I don’t read every article that ends up on Sega-16’s front page, but I do make an exception for the Stories from the book of Genesis features. Nostalgia is a powerful thing and after marathon reading the previous two-dozen anecdotes, I felt an urge to share my “initiation” into retroactive Sega collecting.
For me, August 2005 was a time of leisure. School didn’t start until the 29th and the fact that I was eleven really alleviated any possibility of work related stress. I had taken to thrifting at the time and I would venture out of the neighborhood to see if any local shops carried any cool novelties. There was a little flea market that had recently opened up not too far from where I lived, and the first day I walked in, nestled in a worn out laundry hamper, was a Sega CDX with two six-button controllers, and a stack of assorted cartridges and CDs. As a kid who up until that point had only been fascinated by upcoming games, found the idea of going back and sampling games that predated me to be really appealing. The only problem was the asking price. As mentioned before, I was eleven with no income, which meant coming up with $60 was going to take some doing.
Surprisingly, over the lengthy amount of time it took me to collect a sufficient amount change and saved lunch money, the CDX never found a buyer. It would just get shoveled around various locations around the thrift shop. After a few months of playing “Where’s Waldo” with a CDX, I had enough cash to purchase it myself by Christmas. I bought the bundle with the mindset that it would be nothing more than just a box of cool games that would keep me entertained for a while, but I got more than what I bargained for. I got a real sense of history with the games included. I had enjoyed Mortal Kombat games for the then-current PS2, but it was neat as a young boy to see the earlier versions of a game I loved. That and it was so cool to see the origins of games that I had only known by their 3D sequels. Actually getting to play the older pre-Dreamcast Sonic games, and not just seeing them as still images in an image search, was probably the first time in my life where I really grasped the concept of how technological advancements can change a product, regardless of medium, into something completely different from what it started out as.
I wanted to know more about video games and I wanted to learn about them in a scholarly capacity. I then took this new-found interest in old games to the Internet in hopes that I could find some form of resource that would help me learn things such as why certain series evolved the way they did, or who had a hand in developing this or that, and such and so forth. I found some interesting stand-alone bodies of text here and there, but I didn’t have much luck with finding a site with a substantial volume of information. However, after a few weeks of trail-and-error Google searching, I bumped into Sega-16 and it became my absolute favorite. It had everything in one place. Other contemporary gaming websites were always an aspect or two short of a complete package, but Sega-16 had it all; information presented in a friendly way, captivating features, and a thriving community. I was blown away that there was such a website. Whenever I had free time, I would just binge on reviews and features. As the months went on, I got a great understanding of Sega as a business and its relation to other competitors at the time. I also discovered a lot of the talent behind some of my favorites, a great example being Yuzo Koshiro, who is an absolute musical genius!
I’ve been into vintage video games for quite some time now, and I have to thank Sega-16 for facilitating my further advancement in learning about old games and their cultural and historical significance as well as boosting my enthusiasm about acquiring games and getting well-versed on the history of the industry.Without a greater understanding of games, I might have “grown out of” gaming as a result of feeling like I had seen there was all to see at face value.Thanks so much for shedding light on an entire side of this hobby that I could’ve totally overlooked!