Shouei System Co,.Ltd are a defunct Japanese software developer and publisher who were established on the 8th May 1981 in Tokyo Japan. Shouei System was involved in a diverse portfolio of businesses of which video game software development and publishing was just one aspect. Shouei System had started to operate an online vending business called premium express that was set up in six stores around Japan where you could order goods through an online terminals and items such as films, games & music would be supplied by the Softmap & Shizendo stores.Below is Shouei Systems official archive for the premium express service. (c) Shouei System
The company developed ten console titles while they were active the last title they developed and published was their only Dreamcast title マイトラックマン or My TrackMan which was released on the 8th of May 1999 and retailed for ¥6,800 My TrackMan was a Japanese exclusive release.
The archive site of My TrackmMan contains virtually nothing relating to the game even the list of published works by Shouei System doesn’t feature the title. Initially i had thought My TrackMan was an online enabled utility disc allowing registered users of the software to bet in realtime on online horse races. After some research this turns out not to be the case the My TrackMan software is actually a horse racing prediction service that was updated daily with information from the JRA and the Kanto horse racing newspaper association.
Shouei System had some expertise in this kind of software as they developed the Shoumalizer software exclusively for Japanese Windows computers. The Shoumalizer software is effectively the same type of software that My TrackMan uses. I suspect that My Trackman is a Dreamcast transplantation of the Shoumalizer software although i can’t confirm it as theres no way to access the content now the servers are defunct. Below is the archive site of the Shoumalizer software that you can still navigate to see how it worked the Dreamcast My Trackman would have functioned in a similar manner. © 1999 SHOUEI SYSTEM
While the official site might not have much content Shouei System must have been confident in the softwares accuracy as to support the release of My TrackMan on the 2nd of April 1999 they held a My TrackMan event in which a panel of respected horse racing pundits would give their prediction on the 阪急杯 Hankyu Cup (GIII). The data would be analysed by the My TrackMan software to find out which gave the most accurate information about the upcoming race. Below is a report by Gamespot Japan which covered the event. Copyright (c) 1999 by SOFTBANK Corporation. All rights reserved.
Interestingly the above report lists an 8th of April 1999 release date for the My TrackMan software which it would miss being released a month later in May. I suspect the dire financial difficulty that Shouei System was facing meant that everything went into making sure My TrackMan actually saw release and was successful unfortunately the My TackMan software was a commercial failure and the company was declared bankrupt soon afterwards. I’ve managed to find a Gamespot Japan article about Shouei System’s financial woes which state the company was 800 million yen in debt in November 1999 and bank transactions had been suspended. Copyright (c) 1999 by SOFTBANK Corporation. All rights reserved.
According to the My TrackMan entry on the official Japanese Sega Dreamcast database the My Trackman’s network service was terminated on the 1st of October 2000 due to Shouei System’s bankruptcy. Strangely enough the official Sega Dreamcast database lists the software as not using any peripheral equipment but the software obviously supports the Dreamcast modem.
It’s actually quite surprising that My TrackMan was even released although if you were a fan of horse racing and wanted to use the My TrackMan software i’d imagine you be quite angry about the fact you only just got the free period use out of it before it effectively became useless. The game was planned to give access for free to the Kanto horse racing newspaper association’s information for a year and after that a subscription fee to use the software was to be charged generating some much needed revenue for Shouei System but i can’t find any information that the subscription charge was ever implemented.
The my TrackMan software is useless today as the servers that provided access to the information are long since shut down. Any information would need to be saved to a Dreamcast VMU which it filled all two hundred blocks i assume you could still access the now historical data that you saved but it seems rather pointless.
Interestingly Shouei System Co,.Ltd was developing another title on the Dreamcast called Warrz which was to be an online enabled simulation. It was featured in magazines and upcoming release lists of the time and was said to be quite far in to development. Below is a Gamespot article about Warrz it repeats many of the same things that other sources said about the title. © 2000 GAMESPOT
I’m not surprised by the lack of information on Warrz the title was officially announced and probably in development for the Dreamcast but Shouei System’s financial difficulties that they found themselves in at the time caused all development effort to be placed on getting My Track Man finished rather than concentrate on continuing development on another title. In the end My TrackMan was the last title published by Shouei System with the titles online component outlasting the company itself.
T-37001M My Trackman
SAMPLE T-37001M My Trackman
(NOT FOR SALE) 非売品 discs & other media
I’m not aware of anything relating to My TrackMan and i don’t believe that there is any individual 非売品 disc due to the nature of the software. Its possible that there is a guide book/user manual for the title but i’ve yet to uncover it.
I’d be really interested if anyone has any screenshots or media relating to Warrz it seems that it was touted as an upcoming title for quite a while. Thanks as always for taking the time to read this entry on Shouei System Co,.Ltd if you can help with anymore information about them please get in touch either through the site or on Twitter @dreamcastcollector.