• magisterrex Retro Games


    I've been gaming since the days of Pong and still own a working Atari 2600. I tend to ramble on about retro games, whether they be board games, video games or PC games. Sometimes I digress. Decades after earning it, I'm finally putting the skills I learned while completing my history degree from the University of Victoria to good use. Or so I think. If you're into classic old school gaming, this blog is for you!

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Happy 17th Anniversary to the Sega 32X

It’s been 17 years since Sega released their 32X enhancement device for the Sega Genesis and Sega CD  in North America on November 21,1994, and it remains on my list of most intriguing and yet most disappointing game systems of all time.  Essentially Sega created an attachment for their popular Genesis game system that used two 32-bit RISC processors to improve the graphics quality of their 16-bit video game console.  The 32X was inserted into the Genesis into the game cartridge slot, and used a separate power supply, which made it a tad cumbersome.  (If you had a Sega CD accessory, you could have three power supplies and a mess of cables.)

The short-lived Sega 32X

A small variety of games were released for the 32X on both cartridge and CD formats (36 in total), including Doom, Virtua Racing, NBA Jam TE, Virtua Fighter, Star Wars, Mortal Kombat II, and the brilliant Kolibri (the only game I know of where you play a hummingbird).  However, the game library never achieved the status of other game systems simply because the 32X was discontinued within one year after its release (in October, 1995), as  Sega’s management team decided to move forward with the CD-based Sega Saturn game system, and the 32X soon became a mere memory, selling only 400,000 or so units.  Regardless, the 32X is still enjoyed by some Sega enthusiasts in the retrogaming community, remembered for the promise of its potential rather than the disappointment of its execution.  Though we hardly knew ye, Happy 17th Anniversary to the 32X!

Sega GENESIS 20th Anniversary – Top 5 Accessories

Happy 20th Birthday, Sega Genesis!  Wow, it was just two decades ago that Sega released their Nintendo-killer system, which quickly became the “cool” system of choice for half the video game market.

The Sega MegaDrive - The First Genesis

The Sega MegaDrive - The First Genesis

The rise and rule of the Genesis system led to some nifty accessories.  Here’s five of the coolest accessories that gamers could add to their Sega Genesis:

EA Sports 4-Way Play

EA Sports 4-Way Play

4-Way Play
EA Sports have been making sports-related games for decades, and back in the day Sega Genesis titles were where you went to get your Madden or NHL fix.  But many sports are team games, so Electronic Arts developed the 4-Way Play accessory. This handy little device allowed up to 4 players to play their favourite EA Sports games, so you could have a gamer Super Bowl party, complete with a little pre-game Genesis warm-up!

The Genesis Game Genie by Galoob

The Genesis Game Genie by Galoob

Game Genie
Some Genesis games were hard to beat.  Really hard.  (And some ridiculously easy, but I digress.)  Game Genie by Camerica/Galoob to the rescue!  All you had to do is pop the Genie into the Genesis and insert your game cartridge into it, enter the right code for whatever cheat you wanted, and the game suddenly became a lot easier!  (And you could use the Genie as a country converter cartridge for most games, too – but not officially…)

The Sega Channel by General Instrument

The Sega Channel by General Instrument

Sega Channel
Long before Internet online games, Sega came up with the idea to offer games by download.  This little box attached to the Genesis and to the cablevision line.  Players paid a monthly service fee to get access to unlimited access to 50 or so games, plus limited previews of new releases, as well as special versions of fan favorites.  The service is long gone, but still remembered fondly!

The Sega Power Base Converter

The Sega Power Base Converter

Power Base Converter
Before the Sega Genesis was a hit, there was the Sega Master System.  Although it never reached the market share dominance that the Genesis did, there were quite a few games and consoles sold.  Rather than tossing out the old games (like Phantasy Star!) gamers could pick up the Power Base Converter, which attached to the Genesis and allowed those SMS games to be played on their new Genesis.  8-bit gaming goodness on their new 16-bit gamer powerhouse!  Gamergasm!

Sega CD Accessory - Top and Side Mounts

Sega CD Accessory - Top and Side Mounts

Sega CD
If you had the cash, the Sega CD was a must-have accessory.  It came in two designs, a CD-player style for the older Genesis systems, which stacked on top of each other, and a top-loading style for the new Genesis systems, which acted as a base and the Genesis inserted into its side.  (The Nomad would be released later.) Some of the best games for the Genesis were released on CD-format, including Lunar: The Silver Star, Sonic the Hedgehog CD, The Amazing Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin, and Earthworm Jim.  Now that’s quality retro gaming!

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