The From A to Z series lets our editors go back and take a look at games from past generations that are classics, overlooked gems, or just titles they remember fondly. The idea behind this is to pick five games from each letter of the alphabet, once a week to showcase. This delivers 26 weeks and 130 games to talk about. Hopefully it sparks some conversation, and of course plenty of memories.
The third in our series focuses on Sega’s Mega Drive (Genesis in the US).
Let’s continue with the letter “G”.
While this platforming game features a somewhat bizarre connection between McDonalds and environmentalism, guiding heroes Mick and Mack through a variety of colourful levels, using goo guns to shoot enemies and doing some recycling was a pretty fun experience. That said, I distinctly remember spending a lot more time playing the bonus round on repeat, in which the player had to run around with a garbage can catching trash that fell from the sky.
Another beloved side-scrolling beat ’em up, in which the player takes control of one of three heroes (a Dwarf, a Barbarian or an Amazon) and sets out to rescue a prince and princess from the game’s big bad, Death Adder. In addition to a general prowess at hacking and slashing their way through hordes of stereotypical fantasy genre enemies, each of these heroes has their own spells which can be equipped and various mounts are available to ride at certain times. While Golden Axe might not be the best game in its genre for the platform, it certainly never got boring.
Greendog: The Beached Surfer Dude
While it definitely wasn’t the most original platforming game to grace the Mega Drive and the gameplay was pretty frustrating, Greendog: The Beached Surfer Dude had a certain eccentric, nineties charm to it. The player’s jaunt through the game’s Caribbean setting was also accompanied by a pretty memorable soundtrack, which was probably the best thing about it to be honest.
I have replayed this game from start to finish more times than I can remember. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that Gunstar Heroes might be the best shooter to appear on the Mega Drive. Indeed, it might even be the best game to appear on the console, full stop. Featuring intense, all-action gameplay and some beautifully clean visuals Gunstar Heroes is, without a doubt, a classic of the 16-bit era.
Tune in next week for the next collection of titles.