In Defense of… Sega CD
A couple weeks ago…
Me: I’m here to pickup my reserved copy of Marvel vs Capcom3
Gamestop Employee: Cool, and would you like to reserve anything else? Mortal Kombat perhaps?
Me: Well no… not yet at least, I’m somewhat on the fence. I lost track of MK around part 4. So I guess it’s good they’re getting back to basics with having it take place during Mortal Kombat 1 and 2… but then there’s Kratos…
Gamestop Employee: Yeah! He fits in so well!
Me: …. *I try to think how the heck Kratos fits into the already confusing storyline of MK, was he there the whole time?? Was he the super hidden character in Mortal Komat 1 if I beat the game with Ermac?*
Me: Er right, well maybe next time…
Gamestop Employee: Ok, well… *he struggles to try to think of another fighting game* Hm.. Fight Night Champion?
Me: Hehe… now you’re just reaching… although I have been tempted to reserve the 3DO… but maybe next time.
Gamestop Employee: 3DO? ….You mean the 3DS?
Me: Er yeah.. *but really, I think I would have been happier with a 3DO*
:::FAST FORWARD TO NOW, and cue my rant:::
Now I admit, I love a lot of things that deserved to be bashed, but the Sega CD is not one of those things. The 3DO was a symbol of a time of when cd-gaming technology was cutting-edge, and as a kid I so badly wanted my own system that could produce cd-quality music and cinema-worthy visuals. The 3DO was a bit too pricey at the time, but I did manage, one Christmas, to get a Sega CD…. and it was awesome,
I still have my model 2, and play it fairly regularly, to the confusion of my younger brother. Him, and gamers like him, consider the Sega CD to be a complete failure. Their common complaints:
– Long Load Times
– The FMV games are like movies… really bad movies!
– Needs its own AC power supply
– Terrible Library of games
Granted, I hate how it needs it’s own power supply, but the rest of the complaints are rubbish. First of all, one needs to keep in mind that the Sega CD is not meant to be a separate system, nor replace the Sega Genesis/Megadrive. It is an “add-on” that gives your Sega Genesis console the ability to play CD games and audio CDs. It’s just adding another dimension onto the existing hardware, and was never meant to replace it.
Now I’m going to test the first complaint about the long load time, back in a sec.
Ok, back, I timed the loading startup for Ecco the Dolphin CD at around eight seconds, rounding up. Not instantaneous, but HARDLY what I’d consider “Long”. If it is taking awhile for a game to load, it’s usually because there’s some blemish or small scratches on the disc itself, which might also cause the game to freeze every now and then. However this is not the fault of the system, but the owner’s responsibility to take care of their games.
Now I admit that the FMV games were like really bad movies, but who doesn’t like bad scifi movies? Sewer Shark, Night Trap, Double Switch and Wirehead are just a few examples of bad scifi done RIGHT.
However the Sega CD didn’t just have cheesy FMV to offer, but also plenty of other very good titles including:
Shining Force CD
Brutal: Paws of Fury (ok ok, it’s a personal favorite of mine)
Final Fight CD
Rise of the Dragon
I could go on, but one must admit that’s a pretty impressive list of A+ titles for an add-on that had such a short life. Terrible library of games? I don’t think so.
Also it is very easy to collect for. CD titles are very affordable (although there are a few of them that go for a lot, namely Snatcher) and the unit itself goes for pretty cheap on ebay. The only downside is that one should be wary of used games, since the slightest scratch on these old discs could really ruin the game. So try to get mint/near mint as much as possible.
If all of that still hasn’t convinced you that the Sega CD wasn’t terrible, then keep this in mind. You have probably heard of the Sega CD. How about some of its cd-based competitors?
Commodore Amiga CD32 (It was pretty revolutionary… but not nearly as successful as the Sega CD)
Jaguar CD (I love the Jag, but even I can’t defend that)
Neo Geo CD (The Neo Geo AES was not nearly as successful as it should have been, the CD addon had a similar fate)
So how exactly did the Sega CD fail again? I think some people get it mixed up with another Sega add-on that was doomed from the beginning…
Oh, and it’s March 1st. Happy birthday Chun-Li
– Furry Senpai