It Looks Like Sega Nailed the Genesis Mini


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Nintendo hit on a winning formula when it launched the NES Classic in 2016. Gamers clamored to get their hands on this plug-and-play gateway to gaming history. The SNES Classic followed, and then Sony tried its hand at mini consoles with the disappointing Playstation Classic. Sega’s effort has taken longer, but it’s almost ready for release, and it’s shaping up better than the PlayStation. Early reviews are universally positive — perhaps even more so than they were for the NES Classic.SEEAMAZON_ET_135 See Amazon ET commerce

The Genesis Mini, known as the Mega Drive Mini outside the US, uses the familiar mini console formula. It looks like a shrunken-down version of the 90s hardware. Instead of plugging game cartridges into the Genesis Mini, it has 42 classic games preloaded on the internal storage. That’s twice as many included games as other miniature game consoles. It also comes with two retro-style Sega controllers (the three-button version), so you can do multiplayer without any additional purchases. 

This is not the first retro Sega console. In fact, there have been many attempts to capitalize on the Genesis game library over the years, probably because Sega dropped out of the console market nearly 20 years ago. These devices usually suffered from a mediocre game selection, poor emulation performance, or both. The Genesis Mini software comes from a developer called M2, which specializes in emulation. The results, by all accounts, are superb. Playing on the Genesis Mini feels like playing games on the original hardware. It connects to your TV via HDMI, and you can choose between original 4:3 and 16:9 ratios. There’s even the option to add in CRT-style scanlines. 

Sega didn’t skimp on the game selection for the Genesis Mini. It’s got all the hits, as well as some lesser-known classics. There’s Sonic the Hedgehog, of course, but also Golden Axe, Castlevania: Bloodlines, Altered Beast, Ghouls ‘n Ghosts, Streets of Rage 2, Earthworm Jim, and many more. It even includes Darius and Tetris, two games that never launched on the Genesis in the US. That’s not as cool as the unreleased Star Fox 2 debuting on the SNES Classic, but it’s still a nice bonus. 

The Sega Genesis Mini is available for pre-order via Amazon, Best Buy, and more. It launches on September 19th. It’ll run you $79.99, the same price as the NES Classic at launch. There’s an officially licensed 6-button version of the controller also available for another $20.

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Analogue’s Mega Sg is the Sega Genesis Mini alternative for the discerning retro gaming fan – gpgmail


The official Sega Genesis Mini is coming in September and hopes to capitalize on some of the retro gaming hype that turned the Super Nintendo and NES Mini Classic editions into best-sellers. But there’s already a modern piece of hardware out there capable of playing Sega Genesis games on your HDTV — plus Mega Drive, Master System and Sega CD, too.

The Analogue Mega Sg is the third in a series of reference-quality, FPGA-based retro consoles from Analogue, a company that prides itself on accuracy in old-school gaming. It provides unparalleled, non-emulated gameplay with zero lag and full 1080p output to work with your HD or even 4K TV in a way no other old-school gaming hardware can.

For $189.99 (which is just about double the asking price of the Sega Genesis Mini), you get the console itself, an included Master System cartridge adapter, an HDMI cable and a USB cable for power supply (plus a USB plug, though, depending on your TV, you might be able to power it directly). The package also includes a silicon pad should you want to use it with original Sega CD hardware, which plugs into the bottom of the SG hardware just like it did with the original Genesis. It includes two ports that support original wired Genesis controllers, or you can also opt to pick up an 8bitdo M30 wireless Genesis controller and adapter, which retails for $24.99.

Like the Nt mini did for NES, and the Super Nt did for SNES before it, the Mega Sg really delivers when it comes to performance. Games look amazing on my 4K LG OLED television, and I can choose from a variety of video output settings to tune it to my liking, including adding simulated retro scaliness and more to make it look more like your memory of playing on an old CRT television.

Sound is likewise excellent — those opening notes of Ecco the Dolphin sounded fantastic rendered in 48KHz 16-bit stereo coming out of my Sonos sound system. Likewise, Sonic’s weird buzzsaw razor whine came through exactly as remembered, but definitely in higher definition than anything that actually played out of my old TV speakers as a kid.

Even if you don’t have a pile of original Sega cartridges sitting around ready to play (though I bet you do if you’re interested in this piece of kit), the Mega Sg has something to offer: On board, you get a digital copy of the unreleased Sega Genesis game “Hardcore,” which was nearly complete in 1994 but which went unreleased. It’s been finished and renamed “Ultracore,” and you can run it from the console’s main menu as soon as you plug it in and fire it up.

Analogue plans to add more capabilities to the Mega Sg in the future, with cartridge adapters that will allow it to run Mark III, Game Gear, Sega MyCard, SG-1000 and SC-3000 games, too. These will all be supported by the FPGA Analogue designed for the Mega Sg, too, so they’ll also be running natively, not emulated, for a true recreation of the original gaming experience.

If you’re really into classic games, and care a lot about accuracy, this is definitely the best way to play Sega games on modern TVs — and it’s also just super fun.


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