Review by TheProdigy

"Genesis, the little system that could"

Introduction to: Genesis Hardware

The Genesis is a rather old system now-a-days, but it is still one of my favorites. I grew up with the system, and never really understood it or any of the games, but now I do, and I feel it's my duty to give it a review. It's a classic, and any serious gamer, who wants to look like he/she is not only with the times, but also retro too, should own this. But there's more than just looking cool owning a Genesis (since you probably aren't going to go around bragging about it), there's also the fact that you can complete your gaming system collection. Plus, the Genesis was one of the better old Sega systems.

It was released in 1990, and in the next few years, it would prove to be a major contender in the videogame market. It gave Nintendo a run for its money, and also developed some amazing games. Some games that you still play now on recent or next-gen systems were originally developed on the Sega Genesis system. The most notable is probably Sonic the Hedgehog.

Console Design

The console doesn't look all that impressive really. It's just an all-black rectangular-ish box with a game slot on the top and two buttons. I'm referring to the second version, the MK2, which is the only one that I have. The other, MK 1 is a bit different looking. Anyway, the console looks pretty plain. What's kind of annoying is the slot for games. Sometimes it is difficult to get the chips properly aligned, and you must often pull the game out, blow the dust off, clean the system (you should do this regularly) and then try it again. Sometimes it takes a few tries to get a game started, but I've never had any major trouble getting a game started before, so this isn't that big of a problem.

Graphics

Now, if you haven't noticed yet, I'm not a very technical guy, so I couldn't tell you all the different chips or whatever in the system. So excuse my vernacular language, it will be quite simple. I'll just tell you what I see. The graphics are pretty good. While most games don't push the limits too far, and most are two-dimensional, I can tell you that some games really look great. Different layers are sometimes used to make the game appear three dimensional, and the colors are pretty good too. Often games are quite bright and realistic. So overall, I'd say that while the Genesis's graphics aren't amazing, they are very good, and they were awesome for their time.

Sound

The sound is pretty good on the whole. While some games feature scratchy, rough, or otherwise muffled sound, other games don't have this. I'm not exactly sure why. Like I mentioned, I don't know much technical-wise, so I can only tell you that some games have great sound, but others don't. I don't know if it's the system or not. But for most games, the sound is pretty good. Good music is often featured in some of the games. Plus, the Genesis hardware was the first to feature running commentary in a sports game. While the commentary wasn't awesome, it definitely opened up the idea and that is now used in all recent sports games.

Controller

The controllers are very simple, and could have been better. If you haven't seen one, they simply feature 3 buttons, A, B, and C on the right, a D-Pad on the left, and a Start button near the center. That's it. This kind of restricts some games, since there is such a small amount of buttons to use. Most games for the Genesis don't use that many buttons since they aren't that complex anyway, but still, the controllers could have been a little more complex to add diversity.

Games

There are many great games available for the Genesis. The most popular are of course the Sonic games, but there are many little games that make the system great as well. There's the famous NHL '95, along with the other sports games available, and there's plenty of action games too. The only area that could have been better enforced is RPGs, there's only a few available ones for the Genesis. But there is a lot of great educational and children's games available on the Genesis. For the most part, the games are diverse, unique, and well-made. I give them a thumbs-up.

Final Word

Like I said, the Genesis is a system I've had all my life and I have a lot of experience with. If you are into collecting classic, rare, or just otherwise uncommon systems or games, I definitely you recommend you pick up a Genesis, especially since they aren't very expensive at all anymore. Who knows, you may even enjoy some of the games like I used to and still do. Overall, the system's not perfect, as none are, but it is not only awesome but it opened the way for a lot of the new features and games that we have today, so look back, and thank the good old Genesis!

Final Score: 8


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 02/13/06


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