Included are the likes of Sonic The Hedgehog, Streets Of Rage and many more which helped to define not only the Mega Drive, but also the 16-bit era.
A series of interviews are also included alongside some classic arcade emulations to make the package complete.
Sonic & Knuckles. Streets Of Rage 1, 2 and 3. Ecco The Dolphin. Phantasy Star IV. Columns. If you're an oldschool gamer you'll know exactly why these games are great because, chances are you've played them before. If you're a newcomer then it's time to find out about the titles that paved the way for Killzone and LittleBigPlanet. We can say with ample probability that there will be something on this disc for everyone. SEGA's support of their Mega Drive console was consistently brilliant all the way through the early-mid '90s. This collection simply lets you replay all the greats emulated perfectly on your PS3.
By our rough calculations we reckon this little selection of games would have cost you somewhere in the region of £1600 in the '90s. Even buying them all on the Nintendo Wii's excellent Virtual Console service would set you back approximately £240. So when you consider SEGA Mega Drive Ultimate Collection weighs in at around £24.99 and provides a selection of interviews and bonus arcade games to boot, it's really very difficult to fault.
Upon loading SMDUC for the first time we were rather impressed with the excellent menu screen. Not only can you order the games by alphabet, genre and date, but you can also rate each game and sort them into your favourite and least favourite. It's a neat little touch that makes jumping between different games a tad slicker.
SEGA Mega Drive Ultimate Collection rewards you for playing the range of content the disc has to offer. Whether it's achieving a certain score in Columns or reaching a certain level in Streets Of Rage, there are numerous trophies and incentives to keep playing the variety of games the package has to offer.
For anyone with a slight interest in the history of SEGA, it's extremely interesting to watch the packaged interviews with the people behind the games. They are well constructed and moderately informative for the fanatic.
Not every game has aged well.As expected given the wealth of content, some games on this compilation may shatter some pairs of rose-tinted glasses. The Golden Axe games verge on the wrong side of unplayable, while others feel too basic and stripped down to appease the needs of modern gamers.
While the box claims the games of SMDUC are "now in HD", the statement should be taken with a massive pinch of salt. Essentially, this comment refers to the "smoothing" option which is available for each game. Turning the option on improves the picture on HD televisions greatly, however, this is at the expense of some retro charm. While it's not really a problem (games like Comix Zone still look great today) we were worried people might buy the game under the impression this is a Bionic Commando Rearmed type upgrade. It's not.
Is this what you want to play on PS3?With a flow of games which constantly test the PS3's hardware, you have to question if Mega Drive games are what you want to be playing. We can't compromise the quality and extent of the package, but no matter how good the collection of games are, the fact that they were released sometime in the early 1990's will not go away.
While SEGA Mega Drive Ultimate Collection doesn't exactly justify the cost of your expensive next-gen console; oldschool gamers and newcomers alike will be hard pushed to find such a vast collection of quality content at such a low price.