Sega Retrospective

Sega Retrospective
The Genesis Effect

Russ Pitts | 25 Jan 2011 13:52
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"In Genesis, it says that it is not good for a man to be alone; but sometimes it is a great relief."
- John Barrymore, Actor

Now comes the part of the story in which the Velveteen Rabbit slowly becomes "unreal." Or, more to the point, gets sold for beer money. And by "Velveteen Rabbit," I mean "my NES."


I moved away from home in 1993 to attend college and live with some girl. The NES lived in my dorm room for a while. I even, briefly, developed a Nintendo Ice Hockey obsession, but the demands of academic life slowly took over and gaming briefly fell off my radar. I sold the NES to a pawn shop, yes, for beer money. I regretted the decision almost instantly.

A year later, I was back home, living with my parents. Back in the town where I grew up. Back to not knowing what I was going to do with my life or how. I spent a good solid month revisiting old haunts and looking up old friends, but most of my cronies were gone, having moved off in pursuit of their own degrees or on whatever wild adventures tickled their fancies.

Having failed at moving on, I'd returned home for a taste of comfort and familiarity but there was none to be found. I was alone. My girlfriend had left me, my friends had gone away and my once-trusty companion, my NES, was being played with by another (or so I imagined). Somehow, this hurt worse than my girlfriend telling me - on the phone - that she'd found another lover.

I believed I was, to put it melodramatically, at rock-bottom. But I was 19. Everyone thinks that when they're 19. Still, it was bad. I needed a job and couldn't find one. I needed to make plans to attend another school, but all I could think about was the emptiness in my heart. I was a wreck.

That's when it happens, though, you know? In all the stories, the romantic comedies, the books and TV shows? When our hero is at his lowest, an angel comes and lifts him to his feet. And that's how it happened for me. And by "angel," I mean "game console."

The new friend I found in the summer of 1994, who helped me reclaim my life - to become, in a word, reborn - was literally called Genesis.


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