What SEGA games do you appreciate outside Sonic? (and why)

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I'm pretty jaded about Sonic Forces, which I found to be a disappointingly mediocre and way too easy (almost auto pilot) game, especially after the joy that was Sonic Mania. I don't hate it but I have no desire to replay it. That's unusual for a main line Sonic game for me - replayability is what Sonic is all about.

Therefore, today, I've decided to remind myself that SEGA used to be an excellent company when they devoted their time to multiple franchises. Some of my all time favourite games were from SEGA - Streets of Rage, Wonderboy, Golden Axe, Phantasy Star, Alex Kidd, Shinobi, Shenmue, Columns, SEGA Rally, Virtua Fighter, Nights Into Dreams etc.

Who out there still likes the classic SEGA games? Which are your favourites and why would you suggest that modern gamers play them, if you had to recommend them to future generations of gamers. Or tell me some modern ones if there are any...

SEGA Rally right in your OP? Hell yeah.

And I'm in general a fan of their older arcade racers. Hang-On, OutRun, Virtua Racing, Daytona USA and as you mentioned, SEGA Rally. I'm also a fan of After Burner: Who wouldn't be a fan of flying through entire enemy squadrons in an F-14 Tomcat jet fighter, blasting down every enemy plane you can get your sights on?

Muthafuckin Ecco the muthafuckin dolphin!

Shining Force, which I always found was a better game than Phantasy Star and criminally underrated by comparison.

Oh and there's Vectorman, owner of the "Coolest Title Screen Music" Award. Shame it's only thirty seconds long.

Some stuff that hasn't been mentioned yet:
Vectorman, Ristar, Rez, Skies of Arcadia, Panzer Dragoon, Jet Set Radio and Gunstar Heroes.

As for more modern stuff:
Bayonetta, Valkyria Chronicles, Total War and the Yakuza series.

I'll second Shining Force, both 1 and 2 were (are) amazing games. I bought the Sega Collection when it launched on the 360 just for those games. Shining Force II was the first one I played and the first video game I spent literally DOZENS of hours playing, whether it was grinding out levels or trying to perfect a strategy for one of the many lengthy battles. It was just so much more strategic than the randomness of Final Fantasy encounters and so much more rewarding than the mindless button mashing of hack-n'-slash action titles of the time. I still go back and play those games from time to time.

Also Beyond Oasis. It was the first game that brought me the same sense of exploration and adventure reminiscent of that I experienced as a 7-year-old wandering Hyrule in the first Legend of Zelda. Infinite Omega Sword FTW.

Lastly, the Condemned games. Only published by Sega, but to date two of my favorite Horror titles, first-person melee done RIGHT. I'd love few things more than to see this franchise reinvigorated; I'd even settle for a remaster.

For old stuff comic zone, for new stugg puyopuyo v.s tetris

The Megadrive release of Robocop vs. The Terminator was the best one, its hard as nails, has the most enjoyable level design and si the one I emulate when I want to replay it.

I used to love playing Road Rash 1 & 2 on Genesis. I had a paper route where the Saturday papers would get dropped off at like 2 or 3 in the morning. I'd play until then, do the route and then come back and play some more. Very few games compelled me to play til the sun came up, but those were a couple. I also liked that 7-UP Spot game on Sega CD. Mutant League Hockey was another good one.

None of those are probably technically SEGA games, but afaik they weren't available on other platforms.

I'm not aware of every IP they own, but I quite like the Yakuza games from what I've played.

I used to own genesis and play sega games when i was a kid. i prefer sonic over mario. i hated mario even when i was a kid.

they made some really good games like earthworm jim and shinobi etc.

Not going to lie, I had no idea Sega had other games...

To be honest...not that much? It's weird, because I fought for Sega during the console wars, but looking at my writing homepage, while I've got numerous Nintendo IP sections, Sega doesn't do too well in terms of representation outside Sonic.

But that said, looking up their game list on Wikipedia:

Bug!: Played this on a friend's Saturn. Enjoyed it at the time, but it left no real impression on me.

Clockwork Knight: See above.

Ecco the Dolphin: This left more of an impression. I only played The Tides of Time, and could never get past the first level. Ecco is...weird, but it's an interesting kind of weird. It's certainly a memorable weird for me due to its atmosphere and soundtrack.

House of the Dead: Enjoyed the first two games, cheesy as they are. Fortunate enough to have the second game on Dreamcast. I mean, it's no Resident Evil, let alone Walking Dead, but if you want a rail shooter where you shoot zombies and get to listen to questionable voice acting, House of the Dead is right up your alley.

NiGHTS: Played a demo of this on my same friend's Saturn. It was...weird. That's all I can say.

Sega Rally Championship: Played a game of this on another friend's console way back in the day. It was...fine, I guess? I'll be honest, racing games aren't really my thing outside kart racers, and even they went on the backburner for me.

Super Monkey Ball: Had the first game in this series on my Gamecube. It's...fun. That's all I can say. Fun. Also the sound effects of the monkeys falling down is both hilarious and adorable. And I never get what the people in those windows in some of the stages were doing. Dancing?

Toy Commander: Dubious as to whether this counts as a Sega game since it was only published by Sega, but hey, I enjoyed this game a lot in the day. It's not the first game to go with a 'toys to life' theme, but it's one of the more creative ones.

Virtua Cop/Virtua Fighter: I played them. They were fine. Moving on.

Road Rash 3: This can be called a Sega game only if one includes console-exclusives, since it was developed by EA. And despite being developed by EA (believe it or not, I used to be attracted to EA games if only for their "challenge everything" slogon that kept coming up on the loading screen), this game was a tonne of fun. There's something to be said about riding bikes while beating the shit out of fellow racers.

Bonanza Bros: Had this on my Megadrive. 2 player was hard because my second controller didn't work properly (it was a specialist controller, and I never got a standard second one), but I enjoyed playing it. Music is good, and I like the cartoony atmosphere.

Alex Kidd: Played the last Alex Kidd game. It was meh.

There's various other console exclusives I've played on the Megadrive (Castle of Illusion, Jurassic Park (the good version), Talmit's Adventure, etc., but I already stretched things with Road Rash and Toy Commander, I don't need to stretch things further.

Looking at the list of IPs Sega has, I can kind of say that Sega strikes me as a jack of all trades, master of none sort of publisher/developer. They've got a wide variety of IPs, but how many of them made it to the mainstream outside Sonic? What happened to the likes of Ristar, Vectorman, Ecco, or Bonanza Bros? Why was Phantasy Star eclipsed by Final Fantasy? These are rhetorical questions, but overall, nowadays, Sega stays more in my mind as a developer. I mean, I grew up with Sonic, I'm still a fan of Sonic, but aside from a few exceptions (e.g. Ecco and House of the Dead), none of Sega's other IPs really gelled with me in the same way as, say, Nintendo's did. Which is kind of in the opposite situation, because while I'm not really a Mario fan, Nintendo gave me IPs like Advance Wars, Metroid, Fire Emblem, Golden Sun, Legend of Zelda, Star Fox, etc.

Phantasy Star Online

Episodes 1, 2, 3, and 4 were great

I only wish PSO2 had come to the West, but it never did. The only option is an incomplete DeJap because for some reason they didn't think us filthy Westerners would want to play it.

Just their classic AM2 stuff when Sega was at it's peak in the 80s and 90s: Daytona, Outrun, Hang On, Virtua Cop, After Burner. I played so much After Burner in the arcades. That little shit cabin that rumbled and shaked like you were 'in' the jet. :p The Megadrive also had great games like Castle of Illusion, Phantasy Star, Sunset Riders and all the arcade ports. The Saturn has a library of awesome shmups that nobody played and the Dreamcast while ahead of it's time wasn't marketed properly and failed due to lack of software. After that Sega lost it's spark and even as a publisher they are kinda meh. Yakuza is awesome though.

Valkyria Chronicles and the various Hatsune Miku stuff is my fav. Also Dengenki Bunkou fighting climax (though they just published it and lent it some licenses with french bread doing the development).

I'd personally take another Streets of Rage, in 3D with L4D-like coop campaigns, over more Sonic.

Also, another 3D Ecco.

Also, Jet Set Radio and Crazy Taxi. Seems like those types of open world time attack games are dead. I blame everyone wanting games to be more like movie experiences.

Hawki:

Looking at the list of IPs Sega has, I can kind of say that Sega strikes me as a jack of all trades, master of none sort of publisher/developer. They've got a wide variety of IPs, but how many of them made it to the mainstream outside Sonic? What happened to the likes of Ristar, Vectorman, Ecco, or Bonanza Bros? Why was Phantasy Star eclipsed by Final Fantasy? These are rhetorical questions, but overall, nowadays, Sega stays more in my mind as a developer. I mean, I grew up with Sonic, I'm still a fan of Sonic, but aside from a few exceptions (e.g. Ecco and House of the Dead), none of Sega's other IPs really gelled with me in the same way as, say, Nintendo's did. Which is kind of in the opposite situation, because while I'm not really a Mario fan, Nintendo gave me IPs like Advance Wars, Metroid, Fire Emblem, Golden Sun, Legend of Zelda, Star Fox, etc.

I wouldn't be so quick to write off all their titles as mediocre though. Golden Axe and Streets of Rage are still brilliant to play through. Shenmue was excellent for the time. And many of the others are a question of whether you like quick arcade style titles that you can easily dip in and out of. House of The Dead and Crazy Taxi are perfect examples of this.

On Nights Into Dreams, yes it is weird, but its tutorial doesn't properly teach you how to play it in the way you are meant to. Once you get into it, it's a bit like Sonic in terms of replayability. It's actually dead fun.

I would have loved Valkyria Chronicles but I consider it sort of meh as it is. The combat system is great but the story is SO STUPID, so full of broken, nonsensical, and contradictory messages it makes my head spin, not to mention a main character death that makes No-Phoenix-Down-For-Aeris look smart. Said character, I might add, is one of the main targets of the whole "racism is bad" message that the game itself actively engages in itself by instead being racist against another species who are walking WMDs. Apparently just having superpowers and doing something extreme to give that person those superpowers when it's the only way to save everybody's lives is wrong. The bad guys were psychotic stupid evil villains and even the "good guys" were a bunch of dicks while everybody was a moron, so I couldn't like the story. I haven't tried any of the other games in the series past the first, but I hope when I do finally get around to them they have a much better story with protagonists I can actually root for.

Panzer Dragoon was pretty good, the on rail shooter ones were really fun but sadly pretty short. Fortunately the best is an RPG that basically keeps the on rail shooter style combat so I liked it a lot, too bad emulating it is a pain or I'd play it again like I did way back when the Sega Saturn was still around.

Yeah, I was a Genesis / Mega Drive guy back in the day. Was just talking with my friends about this the other day actually. I'm on board with the beat 'em ups being the best ever in that era. I played Streets of Rage to death, and last year when I came aware of the remake I went nuts on it. Just yesterday I did another playthrough with Blaze on hard difficulty.

I liked Golden Axe, Rocket Knight Adventures, Road Rash series, Skitchin', Shinobi, Sonic series, Mazin Saga, Gunstar Heroes, Strider, Alien Storm, Cyborg Justice and a bunch of others I'd have to look up. Screw it, I'm on break I'll look 'em up now.

Some side scrolling 2D air combat games, like Aero Busters / Air Buster, Rolling Thunder Series, and another one which was a mech that could transform or something.

Ok I realize not all of these are by Sega, and some only published by, but that was my childhood in a nutshell. For modern, the only thing that comes to mind right now is Bayonetta, which I think I've played through at least 4 or 5 times.

Valkyria Chronicles(specifically the first one). Who knew a third person turn based(ish) rpg shooter could be fun. Story was pretty good in the first game as well.

Shining Force is good too but I only really have experience with the Game Gear one.

dscross:

I wouldn't be so quick to write off all their titles as mediocre though. Golden Axe and Streets of Rage are still brilliant to play through. Shenmue was excellent for the time. And many of the others are a question of whether you like quick arcade style titles that you can easily dip in and out of. House of The Dead and Crazy Taxi are perfect examples of this.

Crap, I forgot about Crazy Taxi and Streets of Rage. With the latter, I only played Streets of Rage 3, and never really got into it. Crazy Taxi I got on my Dreamcast though and had a blast...at the time. Doubt it would appeal to me much now, but it was 'da shit' back in the day.

Looking at my quoted post, I saw I made a mistake - should have said Sega is more of a publisher to me now, not developer. And...yeah. There's a plenthora of Sega games that I did enjoy, but very few of their franchises outside Sonic have had any real staying power for me. I mean, if something like Bonanza Bros 2 or Streets of Rage 4 was announced today, I'd be pleasantly surprised, but I'd hardly be in a rush to go out and get them.

immortalfrieza:
I would have loved Valkyria Chronicles but I consider it sort of meh as it is. The combat system is great but the story is SO STUPID, so full of broken, nonsensical, and contradictory messages it makes my head spin, not to mention a main character death that makes No-Phoenix-Down-For-Aeris look smart.

I liked Valkyria Chronicles, but don't disagree about the story. What I do disagree about is all the complaints about Aeris and Phoenix Down.

Phoenix Down is an item that "reverses KO status." It's smelling salts, not the freaking holy grail. I'm not even an apologist for FF VII (I had more fun with VIII) but I didn't even realize this complaint was a "thing" for years until someone brought it up and I countered it in 3 seconds with "Phoenix Down never brought anybody back to life, what the hell game were you playing?"

Kyrian007:

immortalfrieza:
I would have loved Valkyria Chronicles but I consider it sort of meh as it is. The combat system is great but the story is SO STUPID, so full of broken, nonsensical, and contradictory messages it makes my head spin, not to mention a main character death that makes No-Phoenix-Down-For-Aeris look smart.

I liked Valkyria Chronicles, but don't disagree about the story. What I do disagree about is all the complaints about Aeris and Phoenix Down.

Phoenix Down is an item that "reverses KO status." It's smelling salts, not the freaking holy grail. I'm not even an apologist for FF VII (I had more fun with VIII) but I didn't even realize this complaint was a "thing" for years until someone brought it up and I countered it in 3 seconds with "Phoenix Down never brought anybody back to life, what the hell game were you playing?"

It probably has something to do with the fact that Phoenix Downs are able to revive people from K.O.... which is the end result of those people being cut up, stabbed, shot, blown up, set on fire, frozen, electrocuted, hit with giant frickin laser beams, stepped on by building sized abominations, hit with the force of a nuke, and countless other things that should be way beyond the point of fatal even with how superhuman the cast of Final Fantasy 7 is, and somehow it can't revive Aeris from a simple stab through the stomach? Call it K.O. or death, there's nothing except plot that allowed Aeris to die and stay dead with the existence of something like a phoenix down and life magic around. Not to mention that Aeris herself should have been resilient enough at the point that it happens to survive if not tank the stab to begin with without a phoenix down or life magic even entering the picture.

Hawki:
With the latter, I only played Streets of Rage 3, and never really got into it.

SoR3 is the worst one by a country mile - i wasn't that keen on that one either. I think the other two games are classics that everyone should play at least once. Man I love the music in those games.

Spiral Knights. By gaming standards, its now a very long in the tooth F2P co-op tactical shooter. Some of the F2P mechanics are pretty grindy, but overall the gameplay is a hoot and the community (what's left of it anyway) is also great. Technically its not a Sega game anymore, but it was published/owned by them until about a year ago I think.

immortalfrieza:

Kyrian007:

immortalfrieza:
I would have loved Valkyria Chronicles but I consider it sort of meh as it is. The combat system is great but the story is SO STUPID, so full of broken, nonsensical, and contradictory messages it makes my head spin, not to mention a main character death that makes No-Phoenix-Down-For-Aeris look smart.

I liked Valkyria Chronicles, but don't disagree about the story. What I do disagree about is all the complaints about Aeris and Phoenix Down.

Phoenix Down is an item that "reverses KO status." It's smelling salts, not the freaking holy grail. I'm not even an apologist for FF VII (I had more fun with VIII) but I didn't even realize this complaint was a "thing" for years until someone brought it up and I countered it in 3 seconds with "Phoenix Down never brought anybody back to life, what the hell game were you playing?"

It probably has something to do with the fact that Phoenix Downs are able to revive people from K.O.... which is the end result of those people being cut up, stabbed, shot, blown up, set on fire, frozen, electrocuted, hit with giant frickin laser beams, stepped on by building sized abominations, hit with the force of a nuke, and countless other things that should be way beyond the point of fatal even with how superhuman the cast of Final Fantasy 7 is, and somehow it can't revive Aeris from a simple stab through the stomach? Call it K.O. or death, there's nothing except plot that allowed Aeris to die and stay dead with the existence of something like a phoenix down and life magic around. Not to mention that Aeris herself should have been resilient enough at the point that it happens to survive if not tank the stab to begin with without a phoenix down or life magic even entering the picture.

Well... when you can be revived by Phoenix Down... you have been reduced to 0 hit points and have passed out (you have KO status.) If any of those examples (from cut up to nuked) reduce a person's hp to 0 and they pass out... its reasonable to assume that a phoenix down can wake them up (within the context of the game.) That simply wasn't the case with Aeris and I never from the beginning assumed it was. Also in the context of the game, they deviate from reality by not treating just any stab... like any other stab. You have to factor in a character's strength and level and weapon which determines how much damage a "stab" does. At the time it happens there's no question that yes, Aeris shouldn't go down to a single stab from some random mob. But at that same time its also quite believable (again in the context of the game) that someone as powerful as Sephiroth (with Masamune) could one-hit anybody... perhaps even killing them, not just knocking them out.

Of course I was already old enough when I played FF VII that I could accept the tragedy of a character's death as part of a good story. Instead of the response of lots of the younger folks playing FF VII who responded "ahhh I spent so much time on heeeerrrrr! That's not fair! (cry cry sob complain)" Yup kid, sometimes life isn't fair.

Hi,

My best collection of Sega genesis games are Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3, Wrestlemania-The Arcade Game and International Superstar Soccer Deluxe. I still own two consoles. Only one works though. Lately, I've been using these games on my Android mobile phone. :)

I'm still holding out hope that one day Sega will let us have an Alpha Protocol 2. Obsidian made a mistake handing them the IP as part of the deal. And a good but not great metacritic was apparently all it took to kill any sequel. Obsidian should just make a spiritual successor modern-espionage RPG starring Mike Bourneton.

I've never liked Sonic.
I've played the shit out of Virtua Fighter 2 and 5 though.
Virtua Cop was great on the arcade, House of the dead as well (I love to take 2 guns by myself and go all Desperado on them).
I've enjoyed some Panzer Dragon 2.
Nights into Dreams wasn't bad at all.
Back in the day, Sega Worldwide Soccer '97 was better than Fifa '97.

That's all I can think of right now.
I've also played a ton of Sega games that were never released outside of Japan with difficult titles which I've forgotten, some of them were pretty good.

Rangaman:
Shining Force, which I always found was a better game than Phantasy Star and criminally underrated by comparison.

Xprimentyl:
I?ll second Shining Force, both 1 and 2 were (are) amazing games. I bought the Sega Collection when it launched on the 360 just for those games. Shining Force II was the first one I played and the first video game I spent literally DOZENS of hours playing, whether it was grinding out levels or trying to perfect a strategy for one of the many lengthy battles. It was just so much more strategic than the randomness of Final Fantasy encounters and so much more rewarding than the mindless button mashing of hack-n?-slash action titles of the time. I still go back and play those games from time to time.

Strangely, despite my love for classic SEGA games, I never played Shining Force. Your posts make me tempted to try it. Does it play like some of the Snes RPGs?

I always loved Sword of Vermilion, unfortunately it never seemed to have gotten widespread notice and is mostly forgotten today :(.

dscross:

Rangaman:
Shining Force, which I always found was a better game than Phantasy Star and criminally underrated by comparison.

Xprimentyl:
I?ll second Shining Force, both 1 and 2 were (are) amazing games. I bought the Sega Collection when it launched on the 360 just for those games. Shining Force II was the first one I played and the first video game I spent literally DOZENS of hours playing, whether it was grinding out levels or trying to perfect a strategy for one of the many lengthy battles. It was just so much more strategic than the randomness of Final Fantasy encounters and so much more rewarding than the mindless button mashing of hack-n?-slash action titles of the time. I still go back and play those games from time to time.

Strangely, despite my love for classic SEGA games, I never played Shining Force. Your posts make me tempted to try it. Does it play like some of the Snes RPGs?

Not sure how it compares to SNES RPGs (I was on the Sega side of the Great Console Wars of '90s,) but I can best explain it as an RPG of chess. The stories themselves are your stock "unlikely, no-name hero facing ancient, slowly resurrecting evil." You'll travel from place to place building up your party and progressing the story, and in between the story events is where the major battles take place. Your party of up to 12 characters is placed on a battlefield against an enemy army you're ultimately tasked to defeat over the course of a protracted, turn-based battle. Each character has a fixed distance they can move per turn; this is also affected by the terrain they're standing on (e.g.: a character who can normally move 5 spaces who's standing on a sand tile might only be able to move 3 spaces their next turn, flying characters are uninhibited by terrain and can traverse water, etc.) The strategy comes in building the right party, knowing your various strengths and weakness, never letting the party drift too far apart/get surrounded, spreading the experience around to level up your favorite/most useful members and most importantly, keeping the main character alive throughout the battle as his death is a 'game over.' Some battles have boss characters who get more turns than any character on the field which makes planning and strategy paramount as you close in (i.e.: you don't want to spend an hour advancing just to have the boss get two turns in a row and decimate your main character.) Battles can take a LONG time and both games have dozens of them which is why I got so much play time out of them. (Shit, talking about them makes me want to play them now!)

I really hope you check them out; everyone should. Like I said, you can find them both (plus a shit-ton of other great Sega classics) on the Sega Genesis Collection for the Xbox 360; it's probably dirt cheap now considering it was only $30 when it was new like 5-6 years ago.

Three words:

BILLY. FRICKEN. HATCHER.

It's everything Sonic wishes it was. The controls are tight, bugs are minimal, and the platforming is awesome. Its also got an adorable soundtrack and elements of a collectathon.

The game had one printing and was basically buried because no one really cared about it. Once it was discovered that the game was awesome it became kind of a cult classic. To this day I don't believe it gets the recognition it deserves.

dscross:

Who out there still likes the classic SEGA games? Which are your favourites and why would you suggest that modern gamers play them, if you had to recommend them to future generations of gamers. Or tell me some modern ones if there are any...

Hell Yeah Wrath of the Dead Rabbit was an enjoyable little throwback game on last gen (and on Steam still). Pretty heavily influenced by Jazz Jackrabbit if you're at all familiar with that. A little bit over-90s with the humor and at times questionable controls. In an oddity for throwback-style stuff, it did boast at the time, full HD sprites and animation.

Not aware of any actual franchise to it. A cursory wikipedia run says Arkedo actually owns all their stuff, so it wouldn't necesarily be Sega if there was a 2nd go.

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