Sonic the Hedgehog (Sega Genesis) & 4 Other Sega Genesis Games

This game started a revolution for Sega Genesis; it branded them as the bad boys of video game.  Sonic’s brashness and cool attitude paved the way for a new type of video game hero and a new console to play it on.  Compare Sonic’s speed and dash moves to simple jumping and stomping of Mario and it was apparent why he became so popular over night.  Not to mention, his game was just as addicting as Super Mario Bros. and once you played it a few times, becomes as familiar to any true gamer as the classic packaged-in game with the red plumber became.  I’ve picked this game up a few times over the years (once at a display in an Best Buy) and the controls and level layouts are still so fluid in my mind, I played through the first 3 levels in 20 minutes standing in that store.

There’s so much fun to be had controlling Sonic, from upside down loops to tunnels to breaking through walls and becoming a human (sorry, hedgehog) pinball.  The worlds are each unique, challenging and all feature music I can still hum days after re-playing this again.  If there’s a video game hall of fame (which there now is) it would be a crime for this game not to find shelf space there.

Scores:

Playability- 9.5

Grahpics- 7.5

Music/Sound 8.5

Replay Value 10

Originality- 10

Final: 91%

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Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle

Sega’s self-professed mascot before the blue guy came along, Alex Kidd looks like a half-boy, half-monkey who’s watched too many Bruce Lee movies.  This game is strange; cars are coming at ya, you can break the ground, and there’s this weird betting game that I always just avoid but I believe was supposed to be the popular feature of it.  But, it tries to get you to bet one of your lives!  Plus, this game suffers that fatal flaw that all bad games suffer from: 1 hit and that’s it!  Yeah, one hit and you start over.  There are checkpoints at least.  The learning curve is a bit steep here; took a lot of trial and error for me to get anywhere as anything that remotely touches you and you’re dead.  So you have to be very careful and learn to use the blocks around you to knock them into enemies that could give you the touch of death.

Scores:

Playability/ Controls: 4.5

Graphics- 4

Music- 6.5

Replay Value 3

Originality- 6.5

Final: 49%

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Berenstein Bears: Camping Adventure

Ah, the Berenstein Bears; who didn’t read their stories growing up?  Living in Bear Country, in their old treehouse, they taught kids good life lessons like not to talk to strangers, share and help the elderly.  I always liked the Spooky Old Tree story.  And I always loved the artwork of those books.  That same unique style is evident all over this game and if nothing else, it looks really swell.  So many vibrant colors and backgrounds it’s a tremendous looking game.

You control either Brother or Sister Bear (or do a 2 player co-op mode) and explore 5 different levels, with the goal of collecting a certain item each stage (fish in Goin’Fishin, or Diamonds in the Cave Adventure) and fight off a litter of pesky animals in each.  There’s some small puzzle solving elements but it’s mostly just an exploring game.  I had a lot of fun with this as my daughter watched me play and is a great game for kids, with simple to learn moves, even if there are some really hard jumps involved.

Playability/ Controls: 6.5

Graphics- 8

Music 4.5

Replay Value 6.5

Originality 5

Final: 61%

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Technocop

This game screams Arcade port.  You start off in a car, just driving down a highway cruising past cars with no real obstacles.  You’re a cop going to a police call; when you get there, again, the screen setup is so arcade I can smell the prepubescent sweat and sugar.  At this point, the game becomes almost unplayable; you control a cop with a gun that shoots webbing to bundle up the bad guys but man it’s a tad slower than their own guns and weapons.  So, you’re fighting against logic.  There’s also a timer, you need to net the main baddie from a stage in so much time, or he escapes.  I got frustrated with this game multiple times , even though it was probably a fun arcade game (betting it had a gun with it) as a port to a home console, it leaves a whole lot to be desired.

Scores:

Playability- 3

Graphics- 3

Music/Sound- 3.5

Replay Value- 2.5

Originality- 6.5

Final: 37%

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F-117 Night Storm

When I turned this on, I was really in the mood to play a flying game for some reason.  The set up to get started is fun; you choose you craft, and the weapons you want to carry. Then the game starts.

The graphics for this were low-tech for Atari.  It was ridiculous.  You get a target and the controls of this game are the pits.  You end up flying way off course no matter where you’re trying to go.  After that, I F-117’d this thing right into the trash.

Playability- 2

Graphics- 1.5

Music/Sound- 4

Replay Value- 2

Originalit- 1.5

Final: 22%

Sega Genesis Rankings:

– Sonic the Hedgehog   91%
– Decap Attack  71%
– Ghostbusters  71%
– Golden Axe  70%
– Golden Axe II  62%
– Berenstein Bears: Camping Adventure   61%
– The Simpsons: Bart’s Nightmare- 59%
– Zoop  50%
– Laser Ghost   50%
– Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle  49%
– Cliffhanger   47%
– Enduro Racer  44%
– Technocop   37%
– Jennifer Capriati Tennis   36%
– Pit Fighter  36%
– Shadow of the Beast  26%
– F-117 Night Storm  22%

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