Monday, December 30, 2013

Sega Genesis Classic Game Console - Gaming Thoughts

The Sega Genesis was one of my favorite gaming consoles of all time. There were excellent fighting games like Streets of Rage, roleplaying like Phantasy Star IV, strategy titles like Warsong, platformers like Sonic and even sports titles like the Madden football series.


So this was an interesting find by my wife - but she found an emulator-like Sega Genesis with 80 games included for $25 (it's regular price was apparently around $70) for Christmas for me. This appears to be very similar to the popular Atari Flashbacks (my wife has gotten me a couple of those sprinkled over prior Christmases as well), and I generally love the idea. Classic gaming! Score! There is no upscaling of graphics or HD coats of paint here, but the idea of classic gaming being made available now on the relatively cheap is very cool.

I spent quite a bit of time with it - and it does come with pluses and minuses:

Pros:

- Small. Like half the size of the original console. It fits very neatly among all my other tech stuff
- It plays most Genesis cartridges
- Wireless controllers
- Ports for plugging in classic controllers
- 80 games

Cons:

- the wireless controllers NEED to have the tops pointed at the unit. It uses IR not radio, which means they can lose signal very easily.
- Not all cartridges apparently work (according to the manual. The handful or so I tested were fine)
- There is a menu button placed precariously right over the start button. Hitting that immediately bumps you out of your game, so if you were trying to pause, you might actually quit instead
- There are 80 games, but about 1/3 of them are not true Genesis classics but like homemade ones (with copyright dates of say, 2006 or 2008) like chess or checkers. Not bad titles, but do not go thinking all 80 are of the classic Sonic or Streets of Rage variety

All in all, I thought it was pretty cool, especially since my Genesis finally died this year and I still had quite a few cartridge games. The remote controllers would have been better with radio than IR though - I use my classic controllers more as a result now.