With Nintendo’s Classic Mini system filling fans with nostalgic euphoria, Sega couldn’t help cutting in on the action a few weeks later with their own mini system based on the Mega Drive (a.k.a. Genesis), preloaded with games but also allowing other cartridges to be plugged in.

Sega Mega Drive Classic Game Console has made an opening salvo by planning to go on sale (in the U.K. at least) this October, about a month ahead of the Nintendo Classic Mini‘s planned European release in November.

However, it should be noted that this Mega Drive isn’t a new creation but a rehash of an emulator device made years ago by Chinese company At Games. Just like the original Chinese machine, this unit holds 80 games.

All of the games listed on the right are not actual Sega Mega Drive Games, but At Games own creations, lest you wonder why you never came across such gripping titles as Warehouse Keeper, Mr. Balls, and Meatloaf Rotation back in the 90’s.

So we are left with only 40 real Mega Drive games, but there some of the greats up there like the several Sonic titles, Golden Axe, Altered Beast, and Mortal Kombat. On the other hand, there are no sports titles, which sucks as sports games were really where Sega’s machine bested Nintendo’s time and time again.

Whoops, I spoke too soon! Curling 2010 is in there!

Even so, at first glance, this looks like a pretty tight machine with a compact – albeit unimpressive – design and two wireless controllers to boot.

Where the Sega Mega Drive Classic Game Console really falls flat, though, is the under-the-hood specs. This device is not created by Sega and it shows with lackluster video and fairly crappy audio. This is no doubt far behind the HDMI support that Nintendo’s machine will come with.

Since this is not really a new product, here is a review from 2013.

I thought the guy was a little too hard on the quality of playback, but the video clearly shows how those 40 extra At Games games are impressively lame. It also shows that the Sega device’s ability to play actual cartridges is somewhat limited in selection being unable to play even Street Fighter II.

▼ There’s also a promising-looking handheld version that has SD card support, but our optimism is wearing thin that it’ll deliver.

Overall, the Sega Mega Drive Classic Game Console is lacking against the Nintendo Classic Mini in playback and quality of titles. Also, in the areas where Sega should get an advantage, like cartridge support, it seems totally unreliable. It’s pretty safe to say that this is simply a cash grab capitalizing on the hype around the Nintendo Classic Mini.

In conclusion, it’s nice to see these two former titans of household gaming go head-to-head again. However, it looks like rather than a full blown console war, this will develop into little more than a console cat-fight between two strays over a discarded can of sardines.

And one cat is clearly stronger than the other.

Source: US Gamer (English), Engadget, My Game News Flash (Japanese)
Top Image: Smiths Toys
Inset Image: Smiths Toys, Funstock
Video: YouTube/SEGAbits