The Clunky Sega CD Has Been Replaced By A Single Pricey Cartridge

Photo: Terraonion

It’s no fun being a fan of retro gaming if you grew up a fan of Sega consoles. Emulators and game-bundled throwback consoles have been notoriously bad, but recently things have improved—as long as you’re a Sega fan happy to throw money at your passion.

The $266 Mega Sg console plays classic Sega games flawlessly, and there’s now a disc-free cartridge that brings Sega CD games back to life.

Released back in 1991, the Sega CD was a CD-ROM drive for the Sega Genesis that not only increased the size of games (allowing for full-motion video to be included), it also added processor and graphics hardware improvements so the Genesis could match some of the Super Nintendo’s features like the Mode 7 rotating background effect.

Despite being an expensive upgrade, the Sega CD introduced a few memorable games, like the controversial Night Trap, which can now be played on modern systems without the need for the actual Sega CD hardware.

Photo: Terraonion

The MegaSD (based on the international name of the Sega CD) is more than just a cartridge slot-friendly flash card that can be loaded with Sega Master System, Genesis, and Sega CD games ripped from the original discs.

It features a custom-developed FPGA (essentially a programmable chip) that perfectly emulates the Sega CD’s hardware so that disc games not only play perfectly off it, they’ll actually have much-improved load times.

The custom hardware helps explain why the MegaSD card will set you back over $380; a price tag that doesn’t include a Sega Genesis console required to play any of your favourite games.

If money is no object for satiating your retro gaming cravings, pairing the MegaSD with the $266 Analogue Mega Sg will undoubtedly give you the best experience possible.

You could also find an original Sega Genesis on eBay for cheap, or even at a garage sale, but keep in mind it won’t connect to your modern flat-screen TV as easily as the HDMI compatible Mega Sg will. Nostalgia is quite a racket.

[via Ars Technica]

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