SEGA Genesis Mini: Play This! #01
Masterpieces that were created by
Japanese developers and became worldwide hits


The SEGA Genesis Mini is set to be released along with the Mega Drive Mini in Asia. As expected of a game console named after the Genesis—which was a major success in North America—the SEGA Genesis Mini will include a total of fourteen titles not available on the Asian version of the Mega Drive Mini. Here we take a look at seven of those titles which were created by Japanese developers, including SEGA.


Dynamite Headdy

This comical action game platformer was created by Treasure, a video game company who developed a number of action game masterpieces for the Mega Drive, including Gunstar Heroes and Alien Soldier. When the evil King Dark Demon suddenly appears and starts wreaking havoc in the puppet world, a ragged puppet named Headdy steps up to confront him.

The game’s hero is a ragged puppet named Headdy, and his weapon is—believe it or not—his head. Headdy can throw his head like a boomerang to not only attack enemies, but also to grab hooks and move himself to other platforms.

Plus, by picking up special items brought by friendly characters, Headdy’s abilities undergo all sorts of transformations! Numbering seventeen in all, these transformations enable Headdy to do things such as attack enemies with a hammer, shoot missiles in all directions, or shrink himself. Mastering these transformations can make progressing through the game much smoother.

In addition to simply being a well-made action game, Dynamite Headdy is packed full of compelling elements that include the colorful graphics of its puppet world, the rival character Trouble Bruin who repeatedly attacks Headdy, and the game’s unique sound effects. This one definitely deserves a try.


STREET FIGHTER II is the worldwide-hit masterpiece that launched the one-on-one match-style fighting game boom. STREET FIGHTER II’: SPECIAL CHAMPION EDITION adds a variety of additional elements to the previous CHAMPION EDITION, which is an updated version of the original game that allows players to play as the four boss characters.

Players choose to play as one of twelve zany characters—among them martial artists, wrestlers, a soldier, a yoga master, and more—who then fights opponents at different locations around the world. Players damage their opponents by punching, kicking, and using special moves that require them to input combinations of commands. Victory is attained when an opponent’s vitality becomes fully depleted.

The diversity of characters and a game balance that once captivated countless players make the game a joy to play even now in 2019.

In Hyper Mode, players can choose from eleven different speed settings, and certain characters are also given additional special moves. The resulting altered game balance allows players to enjoy the game in a whole new way.

Altered Beast

Men who have obtained bestial powers fight to save goddess Athena from the demon god who captured her in this side-scroller beat ’em up game which was one of the launch titles released alongside the Genesis in North America in 1989.

The basic gameplay is simple: the player controls the hero, who uses punches and kicks to defeat incoming enemies and progress onward while being careful not to take damage from the enemies’ attacks.

What sets the game apart is the hero’s power-up system. Occasionally a white wolf will appear, and upon its defeat a Spirit Ball is released. Whenever the hero picks up one of these Spirit Balls, both his strength and size increase, and if he picks up an additional Spirit Ball after reaching his power-up limit, he transforms into a fusion of man and beast! The beast half of this new form differs depending on the level, with some possibilities including wolf, dragon, and bear. While in these new forms, the hero can use projectiles, lightning attacks, and other powerful abilities to plow through enemies with ease.

When the hero defeats the boss that awaits him at the end of each stage, that stage is complete. There is also a two-player cooperative mode (accessed by pushing start on the second player’s controller at the title screen) and playing with friends is a blast.

Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master

When an evil crime syndicate resurfaces, ninja and crusader for justice Joe Musashi’s battle to thwart the group’s ambitions begins to unfold once again. This action game is the sequel to The Revenge of Shinobi, which is also included on the Asian version of the Mega Drive Mini.

While the flowery action—double-jumping and throwing shuriken from high in the air—and lifesaving ninjutsu techniques of the previous games remain unchanged, additional abilities such as sprinting, flying kicks, and jump-scaling walls help to turbocharge the gameplay, allowing players to enjoy speedier and even more exhilarating fights.

The game’s rich variation of stages helps keep players from getting bored. In addition to the usual stages full of enemies such as ninjas, armed forces, and military animals, other variations include a stage that takes place while riding up an elevator, another that progresses at high speed while on horseback and riding surfing boards, and a stage in which the player jumps from rock to rock as the stones fall down toward the bottom of a cliff.

The additional abilities and techniques make this game easier than its predecessor, which in turn makes it a great introduction to the action game genre.

Light Crusader

Developed by Treasure, this action RPG takes place in a fantasy world. The player takes on the role of the battle-tested swordsman David as he adventures through dungeons below a royal palace while solving the countless puzzles hidden within. The game’s complex and symphonic progressive rock-inspired soundtrack is another of its highlights.

In addition to his sword attacks, David learns basic magic spells—Wind, Fire, Earthquake, and Heal—as he progresses through the game. He can also use more powerful combination magic by combining multiple spells. This skill should be mastered as it is an essential element of dungeon exploration which aids in fighting enemies, regenerating HP, and more.

The dungeons employ a characteristic slantwise top-down perspective, known as an isometric view, and are filled with not only monsters, but a variety of traps as well. The player must use his or her head to solve the puzzles and clear a path through the perilous depths of the dungeons.

Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle

Prior to the introduction of Sonic the Hedgehog, Alex Kidd was the SEGA company mascot. In this action game, he tackles a total of eleven stages using his fighting skills and Paper, Rock, Scissors. This was another of the launch titles released alongside the Genesis in North America.

The basic gameplay is orthodox: the hero uses attacks and jumps to defeat enemies and progress toward his goal. Players can collect coins that appear when enemies are defeated and use them to purchase items at shops found within the stages, but must also win a game of Rock, Paper, Scissors before being able to shop. Losing results in being left stark naked, so be sure to use your intuition to secure a win.

Aside from items which enhance his abilities, Alex Kidd also has access to several vehicles, including a motorcycle and a pedal-powered helicopter, allowing the player to enjoy several different types of gameplay.

Among the games included on the Genesis Mini, this is one of the more laid-back titles. A lighthearted atmosphere that even children will enjoy make this game invaluable, offering players a change of pace when they need a break from other more extreme titles.

Virtua Fighter 2

SEGA’s Virtua Fighter is a masterpiece known for being the first 3D fighting game ever released. This game is the Genesis port of the worldwide-hit sequel Virtua Fighter 2. While the original was known for its 3D computer graphics, this Genesis version is a 2D pixel graphics remake.

Though the graphics may differ, the company’s sincere efforts to reproduce the original gameplay are evident. Each of the eight available characters retain their characteristic moves, and landing hits on your enemies feels just as exhilarating as ever. The functions of the three buttons—punch, kick, and guard—remain unchanged, and the reproduction of the background art and music is quite impressive.

The several tens of millions of Genesis users in the US and Europe deserve to experience the greatness of Virtua Fighter 2! Perhaps this was the inspiration behind the creation of this port. Regardless, the title offers players a valuable opportunity to experience a piece of game port history, including the conversion from 3D to 2D graphics.




What is the “Mega Drive Mini”, ”SEGA Genesis Mini”?
These are new game machines which re-size SEGA’s 5th console from 1988, “Mega Drive” and its USA version, “Genesis”, into a palm sized footprint. 42 titles are planned to be included in the miniature consoles, which are 15.4 cm wide, 3.9 cm tall and 11.6 cm thick.
Players can enjoy a variety of their favorite titles of the era, including action, shooting, puzzle, RPG and simulation titles which you can regard as “Mega Drive (Genesis) History”.

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The “Mega Drive Mini” and “SEGA Genesis Mini” are set to be released on September 19!


TITLE:SEGA Genesis Mini
RELEASE DATE:September 19, 2019
Official Web Site: