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Mega Drive Mini

Sega held a recent live-stream to make a number of announcements about new games coming, new HD re-releases being in the works, and a brand new Sega Mega Drive mini-console being in development for release this year.

Game Informer is reporting that Sega has teamed with ATGames once more to release the Mega Drive Mini Console, which is scheduled to release later this year in Japan. Mega Drive was the name of the Genesis outside of North America.

Sega revealed that a "number" of the classic games from the Genesis Mega Drive will be present which will likely include many of the fan-favorites that helped shape the popularity of Sega's home consoles during the 1990s. Although, this probably does not include the Sega CD or the Sega 32X.

The games for the system weren't revealed just yet, but it's likely that the package will include many of the same games that are present on another portable device being released in Japan featuring a giant Genesis controller that has Puyo Pu Yori, Streets of Rage II and Sonic The Hedgehog.

The likelihood is that the mini console due out later this year will be similar to the ones that AtGames have been releasing for the past several years featuring 16-bit Sega Genesis games. There have been several different types of the mini-consoles released in the past featuring Sega's games, including a micro version of the mini-console that comes with two six-button Sega Genesis controllers, and the device itself that plays actual 16-bit cartridges. It also comes jam-packed with 81 different games. The plug-n-play device costs only $39.99.

There's also the slightly larger version with 720p HDMI output and two 2.4G wireless controllers and 85 games included in the console, for $69.99. Both versions are made by AtGames and come with classics like Mortal Kombat and Phantasy Star IV, as well as Shinobi, Shining Force, and Golden Axe.

Different iterations also mix and match some of the game offerings, not only featuring some of the more well-known releases on the Genesis but also games like Altered Beast and Virtua Fighter 2.

The collaboration that Sega has with AtGames isn't all chocolate and roses, though. Many gamers have complained about the quality of the mini-console output from the company due to it having poor navigational features, and sometimes buggy functionality.

There were also graphical issues that some people reported as well as homebrew games that were added to the line-up that diminished the quality of the so-called 85 games included in the package.

For now, Sega has only announced that the Mega Drive Mini will release in Japan, so we have no idea if it will also release in the West, but as pointed out by Game Informer, all of the previous AtGames mini-consoles have also released in the West.

Hopefully Sega ensures that the devices have top-quality output of the games and functionality in order to match Nintendo's SNES Classic Edition and NES Classic Edition, both of whom went on to move big numbers due to the quality being higher than the quantity. We'll likely find out what games will be included in the final package later this year ahead of the Mega Drive Mini's release.