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"Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection"


For years, I've been holding out hope that SEGA would release a bunch of the old SEGA Genesis games on a "modern" system so that old fogies like myself could reach back into our childhood heyday and play games like "Sonic the Hedgehog" from the comfort of our own home.  But, I was also looking for a disc that had a bunch of more niche classics, too...and, for that reason, I must say that while you would never run out and drop $400 for a PS3 just to own this disc, if you've already got the system and you are 30+ years old, you need to own this if you had a SEGA system back in the day.

Not only does "Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection" have a bunch of great Genesis games, it also has a couple of SEGA arcade conversions AND a couple of SEGA Master System (SMS) games.  The list is awesome, but a couple of highlights really stand out:

  • All four "Phantasy Star" games.  The first game is a classic and you can unlock that one by playing some of the other games on this disc, but games 2, 3 and 4 all shine and let you relive that old-skool RPG glory.
  • Essentially all of the "Sonic" games.  The later "Sonic" games got a little old, but games 1, 2 and "Sonic & Knuckles" all work well even today.
  • "Streets of Rage" 1, 2 and 3...the third game isn't great, but games one and two will remind you that SEGA should have been a dominant platform if their marketing department was worth a damn.  Beat-'em-up games don't get any better.
  • The arcade versions of "Shinobi", "Space Harrier", "Alien Syndrome" and "Altered Beast."  "Shinobi" alone would be worth the $20 purchase price of the whole disc, but "Space Harrier" and "Alien Syndrome" being thrown in?  Aces!

Yeah, there are a lot of Genesis games that aren't here; yeah, SEGA could probably release a disc of just their arcade games for $50 and make a killing.  (Come on..."Out Run", "Afterburner", "Power Drift", "Virtua Cop", "Crackdown", "Virtua Fighter", "Daytona USA", "The House of the Dead", "Crazy Taxi"...the list goes on and on!)  But, as it is, you can't beat the value of this disc if you're a fan of the old SEGA systems.

Rating:  Opening Weekend


Feedback?  Comments?  Salma Hayek's digits?


Bellview Rating System:

"Opening Weekend":  Buy this game right away, and don't ask me any questions as to why that's a good move.  A game experience that will almost guarantee repeated controller abuse, lots of ManScreaming and high resale value, you will assuredly play this bad boy for months on end. 

"$40":  Usually after games have been out for a while, they drop in price slightly, or can be bought for slightly cheaper in combination with other new games.  Usually, that's about $40.  You'll feel good getting the game for this price, since it isn't quite run-out-and-get-it-right-now good, but it has enough game in the box for a few weeks' worth of enjoyment.

"eBay":  This game is not too bad, but you'd be better off buying it used from either or eBay.  You also might let a friend buy this game, let s/he beat it, and then try to buy it from them to make them feel better.  Yes, this does tend to feel like "Sloppy Seconds."

"Rental":  Like my cousin Ron, you should always rent games that you aren't sure about first, to make sure that your $50 is going towards something worthwhile.  For games in this category, this is the maximum amount of money ($5) and/or time (3-5 days) you'll need to either gain satisfaction from the game, or beat the game in its entirety.  Rental-rated games are also sometimes perfect for a weekend when you are going to be at home on your ass, with some time to kill.

"Dogshit":  Games like this should have never been released.  If you play this game for any reason, you will regret every second of the experience.  Further, if you can get this game for free, don't do it, because even for FREE, it will still be a negative experience for you!

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The "fine print":
All material by Justin Elliot Bell for SMR/Bellview/ except where noted
1999-2009 Justin Elliot Bell This site was last updated 08/07/09