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Sega Genesis Classics Review

See PixlBit's Review Policies On 01/21/2019 at 11:56 AM by Nick DiMola

It's a tubular collection, dude.
The Bottom Line: If you're a fan of Genesis games, or want to see some of Sega's best, this is worth a purchase for some great games on-the-go.

Sega has done a lot of great things with emulation as of late. On the 3DS, they released 3D remasters of a handful of games, which boasted a handful of improvements to the source material. Their Sega Ages line marks another batch of games that are seeing improvements to the original games as they release on the Switch. However, Sega Genesis Classics is more of a compilation of classic Genesis games with some additional features that make it a great collection to have on your Switch if you grew up with these old games.

With the Nintendo Switch Online service, subscribers have received access to what is effectively an NES emulator, but it offers online multiplayer for any two player experiences. Sega Genesis Classics provides very much the same type of experience, allowing you to jump online with others who want to play a game. It’s admittedly tough to match with a random player and there was some noticeable lag, but under the right conditions with a friend, this is a great way to experience these games without having someone on the couch with you.

Of course the games are fantastic and with stuff like the whole Streets of Rage series, Sonic 1 and 2 (sorry, no 3 or Knuckles), Vectorman, Gunstar Heroes, Ristar, Comix Zone, Phantasy Star II-IV, and ToeJam and Earl (among many others - the full list available below), you’ll have lots to enjoy. But even better is the presentation of it all. Those who grew up in the 90s would’ve killed to have a room setup as cool as what’s digitally present in Genesis Classics. There’s a TV with your Genesis hooked up, a game shelf with 51 fantastic games, posters on the walls, and more.

You start up a game by picking it off the shelf and you watch it get virtually slotted into the Genesis, then the TV warms up and your game is on display. You’ve got a variety of filters and borders you can throw up on the screen to make it more like the good ol’ days, but all of the modern benefits are still present. Save states are easy to use, jumping out of a game and into another is also easy. You can turn on mirror mode and the rewind feature seen on the SNES classic is also present here.

Even cooler is the ability to play some NES Remix-like challenges just with the Genesis games on offer. It’s a fun way to get some extra mileage out of these games and it provides an extra layer of depth to the experience.

The portability of the Switch makes this collection that much better. For me personally, I’ve always avoided such collections because I have almost all of these games in physical form, along with a Genesis that’s still hooked to my TV. Being that I can take all of these on-the-go with me, I find it a much more attractive offering that’ll get much more play time. It’s like the Sega Nomad I always wanted but could never afford!

If you grew up on these games, or are curious about some of the best of the 16-bit generation, this is a great value for your Switch that’s been presented with some real TLC. It is missing a few key titles, which is unfortunate, but overall, it’s a great buy for fans.


The Games

  1. Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle
  2. Alien Soldier
  3. Alien Storm
  4. Altered Beast
  5. Beyond Oasis
  6. Bio-Hazard Battle
  7. Bonanza Bros.
  8. Columns
  9. Columns III: Revenge of Columns
  10. Comix Zone
  11. Crack Down
  12. Decap Attack
  13. Dr. Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine
  14. Dynamite Headdy
  15. ESWAT: City Under Siege
  16. Fatal Labyrinth
  17. Flicky
  18. Gain Ground
  19. Galaxy Force II
  20. Golden Axe
  21. Golden Axe II
  22. Golden Axe III
  23. Gunstar Heroes
  24. Kid Chameleon
  25. Landstalker
  26. Light Crusader
  27. Phantasy Star II
  28. Phantasy Star III: Generations of Doom
  29. Phantasy Star IV: The End of the Millennium
  30. Ristar
  31. Shadow Dancer: The Secret of Shinobi
  32. Shining in the Darkness
  33. Shining Force
  34. Shining Force II
  35. Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master
  36. Sonic the Hedgehog
  37. Sonic the Hedgehog 2
  38. Sonic 3D Blast
  39. Sonic Spinball
  40. Space Harrier II
  41. Streets of Rage
  42. Streets of Rage 2
  43. Streets of Rage 3
  44. Super Thunder Blade
  45. Sword of Vermilion
  46. The Revenge of Shinobi
  47. ToeJam & Earl
  48. ToeJam & Earl in Panic on Funkotron
  49. Vectorman
  50. VectorMan 2
  51. Virtua Fighter 2

Review Policy

In our reviews, we'll try not to bore you with minutiae of a game. Instead, we'll outline what makes the game good or bad, and focus on telling you whether or not it is worth your time as opposed to what button makes you jump.

We use a five-star rating system with intervals of .5. Below is an outline of what each score generally means:

All games that receive this score are standout games in their genre. All players should seek a way to play this game. While the score doesn't equate to perfection, it's the best any game could conceivably do.

These are above-average games that most players should consider purchasing. Nearly everyone will enjoy the game and given the proper audience, some may even love these games.

This is our middle-of-the-road ranking. Titles that receive three stars may not make a strong impression on the reviewer in either direction. These games may have some faults and some strong points but they average out to be a modest title that is at least worthy of rental for most.

Games that are awarded two stars are below average titles. Good ideas may be present, but execution is poor and many issues hinder the experience.

Though functional, a game that receives this score has major issues. There are little to no redeeming qualities and should be avoided by nearly all players.

A game that gets this score is fundamentally broken and should be avoided by everyone.



Super Step Contributing Writer

01/21/2019 at 02:02 PM

I only have Golden Axe and Sonic Spinball for this (on Steam), but I definitely like the virtual room set-up and the ability to eventually try Toe Jam and Earl and Comix Zone. I'd still love a mini Genesis officially licensed from SEGA though. Unlike you, I do not own physical cartridges of any of this stuff and only grew up with Nintendo stuff. 


01/21/2019 at 08:43 PM

I tried to buy the physical for this one on Switch but could not find it anywhere. I settled for the digital. (Also did that for Katamari.)

Matt Snee Staff Writer

01/23/2019 at 09:25 AM

Gotta get this!

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