbleed takes this approach and runs off a cliff into a volcano with it. Released by Crazy Games (formerly Climax Graphics, the auteurs behind Blue Stinger), the premise behind Illbleed is just awesome: a horror theme park that is so scary that anyone who conquers it is awarded one million dollars (or one hundred million, depending on which script the voice actors are reading). The park isn't scary so much as it is filled floor to ceiling with ludicrous booby traps. Illbleed is a total mess, dumb as shit, poorly presented and I love it.
Apart from the many, many horror movie references sprinkled throughout there are two fun Sega references near the end--one extremely obvious one and one that is a little more subtle!
Enter Zodick the Hellhog, a boss in the final chapter of the game. There's your obvious reference. But check out the spoooooky sound that plays when he appears:
European and Japanese Sega fans probably picked up on this pretty quickly--the sound heralding Zodick's arrival is actually the boot up theme when you turn on a PAL or NTSC-J Sega Saturn!
I'll admit that when I first played Illbleed I was so disappointed, because I approached the game in the wrong way. Before it was released I was under the strange misconception that it would be a straight-faced horror game and to find that it was a goofy parody made me put it away for years. Now that I can appreciate how bonkers it is, going through and finding little touches like this is a real pleasure.
Playing it may be kind of a chore for some (most) people, but if you want to see it presented by someone who is Not Annoying and also has real enthusiasm for the game I recommend this series of videos by Stop Skeletons From Fighting!