OVERVIEW – With a perfect retro look, easy HD output and an incredible range of 42 built-in games, Sega's Mega Drive Mini is a courtesy tribute to the company's venerable 16-bit machine and a great way to experience the system if you don't you want to get your hands dirty with emulators or expensive hardware.
While Nintendo has been promoting the plug-and-play retro microcontroller with its NES Classic in 2016, and the SNES Classic the year after, mega-mega Drive Machines has actually been around for much longer.
The only problem was that they were all sucked.
Usually made by AtGames, which paid Sega for licenses, they were insufficient, slow-running machines that ran the soundtrack of games and usually came with horrible controllers.  The Mega Drive Mini, released on September 19, has none of these issues.
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With meticulous miniature hardware created by Now and the games themselves, adapted by the legend of the M2 industry, this is the most nerve-wracking and most thought-provoking micro-console ever.
Even the music on the menu is a whole new sweet from famous composer Yuzo Koshiro ( Streets of Rage, Revenge of Shinobi
), inspired by some of the biggest hits on the system.
The adorable plastic box has all the details of the first generation Mega Drive released in Europe and Australia in 1990, including a power switch and reset button, a
You can even open the cartridge door lids, slide the volume control of the headset, and remove the expansion slot cover, though none of this does anything.
The controller is a little less impressive, but it does the job.  Good reproduction of the original three-button pad from 1990 (not the more popular six-button version), it looks the part, but the d-pad feels a little hard on my hands.
There are two included in the box and the cable length is decent, but those who want to play Street Fighter II will want to find one of the officially licensed 6-button USB controllers on Retro-Bit, which Sega claims to be compatible with.
As is customary for micro systems, you get HDMI and microUSB cables in the box, but you need to find a USB port (say on your TV or from a phone charger) to power it.
As soon as you turn on the machine, you will see the attention that is put into this compilation.
Side-by-side ringtones, replicas with exact regions of full game covers are sorted online and can be sorted as you wish and you can even choose to display them on the spine so that they all fit on the screen at once.
The retro nerves in Australia and Europe (the so-called "PAL" regions) will be well aware that our old games tend not to withstand both the American and Japanese versions, with ugly frames and a lower frequency of footage due to regional differences in television performance.
Fortunately, the M2 did a fantastic job of optimizing the originals here, addressing the most obvious flaws by dropping color frames, adjusting frame rates, and speeding up music when needed.
While Nintendo uses the nuclear option to migrate PAL versions of old games and including US versions of its micro-consoles, the Now Strategy shows that this is really about Res about preserving players' childhood memories.
And speaking of regions, perhaps the coolest feature of the Mega Drive Mini is that changing the language in the settings allows you to play games as they have appeared in other countries.
Changing the Japanese, for example, allows you to see the various (generally much nicer) works of art on occasion and to experience games without censorship or the added difficulty that comes with a surprising number of Western versions of these games.
Or you can go to Chinese or Korea to see the strange combination of Japanese and American games released there (unfortunately there is no option to change to "American English" and get all American versions).
Just make sure you are familiar with the system enough to bring it back to the language menu and switch it back to English before doing so.
And of course, there are the games themselves, which are the main reason to buy a similar microconsole. See the bottom of this article for a full list, but in short it's a list of 39 great games (plus Altered Beast and two bonus titles), most of which are from Sega itself.
There are entries from most well-known franchises, such as the first two Sonic games, Streets of Fury II, Shinobi III and Golden Ax, and classics like Thor's Story , Gunstar Heroes and both Mickey Mouse Illusion games. But then there are less-watched cult favorites such as Alicia Dragun, Strider and Knight Crusader. Of particular note is Monster World IV which includes a translation into English that was not actually published until 2012.
From other publishers Konami contributed to the brilliant Castlevania: Bloodlines ] (also known as The New Generation) and Probotector (or Contra: Hard Corps ) while EA receives Road Rash II and Capcom ships Street Fighter II: Special Champion Edition and the incredibly rare Mega Man: The Wily Wars which contains updated versions of the first three games of the series.
Both bonus games are interesting historically, even though you would never play them on Mega Drive during the day: Sega's version of Tetris which says that there are only 10 copies of cartridges , and a new conversion of Mega Drive to the arcade game Darius .
Gam es are displayed in 720p resolution and your choice of original 4: 3 or stretched widescreen.
There are several background options, a very blurry CRT style filter (I would recommend turning it off) and a menu you can open in the middle of the game allows you to return to the game to select or save and load states so you can Avoid these annoying game.
As with virtually all emulator boxes, there is some delay in the input and an additional audio lag, which means games may not feel as responsive as you remember them.
But then it's a box to add and drop. For better performance, you will need an original machine or clone with reference quality like the analog mega Sg, which will cost you a lot more considering you have to deliver your own games.
The reason for downloading Nintendo micro-consoles was that they looked great on a shelf and gave instant access to good versions of amazing games without the need for consoles or violins, and now there's finally a Sega device that does everything better or better.
Represents an excellent value of about $ 3.30 per game, the Mega Drive Mini is a suitable revival for an iconic machine from the 90's.
FULL GAME LIST
Alex Kid in the enchanted castle
The changed beast
The castle of illusion with the participation of 198 ] Columns
Dr. The Robotnik Medium Machine Robotnik
Ecco the Dolphin
The Eternal Champions
Ghouls & # 39; n Ghosts
Mega Man: The Wily Wars
Monster World IV
Fhantasy Star IV: The End of the Millennium
Road Rash II
] Shinobi III
Sonic the Hedgehog
Sonic the Hedgehog 2
Sonic the Hedgehog Spinball
Space Harrier 2
Street Fighter II & # 39 ;: Special Champion Edition
] Street of Rage 2
Super Fantasy Zone
Thunder Force III
ToeJam & Earl
Wonde r Boy in Monster World
The World of Illusion with the participation of Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck