411 Games Top 5 4.05.14: Top 5 Sega Genesis Games
Posted by Sean Garmer on 04.05.2014
From Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 and Sonic The Hedgehog to Streets of Rage 2, Comix Zone and more, the 411 staff counts down the top 5 Sega Genesis games of all-time!
Hello everyone, I hope it has been a good week for all the readers out there. Let's take some time to remember the Sega Genesis.
Continuing are on and off again series at looking at game systems of the past. This week is the Top 5 Sega Genesis/Mega Drive Games
Todd Vote (411 Games Zone Reviewer and Regular Contributor to Four Player Co-op)
5.Eternal Champions - While not quite the Street Fighter/MK killer that Sega was hoping for. Eternal Champions brought enough of a unique story that it managed to carve out its own path. Being a huge fan of fighting games, I was all about playing as many as possible.
4.Altered Beast - "Rise from your grave!" One of the Genesis' earliest beat em up platformers gave you the ability to turn into animals to boost your attacks. Werewolves, weredragons, and werebears oh my! Did I mention the dragon can shoot lightning bolts from it's eyes?
3.Sonic - Sonic really hasn't been able to capture the magic his first three games on the Genesis. That's okay because we still have the first three Sonic games. While I never had the patience to beat these games. I always enjoyed playing them. Sonic was something different to the Mario games that Nintendo always offered.
2.Comix Zone - Love this game! LOVE IT! So much that I have since purchased it a second time on a PS2 collection... Then a third on my Xbox 360. I can't believe for as many failed attempts that Sega has made to keep Sonic relevant, they haven't ever tried to give Sketch Turner a second adventure.
1.Mortal Kombat - This game was the proof in the pudding about how Sega did what Nintendon't. Mortal Kombat played such a huge role in me choosing the Genesis over the SNES. Of course I would come to realize that the SNES was a much better console as far as what it could do, but I was always happy with the Genesis. Mortal Kombat was a big reason why.
John Cash (Reader Voice, Occasional Contributor to Four Player Co-op)
5. Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3: Starting off, my list is going to consist of the games that I have personally played, which is about 30-35 games. UMK3 was, for 2 or 3 years, my favorite game, above all others. The speed of the game just felt incredible. One of my best friends was a Rain player, and if you weren't paying attention he could literally get an infinite combo (seen here http://youtu.be/8oi_K4FegNY) on you in like the first three seconds of the match. Plus it was the first game, at least for me, where the roster just felt MASSIVE, and with so many different play styles. Still my favorite MK game of all-time.
4. Contra Hard Corps: Contra, for my friends and I, was definitely that game where every weekend we'd sit down and say "Okay, we're going to beat it this time!", and we nearly never did. It's one of those games from the '90s where you'd play it until you were pretty sure the console would melt through the floor if you played any longer. I think we finally beat it one day but it was one of those deals where we started at 3pm and then played until 7am and then had to go to school so there was literally no joy, just relief that we had finally done it!
3. NBA JAM: I imagine this will be showing up a lot in this article, and with good reason; it is still one of, if not THE best basketball video games of all time. Full stop. It's still more fun than the basketball games made even today, with all the amazing technology put into the games these days. As someone who grew up before stuff like Jam and NFL Blitz, it was just amazing seeing something as serious as pro sports being taken in a wacky, arcade-y style.
2. WWF Wrestlemania: The Arcade Game: You can hit people with actual tombstones as Undertaker, and if you body slam Yokozuna, cooked chickens will fly out of him. Why are you still reading this?
1. X-Men 2: Clone Wars: This is my favorite Genesis game mostly based around the memories created around playing it with friends, but it is also a great game. The "cold open" at the start where you're just given a random X-Men and thrown to the wolves was like an insta-hook for my friends and I. Many a weekend was spent trying to beat this game with two players, but it almost always ended up being up to whoever was best at the game and still alive, only to die to the clones at the end. Recently (a year or so ago) I finally played through it again and was able to beat it, and it was an awesome feeling. The soundtrack probably could have been better, but for pure nostalgia and fun alone, this is my favorite Genesis game. Oh, and did I mention YOU COULD PLAY AS MAGNETO?
Sean Garmer (Games Zone Reviewer, Interim host of "Cooperative Multiplayer" The Official 411 Games Podcast, Games Top 5 Organizer, WWE Roundtable Organizer)
As with pretty much any system, there are just too many good games to fairly be able to make anything but at least a Top 50. So, trying to pick just five games is incredibly hard. For the sake of transparency, the Genesis was the only system I never owned growing up. So, the four games and one series I've included are based off the game either being a Genesis or Mega Drive original and playing them as part of a collection on another system, or playing them as a downloadable game, or through an emulator on a PC.
5. Comix Zone: I had several people tell me I should play this game because it had a cool story and it was like being inside a comic book. Well after playing it I don't get why Sketch Turner has never had another game made? Comix Zone has a great art style and tells the story of someone trapped in his own work, which can be very interesting if told well. I really liked that you could choose which panel you could go to next. It felt like I was making my own path through the story. The gameplay was common fare for back then but I like just beating up enemies some times. This is a game I do come back to on my 360 from time to time and play because I have lots of fun with it, and I think we can all admit Sketch Turner is pretty cool.
4. Toejam & Earl: Panic on Funkotron: I was drawn to this game because of how distinct Toejam & Earl look, then the platforming, the cool alien worlds, and the boombox mini-games kept me hooked. I really wish we could get a modern version of TJ & E, but it probably won't happen. I sunk many hours into saving our idiotic human race and wonder why the hell everyone has to save us all the time. I feel like TJ & E are an underrated gem in the Genesis library that doesn't get enough love from people. So, maybe by seeing it on this list some more people will go play the games.
3. Phantasy Star IV: I owned and played this as part of the Phantasy Star collection that came out on the GBA. After playing through this I didn't quite understand all that happened, but I did feel like I had just played one of the best RPG's ever made. A lot of people talk about the Phantasy Star Online games, but I don't hear too many people going on and on about the original games. Maybe it is the Final Fantasy syndrome or maybe a lot of people didn't get to experience these games. Either way, I enjoyed the heck out of the whole series, but Phantasy Star IV is definitely, to me at least, the crown jewel in the whole bunch.
2. Streets of Rage 2: I was always a Final Fight fan growing up. In a land that was dominated by beat-em ups there were just so many to play that it could get boring after a while essentially just beating up a bunch of baddies constantly. So, I remember picking up Final Fight One for the GBA because I had a nostalgia kick at the time. The one year of public high school I had (my mom moved to Miami FL in 2002, so I had to move in with my dad and go to a private Catholic high school from sophomore to Senior Year) I got to sit in class and play games sometimes because teachers just didn't care. I remember a guy that sat behind me, telling me that I was playing a crappy version of Streets of Rage. Years later in College, I eventually got around to play Streets of Rage 2 and I thought "damn that guy was right." Streets of Rage 2 is probably one of the landmark beat-em-ups that ever existed. It was polished, everything about the game was just well done. Most of all, it was just a hell of a lot of fun and probably one of the most beloved games on the Genesis too.
1. Sonic The Hedgehog Series: I played these at a friend's house growing up named Travis and I later owned them as part of the Sonic Mega Collection. I loved going to my friend's house and just spending hours trying to beat levels in Sonic 1, being Tails in Sonic 2 trying to help out my friend where I could, marveling at how the series kept evolving in Sonic 3, and then just how cool Knuckles was in Sonic & Knuckles. These games are iconic, probably everybody has played at least one level of one of these games. Yeah I could put other games at #1, but I think we all know, even if you didn't own a Genesis, back then, these are the games that you bought your Genesis to play.
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If you don't listen to the Official 411 Games Podcast "Cooperative Multiplayer" you should! Right now, Stephen Randle is taking a little break from the podcast due to recently having a baby boy. Therefore, between Robert Cooper, Daniel Anderson, and I, we discuss the games we've played this week, the gaming news of the week, and just having a lot of fun too. Here is this week's episode…
Games Coming Out the Week of 04/06/14
Titanfall (Xbox 360)
The Wolf Among Us Episode 3: A Crooked Mile (PS3, Xbox 360, PC & MAC)