Sega Genesis

The Sega Genesis is the US release of the Sega Mega Drive and is a 16-bit video game console released by Sega in North America in 1989. Mega Drive was the name used in Japan and Europe, while it was sold under the name Sega Genesis in North America, as Sega was unable to secure legal rights to the Mega Drive name in that region. The Mega Drive was Sega's fifth home console and the successor to the Sega Master System, with which it is electronically compatible.

The Genesis is part of the fourth generation era of consoles, and the first of its generation to achieve notable market share in Europe and North America. It was a direct competitor of the TurboGrafx-16 (which was released one year earlier) and the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (which was released two years later). The Sega Genesis began production in Japan in 1988 and ended with the last new licensed game being released in 2002 in Brazil.

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With over 29 million units sold, it became Sega's most successful console. The console has a legacy with certain games available on the console being offered as downloads to be played on newer consoles, fan translations and indie game development.

Although the Sega Master System was a success in Europe, and later also Brazil, it failed to ignite much interest in the North American or Japanese markets, which, by the mid-to-late 1980s, were both dominated by Nintendo's large market shares. Meanwhile in the arcades, the Sega System 16 had become a success. Hayao Nakayama, Sega's CEO at the time, decided to make its new home system utilize a similar 16-bit architecture. The final design was eventually also used in the Mega-Tech, Mega-Play and System-C arcade machines. Any game made for the Mega Drive hardware could easily be ported to these systems.

The first name Sega considered for its console was the MK-1601, but it ultimately decided to call it the "Sega Mega Drive" in Europe and Japan. The name was said to represent superiority and speed, with the powerful Motorola 68000 processor in mind. The North American version went by the name "Genesis" due to a trademark dispute.

The Sega Genesis initially competed against the aging 8-bit NES, over which it had superior graphics and sound. Despite this, the Genesis was all but ignored in Japan as soon as it was launched. Some positive coverage came out of magazines Famitsu and Beep!, but Sega shipped only 400,000 units in the first year. In order to sell more units, Sega tried some risky moves, including creating an online banking system and answering machine called the Sega Anser and several peripherals and games. The Mega Drive remained a distant third in Japan behind Nintendo's Super Famicom and NEC's PC-Engine throughout the 16-bit era.

One of Sega's most famous advertisements in North American media was its slogan "Genesis does what Nintendon't", which showcased the graphics advantage that the Genesis held against the aging NES. New Sega of America CEO Michael Katz instituted a two-part approach to build sales in that region. The first part involved a marketing campaign to challenge Nintendo head-on and emphasize the more arcade-like experience available on the Genesis, summarized by the slogan "Genesis does what Nintendon't". The second part, since Nintendo owned the console rights to most arcade games of the time, involved creating a library of instantly-recognizable titles by contracting with celebrities and athletes to produce games using their names and likenesses; Pat Riley Basketball, Arnold Palmer Tournament Golf, James 'Buster' Douglas Knockout Boxing, Joe Montana Football, Tommy Lasorda Baseball, Mario Lemieux Hockey, and Michael Jackson's Moonwalker all stemmed from this initiative. Nonetheless, it had a hard time overcoming Nintendo's ubiquitous presence in the consumer's home.

Sega CEO Hayao Nakayama, fearing a second market failure soon after the Master System, hired Tom Kalinske to replace Katz in mid-1990. Although Kalinske initially knew little about the video game market, he learned quickly and surrounded himself with industry-savvy advisors. A believer in the razor and blades business model, he developed a four-point plan: cut the price of the console; create a US-based team to develop games targeted at the American market; continue and expand the aggressive advertising campaigns; and replace the bundled game with a new title, Sonic The Hedgehog. The Japanese board of directors asked "Are you out of your mind?", but Nakayama approved all four points. Magazines praised Sonic as one of the greatest games yet made, and Sega's console finally took off as customers who had been waiting for the Super NES decided to purchase a Genesis instead. Nintendo's console would debut against an established competitor, while NEC's TurboGrafx-16 was left out and NEC soon pulled out of the market.

Sega began 1992 with a number of advantages: a 55% to 45% market share over the Super NES, a lower price, and a tenfold advantage in number of games. Sega's advertising continued to position the Genesis as the "cooler" console, and coined the term "Blast Processing" to suggest that the Genesis was capable of handling games with faster motion than the SNES. A Sony focus group found that teenage boys would not admit to owning a Super NES rather than a Genesis. Neither console could maintain a definitive lead in market share for several years.

By the end of 1995, Sega was supporting five different consoles and two add-ons: Saturn, Genesis, Game Gear, Pico, Sega CD, 32X and Master System in PAL and some South American (predominantly Brazilian) markets. As the Saturn was leading Sony's PlayStation in Japan while the Mega Drive was never successful there, Sega of Japan CEO Hayao Nakayama chose to discontinue the Mega Drive. While this made perfect sense for the Japanese market, it was disastrous in North America: the market for Genesis games was much larger than for the Saturn, but Sega was left without the inventory or software to meet demand. In comparison, Nintendo concentrated on the 16-bit market and reported the most lucrative holiday season in the industry. It also undercut the Sega of America executives; CEO Tom Kalinske, who oversaw the rise of the Genesis in 1991, grew uninterested in the business and resigned in mid 1996.

In 1997, Sega licensed the Genesis to Majesco so that it could re-release the console. Majesco began re-selling millions of formerly unsold cartridges at a budget price together with the second model of the Genesis, until it later released a third version of it. The last commercially licensed release in North America was Frogger, released in 1998.

The Mega Drive was supported until 1997 in Europe, when Sega announced it was dropping support for it. It was discontinued along with its predecessor, the long-lived Sega Master System, to allow Sega to concentrate on its newer console, the Saturn. The Mega Drive's add-ons, the Mega CD and 32X, were also both discontinued at this point, having been the same general failures they were in the other regions.

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Chase HQ 2

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£18.00
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£18.00

It's your job to bust suspects that are to fast for the Highway Patrol. As a member of the elite Chase division you have an arsenal of built vehicles to choose from: a screaming sports car, a ferocious 4x4, and a souped Semi. You'll need them all as you nail criminals from the urban jungles to the snow choked mountains.

Chester Cheetah - Wild West Quest

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£11.00
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£11.00

It's a groove to be on the move. But, if you're Chester Cheetah, "chill is the pill." So, when you are spotted in "Not-So-Great-Falls, Montana," "Unclearwater, Florida," and "Little Shock, Arkansas" you follow the "law of the paw," and run for the fun. Pity, these cities can't spot a cat that knows where it's at. They want to bring you down in their town. Now, follow your feet and take to the street. It's cool to make the rules. "Wild, Wild Quest" features a full 8 Meg, 16 bit platform of adventure. Cool characters and wild-style graphics make this trip a "Wild, Wild Quest" of the best!

Clue

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£6.00
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£6.00

Who killed Mr. Boddy? Was in colonel mustard, with the lead pipe in the kitchen? All the deductive fun of the classic game as the animated mystery unfolds before your eyes!

Beavis and Butthead

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£14.00
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£14.00

We were gonna go to this GWAR concert. Then Anderson's stupid dog, like, chewed up the tickets. Now you gotta help us find the pieces or somebody's gonna pay for it. Probably Beavis. Van Driessen tried to teach us, like, history. But we outsmarted him. Couch fishing rules. Unless there's something good on TV or something. Would you like flies to go with that mouseburger? Heh heh heh heh. At the Turbo Mall, you can meet wild creatures and stuff. Like us.

Bimini Run

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£12.00
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£12.00

Kenji Ohara! The diabolical Dr. Orca has struck again. He's kidnapped your sister Kim and sped off to his island hideaway. You've got to find her! If you don't, she's doomed - and if Orca's B.A.M. Technology succeeds, so is the entire human race!

Bubba N Stix

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£9.00
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£9.00

Our goofy hero and his friend - an intelligent alien stick - have crash-landed on a weird planet after being captured by an alien spacecraft. In order to get back to Earth, Bubba must use Stix in a variety of different ways to solve puzzles, overcome adversaries and foil the comedic attempts of his kidnapper to recapture him in this multi-directional scrolling puzzle.

Bugs Bunny in Double Trouble

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£11.00
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£11.00

BUGS BUNNY has dreamed his way into double trouble. A Mad Scientist is after Bugs' brain! To escape, bugs must use the Scientist's Televisor to travel through dreamland and outwit his LOONEY TUNES pals, including DAFFY DUCK, ELMER FUDD, and YOSEMITE SAM. But Bugs' nightmare doesn't end there. Before he can rest, Bugs must rocket to Mars to battle MARVIN THE MARTIAN and his trusty dog K-9. Move fast or... "That's all Folks!"

Caesars Palace

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£6.00
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£6.00

CAESARS PALACE stretches your entertainment dollar to the hilt with more casino gaming action than ever before available for the Genesis! With over 11 games to choose from, you'll experience the pulse-quickening excitement of casino gaming in the world famous CAESARS PALACE without leaving home. Special invitation-only VIP tables: Make the big bucks and you may be invited to play with the big boys. One-stop shopping at the ATM machines: Withdraw money, keep track of your winnings and play a scratcher at any of the ATMs scattered throughout the casino.

Beast Wrestler

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£14.00
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£14.00

Life science industries of the future have created the world's greatest sports warriors. Averaging 25 feet tall and weighing several tons each, these gigantic wrestlers grapple for the ultimate championship!

Beauty and the Beast - Roar of the Beast

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£14.00
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£14.00

Unleash the Beast. Now you command all his power and fury - and you'll need every ounce of it. Because unless each battle is won, you'll remain a hideous Beast forever.

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