Can you survive An Unholy Return: The 31 Games of Halloween?
33 Consoles of Christmas
Sega Game Gear (1990)
By Cyril Lachel     |   Posted on November 28, 2006   |   Episode 6 (Show Archive)  

It's time once again for Defunct Games' 33 Consoles of Christmas, your 33 part guide to the best and worst system designs of all time. Join Cyril Lachel and Chad Reinhardt as they judge 33 different game consoles based on what they think of the look. Forget about actual hardware and software, the only thing these guys care about is talking about their exterior design. Join us every day between November 23 and December 25 for a new console review!

Synopsis: After the success of the Game Boy everybody wanted a piece of the handheld market. The Game Gear is Sega's first foray into the world of portable gaming, and it was met with mixed results. Some liked the fact that it had a large color screen, while others were disappointed that the battery life was low and the games were nothing more than Master System ports. Along with playing Game Gear-specific games, it also received an adaptor that allowed you to play Master System carts and watch the television.

Best Games: Sonic the Hedgehog, Ecco the Dolphin, Vampire: Master of Darkness, and Lemmings!

Despite the fact that I am a die hard Sega fan, so far none of the Sega systems we've reviewed have been especially attractive. I was not a fan of the Master System's look and the Genesis just wasn't as sexy as it should have been. Sadly the disappointments continue with Sega's Game Gear, their very first portable. Technically this is a huge improvement over Sega's last 8-bit system, the Master System, but when it comes down to it the system just isn't that attractive. The problem I have is that the system is just very, very large. One could argue that it has a nice screen, but this is not the type of thing you can put in your pocket ... unless you have large pockets perfect for shop lifting. I like the fact that it's all black and doesn't have the instructions on the system, but it's just too bulky for my tastes.

The Game Gear looks like it's ready to kick the Gameboy's ass. It was one of the first Sega systems to begin the all-black, cold and uncaring outer exterior, and says to me that it doesn't concern itself with how I feel about it. I give it respect for that, but it is a bit on the bulky side, especially when compared to the Turbo Express. The Game Gear also bears the dubious distinction of being the only system, handheld or otherwise, that I would be likely to club someone over the head with. To map the supposed trend in video game violence, you need only look for a Chad holding a Game Gear. Unfortunately, its weight and size may be intimidating, but not as aesthetically pleasing as some of the more conventional handhelds. I ask you, Sega, where's the heart?


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