Posted By: wraggster
Continuing our network wide feature for just about every console thats emulated and that we own, in time it can be used as a reference point for people to look at what games are the very best on each system
Firstly heres a look at each system and a description to remind you of the history of the console.
Sega Mark III / Master System
To compete with the Nintendo Famicom in Japan, Sega released the successor to the Mark I/II and called it Sega Mark III in 1984.
The Mark III could produce great 8 bit graphics with specs superior to the Famicom. The console had two game formats which were cartridges and a Sega "Game Card" format. The cards held only 256K of data (cartridges held over 4 times that amount), but the advantage to both Sega and the consumer was the fact that the cards were cheaper to manufacture, and sold for less then the carts did. Sega also introduced 3D glasses that could be used in some of their games. The Mark III was also backwards compatible with SG-1000 / Mark I & II software.
When Nintendo released the Famicom to America in 1986, Sega had no intentions of letting their rival get all the market share. They redesigned the Mark III, and changed the name to the Sega Master System (SMS). They approached Tonka Toy Distribution to market the SMS, and the console was released three months after the Nintendo NES in 1986.
Although the SMS was an impressive machine, it did not reach the level of success that the NES gained in America. The two reasons for this were poor marketing by Tonka Toys, and software restrictions implemented by Nintendo to third party developers. Third party developers were contractually prohibited from making games for any rival company. This meant that once a company had made a game for the obviously popular NES, they weren?t allowed to make any games at all for the SMS. As a result, the only outside developers for the SMS were Activision and Parker Brothers (though Sega did receive permission to "reprogram" / port numerous games developed by other companies). Sega developed the rest of the games themselves.
Some of Sega's best games started this way. The Popular RPG series "Phantasy Star" made it's first appearance on the Sega Master System. The SMS may not have been as successful as the NES in America, but overseas was another story. The SMS was extremely popular in the UK and Brazil where games were released into the the late 90's. The SMS succeeded overseas because it was much cheaper than the pricey NES, and by that time the second generation of games had been released which really showed of the SMS superior specs.
The SMS was re-released as the Sega Master System II in 1990 with a reduction in features to save money. The card port was cut, as was the power light and Sega logo and music upon starting the machine.
FACT: The Sega Master System featured a built in secret game. Turn the system on without a cartridge inserted, when the instructions pop up hold the D-pad up and push buttons 1 and 2. In the game your goal is to guide a small snail through a series of different maze levels. Not much play value, but it's a nice extra to have.
Sega Master System II was another story. Sega included Alex Kidd in Miracle World as a built-in freebie.
As mentioned, the Master System / Mark III was backwards compatible, but the games appeared with a darker color palette then the original Mark I & II systems.
Thanks again to Dark Watcher for his info above.
Now heres our question to you - Whats the greatest Sega Master System Game Ever ?
For those interested in Master System Games theres a Portable Console with 20 Built in Commercial Games
Plug & play portable video game system
TV out connection
20 built-in 8-bit SEGA licensed games
Function key: start / pause
Direction key: A, B, up, down, left, right
2.4" LCD TFT color screen
Requires 3xAAA size batteries. (battery not included)
Official product, containing games authorized by SEGA
The PlayPal Portable is a video game player, which is pre-loaded with 20 classic games from SEGA Master System and Game Gear games. There is no need to buy game cartridges. The high quality 2.4” TFT LCD and built-in speakers allows arcade like playing experience in the palm of your hand. The PlayPal Portable game player has an A/V connector and with the included cable the player can be connected to any TV. The built-in SEGA games provide action adventure while testing your intelligence and skill. Enjoy playing classic SEGA games anytime, anywhere with the new PlayPal Portable video game Player.
- Super Columns
- Astro Warrior
- Kung Fu Kid
- Bomber Raid
- Sonic Triple Trouble
- Sonic Drift 2
- Alex Kidd in High Tech World
- Alex Kidd in Miracle World
- Altered Beast
- Assault City
- Aztec Adventure
- Global Defense
- Fantasy Zone
- Fantasy Zone the Maze
- Penguin Land
- ECCO Tides of Time
- Snail Maze
- The Ninja
On sale at Play Asia for US$ 29.90 (~15.25 GBP)
More DCEmu Console History Can Be Found Here
Previous History Topics:
3DO a History & Whats the greatest 3DO Game Ever ?
PC Engine a History & Whats the greatest PC Engine Game Ever ?
Atari2600 a History & Whats the greatest Atari2600 Game Ever ?
Playstation2 a History & Whats the greatest PS2 Game Ever ?
Nintendo 64 a History & Whats the greatest Nintendo 64 Game Ever ?
Nintendo Gamecube a History & Whats the greatest Gamecube Game Ever ?
Sega Genesis/Megadrive a History & Whats the greatest Game Ever ?
Sony Playstation a History & Whats the greatest PSone Game Ever ?
Sega Dreamcast a History & Whats the greatest Dreamcast Game Ever ?
Nintendo NES / Famicom a History & Whats the greatest NES Game Ever ?
Snes a History & Whats the greatest Snes Game Ever ?