Recently a Sega prototype console was revealed to the world by a former employee of Sega. The Sega Pluto is a version of the Sega Saturn with a built in Netlink modem. Holy shit. My personal love affair with Sega really took off in 2009 when I discovered the Netlink modem and the small rag tag group of Sega enthusiasts that still to this day get together for Netlink matches.
The Sega Pluto and it's owner, a former Sega employee, both currently reside in Japan. Making it slightly more difficult to test out all of this machines capabilities. The owner has no US software to test out on the system but I'm hoping he does get the chance to test out it's abilities at some point.
What makes this story even more amazing is that this was the second of two prototypes. After this story broke the owner of the first Sega Pluto came forward on youtube. Even more shocking is the tale of how he procured this holy grail piece of Sega history. He picked it up at a flea market for $1. Even for a standard Sega Saturn that's an absolute steal.
The owner of the Sega Pluto 01 has already put it up for auction at Game Gavel. Personally if I had an awesome piece of Sega history and only paid one dollar for it I'd hold on to that bastard forever. As of this writing however a cool dude from the Saturn League is the high bidder at $7,600. I wish him tons of luck! I've actually Netlinked with him, bought some Saturn games from him and know him pretty well from the Netlink forum. If he wins and I sincerely hope he does I would love to be one of the people to play a Netlink match against this awesome prototype. What a good week to be a Sega Saturn and Netlink fan.
For those of you finding this quick article about the Pluto via google, and my view stats say there are a lot of you, I'm including my video that shows the Netlink, all of its hardware, explains the service how it works and shows some actual Netlink matches recorded in 2010.