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racketboy
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Re: Nominate Hidden Gems for the Sega Game Gear

by racketboy Tue Dec 05, 2017 12:33 pm

Exhuminator wrote:
racketboy wrote:- Please nominate your favorite less-well known games for the handheld
- It would help a lot if you share some thoughts on what made it special or interesting


GG Aleste (Japan) = Amazing shmup, one of the two best on the system.
GG Aleste II (Japan) AKA Power Strike II (EU) = Amazing shmup, the other best on the system.
Gunstar Heroes (Japan) = Surprisingly faithful port of the Genesis original.
Head Buster (Japan) (Has English fan translation.) = Fun mech combat strategy game.
Madou Monogatari I - 3-Tsu no Madoukyuu (Japan) (Has English fan translation.) = Cutesy dungeon crawler by Compile.
Pop Breaker (Japan) (English friendly.) = Very unique, very difficult, very fun hybrid of shmup + logic puzzler.
Psychic World (USA, Europe) = Unique platformer that's a little different than the other ports.
Sylvan Tale (Japan) (Has English fan translation.) = High quality action-RPG sorta similar to Zelda.

Well that's a start. Maybe I'll remember some more later.


And it seems like the Game Gear is region-free, correct? (For those that aren't emulating)
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Re: Nominate Hidden Gems for the Sega Game Gear

by samsonlonghair Tue Dec 05, 2017 12:47 pm

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers was a popular franchise, but that popularity lead to a glut of games with the same title and widely different quality. Here's my write up for an oft overlooked hidden gem on Game Gear.

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers on Game Gear is a surprisingly good Beat 'em up / Boss Rush. In fact, it's arguably the best Power Ranger game on any Sega Platform. Mighty Morphin Power Rangers was developed and published by Sims Co. Ltd. (a joint venture of Sega Enterprises and Sanritsu Denki Ltd.) who also published Tails Sky Patrol and Aladdin on Game Gear as well as Outrun 2019 on Genesis and Ninja Gaiden on Master System.

Sims makes good use of the Game Gear's color pallet in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. The sprites are HUGE and detailed, but the backgrounds are small and bland. This game utilizes cut screen cinematic pans in the style of "Ninja Gaiden" to tell a coherent story.

Power Rangers is inherently repetitive, and Beat 'em Ups are inherently repetitive... so it's probably no surprise that the main criticism against Mighty Morphin Power Rangers on Game Gear is the repetitiveness. Sims endeavored to break up the repetitiveness of the genre by giving the Player many characters select, by programming in a wide move set for each of the selectable characters, by focusing on "Boss Rush" more than traditional Beat 'em Up goons, and by changing from standard ground combat to larger-than-life Zord battle sequences.

The player can choose to fight as any of the five original Rangers (each of whom has unique special attacks), and the player can pick a different Ranger every time they start a level. After defeating the "Evil" Green Ranger, the player can then select the Green Ranger as a sixth playable character.

The goons of Might Morphin Power Rangers are the Putty Patrol, but the player doesn't need to waste much time fighting these bland, basic enemies. The Game Gear does not have sufficient memory to push too many on-screen sprites simultaneously, so Sims wisely choose to focus their design on "Boss Rush" rather than on traditional beat 'em up mob mechanics. After graduating from fighting waves of Putty Patrol, the Player spends most of the game fighting colorful boss monsters. It's undeniable that the player fights the same bosses multiple times, but Sims has another trick to break up that malaise as well.

Fighting the same boss monster twice isn't so bad when the second time is a larger-than-life Zord battle sequence. Each Zord Battle is preceded by an opening cinematic sequence. The core mechanics of the game don't change much in a Zord battle, but the suspension of disbelief allows the player to feel like he's in a larger battle. This contributes to Sims notable efforts in breaking up the repetitiveness inherent to a Power Rangers beat 'em up game. In addition to the six Ranger characters, the player also gets to play as the MegaZord. After defeating the Green Ranger, the player can also select the DragonZord and later the MegaDragonZord (DragonZord Battle Mode). Counting the Rangers and the Zords, this gives the player the option to play as nine total characters. Not bad, Sims, not bad.

It would be easy to overlook Mighty Morphin Power Rangers on Game Gear in a sea of Power Rangers games on various platforms with the same title. Retrogamers should not overlook this hidden gem. Sims also published a sequel in 1995 called "Power Rangers the Movie" on Game Gear utilizing the much of the same code and gameplay style with updated sprites and new enemies.
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Exhuminator
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Re: Nominate Hidden Gems for the Sega Game Gear

by Exhuminator Tue Dec 05, 2017 1:38 pm

racketboy wrote:the Game Gear is region-free, correct?

Correct!
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Re: Nominate Hidden Gems for the Sega Game Gear

by Sarge Tue Dec 05, 2017 1:53 pm

I think the biggest one for me is Defenders of Oasis. I think it's probably the best traditional RPG on the system.

Don't know if Disney games should count, but I played Deep Duck Trouble on SMS, and the Game Gear port is quite good, too.

Also, Master of Darkness ended up getting ported as well. I expect the shrunken dimensions reduce the experience a bit, but it's a fun time regardless, and the game is toothless compared to its obvious Castlevania inspiration.

I'll vote for the Shinobi games, too. I'm not sure how "hidden" they are, but both are fun.
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Re: Nominate Hidden Gems for the Sega Game Gear

by alienjesus Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:30 pm

I'm interested in this topic to see which games get mentioned which aren't superior on the Master System. I'm not saying games on both consoles shouldn't be nominated, absolutely they should, but I think the Game Gear struggles to stand out to me due to it's very similar library.

On a seperate topic, has anyone ever had their Game Gear modded with one of those new LCD screens? I'm pretty tempted but it's expensive.
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Re: Nominate Hidden Gems for the Sega Game Gear

by samsonlonghair Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:55 pm

alienjesus wrote:I'm interested in this topic to see which games get mentioned which aren't superior on the Master System. I'm not saying games on both consoles shouldn't be nominated, absolutely they should, but I think the Game Gear struggles to stand out to me due to it's very similar library.

Likewise, I think that it's important to bring out games that aren't superior on the Master System or Genesis. That's why I nominated Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. It's a totally different game from the Genesis Power Rangers, and what's more, the Game Gear version is the BETTER game. :mrgreen:
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Re: Nominate Hidden Gems for the Sega Game Gear

by racketboy Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:14 pm

samsonlonghair wrote:
alienjesus wrote:I'm interested in this topic to see which games get mentioned which aren't superior on the Master System. I'm not saying games on both consoles shouldn't be nominated, absolutely they should, but I think the Game Gear struggles to stand out to me due to it's very similar library.

Likewise, I think that it's important to bring out games that aren't superior on the Master System or Genesis. That's why I nominated Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. It's a totally different game from the Genesis Power Rangers, and what's more, the Game Gear version is the BETTER game. :mrgreen:


This would be a very good rule of thumb to keep in mind. If there's some that are almost as good and a great game, we can mention that (as a portable version may be preferred), but that may be a minority of actual use-cases in the present scenario.
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Re: Nominate Hidden Gems for the Sega Game Gear

by Exhuminator Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:18 pm

samsonlonghair wrote:Likewise, I think that it's important to bring out games that aren't superior on the Master System or Genesis. That's why I nominated Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. It's a totally different game from the Genesis Power Rangers, and what's more, the Game Gear version is the BETTER game.

This is the same thing with the Master System Aleste/Power Strike games. Even though they share the same titles, the Game Gear Aleste/Power Strike iterations are different games.
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Re: Nominate Hidden Gems for the Sega Game Gear

by samsonlonghair Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:41 am

racketboy wrote:
samsonlonghair wrote:
alienjesus wrote:I'm interested in this topic to see which games get mentioned which aren't superior on the Master System. I'm not saying games on both consoles shouldn't be nominated, absolutely they should, but I think the Game Gear struggles to stand out to me due to it's very similar library.

Likewise, I think that it's important to bring out games that aren't superior on the Master System or Genesis. That's why I nominated Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. It's a totally different game from the Genesis Power Rangers, and what's more, the Game Gear version is the BETTER game. :mrgreen:


This would be a very good rule of thumb to keep in mind. If there's some that are almost as good and a great game, we can mention that (as a portable version may be preferred), but that may be a minority of actual use-cases in the present scenario.

I'm not 100% sure I understand what you're saying here, Racket. Aren't we looking for the minority here? Isn't that what makes them hidden Gems? Maybe I need more sleep. Im not reading your smoke signals, dude.

Downsampled "almost as good" ports of console games are the obvious choices for Game Gear, you know? Streets of Rage is an amazing game on Genesis, and it's a pretty good game on Game Gear... but who cares? It's not a hidden gem if it's obvious, right?
Exhuminator wrote:This is the same thing with the Master System Aleste/Power Strike games. Even though they share the same titles, the Game Gear Aleste/Power Strike iterations are different games.
That's pretty interesting, Ex. I never knew that before.
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Re: Nominate Hidden Gems for the Sega Game Gear

by Anapan Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:53 am

Agreed with others about what's underrated. In it's day I would figure the downported IPs from consoles and arcades would be the defining games I guess (sonics, streets of rage, shinobi, lemmings, castle of illusion, mortal kombat etc.).
Anyway, here's my picks:

I'll easily second Sylvan Tale & Power Strike II - both the best of their genres on the system imo.
Tails' Adventures - a metroidvania-like game - platforming that's actually playable with the passive matrix screen. (not unknown?)
Devilish - breakout, pinball, vertical-scrolling mashup
Magical Puzzle Popils (eu: Popils: The Blockbusting Challenge) - great puzzle gameplay if you're into such things.
Tempo Jr. - Is this underrated/unknown? Fun game anyway.
Batman Returns - Surprisingly competent Beat-em-up - I usually avoid movie-games.


About the screen replacement - The integer scaling without 1:1 pixel mapping ruled it out for me. With a low resolution like that and seeing some pixels take up two of the pixels on the LCD and some take only one - it would drive me nuts.
Image - even the vertical scanlines can't hide that scaling algorithm. If it did bilinear I'd buy it instantly.
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