This article may need to be rewritten to comply with Wikipedia's quality standards. (November 2022)
Many games have been independently developed for the Dreamcast by independent developers. Most of these games were commercially released long after the end of the console's official life span in North America where production was ceased by end of 2001, although Sega of America still offered support and had some games scheduled for release (but was the division at Sega who released the fewest titles after 2002, pretty much limited to NFL 2K2 and other games in the 2K genre) and so games kept being released for quite some time still after first announcing the move to 3rd party development, unlike 1st party titles of other regions like Puyo Puyo Fever being released in 2004 in Japan and a select few more in Europe, seeing as the Dreamcast was launched approximately 1.5 years later in Europe compared to Japan and 13 months later than North America, thus the last region the console was released on 20 October 2000. Meanwhile, in Japan, the console was released in November 1998, lasting with official support and console sales as well as hardware peripherals and games both developed and published by studios at Sega of Japan, from 1998 through 2007, almost giving the 6th generation console 10 years of official support in the region.
In comparison, the Xbox 360 had already been launched when Sega still was publishing games for the Dreamcast (and other platforms) in Japan.
However, most of the time, the online Sega Direct store was the only place to find new consoles which had been produced recently, often with special color variations, such as black and other limited edition collector items; after the last official released title published by Sega of Japan, Karous (2007), hit store shelves, indie developers published games on the console from all over the world, often with very tight time frames between each release - and making the console, in some ways, relevant again well into the seventh generation of consoles.
Consequently, these games are unlicensed by Sega, although completely legal if created with a development environment which is not licensed by Sega. The Dreamcast had nine new entirely independent games released by 2020, thus making it more prolific than most release schedules since 2001, at least in North America.[clarification needed]
The Dreamcast's unlicensed games are produced and printed on regular compact discs (CD) using the Mil-CD format created in-house by Sega, which is just a normal CD unlike its native games format, the GD-ROM, aimed at karaoke and interactive content on regular CDs in general. Unlike the GD-ROMs, though, which can hold up to 1.2GB of data, a CD-ROM can hold around 50% of that.
Josh Prod is among a few of the most serious and active studios that is publishing many high-quality titles, which will boot on any Dreamcast, although only some consoles manufactured between up until 2007, where Sega removed the MIL-CD support from the BIOS. Console manufacturing in Japan was restarted to meet demand up through 2007, although no official numbers exist. However, Sega removed the MIL-CD compatible code in the BIOS; this prevents owners of these consoles from playing games released on CD-ROMs.
While the last officially Sega published game, titled Karous, a lot more titles were consistently released in Japan up until that point. Trigger Heart Exelica was one of them, along with Under Defeat (2005) and Puyo Puyo Fever (2004), to name a few. However, those owning a console with the latest BIOS version have to replace their GD-ROM drive with an optical drive emulator, or solder in a new or additional BIOS ROM chip to have the ability to boot up a game released on CD-ROM, like the Arcade Racing Legend by Josh Prod, which was released in 2020 after a Kickstarter campaign.
Releasing games on half the size of the native format, however, can be a problem, depending on the game. Copying games from GDs through Dreamshell to an SD-card, or through the official broadband adapter and being subsequently burnt to a blank CD, can result in having to remove content to make them fit on standard CDs; depending on the region, this can be a felony. This makes the independently released titles for Dreamcast different from other homebrew titles, in that a completely stock console will most likely boot the game, such as with Gameshark, Action Replay, CodeBreaker and Bleemcast, to name a few. The Japanese consoles not supporting MIL-CD will often tell you (in Japanese) on one side of the outer box.
The reason for releasing games on CDs instead of the native format is mostly because the GD-ROM format is no longer marketed by Sega, and is thus difficult to get a hold of, nor did it ever have a commercially available blank counterpart. Another reason is that there is actual copy protection in place, which has yet to be defeated without using the rare 'System Disc 2' – a disc by Sega for use by developers that unlocks the protection, making it possible to boot games burnt on GD-R discs, the blank GD-ROM equivalent to blank CD-R discs.
Games are mostly released in standard CD or DVD jewel cases, or more recently, styled as a retail Dreamcast case, depending on region (where Japan had what may look like a DVD case). The regional style of the cases is a purely cosmetic option, because all independent titles released on CD-ROM are region-free, as Mil-CDs in general cannot be region locked, while GD-Rom-based games indeed are, requiring one of many commercially released boot discs like the GameShark, CodeBreaker and others, which enable all regions to boot.
Most of the games released, as well as those currently in development, have all been developed using the open source and free SDK known as KallistiOS, or an equally legal alternative, providing about the same functionality as Sega's own SDK; developers have stated that the Dreamcast is very developer friendly - although some claim good performance is easier to achieve in 3D with the officially SEGA SDK, although it illegal to use without a license.
The Dreamcast saw the majority of its biggest homebrew releases after 2017, the same year the same year most of the online functions of the console was bought back, thanks to projects like DCSERV. This also extended the availability of the massively popular online game on a console, Sonic Team's Phantasy Star Online, as the original servers were closed down in 2004.
The indie games are of great variety: some have Genesis-style 16-bit graphics, whereas others look more like Dreamcast-era games. However, the SDKs developers are allowed to use are not as optimized for the hardware as their Sega licensed counterparts. The 16-bit games usually have also been released as homebrew for the Neo Geo AES console, and others may also have had releases for PC, mobile, or as downloadable indie titles for newer consoles - such as Flashback, which was released for the Nintendo Switch as well as the Dreamcast.
|2D House of Terror||2D Retroperspectives||2D Retroperspectives||Action||2013|
|4x4 Jam||JoshProd||Invictus Games||Racing||2017|
|Alice Dreams Tournament||Alice Team||Alice Team||Action||2017|
|Alice's Mom's Rescue||Hucast Games (first run) /
JoshProd (second run)
|OrionSoft||Platformer||2015 / |
|Another World HD||JoshProd||Delphine||Action||2018|
|Arcade Racing Legends||JoshProd||Intuitive Computer||Racing||2020|
|Armed Seven||JoshProd||Astro Port||Action||2019|
|Bang Bang Busters||JoshProd||Visco||Action||2018|
|Battle Crust||JoshProd||Picorinne Soft||Shoot 'em up||2018|
|Beats of Rage||Senile Team||Senile Team||Beat 'em up||2004|
|Bleemcast! for Gran Turismo 2||Bleem!||Bleem!||Racing||2001|
|Bleemcast! for Metal Gear Solid||Bleem!||Bleem!||Action/Adventure||2001|
|Bleemcast! for Tekken 3||Bleem!||Bleem!||Fighting||2001|
|Captain Tomaday||JoshProd||Visco||Shoot 'em up||2019|
|Cave Story||DCEmulation||Daisuke Amaya||Metroidvania||2013|
|Cool Herders||GOAT Store||Harmless Lion LLC.||Party||2006|
|Dreamcastnoid: Retail Enhanced Edition||Matranet||Ryo Suzuki||Arcade||2017|
|DUX||Hucast Games||KTX Software Dev.||Shoot 'em up||2009|
|DUX Version 1.5||Hucast Games (first run) /
JoshProd (second run)
|KTX Software Dev.||Shoot 'em up||2013 / |
|Elansar & Philia||Hucast Games||OrionSoft||Point-and-click adventure||2015|
|Escape 2042: The Truth Defenders||OrionSoft||OrionSoft||Puzzle/Adventure||2017|
|Fade to Black||JoshProd||Delphine||Action-adventure||2018|
|Fast Striker||NG.DEV.TEAM||NG.DEV.TEAM||Shoot 'em up||2010|
|Feet of Fury||GOAT Store||GOAT Store||Rhythm||2003|
|Flashback: The Quest for Identity||JoshProd||Delphine||Action||2017|
|Flea!||Lowtek Games (first run) /
WAVE Game Studios (second run)
|FX Unit Yuki: The Henshin Engine||JoshProd||Saru Studio||Platformer||2019|
|Ghost Blade||Hucast Games (first run) /
JoshProd (second run)
|Hucast Games||Shoot 'em up||2015 / |
|Ghoul Grind: Night of the Necromancer||Woog Worx||Woog Worx||Action/Platformer||2021|
|Giana's Return||Giana's Return Team||Giana's Return Team||Platformer||2011|
|Gunlord||NG.DEV.TEAM||NG.DEV.TEAM||Run 'n Gun||2012|
|Hanky Alien||DCEmulation||ant51||Shoot 'em up||2016|
|Hermes||Dragon Box (first run) /
JoshProd (second run)
|Retroguru||Platformer||2017 / |
|Hydra Castle Labyrinth||E. Hashimoto||E. Hashimoto||Platformer||2020|
|Inhabitants||GOAT Store||S&F Software||Puzzle||2005|
|Intrepid Izzy||Senile Team (first run) /
WAVE Game Studios (second run)
|IRiDES: Master of Blocks||GOAT Store||Madpeet||Puzzle||2009|
|James & Watch: Arm||Retro Gaming Roundup||Ben Lancaster||Puzzle||2015|
|James & Watch: Tooth Cracker||Retro Gaming Roundup||Ben Lancaster||Puzzle||2015|
|Jump'n Blob||2D Retroperspectives||2D Retroperspectives||Platformer||2011|
|Last Hope||RedSpotGames (first run) /
NG.DEV.TEAM (second run)
|NG.DEV.TEAM||Shoot 'em up||2007|
|Last Hope: Pink Bullets||NG.DEV.TEAM||NG.DEV.TEAM||Shoot 'em up||2009|
|Leona's Tricky Adventures||KTX Software Development||KTX Software Development||Puzzle/Adventure||2016|
|Magic Pockets||JoshProd||Bitmap Brothers||Platformer||2019|
|Matterrun||Fuseki Games||Fuseki Games||Shoot 'em up||2017|
|NEO XYX||NG.DEV.TEAM||NG.DEV.TEAM||Shoot 'em up||2014|
|Non Casual Encounter : Prologue AKA Encuentro no casual: Prólogo||SEGASaturno Productions||Alfonso "Ryo Suzuki"||Visual Novel/Adventure||2021|
|Orion's Puzzle Collection||OrionSoft||OrionSoft||Puzzle||2016|
|Pier Solar and the Great Architects||WaterMelon Co.||Watermelon Co.||Role-playing||2015|
|POSTAL||WAVE Game Studios||Running with Scissors||Action||2022|
|Primitive Nightmare||Fuseki Games||Fuseki Games||Shoot 'em up||2010|
|Redux: Dark Matters||Hucast Games||KTX Software Development||Shoot 'em up||2014|
|Rocketron||JoshProd||Astro Port||Shoot 'em up||2020|
|Rush Rush Rally Racing||RedSpotGames||Senile Team||Racing||2009|
|Rush Rush Rally Reloaded||Senile Team||Senile Team||Racing||2017|
|Satazius Next||JoshProd||Astro Port||Shoot 'em up||2021|
|Street Fighter VS Mortal Kombat||Captain Dreamcast||Captain Dreamcast||Fighting||2012|
|Sturmwind||RedSpotGames (first run) /
Duranik (second run)
|Duranik||Shoot 'em up||2013 / |
|Supercharged Robot Vulkaiser||JoshProd||Astro Port||Shoot 'em up||2020|
|Tapeworm Disco Puzzle||Lowtek Games||Lowtek Games||Puzzle||2021|
|The Escapee||JoshProd||Invictus Games||Adventure||2018|
|The Textorcist||Gamefairy||Morbidware||Typing/bullet hell||2021|
|Tough Guy||JoshProd||Panda Software||Fighting||2020|
|Tyrian||Dreamcast.es||Dreamcast.es||Shoot 'em up||2008|
|Volgarr the Viking||Crazy Viking Studios (digital) /
|Crazy Viking Studios||Platformer||2015 / |
|Wind and Water: Puzzle Battles||RedSpotGames||Yuan Works||Puzzle||2008|
|Wolflame||JoshProd||Astro Port||Shoot 'em up||2020|
|Xeno Crisis||Bitmap Bureau||Bitmap Bureau||Shoot 'em up||2020|
|Xenocider||Retro Sumus||Retro Sumus||Run 'n Gun||2021|
|Yeah Yeah Beebiss II||WAVE Game Studios||Rigg'd Games||Platformer||2021|
|Zia and the Goddesses of Magic||OrionSoft||OrionSoft||Role-playing||2016|
|Shadow Gangs||WAVE Game Studios||JKM Corp||Beat 'em up||2022|
|Driving Strikers||WAVE Game Studios||Reality Jump||Sports||7 July 2023|
|HarleQuest!||WAVE Game Studios||Kilgariff Technologies||3D Platformer||2024|
|Non Casual Encounter AKA Encuentro no Casual||SEGASaturno Productions||Ryo "Alfonso Martínez"||Visual Novel-Adventure||2022|
|Okinawa Rush||TBA||Steven Miller||Action||TBA|
|Reaperi Cycle||TBA||Retro Surge||Role-playing/Puzzle||TBA|
|Rizzo Island||TBA||Dreameater Games||3D Platformer||Q1 2020|
|Veredict Guilty Clash||JoshProd||StoryBird||Fighting||2019/2020|
|Donk! Samurai Duck!||Cryptic Allusion||Platformer|
|Elysian Shadows||Elysian Shadows Team||Role-playing|
|Hypertension: Harmony of Darkness||TDGMods/Istope Softworks||Horror/Shooter|
|Redux 2||Hucast Games||Shoot 'em up|
|Saber Rider and the Star Sheriffs - The Game||Team Saber Rider||Run 'n gun/Shoot 'em up|
|SLaVE||Jay Townsend/Istope Softworks||First-person shooter|
|Sydney Hunter & The Caverns of Death||CollectorVision||Puzzle platformer|
- Charnock, Tom. "New Dreamcast Games Coming In 2020". Retrieved 2020-03-04.
- "Retro-bit brought brand-new Sega accessories to CES". Engadget. 19 July 2019. Retrieved 2020-03-04.
- "IGN". Wikipedia. 30 March 2006. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
- "Dreamcast - New Indie Dreamcast 3D Racing game by JoshProd called Arcade Racing Legends has a playable demo out and kickstarter is live". ObscureGamers - Prototopia. Retrieved 2020-03-05.
- kevingifford (2013-08-07). "Why did the Dreamcast fail? Sega's marketing veteran looks back". Polygon. Retrieved 2020-03-05.
- 2D HoT (in French)
- "Alice Dreams - Jeu indépendant sur Dreamcast". alicedreams.com. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Hucast Games announces 2D platformer Alice's Mom's Rescue for Dreamcast". Seganerds.com. 6 January 2015. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- Arcade Racing Legends Review
- The Dreamcast Junkyard
- Epitech Collection
- TDJ 2017
- Flea Jumping to a Dreamcast Near You
- "Sega Dreamcast Receives New Puzzle Game- Fruit'Y, not a Bejeweled Clone". Retro Gaming Magazine. 3 October 2015. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Ghost blade will be ready in 2015". Archived from the original on 2014-12-24. Retrieved 2015-01-27.
- Ghoul Grind: Night of the Necromancer
- "Third new Jump'n'Run in a row – Giana's Return v1.0 available!". Dreamcast-Scene. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- Hanky Alien
- "Hermes". Retroguru - Retro Game Development. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- Intrepid Izzy
- Retro Gaming Roundup
- "Jump'n Blob – fullversion has been released (incl. Dreamcast version)". Dreamcast-Scene. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "LEONA's Tricky Adventures". Trickyleona.com. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Non Casual Encounter - Prologue". The Dreamcast Junkyard. - Preview. Retrieved 1 December 2021.
- POSTAL™ is coming to Dreamcast on June 2nd
- Fuseki Games
- "Satazius Next Dreamcast [US] – PixelHeart".
- "Sqrxz (Remake) – Sqrxz by Retroguru – Mindblasting frustration deluxe!". Sqrxz.de. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "SQRXZ 2 released – New Freeware Jump'n'Run for Dreamcast!". Dreamcast-Scene. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Sqrxz 3 Released". Dreamcast-Scene. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Sqrxz 4". Retroguru - Retro Game Development. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- Tapeworm Disco Puzzle
- Xenocider Review
- Announcing Yeah Yeah Beebiss II
- "The Dreamcast Junkyard: New Dreamcast Game Zia and the Goddesses of Magic Announced". Thedreamcastjunkyard.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-05-07.
- Shadow Gangs
- "Announcing Driving Strikers". 24 June 2023.
- Midsummer (in French)
- Okinawa Rush
- Retro Surge
- Dreameater Games
- Super Nutmeg
- Dreamcast News (in French)
- "New Game: Ameba is a New Visual Novel for Sega Dreamcast". Retro Gaming Magazine. 10 December 2014. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Elysian Shadows Team comments on Watermelon publishing deal". Seganerds.com. 5 June 2014. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Hypertension: Harmony of Darkness Windows, Mac, Linux game". Indie DB. 24 July 2015. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Reblobed, Yet Another Dreamcast Title Coming". Retro Gaming Magazine. 4 December 2013. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Hucast Announces Shmup Sequel Redux 2 For Dreamcast, Shares First Screens". Siliconera. 20 May 2015. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Dreamcast Version Of Saber Rider And The Star Sheriffs Added To Kickstarter Rewards". Siliconera. 7 September 2015. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Saviour". Archived from the original on 2015-08-26. Retrieved 2015-12-10.
- "Celebrate Dreamcast's 15th Anniversary with SLaVE". Dreamcast-Scene. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Henshin Engine The GAME. - PC Engine/TG-16, PC/Steam!". Kickstarter.com. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Interview: Senile Team - Rush Rush Rally Racing". Nintendolife.com. 18 April 2012. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Interview with Jeroen van Mastbergen from Senile Team about Rush Rush Rally Racing". Diehard GameFAN. 29 September 2009. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Un nuovo gioco per Dreamcast in uscita nel 2015: SLaVE". Eurogamer.it. 17 November 2014. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- Anderson, Lark (22 August 2008). "GC 2008: They Are Still Making Dreamcast Games". Gamespot.com. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "10 new Dreamcast games on the way". Engadget.com. 14 July 2016. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- Arendt, Susan. "New Dreamcast Games Coming This Spring". Wired. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Inside the Retro Game Development Community". Zam.com. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- Plunkett, Luke (9 September 2009). "Happy Birthday Dreamcast! Here's A New Game". Kotaku.com. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Dreamcast Not Dead – New Release Set For 2010". Gameinformer.com. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "German TV show reveals a new Dreamcast game". Gamesradar.com. 7 December 2010. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "Redspotgames looking to continue publishing for Dreamcast". Engadget.com. 15 July 2016. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
- "List of 2006 - 2015 Games on SEGA Dreamcast and Genesis / Megadrive". Segabits.com. Retrieved 1 January 2018.