A new Genesis/Mega-Drive action game, Rocket Panda, hits Kickstarter; passes its base goal

Another brand-new Genesis/Mega-Drive game has launched on Kickstarter, with the goal of raising funds to finance its development. Rocket Panda, a game developed by Space Pants Games and Mega Cat Studios, is now crowdfunding on Kickstarter and has 18 days left in its campaign. It has also just passed its $15,000 USD goal, so it seems that this is all but locked in, although there is still a stretch goal of $25,000 USD to add an as-of-now unspecified mini-game.

The game puts you in control of the titular Rocket Panda, who must navigate different mazes while avoiding traps and bizarre enemies in order to find the exit. Along the way, you’ll encounter and rescue little badgers to accompany you to the exit, similar to Flicky, Gain Ground, or Sega’s Sonic 3D Blast, except that the badgers also serve as shields to protect you from attacks. As you’d expect, you’ll want to safely guide as many of these badgers to the exit as possible to earn a good score, so fly carefully either way. A demo is also available on the Kickstarter page for you to try right away.

But would you find this to be a game worth supporting with some cash? You can read on past the break and decide for yourself.

Demon Girls homebrew game for Genesis/Mega-Drive demo now available

It’s Genesis/Mega-Drive homebrew time again. Coming to us from developer and artist JuiceLizard, Demon Girls is still in active development for the wonderful 16-bit console, and now a demo is currently available for all to try from his itch.io page. The demo consists of the entire first level of the game and is absolutely free, but if you’re feeling particularly generous, you can also leave JuiceLizard a gracious tip as you download the ROM file. Like any Genesis ROM file, it can be played in your favorite Genesis emulation software, on original hardware with a Mega Everdrive flash cartridge, or on the MiSTer FPGA console.

You’ll find download links beyond the break.

Aero The Acro-Bat 2 Genesis/Mega-Drive cartridge reprint now up for pre-order from Limited Run Games

Limited Run Games and Sunsoft are back with another Genesis/Mega-Drive cartridge re-release. You can now get a brand new boxed cartridge of the Genesis version of Aero The Acro-Bat 2 (1995). (By the by, they have not re-released the original Aero The Acro-bat yet, so don’t panic thinking you missed your chance to get the prequel. No word on why they started with the sequel.) Just like with their re-release of Zero the Kamikaze Squirrel, this comes officially licensed in a high quality cartridge complete with box and manual compatible with any official NTSC Genesis console or clone console. The game can be pre-ordered for $69.99 until March 10th, 2024.

Also, like Zero the Kamikaze Squirrel, Aero the Acro-Bat 2, in its original cartridge release form, is a lot more expensive than you might think. Prices for just the cartridge alone are just over $50 USD on the second hand market. Don’t ask me why. Maybe the game’s infamy over the years as an example of the 16-bit mascot craze started by our beloved Sonic the Hedgehog carried some value over the years? Either way, this will be your best chance to get a complete copy of the game for your collection at an affordable price, so make sure you get it while you can.

To learn more about Aero The Acro-Bat 2, and for the pre-order link, check in after the break for the whole skinny.

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240p Test Suite now available for Sega Saturn

This is for retro gamers who love to get very technical with their TVs and monitors. The well known 240p Test Suite, created as an open source software by Artemio Urbina, is available on all sorts of retro consoles, but until now, the Sega Saturn was not among them. A version of the Test Suite has now been ported to Saturn by SegaXtreme forum member hitomi2500 for this year’s Sega Saturn Homebrew Competition. However, the Saturn version is currently work-in-progress, so it may still have some issues that need to be worked out, but for now the port is available for you to mess around with on your Saturn.

Check in after the break to learn more about what 240p Test Suite is and to download it.

New secret level select codes discovered in the Saturn game Bug! after 28 years

Bet you didn’t know that the 1995 Sega Saturn game Bug! (1995) had level select codes in it. Well, actually people did know, but nobody knew there were actually two very different ones until now. On January 11th, 2024, 11 days ago, @memory_fallen revealed on Twitter (X) that they had discovered cheat codes in both the North American and Japanese versions of Bug! that had never been revealed before. There’s a bit of an interesting caveat to the new code in the North American version in particular as well. You can check in after the break to see what these new codes are.

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Homebrew port of Konami’s X-Men arcade game being worked on for Saturn; playable demo now available

We’ve talked al lot about homebrew developers porting games to Genesis/Mega-Drive lately, so lets switch things up with a homebrew Saturn port this time. Developer hotrodx is working on converting the 1992 X-Men arcade beat-em-up by Konami to the Sega Saturn and now has a demo ready for the public to try out.

X-Men is one of the most beloved arcade classics of all time and one of the shining examples of classic beat-em-ups, right up there with Sega’s own Streets of Rage series, but somehow the game never received an official home port on any game console in the 90’s. Decades later, it would finally receive official home ports to PS3 and Xbox 360 in 2010, an iOS port in 2011, and its own Arcade1up home arcade cabinet in 2011. Only the latter is still available, as the digital-only 2010 port was removed from the PlayStation Store and Xbox Live Marketplace in 2013 with the iOS version going away in 2014.

The port is early in development, with the demo available as of this writing being version 0.1.1. The demo only consists of the first stage and gives you access to only two characters: Wolverine and Cyclops. Developer hotrodx also has a message displayed in the demo saying that they’re not using any source code derived from the original game and are, instead, eyeballing the whole game, trying to match the arcade game’s feel as much as possible. It sounds difficult, but based on this demo, they seem to be on the right track, but you can try it with an ODE such as a Fenrir, Satiator, or Phøde on real NTSC Saturn hardware and judge for yourself.

The download link will be past the break, along with a video of the demo in action.

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Limited Run Games prepares new limited edition Genesis reprint of Zero the Kamikaze Squirrel; pre-orders open until February 4th, 2023

Limited Run Games have returned with another special reprint of an unassuming Genesis/Mega-Drive classic. This time it’s Zero the Kamikaze Squirrel (1994). This comes to us officially licensed from original publisher Sunsoft in an all-new white and red cartridge with a case and manual for only $69.99. Pre-orders will be open from January 5th, 2024 to February 4th, 2024, so act fast if you’re interested.

Most people might remember this as one of the infamous examples of mascot platformers made to capitalize on the Sonic mania that ran amok in the Genesis years, and it is, but Zero the Kamikaze Squirrel is one of the few that’s garnered a cult following in the time since its release. An original copy is actually more expensive than you might expect too. As of this writing, even just a loose cartridge will run you over $100. Yes, two zeroes. That may still be on the low side of things compared to some of the games Retro-Bit has made collector’s edition reprints of, but Limited Run Games’s reprint is still quite a bargain if you wish to bring Zero into your Genesis collection.

To learn more about Zero, check in past the break.

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Official Genesis/Mega-Drive 99Vidas port “Mega 99Vidas” announced; physical cartridge coming soon

Announced just yesterday in their QByte Connect 2023 showcase, Brazilian game publisher QByte Interactive have announced an official Genesis/Mega-Drive port of 99Vidas, a classic indie beat-em-up that they released to modern platforms in 2016. No release date was given yet, but they have made it clear that they intend to make this available as a working Genesis cartridge, giving enthusiasts of original hardware something new to look forward to.

Check in after the break for more info on this exciting new retro game and the original 99Vidas game.

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Wireless Pro Saturn controllers with hall effect analog sticks announced by Retro-Bit; coming December

What’s that? I think that’s the sound of Retro-Bit making another announcement.

If you need a new Sega Saturn controller, they’ve had you covered since 2019, but now they’ve got something new to offer that they kept people waiting four years for: the new Wireless Pro Saturn controllers, in both black and Japanese white with 2.4 Ghz wireless technology for original Saturn consoles, Nintendo Switch, and computers. This could very well be the ultimate Saturn controller.

And yes, people have been waiting with bated breath for this controller since Retro-Bit first revealed it at CES 2019, but wasn’t able to say much throughout the years since besides that it was never cancelled. Retro-Bit cites the dreaded COVID-19 pandemic, the ultimate party pooper, as the main factor for its delay in their own timeline of their collaboration with Sega. Even so, salivating fans kept asking about it on social media after every other Sega controller they’d made was announced. (Not to mention asking about their new Dreamcast controller, which there is still no more news for yet) The wait will soon finally end, as the estimated release date has finally been made: December 2023. Let’s hope it can make it out in time for Christmas.

But enough about that. Time to wait a few seconds more as you check in past the break to hear more info. (Unless your internet is out, in which case, I feel bad for ya.)

Earthion releasing for Genesis/Mega-Drive and modern consoles in 2024 from Limited Run Games

Looking forward to the new Genesis/Mega-Drive scrolling shooter from Yuzo Koshiro and Ancient known as Earthion? We have learned from them and Superdeluxe Games at this year’s Tokyo Game Show that Earthion is on track to release in 2024 both as a cartridge for Genesis consoles and on modern consoles from Superdeluxe Games and Limited Run Games. The former will handle Japanese distribution and the latter will distribute the game internationally. Put some money aside for that now if you want it.

Of course, when more concrete info comes out about when you can buy the game and how much it will cost, we’ll be sure to let you know as we come closer to 2024. Until then, tell us in the comments below how excited you are for this game.

Before we leave you to absorb this news, here’s an interesting fact about the “YKGGG” sign shown with the Sega font in the intro of Earthion straight from Koshiro-san.

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Jurassic Park: Classic Games Collection from Limited Run Games adds two Sega Genesis/Mega-Drive Jurassic Park games; is still up for pre-order

A while back, Limited Run Games announced their partnership with Universal Pictures to make the Jurassic Park: Classic Games Collection on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5/4, and Xbox, a compilation of all the official Jurassic Park games on NES, SNES, and Game Boy using their all new Carbon Engine emulation platform. We didn’t talk about this at the time because it wasn’t relevant to Sega in any way, until now. Just today, Limited Run Games has announced the collection will now also include the two Sega Genesis/Mega-Drive games: Jurassic Park (1993) and Jurassic Park: Rampage Edition (1994). Life finds a way for Sega Genesis to get its dues after all.

Fortunately, Limited Run Games’s pre-order period for the collection is going on until October 15th, 2023, so you still have plenty of time to pre-order a physical copy of the game if you’re interested. There are standard editions and two different collectors editions available. Photos of each are below. (The extras in the two collector’s editions are the same for every console.) You can select and pre-order them from LRG’s Jurassic Park: Classic Games Collection page.

Will you be picking up this collection? Were you interested in it before the Sega games were added? Tell us in the comments below, won’t you?

And while you’re at it, listen to Barry and George talk about the original Jurassic Park game on Genesis in their latest Sega Talk episode.

Sonic Chronicles 2 plot details finally revealed including the reason why the sequel never got made

The newest video by Did You Know Gaming is covering ‘Lost Sonic Games’, in this video they take a look at a variety of Sonic games that never came to be. One of the biggest featured lost games happens to be Sonic Chronicles 2! The original Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood came out way back in 2008 and was developed by Bioware. It also happens to be the only Sonic RPG ever created. Of course, while the game wasn’t perfect, fans wound still want the developers to give it another try, especially considering the original game ended in a cliffhanger where our heroes return from space only to find out Eggman had taken over the world while they where gone…

If you guys skipped Sonic Forces, its basically the idea behind that plot that Eggman had won and taken over the world, shaping it in his image.

According to Sonic Chronicles designer Miles Holmes:

“Picking it up from the cliffhanger, they would come back and its now Eggman’s world, right? So that’s a little of a Back to the Future 2 kind of vibe. We talked about Skynet in Terminator 2, when you get to see the future, when you get to see where Kyle Reece is from, but now its all Eggman’s stuff. So in this case, Eggman unchecked by Sonic has been able to do what he’s always wanted to do and remake the world in his image.” – Miles Holmes, Bioware designer 

Ancient/Yuzo Koshiro’s new Genesis/Mega-Drive shooter now named “Earthion”; Video footage shown

Since last year, retro game musician legend Yuzo Koshiro and his game development studio Ancient have been hard at work on an all new scrolling shooter for Genesis/Mega-Drive consoles, their first game for the classic 16-bit platform since Beyond Oasis (The Story of Thor outside of North America) from 1994. As of June 16th, 2023, Koshiro-san has finally revealed the decided upon title for this new game: Earthion. Along with that, he has also shared some new video footage of the game’s title screen and opening level. Looks cool, doesn’t it?

Of course, if you have been following Yuzo Koshiro on twitter like we have (And we do recommend it if you are still on twitter) you will know this is not the only sneak preview Koshiro-san has shown for Earthion throughout the months. Come see some more of them after the break.

Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack updated with Street Fighter II, Pulseman, Kid Chameleon, and Flicky

On April 18th, 2023, Sega added Flicky, Kid Chameleon, Pulseman, and Street Fighter II: Special Championship Edition to Sega Genesis – Nintendo Switch Online. This is the first update to the NSO Sega Genesis collection for 2023. Japan, of course, gets the same four games at the same time.

All four games are immediately accessible to Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack subscribers following a quick patch update to the app. For more info on each game, check in after the break for a synopsis on each game.

New Genesis/Mega-Drive fighter Insane Pain releases; on sale now

The new developments on Sega Genesis/Mega-Drive just keep on coming. This time, it’s the new cyberpunk themed 2D fighter Insane Pain, with its impressive pre-rendered 3D graphics and blood and gore effects. The Germany based developers Blast Process Games have released the game in its ROM form on their itch.io page and are preparing an online store in their website to sell physical copies of the game along with collectable trading cards and t-shirts with the game’s characters.

Make sure you check in after the break for more information.