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MEGA ALL-TIME TOP 100 - July 1992

1. John Madden Football '92 (inc. John Madden Football)

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released December 1991/December 1990

Shock! Horror! It isn't Sonic! No, and there's a very good reason for that - Sonic is a wonderful, beautiful game, but you can finish it in a week without trying too hard. John Madden, on the other hand, came out at the end of 1990, but still gets played in the MEGA office to this very day. You might not care for American football as a sport, but spend 30 minutes getting into John Madden's and you'll forget all about it - first and foremost, this is simply a brilliant video game. It's pretty fab as a single- player game (it'll take you ages to get the better of the 'All Madden' team), but played with a friend it'll last you a lifetime, whether you go for the brutally competitive head-to-head mode or the super-chummy two-players-against-the-Mega-Drive team mode. The sequel a year later added varying weather conditions and slicked the whole thing up significantly, and while you'd have to be a little bit mad to buy both versions, you'd have to be completely and utterly out of your tree to own a Mega Drive and not get this astonishingly enduring game.

MEGA Says: The best American Football game ever? Yep. The best sports game of any kind ever? Definitely. The best Mega Drive game of all time full stop? You bet.

 

2. Sonic The Hedgehog

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released August 1991

Okay, so it isn't Number One, but you didn't think it could seriously be any lower than this, did you? It's quite possible that this is the most famous video game ever - it's certainly the one that, more than anything else, lifted console games out of the spotty schoolboy ghetto and into the real-world limelight where they truly belong. Ask any rock star worth his salt these days who Sonic is and the chances are they'll not only know, but will then proceed to bore the pants off you with incredible tales of how they once completed Green Zone 1 in 28 seconds, and now demand that a Mega Drive running Sonic is placed in the dressing room at every gig they play. Yeah, it's a bit easy to finish, but why be selfish - isn't it nice that everyone gets a chance to see the end sequence for once? Anyway, there's so much hidden away in Sonic The Hedgehog and it's just so much damn fun to play that you'll never get bored with it, no matter how many times you whup nasty ol' Dr Robotnik's ass. And if you don't still get a buzz when Sonic loops the loop at maximum speed with his superfast boots on, get someone to check your pulse immediately - you may be dead.

MEGA Says: Still the most technically stunning game the Mega Drive's ever seen, and the standard-bearer of a whole new era of video games. Completely amazing, completely brilliant.

 

3. Aero Blasters

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

If you're one of the not-very-many people who've played this brilliant game in the arcades (under the name of Air Busters, more likely than not), you won't need telling what a fantastic, all-action, exciting and varied blastathon it is. If you aren't One Of Those People, then be told right now - Aero Blasters is the fastest, meanest, sexiest, joypad-grippingly sweatiest son of a bitch shoot-'em-up there's ever been. More impressive-looking than most Mega Drive zappers, more innovatively designed, better off in the end-of-level boss department, and with frighteningly fast and dangerous tunnel sections that provide the biggest wide-eyed thrills you'll ever get from your console. If you reckon you're a bit of a shoot-'em-up demon, try Aero Blasters on Hard level and prove it or die trying. You probably will die trying though, because you'll probably prefer to starve rather than stop playing this one once you get started.

MEGA Says: The best Mega Drive shoot-'em-up ever, without the tiniest shadow of a doubt. Your game collection shouldn't be without it.

 

4. Super Monaco GP 2 (inc. Super Monaco G.P.)

Publisher SEGA

Price 50

Released June 1992

Right, we've had the sports game, the platform game and the shoot-'em-up. What's missing? Of course, the driving game! Super Monaco GP (incidentally, does anyone else remember Sega's original Monaco GP arcade game? Nope, thought not.) was the most popular driving coin-op since Out Run, and the staggering graphics were thought by many to be completely impossible on a Mega Drive. And indeed they were, but disappointment turned to joy within seconds of loading this cart into the slot - the graphics may only be alright, but the gameplay is astonishing. Superb, definable control, high-speed adrenalin-pumping driving, but a bit of strategic depth to keep things interesting after the first few days too. Like John Madden's, the sequel improves significantly on the earlier game (without really changing it very much - again, you don't want them both unless you've got more money than sense), especially in the area of car handling (thanks to input from Ayrton Senna), but with something that started off as fab as Super Monaco GP, that's still just window-dressing. Essential stuff.

MEGA Says: The competition isn't really up to much as far as F1 racing goes, but even so, you'd have to go a long, long way to come up with a better driving game than this one. (And you'll probably have to wait a long, long time for someone to write one, anyway).

 

5. EA Hockey

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released Spetember 1991

You might not think ice hockey was a very good idea for a real-life-to-Mega-Drive conversion, and let's face it, you'd be right. Amazingly though, by some astonishing quirk of fate, EA have managed to turn it into a brilliant game anyway! Taking a strange top-down scrolling viewpoint seems even dafter, but it works beautifully, and the gameplay is as perfect as you could ever hope for it to be. Mind you, just like in the real thing, the best bit is when the gloves come off and the punch-ups start...

MEGA Says: Another fabulous sport sim from EA - how do they do it?

 

6. Quackshot

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released March 1992

Yes, it's another platformer, yes, it's another Disney licence, yes, it's a bit of a clone of Mickey Mouse's Castle Of Illusion, but none of that matters one bit. Why not? Because Quackshot (even labouring under the burden of starring Donald 'can't even speak properly' Duck) is excellent fun. It looks lush, it sounds lovely, and it's action-quacked (I'm really sorry about that) from start to finish. Not much else to say about it really, except get it!

MEGA Says: Are you deaf? We said GET IT!

 

7. Road Rash

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released September 1991

So you've played Super Monaco 2 to death, huh? You're after more racing, but something with a bit more of an edge to it, right? You want Road Rash, mate. It might sound like a nasty disease you get after spending too long in a sweaty boiler suit, but in fact Road Rash is a brilliant motorbiking race game with a difference - you don't just get to overtake your competitors, you get to smash their heads in as well! Hurtle down five dangerous courses at suicidal speeds, avoiding traffic and speed cops as well as other racers, make your fortune only to spend it all on new and ever-faster bikes, and wear your knuckles down riding alongside your enemies and punching them in the face - this game's got the lot!

MEGA Says: Superbly atmospheric full-throttle romp that's arguably even more entertaining than Super Monaco GP, if a little less sophisticated. Whatever the arguments, though, there's no denying that Road Rash is a true classic. Don't miss it.

 

8. Rainbow Islands

Publisher

Price 40

Released IMPORT

Already hailed as the best 16-bit computer game of all time, Rainbow Islands has come to the Mega Drive and, miraculously, got even better. The impossibly addictive platform action is the same as ever, the amazingly cute graphics are as sweet as ever, and the devilishly fiendish hidden bonuses are as devilishly fiendishly hidden as ever, but with Mega Drive Rainbow Islands you get a whole extra game on top! Well, it's more of a variation than a completely different game, true, but the extra, harder version extends the life of a game which was already practically immortal, and makes it just about the best value-for-money investment you'll ever see in an arcade platformer. At once incredibly simple and deeply complex, Rainbow Islands is right up there at the peak of the platform programmers' art.

MEGA Says: If you've got a UK Mega Drive, this game is worth buying a Jap adaptor for all by itself. Seriously beautiful, incomparably playable and unbeatably addictive.

 

9. Sword Of Vermillion

Publisher SEGA

Price 50

Released July 1991

Try not to be put off by the fearsome price tag on this one, because if you're into all that RPG hacking'n'slashing malarkey, it'll be money well spent. Sword Of Vermillion is probably the best game of the type on the Mega Drive, and in a market that's becoming more crowded by the day, that's no mean feat. Big, slick and sexy.

MEGA Says: Look, you're as well to spend 50 on something excellent as waste 35 on something average, aren't you? Quality costs, but it's usually worth it.

 

10. Hellfire

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released June 1992

The only serious competition to Aero Blasters in the space-blast department, Hellfire is Number One in a different field - if the Mega Drive's ever seen a more accurate coin-op conversion than this, we'd like to know what it is. A clever and imaginative shoot-'em-up, Hellfire makes you think before you zap with four switchable weapon systems which have to be employed with expert speed and accuracy if you're going to make any progress through the game. The end-of-level bosses have had a bit more thought put into their design than the usual 'find the weak spot and sit and pummel it for a couple of minutes' routine, and the graphics change enough from level to level to make it a real joy when you discover what's in store in each new stage. You get a lot of continues, which makes it a bit easy to complete, but hey - nothing's perfect.

MEGA Says: Great stuff, although it pales a bit in the frenetic action department when you put it alongside Aero Blasters. If you find that one a bit too demanding, though, this'll be right up your street. A superb game.

 

11. Golden Axe 2 (inc. Golden Axe)

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released December 1990

What's that? You want some beat-'em-ups? Oh, all right then. If you're one of those strange people who likes nothing better than to wander in straight lines through strange lands kicking lumps out of the previously-happy inhabitants, then you'll probably like Golden Axe better than anything else in the whole wide world. The two games are to all intents and purposes identical, a simple walk-along-and-hit-fire-a-lot-whenever-you- meet-anyone kind of affair, but the execution is lovely, with impressively muscular sprites and some great attacking moves (not that you really have very much control over them). The five big levels will keep you entertained for quite a while, and while it's all very repetitive the scenery is pretty enough to make you want to keep at it until you see the end. Whether you'll want to play it again after that is a different matter altogether.

MEGA Says: The best game in a very limited genre. Isn't it about time you got into something a little bit more interesting than this?

 

12. PGA Tour Golf

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released June 1991

By way of a contrast, there isn't a lot of competition in the golf field (Shouldn't that be 'course'? - Ed), but what there is, PGA Tour is miles in front of. The graphics are exquisite, the control is practically perfect, loads of people can play at once, it's got every option you could possibly want, and there's even a battery back-up. Nothing else so far captures that elusive 'wandering around a beautiful landscape pausing occasionally to batter a harmless little ball around with a series of big sticks' atmosphere as well as PGA does, so if golf is your bag (ho ho), this is your game.

MEGA Says: The best golf game there is, and also the best Mega Drive game for more than two players. Why not club together with your mates and buy it? (Sorry.)

 

13. Toejam And Earl

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released February 1992

Speaking of multi-player action, though, it doesn't get a lot more entertaining than this. Toejam (urgh!) and Earl are two of the grooviest aliens you could ask to have a close encounter with, which is part of the reason it's such a pleasure to help them out on their quest to rebuild their crashed spaceship. The rest of the reason, though, is the superbly manic and zany action as our two heroes career around the screen, causing havoc wherever they go. Original and insane, you'll love this one.

MEGA Says: Another okay game which becomes completely essential when played with someone else. Got any friends? Buy this. No friends? Buy this and make some.

 

14. Thunderforce 3

Publisher TECHNOSOFT

Price 30

Released November 1991

Of course, with Thunderforce 4 on the way shortly, it might seem a bit premature to rush out and buy this now, but if you don't you'll be missing out on some of the best blasting mayhem this side of, er, anything. Not only that, but you'll be missing out on the chance to make your mates go 'Woo!' at some of the best visual effects yet seen on the Mega Drive. It's not all cosmetics, though - Thunderforce III is also a damn fine shoot-'em-up in its own right. If you're a zapping fan, this is another one of those 'must-haves', basically.

MEGA Says: Gorgeous blaster, perhaps slightly better to look at than play, but that's mainly only because it's so bloody wonderful to look at. Sweet.

 

15. Phantasy Star 3

Publisher SEGA

Price 50

Released December 1991

A completely huge RPG, with loads of different worlds and a whole gang of characters to control. Try and complete this one in a night without using the battery back-up...

MEGA Says: It's a lot of money, but in terms of hours of fun per pound, you'll be hard pushed to beat this one.

 

16. Robocod

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released January 1992

Converted from, but significantly improved on, the 16-bit computer classic, Robocod was the game that took on Sonic at his own game and didn't make a half-bad stab at it. It's a little, er, spacey in bits, but for the most part this gigantic platformer is busy and impressive. Exceptionally pretty, and funny too, this is one of the best hedgehog clones you can buy.

MEGA Says: Great little game, with a different feel to most platformers (largely thanks to your extendable character...) A right good laugh, and no mistake.

 

17. Lakers Versus Celtic

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

Not THE Celtic, surely?

MEGA Says: No, it's just another American Football game. Ah well...

 

18. Decap Attack

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released January 1992

At first glance you'll probably go 'Yeuch', but if you persist with Decap Attack past the first 20 seconds you'll suddenly discover that you're having a brilliant time, thanks to the rollicking platform escapades that make up this wonderfully tasteless game. Controlling a character with an extra, telescopic, head in his ribcage is simply great fun, and the cheesy music complements the gameplay perfectly.

MEGA Says: Ropey graphics, but don't let that put you off this gorgeous and funny platformer.

 

19. Ghouls 'n' Ghosts

Publisher SEGA

Price 45

Released February 1991

A frighteningly tough coin-op conversion, but hey - it's not as if you have to shovel money into the thing, so who cares? You'll certainly not be seeing the end of this one the same day you buy it, and that's even with infinite continues. The graphics and sound are both practically flawless, and this is generally one of the best arcade ports around.

MEGA Says: Ghouls'n'Ghosts is the business - and for once it's decent value for money as well as being great short-term arcade fun. Go for it!

 

20. Populous

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released December 1990

Immensely strange and original god-simulator game where you hold sway over the very shape of the land itself as you try to create an army of followers to defeat an opposing deity. Slightly forbidding at first with a mass of controls to get the hang of, but once you're in you'll probably never want to come back out.

MEGA Says: One of the most compulsive games ever invented. There's nothing else like it on the Mega Drive, so don't miss it.

 

21. Streets Of Rage

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released January 1992

If every third Mega Drive game that gets released is a beat-'em-up, how come hardly any of them are any good? Thankfully, that's a question that Streets Of Rage doesn't have to answer, because it's great stuff. Lovely backdrops, loads of athletic fighting moves and an imaginative approach to special weapons (the police car firing rockets from half-a-dozen screens back and still managing to pick off the bad guys with pinpoint accuracy - brilliant!) all go together to make this the most challenging and rewarding game the Mega Drive has to offer in the genre.

MEGA Says: If you want a beat-'em-up, there is no alternative (well, except Golden Axe).

 

22. Castle Of Illusion

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released May 1991

Mickey Mouse, eh? Don't you just love 'im? No matter what he does, no matter where he goes, his little mousey ears always stay perfectly round. Yep, even when he appears in really lovely platform adventures like this one, with all manner of strange and beautiful Disney-style fantasy creatures trying to off him in a deeply unfriendly manner as he tries to rescue his sweet mouse babe from the excellently-named witch Mizrabel. What a trouper.

MEGA Says: A lovely platform epic very much in the style of (whisper it) Mario, except without all that tedious head-butting palaver. Gorgeous to look and and gorgeous to play, the whole family will love this one.

 

23. Shining In The Darkness

Publisher SEGA

Price 45

Released March 1992

Gorgeous, mammoth RPG (as opposed to a gorgeous mammoth RPG, which would be a completely different proposition), with lovely aesthetics and gameplay to keep you entranced for months.

MEGA Says: A bit of a must for RPG fans, but even if you're not into the genre, give this a try. You might be surprised.

 

24. Phantasy Star 2

Publisher SEGA

Price 60

Released February 1991

Not quite as big and sexy as Phantasy Star 3, obviously, but pretty damn impressive all the same.

MEGA Says: Great stuff, but at this price it's strictly for the absolute fanatics.

 

25. Batman

Publisher

Price 35

Released IMPORT

Nothing massively (or even tinily) original here, just lots of wandering around platforms and mazes beating up Bat-opponents. Plenty of action but not many thrills.

MEGA Says: Well, y'know, if you're really after a Batman game...

 

26. Desert Strike

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released April 1992

Yes, okay, so it's in extremely poor taste, but you can't deny that Desert Strike is one of the most excellent pieces of blasting fun that the Mega Drive's ever played host to. Sometimes it can feel like you're fighting the entire war yourself, what with missions to complete, hundreds of enemies to blast and all manner of stuff to rescue with your helicopter's all-purpose winch, but even if you're not the xenophobic type you'll be hard pushed not to have a great time with this atmospheric and action-packed shoot-'em-up.

MEGA Says: Never mind the plotline, go out and get yourself enlisted today. Desert Strike is a great game, and that's the only thing that really matters.

 

27. Speedball 2

Publisher IMAGE WORKS

Price 35

Released March 1992

And while we're on the subject of extreme violence, it doesn't come much more extreme than this. Nominally a future sports sim, Speedball 2 is actually football meets Rollerball meets bare-knuckle boxing in a frantic and immensely brutal festival of blood and guts. There's plenty of room for skill and strategy too, though, which means that for an all-round sporting experience, Speedball 2's hard to beat (up).

MEGA Says: Very much an arcade sports game (rather than the more tactical approach favoured by, say, John Madden's), this is about as good as arcade sports games get. Totally vicious and totally excellent.

 

28. F-22 Interceptor

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released January 1992

There aren't many flight sims around on the Mega Drive, which is most of the reason that this is the best one, to be honest. Fab graphics, but the gameplay gets repetitive a bit too quickly for our liking.

MEGA Says: If you want a flight sim, this is about as good as they currently get.

 

29. Strider

Publisher SEGA

Price 45

Released June 1991

Amazing graphics, superb sound, lovely animation and some of the biggest and baddest enemies you'll ever meet are the ingredients of Strider. Pretty simplistic platform-leaping beat-'em-up is the order of the day here, but Strider does it better than most, and it does it looking better than almost anything. Oh yeah, and the 'running down the side of a mountain' sequence is just about worth the money by itself.

MEGA Says: You'll finish it in two days, but if you want something to show your friends the power of a Mega Drive, this is the game that'll make them go 'Gosh, wow' the most.

 

30. Revenge Of Shinobi

Publisher

Price 35

Released

Excellent follow-up to the popular arcade beat-'em-up, Revenge Of Shinobi looks great and sounds excellent, and although you've seen the format a hundred times, this one's so well done that you can forgive it any amount of unoriginality.

MEGA Says: Super stuff, with top special effects and just plain special gameplay. (If you can be 'plain special', that is).

 

31. ESWAT

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released April 1991

Bearing only the slightest of resemblance to the coin-op of the same name, ESWAT luckily manages to be an even better game than its arcade counterpart. It's got a bit more to it than the coin-op's limited beat-'em-up formula, and although it's still no Sword Of Vermillion, there's just about enough thinking to keep you interested to the end.

MEGA Says: There are literally dozens of this type of game around, but this is one of the relatively few that are actually worth having. Pretty simplistic, but still involving and addictive.

 

32. Shadow Dancer

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released May 1991

ESWAT with a dog.

MEGA Says: More fab scrolling beat-'em-up action, and you'll find yourself getting really attached to your little ninja pooch, too. Well worth a bang.

 

33. Blockout

Publisher

Price

Released

Your brain will never forgive you. Imagine Tetris, played looking down a well, with three-dimensional vector-graphic wireframe blocks which can be moved, turned and rotated in each of the three axes. Having problems imagining it? Just you try playing it, mate.

MEGA Says: Complete mind torture, but if you're a professional mathematician or just really really relaxed, you'll get some serious puzzling fun out of this one. Strictly for the hardy, though.

 

34. Taz Mania

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released July 1992

The most cartoon-like game so far, Taz Mania stars that lovable psychopath the Tasmanian Devil in a Sonic-like game of epic proportions. It's beautiful, it's hilarious, but it's also a bit repetitive and none too tough to get to the end of. If you've got a Looney Tunes-loving younger brother or sister, though (or if you ARE a Looney Tunes-loving younger brother or sister, or if you're just really crap at games), this is absolutely ideal.

MEGA Says: Brilliantly entertaining, but not all that demanding, Taz Mania is perfect for the kids, or if you can afford to splash out lots of dosh for games you'll finish in three days. But then, isn't that better than spending 40 on something and only ever seeing the first two levels?

 

35. Kid Chameleon

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released May 1992

Ultra-cute platform thing with lots of really neat touches, but it's way too easy and not all that exciting in play.

MEGA Says: Not too bad, but you can do much better.

 

36. Terminator

Publisher VIRGIN

Price 40

Released July 1992

You're really enjoying yourself, you're marvelling at the lush graphics, you're being blown away by the non-stop all-action platform shoot-'em-up gameplay, you're blasting through the fourth level and... oh, that's it then, eh?

MEGA Says: Lovely game, but there's not nearly enough of it. Shame.

 

37. Two Crude Dudes

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

Well, it's a beat-'em-up, and it's got some crude dudes in it. Er...

MEGA Says: Does anyone know any more good synonyms for 'average'? I'm getting stuck.

 

38. Afterburner 2

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released May 1991

All style and no content, the arcade version of Afterburner threw the player and his lunch all around a hydraulic cockpit while simultaneously flinging huge graphics at the screen so fast that all you could do was wrench the joystick around wildly, keep your finger locked on the trigger and hope desperately for the best. Mega Drive Afterburner recreates the feel of the coin-op perfectly, except that you'll have to get someone to come round and jiggle your chair for you while you play. What else is there to say?

MEGA Says: Er, this, I suppose. Afterburner 2 (ie Afterburner) is excellent short-term blasting, but it's thinner than gold plating on a window and there are plenty other shoot-'em-ups that'll give you bigger thrills.

 

39. Buck Rogers

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 50

Released April 1992

Tacky graphics but tons of depth in this strategic RPG thing. But where's Tweaky?

MEGA Says: Very nice, but wouldn't it have been better to use the licence for a good old-fashioned shoot-'em-up?

 

40. New Zealand Story

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

Another classic coin-op that's seen incarnations on just about every format imaginable, but the Mega Drive version takes an unexpected twist by being less of a conversion than a rearrangement of the original. All the same features found in the arcade game are present and correct, but the level layouts and structures are almost completely different. While this is a bit of a bummer for arcade perfectionists, it means that New Zealand Story fans now have a whole new game to play, and that can't be a bad thing.

MEGA Says: New Zealand Story on the Mega Drive is as cute, clever and addictive as it ever was, so who cares if all the bits are in different places? Not us, that's for sure.

 

41. F-1 Grand Prix

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

 

42. Truxton

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released November 1990

Shoot-'em-up, huh? Vertical scrolling, huh? Bit easy to beat, aren't you? Don't call us, son...

MEGA Says: Decent enough effort, good fun to pick up and play every now and again, but it'll never change your life, or even give you one especially wonderful evening. Ho-hum.

 

43. Columns

Publisher SEGA

Price 30

Released June 1991

The game they give away with the Game Gear, and it's easy to see why - it's worth buying one of the fabby little machines just to play this. Except, of course, you don't have to. This brilliant cross between Tetris and Klax is better on the Mega Drive than anywhere else, thanks mainly to the fact that the graphics are big enough to let you actually see what's going on. Great stuff solo, but the two-player head-to-head 'Flash' game is unbelievably competitive and totally wonderful. The best Mega Drive puzzle game going.

MEGA Says: Buy another joypad, buy Columns, and then invite some of your friends round. Then see if you can get them to leave...

 

44. Olympic Gold

Publisher US GOLD

Price 40

Released August 1992

Lush graphics, but at the root of it all it's just a creative way to pummel the living daylights out of your joypad.

MEGA Says: Pretty dull by yourself, but excellent fun when you've got a few mates round.

 

45. Pit Fighter

Publisher DOMARK

Price 40

Released March 1992

Ooh look, it's another beat-'em-up. Ah yes, but wait - this one's different. How come? Well, it's got digitised graphics, guv. That means the fighters you take on in this simulation of that ugliest of 'sports' (pit fighting, that is) look incredibly realistic, which means you can imagine that it's a Real Human Being you're knocking the living daylights out of. You sad person.

MEGA Says: Pretty dull and morally dubious beat-'em-up fare. You can do a lot better than this.

46. World Class Leaderboard

Publisher US GOLD

Price 38

Released July 1992

Well, it's pretty good, but it's not really PGA Tour, now is it?

MEGA Says: No it isn't. Unless you're absolutely golf loopy nuts and just HAVE to have every available sim, get PGA and settle for that.

 

47. Battle Squadron

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released January 1991

Amiga conversion time again, but this vertically-scrolling blaster looked pretty dated even at the time it originally appeared about three years ago, and it hasn't really improved with age. Good solid zapping action, but nothing to really hold your attention.

MEGA Says: Bog-standard vertical zaperama with little or nothing to make it stand out from the crowd. More repetitive than most.

 

48. David Robinson Basketball

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released July 1992

The best of a whole clutch of basketball games recently released by various people, this one boasts by far the smoothest, fastest action, and some of the nicest effects too. If basketball's your bag (ahem), this is your kind of shopping trolley. (What? - Ed)

MEGA Says: Bouncy bouncy, bouncy bouncy, fun fun fun fun fun. (What? - Ed)

 

49. Super Hang-On

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released November 1990

Road Rash, without all the violence. Yes, we know is sounds like a bit of a bad idea, but if what you're after is pure high-speed racing thrills, then this is still your best bet. A near-perfect rendition of the coin-op, too - just try and stop yourself from leaning into those bends...

MEGA Says: It looks lovely, it plays beautifully, it'll last for ever. Along with Super Monaco and Road Rash, the only genuinely essential racing game for your Mega Drive. 

 

50. Krusty's Super Fun House

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

This isn't too bad a little platformer at all, with some decent puzzle-esque bits thrown in on top, but the Simpsons don't make very much of a showing. Then again, so what?

MEGA Says: Mind you, makes you wonder why they bothered forking out for the licence, doesn't it?

 

51. Sports Talk Baseball

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

Well, it's better than Hardball...

MEGA Says:

 

52. Joe Montana 2

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released March 1992

Nope, sorry, even this sequel to the original 'not too bad but let's face it it's not as good as John Madden' American Football game fails to lace the boots or plump the padding of the boy from Electronic Arts. Nice try, but no cigar.

MEGA Says: It's all very well and good and everything, but why have cotton when you can have, er, John Madden?

 

53. Chuck Rock

Publisher VIRGIN

Price 35

Released July 1992

Unga Bunga! Or something like that, anyway. This is an old Amiga game brushed up a bit for the Mega Drive, and as you might expect, it's a bit of a lush looker. What you might not expect is a fabby prehistoric platform game which plays like an episode of The Flintstones, except funnier, and where you dispose of enemies by bouncing them off your gigantic beer belly. Nope, you might not expect that, but it's what you'll get anyway. Ha.

MEGA Says: A really enjoyable platformer, packed to the brim with variation, lovely little touches and more imagination than a dozen lesser efforts in this overloaded genre.

 

54. Tetris

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

Okay, hands up everyone who doesn't know about Tetris. Three of you, eh? Well, pay attention next time. Tsch.

MEGA Says: The biggest and sexiest puzzle game of all eternity comes to the Mega Drive. If, by some incredibly unlikely fluke, you don't already have a Tetris game, then get this one now. Or would you rather buy a Game Boy?

 

55. 688 Attack Sub

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released January 1992

Nice, atmospheric submarine simulator with a bit of zapping and some pleasant aesthetics. It's still a submarine game though, isn't it?

MEGA Says: Not the kind of thing you ever imagine anybody buying a Mega Drive for, but good at what it does.

 

56. Star Control

Publisher BALLISTIC

Price 40

Released December 1991

Massive but not actually all that complicated space strategy trading thing with zappy bits. Excellent fun with two players.

MEGA Says: A bit of a lark with a chum if you're after something different, but kinda dull if you're on your own.

 

57. Herzog Zwei

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released July 1991

Horizontally-scrolling shoot-'em-ups, eh? Now there's an original idea.

MEGA Says: Aero Blasters, Aero Blasters, Aero Blasters, that's the game for us.

 

58. Spiderman

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released November 1991

'Spiderman, Spiderman, does whatever a spider can'. So how come you never see him getting trapped in a bath then, eh?

MEGA Says: Pretty run-of-the-mill platform game, lifted out of the ordinary by some pretty spiffy graphics and a nice line in enemies. Still only really for web-slinging fanatics and the Manic Street Preachers, though.

 

59. Corporation

Publisher VIRGIN

Price 40

Released August 1992

Gigantic and tough RPG-ish thing with some top 3D blasting bits in it. Involving and absorbing, although it gets a bit repetitive.

MEGA Says: For RPG fun with a bit more blasting AND a bit more brain-stretching than usual, this is a pretty damn good buy.

 

60. Test Drive 2

Publisher BALLISTIC

Price 35

Released May 1992

Er, you probably won't ever to be able to buy this now Ballistic have lost their court battle with Sega, so there doesn't seem a lot of point in telling you about it, really.

MEGA Says: Enjoyable serious-ish driving game, which you're sadly not going to be able to get a hold of. Life's a bitch, eh?

 

61. Trouble Shooter

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

 

62. Arnold Palmer Tournament Golf

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released February 1991

More golf? Didn't we cover that one already?

MEGA Says: PGA Tour's the game you want, mate.

 

63. Games - The Winter Challenge

Publisher BALLISTIC

Price 40

Released April 1992

Pretty run-of-the-mill snowbound sports sim with eight ice-tastic events. As ever, lots of laughs with your buddies but a snoozeathon if you try it solo.

MEGA Says: This one's been kind of overtaken by Olympic Gold, but it's still a good example of the genre. It's just not a very good genre...

 

64. Earnest Evans

Publisher

Price

Released

 

65. Klax

Publisher TENGEN

Price 35

Released March 1992

A massive coin-op cult (ie hardly anyone played it but everyone who did loved it to bits), Klax is one of the best puzzle games ever. Unlike Tetris et al, you get a bit of scope for your own strategies instead of just needing lightning reactions, although you'll have to have those too. Very original and excellently-designed, with a groovy two-player head-to-head game to boot, Klax will test your speed, sight, and spatial perception, all at the same time. Can you handle it?

MEGA Says: Columns, Tetris and Klax- the only puzzle games you'll ever need. Don't be without any of them.

 

66. James Pond

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 35

Released May 1991

The prequel to Robocod, and a much inferior game. Some cute platform/swimming around fun, but nothing that'll really set your head on fire. Er, not that you'd especially want it to.

MEGA Says: The 12 levels won't last you too long, and you'll probably get a bit bored before the end anyway, but this is still good fun for a few plays.

 

67. The Immortal

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released February 1992

Massive but ropey-looking RPG with loads of blood'n'guts for the gore-thirsty. Very slick but ultimately insubstantial.

MEGA Says: Okay, but think very carefully before you blow 40 on it.

 

68. Might And Magic

Publisher SEGA

Price 50

Released September 1991

Drastically over-expensive, dated control interface, and crap graphics, but this is still a deep and absorbing RPG. You can do much better for the money.

MEGA Says: This one's past its prime.

 

69. Budokan

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released February 1991

Martial arts-type beat-'em-up with a little more thought required than most. At the end of the day it's still a lot of wiggling the joypad, hitting the buttons and hoping for the best, though.

MEGA Says: If beating computer people up is where you get your thrills, this is one of the less brain-rotting ways you can go about it.

 

70. Zero Wing

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released June 1992

Of all the millions of horizontally-scrolling shoot-'em-ups for the Mega Drive, Zero Wing is probably, er, the easiest. You'll finish this inside three attempts, which is a bit of a shame as it's otherwise about as good as the genre gets. Lots of nice big aliens, smooth and precise control, and decent weaponry make it lots of fun to play, but there's not much point when you've already finished it...

MEGA Says: A really lovely, playable shoot-'em-up, but way, way too easy for all but the most unco-ordinated.

 

71. Thunderforce 2

Publisher

Price

Released

Thunderforce III, with some different scrolling bits, but not quite as good. Basically.

MEGA Says: Okay, but why bother with this when there's Thunderforce III out there? Or Aero Blasters or Hellfire, come to that.

 

72. Turrican

Publisher BALLISTIC

Price 40

Released October 1991

A supremely popular home computer game, but maybe that just shows how easy to please all those Amiga and ST owners are. Turrican is an absolutely colossal platform-leaping, shoot-'em- upping, landscape-exploring epic of a game, but after a while you start thinking 'Oh good, another hundred screens to plough through before I get to the next interesting bit. I wouldn't mind, but they're exactly the same as the last hundred screens.'

MEGA Says: It's decent enough for a while, but if you've got the patience or the high boredom threshold needed to get to the end, you're a better man than any of us.

 

73. European Club Soccer

Publisher VIRGIN

Price 35

Released June 1992

Previously seen on home computer formats as the extremely popular Manchester United Europe, the fact that this is the best Mega Drive football game around isn't so much down to it being brilliant as the fact that there only are about two competitors, both of which are rubbish. Still, this is slick, fast and enjoyable, and though it's easy to beat, you'll get months of fun from the two-player mode. Well worth a look for footy fans.

MEGA Says: The undisputed Mega Drive soccer king, but that title will probably go out of the window when Mega Drive Kick Off makes an appearance. Wait for that and then make your own judgement.

 

74. Magical Mr Taluroot

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

 

75. Fatal Rewind

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released January 1992

Another retitled computer-game classic, you may know this one better as The Killing Game Show. It's like Rainbow Islands in many ways, but with big butch metallic graphics and a little bit more to think about, not least how impressive the interactive action replay feature is. No more going back miles when you get killed, just watch your last performance then take over a split second before you made that last silly mistake. Excellently compulsive platforming fun.

MEGA Says: If you fancy something a bit different from the ordinary cutesy-graphics formula stuff that is most Mega Drive platform games (and who doesn't from time to time?), then this is the game for you.

 

76. Super Airwolf

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

Also known as Helicopter Panic! or something, and that should be enough to tell you that this game's got absolutely nowt to do with Airwolf - it's just an old vertically-scrolling shoot-'em-up with a new name stuck on it for a quick licence cash-in. Fortunately it's quite a good old vertically-scrolling shoot-'em- up, but it's still nothing you haven't seen a dozen times before.

MEGA Says: One of the best efforts in the vertical-blasting genre, but only worthwhile if you don't already have half-a-dozen of the blighters.

 

77. El Viento

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

Is anyone actually reading right through this? What do you expect to hear about yet another bog-standard beat-'em-up? That the name means 'The Double-Decker Bus' in Spanish? That'd be interesting, wouldn't it?

MEGA Says: Not true, though. Yet Another Bog-Standard Beat-'Em-Up. Sorry.

 

78. Grand Slam Tennis

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

 

79. Rolling Thunder 2

Publisher Namco

Price 38

Released IMPORT

Well, it's exactly the same as Rolling Thunder, really, isn't it?

MEGA Says: Yes, it is.

 

80. Jewel Master

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released April 1992

This is a platformer with some nice touches of originality to it, but you don't have to use any of the clever stuff in order to finish it inside two days. Insanely easy and not very exciting.

MEGA Says: Nah, you don't wanna do it like this, John.

 

81. Marvel Land

Publisher Namcot

Price 38

Released IMPORT

Super-cutesy platforming action, like Sonic The Hedgehog with more primary colours. It looks fabulous and plays better than it looks, so why don't you go and get it?

MEGA Says: One of the best platformers around, and one of the few games that can lure girls to your joypad too.

 

82. Alisia Dragoon

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released May 1992

Dragons! That's what we haven't had in a platform game yet! Dragons!

MEGA Says: Er, the best dragon-based platform game around. Probably.

 

83. Fighting Masters

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

 

84. Gynoug

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released August 1992

Gynoug! It's not just like every other shoot-'em-up! No sirree! It's got a stupider name! Look!

MEGA Says: Alright, alright, so it's quite good, but if you've got this far you should already have at least five better blasters, so why spend another 40 on this 'un?

 

85. Forgotten Worlds

Publisher

Price

Released

This is a very faithful clone of the coin-op of the same name, except that the Mega Drive doesn't have the rotating-knob controller which allowed you to fire in eight directions independently of movement. Inconveniently, that was pretty much the crux of the arcade game, but apart from that (er...) this does a pretty respectable job of recreating the coin-op experience.

MEGA Says: Pity it wasn't a very good coin-op then, isn't it?

 

86. M1 Abrams Battle Tank

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released December 1991

Battlezone for the 90s as you trundle around a fast-moving landscape blasting an impressively wide range of enemies over loads and loads of top tank-based combat missions. Ideal for anyone who ever wished they'd been born a tuna.

MEGA Says: Entertaining war sim that's a deal livelier than you might expect. Different and fun.

 

87. Space Invaders 90

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

NOT the same game as the fabby Super Space Invaders on the Master System, Space Invaders 90 is a strange 'updating' of the first-ever coin-op shoot-'em-up. It's a lot faster and a lot zappier, with some neat-power-ups and tough new baddies (and no defence bases!), but somehow it just doesn't capture the classy atmosphere of the original. You'd be better off with a Power Base Converter and the Master game, to be honest.

MEGA Says: Fun for a while, and the contoured-ground effects are nice, but really you'd need to have a lot of money to burn to think about buying this.

 

88. Hardball

Publisher BALLISTIC

Price 40

Released August 1991

I'm bored now, can I go home yet?

MEGA Says: It's another baseball game, but it's not as good as Sports Talk Baseball. And one baseball game should be enough for anyone, really, don't you think? And it's not going to be this one. If that's not labouring the point. (And since it's by Ballistic, you're probably not going to be able to buy it even if you want to.)

 

89. Rambo 3

Publisher

Price

Released

Lots of brain-dead blasting (what did you expect), but not a lot more.

MEGA Says: Sort of like Gauntlet meets, er, Rambo. Only more violent. And less complicated.

 

90. F-1 Circus

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

 

91. Moonwalker

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released April 1991

Side-on version of the impressive-looking isometric 3D coin-op. Average kinda platform thing really, but the way Michael (Jackson, for it is he) dance whole screens of baddies to death with a quick 'Ow!' is completely excellent.

MEGA Says: Not bad, not bad, not really really bad, but not much of a thriller either. Sorry about that, by the way.

 

92. King's Bounty

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released October 1991

Enjoyable and accessible RPG, but after the first half-an-hour you'll pretty much have seen everything it's got to offer. Good for beginners, though.

MEGA Says: For complete novices or real RPG diehards only - the casual player will get restless after a while.

 

93. Crackdown

Publisher SEGA

Price 35

Released June 1991

A sweet but dull maze shoot-'em-up in its own right, Crack Down is one of the best two-player co-operative games ever. Playing two characters with the unfortunate monikers of Ben Breaker and Andy Attacker, you get a split-screen kind of affair where devious interaction will see you getting all the computer enemies to shoot each other instead of you, which is one of the most satisfying things you can ever do in a video game. Limited, but good for a laugh.

MEGA Says: If you haven't got that extra joypad and that game-loving friend, forget it completely, but if you're the sociable type this is one of the better ways to have a good time with two people (and a Mega Drive).

 

94. Mike Ditka Power Football

Publisher BALLISTIC

Price 40

Released December 1991

Look, it's not 'football', you bloody American gits, 'football' is a game you play with a ball and your feet, not some missile-shaped thing and a load of padded bodies crunching into each other all the bloody time. Jesus...

MEGA Says: Yet another American 'football' game that isn't as good as John Madden's. You know the drill by now.

 

95. Stormlord

Publisher Razor Soft

Price 35

Released November 1991

Scroll along, beat things up, go 'Phwoar!' at the naked fairies, and, er, that's about it, really.

MEGA Says: Hey, there's nothing wrong with naked fairies. If you're going to buy a scrolly beat-'em-up, you might as well have one with naked fairies in it.

 

96. Marble Madness

Publisher ELECTRONIC ARTS

Price 40

Released February 1992

Could this be the world's most ubiquitous game? It's been converted onto just about every format there's ever been since it first appeared in arcades in the early 1980s, but still the bizarre appeal of rolling marbles down weird geometric courses suspended in space holds a strange sway over gamers everywhere. Mega Drive Marble Madness is a flawless conversion of the coin-op, right down to the crucial two-player mode, and though it won't last you very long, it's great fun while it does.

MEGA Says: Short-lived entertainment, but a classically original and enjoyable arcade game in the meantime. A bit on the expensive side for what you get, though.

 

97. Arch Rivals

Publisher

Price

Released

It's a beat-'em-up. It's not as good as the other beat-'em-ups in this chart. That's why it's No.97.

MEGA Says: Beating up your chums is a laugh, but hey - you don't need a Mega Drive to do that, right kids?

 

98. Super Off Road Racer

Publisher ACCOLADE

Price 30

Released June 1992

This was never supposed to be a one-player game, but if you do try to play it that way you'll get a solid couple of days' fun before you throw it to the back of your games cupboard never to be seen again (helped out by the fact that here you get the coin-op's original eight levels plus an extra eight from the little-seen sequel). Get someone else involved and it's much more entertaining, but the Mega Drive version lacks the three- or four-player modes of some other versions and so never quite reaches the same giddy heights as the coin-op original did.

MEGA Says: A definite luxury, unless you're a real Super Sprint freak. You'd be better off hanging around until someone invents a multi-player adaptor and then seeing what happens.

 

99. Road Blasters

Publisher

Price

Released IMPORT

Sort of the car-driver's equivalent of Road Rash, this one. Superficially a straightforward Out Run clone job, Road Blasters boasts the intensely desirable feature of a machine-gun mounted on the front of your car with which you can blow away the rest of the field in each of 50 stages of heads-down no-nonsense racing. It gets repetitive very quickly, but there's a lot of high-octane excitement in store first.

MEGA Says: Actually one of the more enjoyable driving games around, but if you're looking for anything with any degree of depth to it whatsoever, you're looking in the wrong place.

 

100. Dick Tracy

Publisher SEGA

Price 40

Released June 1991

Pretty routine horizontally-scrolling blast-'em-up stuff in a similar vein to ESWAT et al, but less sophisticated.

MEGA Says: Less sophisticated than ESWAT? Yikes...

 

 

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