For the past couple of years I’ve seen some issues made about a trademark requested by Sega by the name of Orbi. A very small minority of fans made some pretty broad assumptions based upon trademarks and patents being filed, to the point where it felt more like trolling – Orbi was going to be the home game console that the diehard fans had been waiting for, or a handheld system or a powerful new Sega entity that of course would release the Dreamcast 2 and rule the world from there. Or some silly thing to that effect. I take no pleasure in raining on a parade, but I do like dismissing false premises and dispelling rumors that were way off base(as I have said before, I like Sega as much as the next guy but launching a multi-billion dollar effort like a console just doesn’t add up for where they and the industry are right now).
It has finally been unveiled today what Orbi is and as the headline mentions, it’s none of those things. It is an out-of-home amusement concept, although it’s probably stretching it to say it’s going to be an arcade. It certainly won’t be an arcade in the traditional sense, judging by the video below.
The concept in conjunction with BBC Earth, which produced those incredible videos known as Planet Earth, is looking to bring an interactive experience to users in Yokohama Japan this August. Perhaps a good comparison is to say it’s a Joypolis with a nature/Planet Earth theme to it or we could even call it an “Educade”. Some interesting display technologies will be at work here but only with the passage of time will we know whether this is a one off facility for Japan or whether they plan on expanding it further. Challenging how zoos work is no simple undertaking but it certainly is a blow once again to the persistent yet consistently baseless rumors about Sega’s home undertakings.