The SEGA Mega Drive (or SEGA Genesis in the USA!) was the best home video games consoles of its time and - 30 years on - still graces Top 10 lists to this day. The reason: a stunning collection of games which pushed the 16-bit platform to its limit. Sonic the Hedgehog brought zip and audacity to the side-scrolling platformer, while Mortal Kombat finally found a home console that could match its prestige.
The video game console realm is much bigger than you think, ranging from insanely powerful offerings for 4K HDR and virtual reality gaming, through ultra portable picks, all the way to options designed to take you decades down the memory lane. Check out the best picks available on the market at the moment from the likes of Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo, and get ready to get your gaming on!
By 1991, compact discs had gained in popularity as a data storage device for music and software. PCs and video game companies had started to make use of this technology. NEC had been the first to include CD technology in a game console with the release of the TurboGrafx-CD add-on, and Nintendo was making plans to develop its own CD peripheral as well. Seeing the opportunity to gain an advantage over its rivals, Sega partnered with JVC to develop a CD-ROM add-on for the Genesis. Sega launched the Mega-CD in Japan on December 1, 1991, initially retailing at JP¥49,800. The CD add-on was launched in North America on October 15, 1992, as the Sega CD, with a retail price of US$299; it was released in Europe as the Mega-CD in 1993. In addition to greatly expanding the potential size of its games, this add-on unit upgraded the graphics and sound capabilities by adding a second, more powerful processor, more system memory, and hardware-based scaling and rotation similar to that found in Sega's arcade games. It provided battery-backed storage RAM to allow games to save high scores, configuration data, and game progress.
In 1983, Nintendo released the Family Computer (or Famicom) in Japan. The Famicom supported high-resolution sprites, larger color palettes, and tiled backgrounds. This allowed Famicom games to be longer and have more detailed graphics. Nintendo began attempts to bring their Famicom to the U.S. after the video game market had crashed. In the U.S., video games were seen as a fad that had already passed. To distinguish its product from older game consoles, Nintendo released their Famicom as the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) which used a front-loading cartridge port similar to a VCR, included a plastic "robot" (R.O.B.), and was initially advertised as a toy. The NES was the highest selling console in the history of North America and revitalized the video game market. Mario of Super Mario Bros. became a global icon starting with his NES games. Nintendo took a somewhat unusual stance with third-party developers for its console. Nintendo contractually restricted third-party developers to three NES titles per year and forbade them from developing for other video game consoles. The practice ensured Nintendo's market dominance and prevented the flood of trash titles that had helped kill the Atari, but was ruled illegal late in the console's lifecycle.
eBay offers a wide range of games for all systems. Best-selling new releases like Batman: Return to Arkham or LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens, as well as classic old-school RPG video games like Baldur's Gate or The Elder Scrolls series are affordably priced on eBay. As technology moves at a rapid pace, many consoles get discontinued and become impossible to buy at regular stores. Here's where eBay comes in. Here can find an ongoing auction for any kind of game console you can think of. Looking for a video game from your childhood? It's yours again with a few clicks! With eBay, there's no such thing as obsolete software because you can always buy the obsolete hardware to go with it!
When the 16bit Sega Mega Drive was first launched in the UK in 1990, it was an instant success, selling out on pre-sales alone. Hardly surprising considering its advanced graphics and gameplay, which had previously only been seen in the amusement arcades. The rival Super Nintendo was still two years away, so the Sony Mega Drive quickly became the dominant system, ultimately selling 30million units worldwide.
The first handheld game console with interchangeable cartridges was the Microvision designed by Smith Engineering, and distributed and sold by Milton-Bradley in 1979. Crippled by a small, fragile LCD display and a very narrow selection of games, it was discontinued two years later. The Epoch Game Pocket Computer was released in Japan in 1984. The Game Pocket Computer featured an LCD screen with 75 X 64 resolution and could produce graphics at about the same level as early Atari 2600 games. The system sold very poorly, and as a result, only five games were made for it. Nintendo's Game & Watch series of dedicated game systems proved more successful. It helped to establish handheld gaming as popular and lasted until 1991. Many Game & Watch games were later re-released on Nintendo's subsequent handheld systems.