U.S. Gold consoles Sega-CD-less Genesis owners... ...while Sega unveils their latest free-game promotion.

Check out the groovular sound effects!
Tiny Toon Adventures: Buster's Hidden Treasure
8 megabits

Although best known for their original game titles, Konami has never been above cashing in on popular licensed properties like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles or, in this case, Tiny Toon Adventures.

Along with Rocket Knight Adventures, Tiny Toon Adventures enabled Konami to compete in the increasingly overcrowded action/platform genre on Sega's 16-bit system. Castlevania and Contra weren't far behind...

A CD-ROM in a cartridge!
U.S. Gold
12 megabits

U.S. Gold took a unique approach to advertising Flashback by declaring the game to be the first CD-ROM title on a cartridge. Indeed, in 1993 most CD-ROM games that had been released fell into one of two categories: full-motion video point-and-click contests, or cartridge games with CD-quality music and cartoon-like "cinema displays". Flashback most closely resembles games from the latter category, with cool rotoscoped animation sequences scattered throughout. These sequences not only help to advance the plot but also contribute significantly to the game's sinister atmosphere.

Flashback can perhaps best be described as a sort of action/RPG, where the player takes on the role of Conrad Hart in his quest to stop an alien invasion of Earth. Levels take place on various alien worlds and cyberpunk-influenced cities of the future, where players must solve puzzles and engage in shootouts with enemy agents in order to proceed.

The rotoscoped animation style of Flashback's cinema displays is used on in-game sprites as well, which results in silky smooth character animation throughout the game. Combined with an atmospheric soundtrack designed to help ratchet up the tension, Flashback can in some ways be compared to a game like Mystic Defender, inasmuch as its sense of style is in some ways more important than the substance of the game.

Flashback received very favourable reviews in the gaming press upon its release, and deservedly so. It is a game every Genesis owner should try and one of the best games of 1993.

"A definite must-have cart for Genesis owners. This cart has it all! A cool storyline sets the mood of the game as you play along. The graphics are absolutely awesome! The animation is liquid smooth and cinema displays are present throughout."
- Martin Alessi, EGM May 1993

Road Avenger

Remember how I said that CD-ROM games in the early nineties were generally either full-motion video point and click adventures or cartridge games with CD quality music and cinema displays? Well, Road Avenger falls neatly into the former category, but it at least does so with that typical Wolf Team sense of style...

"This game is a barrel of fun - the first time through ... Still a great showpiece."
- Steve Harris, EGM March 1993

"Makes other carts look like girlie toys."
8 megabits

Described as an "adventurous resource management game", Tyrants seems to have gotten lost in the historical shuffle amongst Virgin's other more successful titles, such as Cool Spot.

"The only sports game tough enough to make you hurl."
Summer Challenge
8 megabits

Multi-event sports games like Summer Challenge were all the rage in the early nineties, or so they appeared to be considering the number Olympics-inspired cartridges released at the time. Unfortunately, games of this type typically suffered from having too many events to play, none of which were particularly polished or enjoyable enough in their own right to justify a purchase...

"Perhaps Summer Challenge was to be released last year to coincide with the Olympics ... How else to explain its dated idea and the fact that it seems to have been taken right off the shelf where it was put away? Problem is, somebody forgot that Summer Challenge hadn't been debugged and decided to release it."
- Howard Wen, VG&CE July 1993

Who wouldn't want to play as the Lobster Cyborg?
Cyborg Justice
4 megabits

Cyborg Justice's chief claim to fame is that it allows players to create their own mechanical fighters and then use them to crush other cyborg monstrosities. The game doesn't appear to have been very well received by the gaming press, but fortunately its developer, Novotrade, had the Ecco the Dolphin franchise to fall back on in case of emergency...

"I did not like this cart too much. I found the normal game to be unexciting and difficult to control. The graphics look cool, and there is a lot of animation, but the music is only fair."
- Martin Alessi, EGM June 1993

Watch out for those "environmental hazards"...
Malibu Interactive
8 megabits

Malibu Interactive's Ex-Mutants falls into the increasingly overcrowded action/platform genre on the Genesis system. Although the whole idea of environmental damage causing genetic mutations in the human race could potentially form the basis of an interesting game, what I've seen of Ex-Mutants looks more like the game's developers took the Genesis version of Batman Returns and replaced its sprites...

Stone Age action meets High Definition Graphics!
The Flintstones
8 megabits

The "classic" cartoon series is brought back to life on Genesis by Taito, the people who brought you Sagaia!

"Another great cartoon character bites the dust. Fred's moves (like ducking, running, and powering-up his mighty club - easy, gals), look downright ridiculous."
- Mike Weigand, EGM October 1993

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