Nintendo recently announced the coming of a much wanted home console. No not a WiiU with PS4 quality graphics and multiplayer that works. The Nintendo Classic!

It’s a many-games-in-one plug and play NES clone. The design looks superb and with a fantastic selection of games it’s bound to be a sure fire success this Christmas.┬áIn response Sega countered with a new variant of their existing 80-in-1 system made by ATGames, social media and gaming sites went crazy at the news and the prospect of an all new chapter in the Sega VS Nintendo saga. OOC did not, and here’s why:

Although we don’t know a great deal about the Nintendo Classic, what we do know sounds fantastic. It uses reproductions of NES pads and has cross compatibility with the WiiU classic controller. It has HDMI out which means that even if the games are emulated, they’ll be viewable in a reasonable fidelity. It has a great selection of first and third party titles. Heck even if it stinks, it looks like a mini NES…how can you not want that just to sit it on a a shelf and admire it?

The Nintendo Classic Mini
The Nintendo Classic Mini

Here at OOC however we own an ATGames all-in-one Sega Megadrive/Genesis and even though we adore Sega, we have to say this console sucks. It sucks big time. The emulation is appalling especially when it comes to sound. Looking forward to hearing the sweet notes of the Green Hill Zone music? Well be prepared to hear something that sounds like a fax machine being force fed to a cow. It’s awful. The video output is limited purely to composite which was fine in 1992 but not in 2016. A CRT TV from the last decade will do a decent job of making composite video bearable, on a modern TV however it looks dreadful. If you want an idea of what it’s like. Put on a YouTube video of Sonic the Hedgehog and then smear wallpaper paste all over the screen. Lastly the controllers are a crime. Yes they’re wireless with a pretty good range but they feel cheap, unresponsive and they rattle.

The Sega Genesis 80-in-1
The Sega Genesis 80-in-1

It’s real shame that there’s no real contest here. Sega had an opportunity to counter with something really great, but bunging in a few different Roms and changing the packaging just isn’t enough. Even without seeing or using the Nintendo Classic, we know at OOC that it’s already the clear winner.

The sad part is, the average joe consumer won’t read this article. They’ll see both units sat along side each other in the supermarket and nostalgia will take the better of them. Those who go with Nintendo will have a happy Christmas. Those who go Sega will have to explain to little Timmy why Sonic & Knuckles looks and sounds like an explosion in a pet rescue centre.

Shame on you Sega, shame!

 

In 2006 I died a little inside.

Sonic the Hedgehog or Sonic ’06 as it’s now more commonly known was unleashed upon the public. So much was wrong with it. Bugs, bestiality storyline, horrendous new character Silver, it was a total car crash of a game.

More importantly however it was the sign of a turning point in the Sonic franchise, a clear signal that the old Sonic we knew and loved was dead and 3D gameplay, shitty characters and ridiculous plots were here to stay. Sonic Adventure 1 & 2 and even Sonic Heroes could be slightly forgiven, they still maintained some of the cartoonish playful charm of the classics but Sonic ’06. Never forget.

In some bizarre effort to make up for Sonic ’06, Sega went crazy. Each subsequent Sonic game added more characters, ridiculous plot points and mind bending gameplay mechanics, far removed from what made a Sonic great in the first place and the Sonic Cycle was born.

The Sonic Cycle, we never learn.

Finally in 2011 someone at Sega saw sense and we were given Sonic Generations, a fantastic blend of classic platforming for the old school and some 3D action for the mentally insane who liked the new into-the-screen gameplay mechanic (if I’m honest I thought those sections were pretty fun in Generations). Aside from the weak plot which could be easily ignored, it was everything the fans could have wanted however Sega failed to run with its success, there was no DLC and no follow up.

Fast forward to a few days ago and we find Sonic is in a sorry state. The franchise has been rebooted for the millionth time, now Sonic has a scarf, Knuckles has a roids addiction and Amy, well, Amy looks like a whore. Oh yeah and there’s another character, I don’t know its name, I don’t care.

Sonic Boom Characters

Sega just doesn’t seem to have learned a goddamn thing…well until today.

Christian Whitehead (friend to Poly’s and Pixels alike (I have it on good authority he enslaves and abuses Voxels)) who rose to fame a few years ago after creating the wonderful ports of Sonic 1, 2 and CD for mobile platforms seems to have finally gotten his own way in Sega HQ.

His latest creation is Sonic Mania, a true throwback to what Sonic is all about; speed, 2D platforming, sprites and remaining silent for as much as possible. It looks like its going to be a wonderful homage to the original games along with some newly designed levels in which the attention to detail is incredible. In the trailer we see the Daytona van and the Sonic Popcorn machine (from a Japanese arcade game) included as props, sprite fixes have been made to original backdrops which only a true fan would’ve noticed in the first place, Sonic’s cut jump animation upon finishing a level has been placed back in the game and the music, my god the music. Someone has given Christian and his team the keys to the candy store. God help the man who tries to get them back.

I’ll leave you with a trailer for the game along with some gameplay footage, so you can see for yourself how glorious this game is likely to be and how the Sonic Cycle may eventually be broken. This is one that OOC is going to be watching closely.