Review by Pokejedservo

"Good early 1990's console? Absolutely... As good as the SNES or better? Eh, sorry but no..."

Ah yes the Sega Genesis the so-called ''Hated Enemy'' of the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. (Where in reality there are actually quite the friendly rivals as a matter of fact.) This early 1990's console is not only what TRULY but Sega on the map as in for the Video Game Industry but it was also their last SUCCESSFUL console they either made as well. (Though the Sega Saturn would've went a LOT better if they stayed with their original idea on making the SS backwards compatible with this golden oldie. But alas they didn't which is of course a different story for a different review at another time.) And while as I look back into this system in retrospection I admit its certainly not as good as its opponent the Super Nintendo but its still far from being a shoddy piece of hardware itself.

Well first off its 1st party support was certainly well done with game series such as Sonic the Hedgehog, Shinobi, Streets of Rage and the like. So its first party game library was definitely no slouch as its 3rd party games are generally not bad either. One small flawed concept was initially using 3-button controllers which was not a truly smart idea. Oh sure there were games that used the 3-button schematics of the controller pretty well but lets just say they probably should've went with a 6-button controller. (Though to be fair a 6-button controller IS availible and its certainly no rarity.) And even though I said that the SNES was overall a better system than the Sega Genesis the ol' Genesis did have certain advantages.

For one their standards in censorship was a lot more leinient for starters. Now I KNOW that Nintendo wasn't as terrible on censorship as a good amount of people think they are but still the Sega Genesis is one of the first consoles to TRULY try to push the envelope and test the limits on game content in which were often considered to be taboo. And speaking as someone whom is also quite anti-censorship I absolutely applaud Sega's bravery into utilzing concepts that could cause well lets just say controversy to put it quite mildly. Their main reason why is due to on how they more realize how much older the gamer populous is going (notice on how their marketing sense has been going better back then compared to how it was just before Sega is now a 3rd party? Its a awfully strange irony when you think about it.) And whether its due to censorship or not a pretty good amount of games that were released on both the SNES and SG the SG versions went better. (Though not ALWAYS such as ''Super Street Fighter II''.) But games like Fatal Fury, Revulotion X and the like shown proof on sometimes games can go better on the ol' Sega G. And there were games that went good with gamers that you can pretty much only find it here on the ol' SG namely those like the cult hit ''Comix Zone''. (And one thing I personally admire Sega for is that unlike Nintendo whom filed lawsuits against Galoob for the Game Genie, Sega perfectly allowed it and even given it their signal.)

How was their 3rd party aid going you might ask? Well lets just say it didn't end up being HORRIBLY terrible (after all companies like Capcom and Konami did give some worthwhile material for them, particularly Konami) but lets just say SNES had them beat there. Like take the RPG genre for one example, while granted they did have ''Shining Force'' and ''Phantasy Star'' which is good I'll agree to that. However while they have a pretty good fanbase but compared to the epic grandscale of the fanbase of SquareSoft's (err... SquareEnix's) Final Fantasy series? (Alongside with those such as Secret of Mana, Chrono Trigger and Super Mario RPG?) Ehhh.... no offense to fans but no, just no... Back in those certain days before Squaresoft and Enix merge they were mainly focusing on Nintendo which gave Sega a pretty good sized bruise. However not to overrate Squaresoft & Enix they weren't the only 3rd companies that didn't give them a lot of attention. Lets just say this system was to Sega as what the earlier days of the Gamecube were for Nintendo in certain ways.

What also hurted them was their idea on adding ''innovative'' add-ons to the Sega Genesis. Remember those such as the 32X? Don't strain yourself not a lot of people did, unfortunately bombs like this lead them into their considerably darker future that many of us know from in systems such as the Sega Saturn. Heck nowadays its been looked upon as quite the irony on how the war between Sega & Nintendo was suppose to be QUITE in Sega's favor during the mid-1990's yet we all know how they actually did in later years. (Kinda sad when you think about it.) But on a much lighter note while the system is not QUITE as easy to find as the SNES its generally sold on a much cheaper price. Alike its much more modern but no where near as successful counterpart the Dreamcast you can usually find them at the retail price of $19.99. And whats also quite nice is that the games for the Sega Genesis are also cheaper than most SNES games as well. (They actually have the same price-range as most inexpensively priced NES games to boot. So in another words you can buy up to 2, 3 or maybe even MORE games for just $10 if you wanted to.)

Overall this was Sega's most popular console (and its not hard to see why either even though it was unfortunately their last true success). Even though time has withered it a bit in certain areas and that the classic the Super NES was still the superior console, it is and most likely always will be a good Video Game system. And is most of all a great trip into Video Game History...

+ A respectably large amount of good Video Games with a very good amount of 1st person support and its the only successful console ever made by Sega.
+ One of the first video game systems to ever truly go against censorship
+ Sega actually DIDN'T want to sue Galoob out of Business due to the Game Genie. (Heck they even gave the SG/GG versions of the Game Genie their ''Seal of Approval''.)
+ A good amount of Arcade ports and the like that went better in here than the SNES versions
+ It has a good amount of quality games that are for this system alone. (And fortunately unlike the SNES most SG games cost as much as your average cheap NES game. Heck the system itself is usually charged less nowadays even though its not as easy to find).
- The 3 button controller was not a good idea (though a 6-button one is availible and is generally easy to seek.)
- 3rd party support here was far from horrible BUT the S/NES had a lot better 3rd party support as well.
- Not all of its game's SNES counterparts were inferior if you know what I mean.
- Aside from the ''Shining Force'' & ''Phantasy Star'' series it was QUITE mediocre in RPGs
- In retrospection its not as good as the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. (And its miserably failed ''innovations'' didn't help either.)


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 03/12/04


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