Super Monkey Ball Banana Blitz HD Review – An A-Peeling Remake? (PlayStation 4)

It was just a few short weeks before the announcement of Super Monkey Ball Banana Blitz HD that I was talking with fellow SEGAbits editor and writer George about the franchise, specifically the first game and just how impactful it had been in SEGA’s early days as a third party developer.

Starting in arcades and quickly shifting to home consoles, Super Monkey Ball had become a staple for SEGA when debuting their software to new platforms. From the Apple App Store to Nintendo’s 3DS and Wii, it just became expected that Aiai and his friends would make their appearance.

Note: This review is based on a copy provided by the publisher.

SEGA Genesis/Mega Drive Mini Review – Mini Console, Mega Heart


Well it’s the 30th anniversary of the SEGA Genesis (aka the Mega Drive). The SEGA Genesis for decades now has been fondly looked back due to it’s strong kit and solid lineup of games, which is reflected in it being SEGA’s best selling console of all time. While it did eventually stutter late into it’s life, ironically from SEGA themselves trying to expand on the console with peripherals like the SEGA CD and SEGA 32X, those that remember the system back in the day remember SEGA’s aggressive push to outsmart their main competition Nintendo. This resulted in quite a number of notable titles being developed over the years, both from SEGA themselves with their arcade ports and original titles, to other third parties contributing to the system like Compile, Electronic Arts, Capcom, Konami, and Namco.

Now 30 years later due to the “mini console” fad, SEGA is now pumping out a huge love letter in a tiny package, simply called the SEGA Genesis Mini. Will this small machine bring out that nostalgic heart tug, or is it more like an embarrassing memory from ages ago?

SEGA AGES Puyo Puyo Review – A Great Surprise for Puzzle Fans (Nintendo Switch)

M2, in collaboration with SEGA, has been doing a great job with the SEGA AGES series of arcade and Genesis ports. Despite being rereleases, there are quite a few new options and features not found in the original releases of games. Add in the portability factor, and you have an attractive new way to play classic SEGA titles. This latest release for the SEGA AGES series sees a never localized port of Puyo Puyo from the arcade will take some puzzle lovers by surprise.

SEGA AGES Space Harrier Review – The Best Version of the Game Yet! (Nintendo Switch)

SEGA has been on a roll lately with their releases of past arcade titles on the Switch. What is unique about these rereleases however is that they come with a variety of different and new options never been done on original release or as a port. And with both TV and portability uses to be had, some might pick up a few if not all the titles available, as they enhance the game play in wonderful fashion. That’s why it is easy for me to say that this port of Space Harrier is the best version of the game.

Review: SolSeraph (PS4) – The Time to Act is Now!

SolSeraph is the latest game from developer ACE Team known for their Zeno Clash and Rock of Ages titles. In SolSeraph players take control of Helios, the Knight of Dawn as he fights to protect humanity from the threats of hellish monsters and aid them in the development of their cities. It’s clear to see that the game takes direct inspiration form the 1990 SNES game ActRaiser, but does it live up to Quintet’s classic it’s based on? Read on to find out!

Review: SEGA Master System: A Visual Compendium

In the last few years we have been getting more officially licensed SEGA books than ever before, with each of these books offering readers a unique slice of SEGA history. While most of the books have a unique take or format, it seems that most of these books try to center around SEGA’s most popular console, the SEGA Genesis/Mega Drive. It seems a lot of publishers aren’t very interested in covering SEGA before this time period, that is until Bitmap Book’s Master System: A Visual Compendium.

Review: Judgment (PS4) Back to Kamurocho, With A New Perspective


Judgment is an open world action and adventure game that takes place in Kamurocho, the same setting from the Yakuza series, where you play as Takuyuki Yagami, a former lawyer who later becomes a private detective after a tragic event involving a previous case. Now Yagami must take on a gruesome serial murder case involving a mysterious killer that is gouging the eyes of his yakuza victims. As you take on the case, you’ll be in for a journey where you’ll make use of your detective skills to not only solve the mysterious behind this case but also take on side cases for the residences of Kamurocho, while enjoying the mini games during your spare time.

Team Sonic Racing Review – Roadside Assistance (PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC)

Nearly ten years ago, SEGA and the Sheffield based developer Sumo Digital teamed up to bring Sonic and a number of SEGA franchises to the world of mascot kart racers. Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing was a hit with fans of SEGA, Sonic and drift-focused racing games and only two years later the studio returned with the even more successful Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed. Transformed not only outdid the previous game in fan service, but also in ambition. Players controlled transforming vehicles with three distinct modes in tracks that would change with each lap. After a seven year break, SEGA and Sumo Digital are back with Team Sonic Racing. Fans are undoubtably wondering what to expect from this third outing, though the lead up to the game has probably put fans in more of a place of uncertainty than excitement. Is Team Sonic Racing a worthy follow-up, or is it a step back for the series?

Arcade Review: House of the Dead Scarlet Dawn – True Horror Returns

A classic SEGA franchise brand that spawned many sequels, spinoffs, movies and a vast global following of core and casual players since its debut in arcades in 1997. It has been 12 years since we have seen a House of the Dead game in the arcades worldwide and with SEGA CEO Haruki Satomi wanting to win older fans trust again when it comes to their brand, we finally managed to get a sample of that trust with a new entry to the classic arcade horror shooter. House of the Dead Scarlet Dawn, announced back in January 15th 2018 for Japanese arcades, is now in the west and we got a chance to play and complete it! The House of the Dead has risen beyond the grave once again but does this latest entry live up to our expectations. Hit the jump to read our review of House of the Dead Scarlet Dawn.

SEGA AGES Thunder Force IV (Lightening Force) Review – Lightning Strikes Again (Nintendo Switch)

After a long hiatus, partially due to the downfall of the company Technosoft, the Thunder Force series is steadily regaining it’s spark. SEGA has been courteous enough to give fans of the series some much needed love, first with M2’s version of Thunder Force III as apart of the SEGA 3D line of titles for the 3DS, then later it’s follow up Thunder Force IV (aka Lightening Force: Quest for the Darkstar) and the arcade game Thunder Force AC as apart of the SEGA AGES line of titles on the Nintendo Switch.

Today we’re going to be looking at SEGA AGES Thunder Force IV in particular. This is arguably the best game in the series, and commonly praised as an example of one of the SEGA Genesis’ best shmups available on the system. But does this SEGA AGES version live up to this praise, or is it more like flying into a stray bullet and dying multiple times?

SEGA AGES Sonic the Hedgehog Review – Old Hog, New Tricks (Nintendo Switch)

The original Sonic the Hedgehog has a very long history with re-releases on many systems. Starting with Sonic Jam on the SEGA Saturn, the blue insectivore’s first outing has appeared on many systems from the likes of SEGA, Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft. These ranged from the fantastic like Taxman’s efforts on mobile devices, to the absolute atrocious like the infamous Sonic the Hedgehog Genesis on GBA. Either way, Sonic the Hedgehog is once again on a new platform, this time Nintendo’s latest console the Nintendo Switch.

Though on the surface it seems like a straight forward port, the developers at M2 decided to add new features to spice up the experience a bit, giving the player new options to toy with while retaining the original feel of the original release. Does SEGA AGES Sonic the Hedgehog give the game a much needed breath of life, or is it just another cheap cash grab?

Shining Resonance Refrain Review – AKA Tales of Resonance (PS4, Nintendo Switch)

It’s hard to believe that Shining Resonance Refrain is the first Shining series game to come outside of Japan in over a decade. While the franchise use to be a stable of SEGA back in the 90s, it seemed that us Westerns have been kept in the dark on the recent releases, until now. Shining Resonance Refrain is a definitive release of the PlayStation 3 exclusive Shining Resonance. So was the wait for the return of the Shining series worth it?

Sonic Mania Plus Review – Worthy of an Encore (PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC)

When I reviewed 2017’s Sonic Mania, I praised it as being the best 2D Sonic game in decades. Now, a year later, SEGA is releasing a new version of the game dubbed Sonic Mania Plus. This definitive edition answers fan demand for a physical release while adding gameplay tweaks, expanded multiplayer, a new mode and two additional playable characters. Typically a reviewer would take this moment to pose the question: “So does Sonic Mania stand up one year later and are the new additions worthy of a double dip or DLC download?”, but I’ll just let you know right now that the answers are “yes” and “yes”. Sonic Mania Plus is everything that made the original Sonic Mania great, and more.

If you’d like to read our initial review, click here. Everything said there applies here. After the break, read about the new additions and enhancements, as well as the contents of the physical release.