We bought one of the Sega Toys Homestar Home Planetariums with the help of (a) lots of money and (b) someone who went to Japan for Christmas. It's a plastic globe that makes the stars appear on your ceiling.
Suddenly, lying on the floor in the dark is a hobby rather than a cry for help.
Here's where it says "Sega" on the box! And it's the right kind of blue. It's the wrong font but still a NEW ELECTRICAL SEGA THING!
This is the Sega Homestar. We got the silver one, by chance. It has buttons on it, a sort of disc tray in the front and looks quite cool -- if a little cheaply manufactured (the buttons are a bit 'Pay As You Go').
Here's another place it says "Sega" on it! This proves we were not stupid to blow 150 quid on getting this relatively small and flimsy piece of plastic sent back to us from Japan.
(OK, so it's actually saying "Sega Toys", but that's close enough when IT'S ALL YOU'VE GOT LEFT TO CLING TO.)
The disc tray comes right out so you can look inside at the mechanism. It's a little motor and small plastic wheel. This must be really easy to develop for!
We also got a 'Handy Homestar'. We have absolutely no idea how this works. Also the battery on it was flat. Still, it looks like a cool little thing AND it's by Sega so we're very glad we got it.
It comes with little boxes of discs. The discs contains the stars.
It doesn't take CDs. Or GD-ROMs. Or DVDs. The discs are little transparent plastic discs with a map of the stars printed on them.
This is us putting a disc into a Sega machine! Just like in the old days. Just think, that could be a game disc we're putting into a new Sega console!
TURNING IT ON! It lights up and everything. This is great news. It really works and we haven't wasted lots of money (not that buying Sega things is ever a waste of money!)
These buttons alter the speed and rotation of the stars.
Some buttons remain a mystery to this very day!
When you look inside it it's FULL OF STARS! Just like Dreamcast was. At least, that's how we remember it.
This flimsy circular insert adjusts the focus of the beam. When beaming from a normal height bedside cabinet to a regular ceiling, it covers an area approximately 12-14 feet across with an image of a starry galaxy.
If were were putting our photos on Flickr this'd be the one we'd use. It's the artiest one. Look, that thing on the left is a bit blurry. We even let ourselves go mad and hold the camera at an angle. If you work for a magazine like Stuff or T3 you should probably "get us in" to do product photography!
And this is what you get on your ceiling. This is our bedroom ceiling, ladies! It's quite a good effect as long as the room is very dark. The stars are a little blurred around the edges, but that makes it all the more interesting to look at. When the stars slowly rotate it's quite mesmerising and nice, especially when the horse tranquilisers are kicking in. BUT WAS IT WORTH 150 QUID?
Not really. But it's cooler than a lava lamp and relaxing to look at when you go to bed all angry and full of rage. We're thinking of organising an event where we demonstrate the Homestar in a public environment. If you'd like to come along, email us. If lots of people express an interest in lying on the floor in a dark room looking at the stars, we'll book somewhere.