Review Manifest

Sega-16 specializes in reviewing games for all of Sega’s consoles (SG-1000, Master System, Genesis, Sega CD, 32X, Saturn, and Dreamcast), as well as its coin-op video games. If you’re looking for simple, bulleted reviews of only a few sentences, then look elsewhere. Sega-16 prides itself on its in-depth and comprehensive pieces, giving Sega gamers all the information they need to decide on whether or not to track down a specific title.


Sega-16 accepts reviews from contributors for any titles not already reviewed. Only complete games are eligible for review. These may be licensed (bearing the official Sega Seal of Quality) or unlicensed. The only difference between the two is that a licensed game came from a publisher who was authorized by Sega itself to release games on its consoles. A license had no bearing on the actual development of the game involved. Licensed games may have been released at retail or made available through mail order or via a service such as the Sega Channel. In other words, it was released for purchase by its developer and/or publisher. An unreleased game that was officially licensed but canceled may be reviewed, so long as the reasons for its cancellation did not affect its actual development. For example, titles that were in the alpha or beta stages of development do not qualify for review, but instances where the publisher went bankrupt after the game was finished but before it could be released do qualify. Titles like Fido Dido, It Came from the Desert and ResQ meet this definition. Many of these games, such as ResQ and Beyond Zero Tolerance, have had their completed ROMs publicly released by their developers, making them eligible for review. However, if the game was unfinished when it was canceled, then it does not qualify.

In contrast, an unlicensed game is a complete game that was released at retail or through mail order or over a service such as the Sega Channel.  The only thing it is missing is the Sega Seal of Quality, which indicated that the company was an officially licensed third party. Homebrew games like Pier Solar and Oh Mummy fall into this category, as do games by publishers such as Wisdom Tree and RealTec. This is quite different from a pirate or hack, which may use stolen assets to create a copy or modified version of an already released title or may even be an unfinished game. Hacks, protos, and pirates are not eligible for review but may be covered in our Hacks & Homebrews series.

Each reviewed game is rated on a scale from one to ten and reflect how much we enjoyed the overall experience of playing it compared to other similar titles or weighed against its own flaws. The numerical ratings are meant to give our readers an overall idea of what to expect from a particular title, and they should not be considered etched in stone like a constitutional right.

Moreover, all review scores are strictly the opinion of the writer, The views expressed by contributors to Sega-16 do not necessarily reflect those of the editors or administrators. Contributed material published on Sega-16 should not be construed as having its endorsement.

The scale is as follows:

11. Absolute perfection… top of the mountain… the holiest of grails. It doesn’t exist folks, so don’t look for this one. You’ll never see it.

10. A must buy that needs to be in your collection now. This doesn’t mean the game is perfect, just that it excels in everything it set out to do, without any glaring flaws.

9. Excellent on every level, usually only flawed in a single, minor area.

8. Very well polished and a blast to play but with a few minor flaws.

7. Great fun but notably lacking in a few areas (i.e. too short, poor music, etc.)

6. Better than average and a decent game to be had for a cheap price.

5. Strictly average. Nothing spectacular but nothing horrible either.

4. Disappointing and only barely worth playing.

3. Almost a contender; usually a good idea gone very, very wrong.

2. A horrible, horrible game with few (if any) redeeming qualities. Not worth it, even for free.

1. A complete failure that should be avoided at all costs. The absolute bottom of the barrel and an embarrassment to the gaming community overall.


Reviews for products related to anything Genesis, such as newly released compilations of games, sequels, plug-‘n-play devices, and accessories are all covered here. The scale is a bit different, going only as high as five.

5. A great purchase that you’ll have loads of fun with.

4. Excellent quality and a good investment. Maybe not top of the line but no slouch either.

3. Not the best out there but you at least get your money’s worth.

2. Buyer beware. Some redeeming qualities but definitely not worth a purchase.

1. Run away! Leave the store immediately and clasp your wallet closely to your breast like a panicking mother cradling her newborn baby as she flees the Gestapo.