"Where's the beef Sega! You rode out of '91 on a high, but you're heading into '92 on a low! I'm all for you guys making it big, but with hot hits like Street Fighter 2, Contra 3, Turtles 4, Zelda 3, etc. hitting for the Super NES, you better get something better than Art Alive into the stores!"
- Quartermann, EGM April 1992

Not as bad as the Valis III ad, but that's not saying much...
8 megabits

Renovation's Valis was rather poorly received by the gaming press and quickly forgotten. From the looks of things, it appears to have featured more of the same play as its predecessors, only crappier...

"I can't believe that this cart is 8-Meg! Where did the memory go?"
- Bart, Mega Play May/June 1992

Perhaps the first Genesis ad to feature a camel.
8 megabits

Renovation's first action RPG after the mediocre Ys III, Exile too failed to generate much excitement amongst Genesis players.

For what it's worth, Working Designs released two Exile games for the Turbografx-16/TurboDuo system, so somebody somewhere must have enjoed this series!

"I suppose the intention of Exile is to provide the player with plenty of excitement without getting tied down to the technical specifics of traditional role-players, as the action scenes are frequent and quite difficult. Still, its dated look and uninvolving narrative don't help it, compared to newer RPGs for the Genesis."
- Howard H. Wen, VG&CE May 1992

"Exile just didn't swing it for me."
- Dave, Mega Play March/April 1992

"Anything less is hibernation."
Winter Challenge
4 megabits

Critics disagreed over the merits of the Genesis sytem's first "multi-event" game, but Ballistic's programmers deserve credit for getting Winter Challenge's polygonal display to work on the Genesis system without the aid of additional hardware.

"Computer-style icons and a battery-backed password system give this one a state-of-the-art feel that's also reflected in the game's subject matter: Its appearance in the midst of the XVI Olympic Winter Games makes it one of the freshest and most timely video-game releases in recent memory."
- Chris Bieniek, VG&CE April 1992

"Winter Challenge is a computer game to the core. The graphics aren't as smooth as they could be, and there isn't much variety from event to event."
- Martin Alessi, EGM June 1992

"Golden Axe was murder. This one's worse!"
Golden Axe II
4 megabits

The original Golden Axe went a long way towards establishing the Genesis system's "street cred" as the console to beat for bringing the arcade experience home. I still remember the salesperson at the store I bought the game from assuring me that Golden Axe was "just like the arcade."

A little over a year later, Sega released this original sequel to Golden Axe, but they appear to have rested on their laurels a bit. While I haven't played the game personally, the general consensus amongst the gaming press in 1992 was that Axe II at best offered very little that the first game didn't, and at worst a significantly inferior experience to the first instalment.

Perhaps Sega's reluctance to increase the game's cartridge size had something to do with the diminishing returns...

"Axe 2 isn't a total let down but it shows little or no improvement over the first. The graphics detail is lousy and the animation is lacking."
- Martin Alessi, EGM April 1992

"Golden Axe II is kind of a disappointment. There's so much more that could have been added that just wasn't."
- Dave, Mega Play March/April 1992

"Each tick of the clock brings you closer to eternal damnation!"
Sages Creation
4 megabits

It seems pinball games were all the rage in 1992 (for whatever reason). Devilish looks a bit like something Razorsoft would have come up with, although in addition to its demonic overtones it was apparently also heavily influenced by Breakout...

"Devilish is clever, challenging and the embellishment it brings to the Breakout concept is truly enjoyable."
- Josh Mandel, VG&CE May 1992

"This game comes off more like a souped-up version of Breakout, with a little pinball thrown in. Good action but not enough."
- Bart, Mega Play May/June 1992

Game creative staff... Wolf Team!
Earnest Evans
8 megabits

One of the first Mega CD games in Japan, Earnest Evans was rushed out in North America to cash in on "Mega CD fever" in the form of a slightly-less-impressive-than-it-used-to-be 8 megabit cartridge. The lead character apparently animates in a unique marionette-like way which tends to elicit a "love it or hate it" reaction from players.

"It has a nice combination of graphics, unknown paths and whip 'em out action, but none of its individual characteristics saves it from being slightly above average all around."
- Steve Harris, EGM May 1992

"While the game moves well, the title character looks like a robot! The bosses are kind of a joke, too."
- Dave, Mega Play March/April 1992

The ever-popular "dragons in the mist" motif...
8 megabits

Traysia received faint praise upon its release in 1992, then quickly faded into obscurity. I've never played it, but it appears to have been a rather run of the mill Renovation RPG.

"Traysia is an RPG that holds your interest, contains new player experiences and doesn't get bogged down with data."
- Mike, Mega Play May/June 1992

Emerge as a gallant warrior!
Star Odyssey
Sages Creation
8 megabits

I always thought this game looked kind of cool. I admire RPGs that mix elements of the past and the future together to create a weird sci-fi atmosphere (like Phantasy Star II), and Star Odyssey seems to fall into that category. It didn't get the greatest of reviews, though, and from what I can gather on the internet it never actually made it into stores!

"Star Odyssey, while it offers little new to the genre, is a playable enough RPG that ought to please adventurers looking for a ticket to the stars."
- Clayton Walnum, VG&CE July 1992

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