Monday, December 10, 2012

Tis The Season...To give to some less fortunate gamers

 I know it's been awhile but patience, I have some stuff in the works.

Now to business.

I am a member of quite a few forums (Nintendo Age / Sega Age / Sega 16 and so on) and I am constantly stunned by the generosity and acts of good will that I find there. This is not to say no one ever flames, or trolls, but really some people there go above and beyond.  I am in a Secret Santa on one of these forums and I received my gift today, and needless to say I was a bit stunned. I figured everyone was doing a $25ish gift and what I got was thoughtful to begin with and just got ridiculous the further into I went.  I wont share right now what it was, as I have agreed not to until Xmas morning but suffice to say it got me thinking.

I am fortunate, I have a great collection, and in my life in general is better than I expected. Reflecting on the gift I gave it was adequate, meet the requirements and nothing more. I can do better and I should. Rather then send more to the my Secret Santa participant I figured I could open it up to some  classic gamers who are less fortunate. If Xmas is looking bleak, and you collect Nintendo, Sega, or Collectible Toys ( Marvel / DC  /Star Wars Figs) maybe I can help.

So here is the deal, send  me an email or a message telling me your story. It doesn't need to be super long but lay it down for me and say why this year is in need of some cheer.  Also tell me what kind of stuff you are interested in, a want list would be good to include. So it might say, man I really love NES and boy could I use the following... or I love RPGs , I have these but could use anything on, and so forth.

I can't promise how many people I  will send to, depends on the response really, but I will try to send to a few people, can't promise it will be a ton but I will do what I can.

I have a  sweet Dreamcast with all the cords and a game ready to go.

Merry Xmas or Happy Holidays, you decide

Monday, October 1, 2012

Spookylicious Pop-Tarts: A Cautionary Tale.

Once upon a time, a long time ago in the far away land of last October, a good wife and a bad husband bought Halloween Pop-Tarts and they were spooktacular.

Upon first bite these pop-tarts were deemed good and right and even more than that, delicious.The good wife and the bad husband agreed to split these pop-tarts which consisted of 6 packs containing 2 each. The box can only hold 12 of these seasonal delights.

"Fair is fair, said the good wife, and even split is just the thing.”

Husband agreed in an instant, but after eating these delicious Spookylicious Pop-Tarts the husband could not contain is greed. Lost in magic and sugary delight the bad husband quickly finished his 3 packs. It took less than a week but he  hungrily ate all 6 tarts without a thought as to what he would do when they were finished. He was not satisfied. Meanwhile, the good wife slowly enjoyed her pop-tarts savoring each and every one of them enjoying them through the whole month of October, unlike her husband who had stuffed his face and finished his all too fast.

The good wife is a nurse, and it is her job was to see new babies arrive safely into the world. As is the nature of babies they will come when they will and given that October is a rich month for births, it is with no shock that the good wife was whisked away to work for 5 days straight, as stork after stork arrived with bundles full of new born babes. With great care the good wife unwrapped each bundle and helped bring joy to many new mothers and fathers across the land.

At home the bad husband stalked the kitchen greedily licking his chops as he stared at the final packet of Spookylicious Pop-Tarts they were the only two that remained. On the 3rd straight day of work  for the wife, the husband’s food stuffs had food ran short.  With the wife so busy at work she was unable to complete her duties and do the shopping, this meant the husband had grown hungry and weak. On this terrible day the husband's will ran as short as the food supply, without further though the husband strode into the kitchen, threw open the cupboards and set upon on the pop-tarts, scarfing them down with no thought of his wife's disappointment, his broken word, or the the folly that would surely follow.

When the good wife arrived home on the morning of the 6th day she was famished, delivering babies is exhausting work and leads to a powerful appetite. When she went to the kitchen to fetch a spooky treat, the cupboard was bare. She exclaimed in shock "Husband we have been robbed, someone has stolen my last packet of  my special pop-tarts."

The husband grunted and went to the kitchen,  "Don't be ridiculous, you silly girl. I ate the last tasty tart."
"No" gasped the wife, we agreed to split them fair and square. The bad husband laughed a bellowing laugh as he rubbed his all too full stomach. "Calm yourself woman" he said "I will hunt you down more Pop-Tarts, fear not your famine will soon be over, it is not as if these are the last Halloween Pop-Tarts in the land. The bad husband  had no idea just how wrong he was.

The  good wife could only nod as she was far too hungry and weak from lack of tasty Halloween pop-tarty treats.

The bad husband looked at the sad state of his good wife and in that moment he felt guilt, and remorse for what he had done. He took what was not his, and he broke his word.  He knew his wife was good and deserved better, so he resigned himself to hunting for more of these seasonal treats. He would make good on his word no matter what the cost, but in the dark secret place of the bad husbands mind he also knew this would mean more Spookylicious Pop-Tarts for him. He tried to push away the thought but couldn't. We must be careful for what is easily made is hard to unmake. The husband set out and made haste, leaving his good wife with an empty stomach. The wife could hardly sleep for the hunger pains stabbed at her terribly The good wife had worked 5 days straight and was so exhausted that despite the hunger and disappointment sleep did take immediately take her. Her last thought was that her husband would do right, and would make good on his promise, and it was this thought that finally eased he enough to let sleep come, but it was not to be.

husband despite his bad ways, did search long and hard. Every Grocer in the land was called on, and everyone had the same tale. "Alas poor Sir" they said, “Spookylicious Pop-Tarts are a might popular and tasty as you obviously know. We have sold through our stock and surplus. We expect no more shipments.” The bad husband raged, "But it is only 17th day of October, we still have a fortnight of this cursed month. What will we fill our stomach with if not SPOOKTACULAR POP-TARTS?" Despite his anger, despite his threats no grocer could help him, the husband would have to return home with only another broken promise in hand.  

When finally he returned to his home, he paced dreading the moment his goodly wife would awake, dreading the moment where he would have to explain. A short time later she awoke and brought herself from her chambers and came to him. She beamed, joy and expectation shining in her face "Hello my good husband, did you find them, did you do as you said you would?" The bad husband frowned at her, she knew the truth before the words were spoken, Her smile faltered and turned upon itself and became a frown. The husband did not speak, he only stared at his feet as if they might offer up some advice. He dare not break the silence. The good wife was not afraid of the silence and so she spoke and said, ' it is okay my dear, I can just have something else." She had released him from his promise but the not from her disappointment. He tried to attend her, The bad husband asked, "Are you okay?" Her response was the practiced lie that every woman is taught as a young girl. “I'm Fine, she lied. With those words the husband knew his fate It would be another full turn of the seasons before another batch of Spookylicious Pop-tarts could be had and the year would be long, and cold, but he must endure.

10 Months later

10 months ago on that weary October morning the once good and kind wife had a shadow placed on her and in that shadow her normal kindness was dulled and her warm and tender nature frosted. The good wife that the Husband remembered was almost gone, the shadow wife had grow prominent and with her prominence  came many joke and jibes about Spookylicious Pop-tarts and the husbands greed, his weakness and his failures. These thorns had been brought to bear on the husband by the wife for reasons the he could not fathom. No friend was spared the tale of the husbands misdeed either, every guest was regaled and delighted by the loathsome tale. Husband bore this shame as foil wrapped treat on his heart, but with the dawn of harvest, the husband would soon  be able to lay his shame down and reap his forgiveness. Husband had a plan and began his search early. He looking high and low, questioning every grocer but none knew if the Spookylicious Pop-Tarts would ever return. This was troubling news for Husband he began to despair. The key to the life he once knew lay in a box of foil wrapped seasonal delight. Husband must find them no matter what the cost.  Days went by and September shrank into nothingness and finally the calendar turned and the date read October 1st. The formerly bad husband had become thoroughly desperate as no  Spooktacular Pop-Tarts seemed destined to appear.  As the sun plunged behind the mountains finding it’s nightly resting place he knew what he had to do. In a  delirious rush he ran for the Electric Church, on the plinth at the base of the alter Husband  prayed to the Great Trader. His prayer rang out with a  clickety click click clak, “Great Trader hear my prayers and deliver me from the sorrow I have wrought upon my family and deliver unto me with the power of prime an answer.

What happened next, none could say

Moral of the Story: Don’t eat your wife's last pop-tart or you may spend the next year stalking the cereal and seasonal aisle of every grocery store and target you enter. I know these pop-tarts were reissued but for whatever reason never made it to my area of California. As a last resort to end the constant ridicule I did indeed pay nearly $20 for a box of Pop-Tarts.

This account is mostly true,  my wife is awesome, and I did eat the last pop-tart. The parts of this story that aren’t true are how my wife reacted. She has teased me for a whole year and yes, she has told our friends but never ever in a mean spirited fashion. This blog post was written for her and you to enjoy, I know this has nothing to do with video games, but eating that last pop-tart and assuming I’d just get more was truly a game over moment for me. I  won’t do post like this very often and possible ever again but it’s October the best month of the year and I decided to cut loose, I hope no one is too offended by me going off-topic.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Nintendo Vs. Sega: Shifting Gears

Greeting readers, I know it has been a good long while since I made a post, but the summer is my busiest time at work and I just did not have the time or energy to do an update. A failure on my part most definitely.  I want to right this wrong by giving you this brief update.

Just because I haven't been posting doesn't mean I have been collecting. If you look at the numbers columns and my top wants you will see that some interesting things have happened.  I added Sega Pico, and I have completed that set. I completed Dreamcast, and Saturn has been done for awhile.  With the Genesis I  am a mere 20 something games away from the complete set. I have held off on finishing Genesis for a few reason, cost being the main reason, cost is misleading actually,  it is the cost of shipping. The games I need to finish off Genesis are roughly between 5 and 10 dollars each.  The problem is that I have purchase these games from individual resellers it has been very difficult for me to find anyone  selling more than one game I need. Buying $5 Genesis games and paying $5 shipping for each game just doesn't make much sense. I am not worried the value of the remaining games I need will spike so I have just been picking them up here and there. Another reason I have procrastinated on this front is, because once I finish Genesis I am done with all Sega Consoles and that is super sad. I have been asked about Game Gear and my answer to that is probably not, I just don't have much love for portable systems.  I have about 80 Game Gear games and I am fine with that, I have the ones I want, maybe in the future or maybe it is something I will do very slowly.

Since I am just about done with Sega that prompts the very natural question, What Next?  One of the major reasons I love collecting Sega is because of the learning that takes place, it is unlike Nintendo,in the fact that it still has secrets and unknowns, it hasn't been picked apart by thousands of people scutinizing every facet. Just because I am essential done with Sega does not mean suddenly I wont be picking up any new Sega items. I am still looking for new Cardboard boxes and Sega Variants, and I still have lots of stuff to discuss about that I learned while completing the US Sega Library. I also want to put out a few complete set videos  and some write ups for Pico, Saturn, and Dreamcast. To answer the whats is next question, Nintendo, with a sprinkle of Xbox.

Nintendo Vs. Sega Vs. Xbox
With Sega I wanted to experience a system I didn't have as a child and learn why the world loved Sega even if it was under appreciated in America. With Sega I wanted to complete every set I could, the time was right and so was the price. Nintendo is a different animal all together. The love that people have for Nintendo is fierce and overwhelming, if for no other reason the sheer number of people who love it, collect it, and are vocal about it. This love is also shown in the cost of the games, if you haven't noticed the cost for rare and uncommon games is very high. I loved Nintendo as a child, I owned a NES when I was 5, I purchased a SNES with my own money the day it came out. The N64 came out right as I became an adult and had started dabbling with Playstation. I had a subscription to Nintendo Power from issue one, and I credit that magazine for helping me become a life long reader. The point being, is I have a lot of Nintendo knowledge and history so I won't be able to write the same way about Nintendo as I did about Sega, I have too many notions, biases, and inclinations that were deeply rooted in me during my developmental years. With Sega I can be completely honest and objective when  I write or speak to people who want to discuss it. I have a lot of love for Sega but very little nostalgia, so my judgment isn't clouded when I am asked to speak about it. My focus for Nintendo is going back and purchasing the things I love not necessarily complete sets. I plan on highlighting some publishers and retreading some areas that have already been explored.   A lot of what I collect for Nintendo is RPGs so I will have to highlight those at some point, but my first focus is going to be on the N64 the Nintendo System I know the least about. My current focus is getting an accurate list for the Player's Choice Titles,  the data out their is woefully bad, but that is still in the works and article for another day. The Xbox I don't have clear direction yet, but the idea of buying for a system that you can still find easily in the wild is appealing , and the fact that I only know this system through the eyes of  an adult is compelling.

Okay so this post wasn't as brief as I had hoped, but alas earwax. When I started this blog  I wanted it to be universal, talking about collecting in a way that didn't sound like some random fanboy shouting his opinions. I am an inclusive gamer that loves great games regardless of  the system it was published on. I hope the shifting of gears on GameOver doesn't turn away any of you who liked the Sega-centric view this blog had. I hope to get some more updates out soon and maybe finally show a room of doom video so you can see many systems  and games I have collected over the years.

As Always, Thank You for Reading.

I have a Facebook Humor Page: Why Is Everybody So Bad At Everything? If you like the little jokes I put in the links, this is of the same ilk.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Renovation Games for the Sega CD & Genesis: A Complete Set Video

This is just a quick video to show the complete set of games by the publisher Renovation for the Sega Genesis and Sega CD. In total Renovation published 27 games, 23 for Genesis and 4 on the Sega CD. Renovation is a very popular publisher on the genesis and most of their games are well loved and highly collectible. Part of what makes these games collectible is the genre of games Renovation chose to publish mainly SHumps / RPGS/ Action RPG.   IGN did a feature on the top 10 renovation games and I agree with their number 1 title completely.

You can see that article here.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

How To Complete Sets for Retro Video Games: Sega Nintendo Playstation

How to attack Complete Sets.

Completing a full set of any console can be a daunting task, that can sometimes be overwhelming, and frustrating. The question question I get the most aside from WHY? is, how do you do it? This is a very good question. Some people think that to get a full library all you need to do is go to eBay, type in the name of the game you want, and spend money. This is not the case, ever...EVER. I said it twice and bolded it so that you will believe me. Some of you still won't, so let me go over why it isn't true.

Before you go to eBay and start snapping up games you need to make a few decisions. These first decisions will act as a guide as you continue to buy games for which ever library you are trying to complete.

Decision 1: Are you going for complete copies or is a loose set fine? How complete are we talking? Every insert, or are you going with the standard Box, Manual, and Cart / Disc? Some Sets bare different considerations as the packaging for games on every system is a bit different..

Decision 2: Does Condition Matter? It will affect the price, but if money isn't your biggest obsticle you still need to consider condition. Some games are Hard to find or Rare, this means you may not see it in any initial searches, it also means that when you do find it, that is might be beat to hell.

From what I say happens in decision 2 you can probably start to see why you won't ever (Please read that as 99.9% of the time) be able to just “go to eBay and buy every game”. The simple answer is some games are actually rare, and that means they aren't always on eBay. If you want an example look at MiraclePiano for the Sega Genesis eBay. Miracle Piano is semi-rare, not the rarest game on the Genesis but still rare. The price, I have seen them at $150 to $300 for complete copies. That's in the range of Panzer Dragoon Saga; which, is to say expensive but not completely prohibitive to collectors. If you factor in condition, I have only seen one mint copy, and he wanted a grand, and I know people who would pay that, maybe more. So you can see how you don't actually have the ability to get it all from eBay, on truly rare pieces I would say you have to know some one, or be in community like Sega-16 or Nintendo / Sega Age or Racket Boy, Digitpress, Atari Age ect. IF you don't have access to hardcore collectors it could take you a very long time to complete sets for most systems.

It's True that not all systems libraries are as large as the Genesis or Nintendo NES. Sega CD is pretty small, but I still had problems finding all of those. The 32x was pretty easy and Virtual Boy can probably be done off of eBay right now, but not if you want it all mint, and if you want sealed, then you should settle in and get comfortable because you are going to be at it awhile...also bring your wallet and it better be thick.

Now that I have full discussed why eBay isn't the end all be all, let me get to the actual methods I use.

The first thing I do after I have decided what set I am going after is research. Yes, it can be boring but I assure you it is necessary. You need to learn about the set from a buyers point of view not a gamers point of view.

Things to look for:
What Games make the whole set?
Seems like you should just be able to google this question and find an answer, but it isn't that easy. Collectors argue constantly over which games are in a set, official vs licensed, pirates, Variants, re-releases, pack ins, accessory only games, competition games and the list goes on. My advice is to make a list out of all the available data that you are happy with, tinker with it and adjust it to suit your needs. Remember this is your set and despite what people say or argue there is no official guide. For me personal I stick to retail release games official or not. This usually makes for a clean concise list.

Variant, what are they and do you care?
The reason I didn't lump this into the what makes a whole set question is because I feel it is really a second set. If you like variants you are going to get these games in addition to all the regular release. Essential this gives you an add on to your complete set. Variants aren't for everyone and most of the time they are just more expensive versions of games you already own.

Does the system have any barrier games?
Barrier games are games that are so rare or so expensive that they either aren't realistic to obtain or are going to require a large amount time as well effort to obtain. We have all heard of games like these: Stadium Events NES, Outback Joey Genesis, Blockbuster Champ, Nintendo NWC Gray and Gold Challenge Carts, Magical Chase TG16 . Elemental Gearbolt Assassins Case PS1, Metal Slug Neo Geo. The list goes on. These games are all over 1k and some well over. Most of the time these aren't retail releases or they are so fringe you don't have to acquire them for the whole set. Notice I said most of the time not all of the time.

What are all the rare / expensive/ HTF games?
Since you have already located the potential barrier games for your system of choice,you should also have noticed some of the less expensive rare or HTF games that pop up on peoples lists. Write the names of these games down or highlight them if you already have a list. These games you will want to do further research on, so you don't over spend. I advise putting them on an eBay watch list and consulting completed auctions so you know a good deal when you see one.

What are the Niche Sets, Sub Sets, Mini Sets and Series?
The Niche Sets, Sub Sets, or Mini Sets as I call them are categories like RPGS, SHUMPS, Fighters Popular Game Series, or Games By Specific Publsihers. These are games that are getting consumed by collectors who aren't just interested in sets or playing games they like. You should watch out for genre specific collectors. These collectors  have SHUMPS/ RPGS/ Fighters on over 30 different systems and they are usually willing to pay. Series Collectors are another group that bears notice.You know people love Zelda, Sonic, Mario, Rachet & Clank, Shining Force, so on so and so forth. You also know that while common you are probably going to have to pay  premium for these games and people are competing against you.  Knowing what games fall in these categories helps you know how hard you may have to battle and who your competition is. Some of the games in this category wind up crossing over to rare / expensive games category, but this just about every category has cross over so don't let that worry you.

Buying Games
Now that the research portion is done, we are ready to go out and do some shopping. You have your favorite haunts, both local and online located. eBay and Amazon have tabs on your home page and now it's time to spend that money.

So what to buy first?
The first thing I suggest you buy are your Favorite games or the games you really want to play. Buying these are rewarding and the cost seems a lot less when you get hours of play. In addition to your favorites make sure you have eBay saved searches for all the expensive games. These games you want to buy as you find good deals and when you can afford them. If you save them for last you will find that even though you have complete 90% of a set you still have 70% of the spending to do.

Buying Lots.
After I have all of my favorite titles it can be very daunting to just go randomly buy games. At this point I normally only have 5 or so game purchased so I have lots of options available . This is a great time to start buying lots on eBay. I like to have a good bit of cash tucked away $200-$500 just to buy a few different lots from eBay and Craigslist. If I get real lucky maybe I find a few sweet deals at local garage sales, but that doesn't happen as often as I'd like, and not often enough to expect it. At this point in your collection lots won't net you tons of dupes so you get a lot for what you spend. Buying lots allows you to put meat on the bones of your collection. Remember you are going to have to buy tons of filler and if you are tackling a library for any system, far more of the games are garbage rather than gold. This is the ugly truth about collecting whole libraries the ratio of bad to good won't ever bee in your favor, not even for small sets like the 32X. The Saturn has a very good ratio, I'd say the best for Sega for sure and maybe the best for any system. ( I am also biased , the Saturn is my fav disc based system.)

Mini Sets, Making Goals, and Staying Motivated
Now that you have a solid base of games in your collection it's time to set some small goals or go for mini sets. I mentioned earlier about the Mini Sets  and when you buy lots you have a good chance of picking a few of these up to begin your sub sets. I personally like to focus on my favorite series on a system then all the RPGs, next  SHUMPS and then Fighters. Collecting small sets within a larger set helps keep you motivated. Accomplishing these mini goals gives you a sense of a accomplishment and  checking a box and giving yourself a mental gold star goes  a lot to keep you going.. It doesn't seem like much but if you are going after a large set then these small achievements act as progress markers on your journey, encouraging and helping you move forward. I know to some of you that just sounds stupid, but when you are buying your 10th Madden game that you won't ever play sometimes you need even the small wins, plus

 these goals allow you to be able to track your progress and see the things you have accomplished. Completing sets can be a long journey and it should be rewarding, building a library subset by subset allows you to stay focused or even taking breaks without loosing your place. For the Sega Genesis , I just completed a Black Grid Games  set as well as the Renovation Games Set, getting those out of the way gave me a nice boost to get through the last 100 or so Genesis games I need.

Finishing It Up.
After you finish building your subsets and snagging some of the expensive games at good prices, it is time to finish up. At this point you probably have filler and some one off games on your list and maybe the one Barrier Game one the system left. This is probably the hardest part of finishing a set. Aside from the Barrier Game and a few other expensive titles you have the filler and these games are common but not super common, they might even be uncommon. This is a problem because while they aren't expensive or rare they are titles people just don't have in bulk or you can't get from a single seller. This means you are going to have to scour places, at this point I am usually exclusively on eBay and Amazon. So this hoard of $10 to $15 dollar games stands between you and a complete set. Try your best to buy from as few sellers as possible, and make sure you are posting wanted lists on forums. If you try to buy all of these games as stand alones from eBay you are going to waste a ton on shipping and that is going to make buying the last few expensive games on your list difficult or it is going to prevent you from saving up to get that Barrier Game.

The Crown Jewel
At this point your set is pretty much done and you are just saving up or perhaps you have saved but you can't find the last game. If you have the money you should be contacting other collectors seeing if they know who might have it for sale or maybe they are at the point where they are ready to sell. At this stage the forum is your best friend. During the process of making your set hopefully you already had or created a deep pool of friends and contacts that you can rely on. These Barrier Games don't often show up on eBay and when they do bidding wars can happen extended the price well beyond your limits. Remember if you are looking for a game that means others are looking too, and some of them might just out crazy you and bid high on eBay.

The End
Buy a nice shelf to display your accomplishment on, write a blog, and make a video to post on youtube.

Good luck completing your Sets, It's not for everyone but some of you are crazy and won't be persuaded

As Always Thank You For Reading

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Genesis Cardboard Boxes: A Complete Set?

Part 1 of the Sega Genesis Cardboard Box Complete Collection Video
Part 2 of the Sega Genesis Cardboard Box Complete Collection Video
(Before I go Further I would like to thank SegeAge.Com and a several of its members especially Brad aka WRK. Without them and their efforts this post would not be possible - Thank You)
So after over a year of research, which involved countless Google searches, forum discussions, and more eBay trolling than is healthy I can now say that I have a complete set of Cardboard Box Genesis Titles. I believe I am the first person to accomplish this feat, not because I am amazing but because I had help and I was very dedicated. Another huge factor was that I wasn't really competing against anyone to do this. It is not often in Retro Game Collecting you get to break new ground, so this list is very exciting to me on that level. I think this is an amazing achievement, but before we start jumping up and down and hugging let me tell you I can say that with about 90% certainty that others will be found. When I first started writing this post back in October it started with the same opening sentence and then went on to give the total number of games that came in Cardboard Boxes. The number  when I first started this post was 183, and before I could finish my first paragraph I was alerted to a game not on my list and the total jumped to 184. The timing was a bit too perfect, so for the sake of being thorough I decided to wait a little longer before finishing this post. Waiting would allow me to see if I could find any others I had missed, even though I had already put months of research into the topic. Turns out I missed quite a bit. By December the total had climbed to 190 by Feb it had jumped to 199 and in March I realized I had omitted one title that had been on earlier list and that brought the grand total to a round 200.

So 200 is the Final Number? Right? 
Well that's a tough question, I think it is important to discuss how this number was achieved and what games it counts. Here is a link to the Master List I use. Now that you have access to the list, and if you are looking, you will see that it is full of variants/duplicates and some games that are debatable. I will discuss those at length, I will also discuss how my Google doc is arranged, why some games made it onto the list and why others did not. I will also explain just how likely it is that other games will be added to this list.
From here on out I will assume everyone is looking at the list.

Why are some games not on the list?
Some of you might think you know of a game or heard of a game that came in Cardboard (CB) that is not currently on the list, you might be curious why it hasn't been mentioned or how it was missed. Let me say this, I would love any info you have. If you email me or leave a comment about a game that isn't on the list I will gladly give you the credit for it's find, but I require proof. What kind of Proof? Let me respond in a way that is customary to the Internet.

Variants and Duplicates
On the list you will see many games that appear to be duplicates but really they are variants. In fact if you look at the very first game on the list 6-Pack you will see it is listed twice once with an (f) at the end and the other with an (s) at the end. The letters in parentheses indicate the box type, F being Flip Top and S meaning Slide Box. These Box types were discussed in my previous post which you can see here. If you are using my list for your collecting purposes please adapt it however you want. Just because I point out that 6-Pack has two versions in CB doesn't you need to have both to complete your set. I show all the variants I have found to give everyone the most accurate data available. I personally have collected all the variants listed but that's just me.

Debatable Games
The Big one I know people like to argue about is Outback Joey, but I have had questions about Miracle Piano, The Carmen Sandiego Games,Maximum Carnage QVC, The Accolade titles, Wisdom Tree Games, and even Wacky Worlds. To those who say these don't belong on the list please know I am not here to argue with you. I have mentioned before that I don't mind if you take my list copy it and edit it to suit your purposes. Now with that in mind please understand this list suits my purpose. That purpose so we are clear is information. I try to put out as much info as I can, take what you want and leave the rest. For the specific titles above let me offer you my reasoning.
Outback Joey: Some people will say OJ is not a Genesis title, even though it runs on a Genesis, comes in a Genesis cart, was released during the Genesis life cycle and says Sega on the Box and Cart. I am not sure how it is described in the literature that comes with it but I will check. They also argue that under my logic any Not For Resale game that came packed in with a system should be included, because the game was essential packed in a big Cardboard box. I see their point, but OJ was only found with the fitness system so I feel hard pressed not to include it. For me and mind you I am biased, OJ is a Genesis title and should get the respect it deserves.
Some people argue that Miracle Piano and OJ shouldn't be on the list not because they aren't Genesis games but because they didn't come cart only, they are packed into accessories. These people believe that Cardboard Box games should be games that had a box dedicated to the game only, the carts for Miracle Piano and OJ are more like accessories to accessories. This is the rational I have heard, I disagree but for arguments sake I present it to you.
Big Box Games: Games like the Carmen Sandiego titles, Mario Lemieux with Puck, and QVC Max Carnage are probably the most questionable games on the list. These games actually have plastic clam-shell cases that are packed into a bigger outer cardboard box. I would find it totally reasonable to leave them off your list.
Accolade and Wisdom Tree Games: The debate about these games come not from the box, they are very clearly Cardboard but from the lack of the official Sega Seal. I think people are really splitting hairs on these games, call them unlicensed if you like but these were released during the life cycle of the Genesis for the play on the Genesis, they have earned there place. Some people say "what about Pier Solar? why is that excluded it's the same thing as any Wisdom Tree Game. A few things, one it is way better than any Wisdom Tree game or Accolade game for that matter ( I like RPGs). Two and here is my real reason, Pier Solar was not released during the life cycle of the system. I have been consistent with this personal rule on every system I collect for. Double check my Sega CD List and Complete Sega CD Collection Video if you doubt it. Pier Solar is wonderful and you should buy (buy it here) it if you like RPGs, but it is not going on my list.
How is the Google Doc Arranged?
The arrangement for the Google Doc is easy enough to understand. The first tab has an intro to the list, Contributors, and Key that explains box types. It also has has under those first few blocks a revision block. This space lists all revisions and recent editions made to the list. Under these blocks we get to the meat of the list. The first column is the Master List, it lists all games in alphabetical order regardless of box type. The Second Major column is games that I believe only came in Cardboard Boxes, and the Third Column lists games that I think also came in plastic clam-shells.
The Second Tab has the games broken down by box types. Some of the info has yet to be updated as this list is always a work in progress. The box type separates all the variants, and but still has all games listed alphabetically. Some of the lists in the second tab contain overlap, for instance, if you look at Bible Adventure you will see it listed as both a Genesis Flip Top and also as an Wisdom Tree game. The Second Tab is mainly for my purposes but I know some of you are just as anal as me and want them all listed separately, so enjoy.
How likely it is that other games will be added to this list?
While I have been diligent and looked high and low across the internet, it saddens me to say that this number will most likely increase. Many games had very limited print runs in Cardboard, Tin Head, Battletoads, and Power Rangers Mega Hit to name a few. It took me a long time just to confirm they existed even though I had been told from multiple sources. It stands to reason that a few titles in limited runs have escaped my rather narrow view of the Sega Landscape. Another problem with keeping this number consistent is the type of variants. Many games have multiple versions: Slide Tray and Flip Tops, see 6- Pack or The Adv of Batman and Robin for examples. It is not always easy to tell in photos which version of a game you are looking at. I have double checked most games to see if I can find multiple versions but my primary source is eBay and the results vary every single day. I won't be shocked to see more of these types of variants pop up, and I have no doubt this will be the most common addition to the list.
Please enjoy the list and I hope you find it useful. Remember every game on the master list has a photo link attached. If you have any question please let me know.

As Always Thank You Reading

I have a Facebook Humor Page: Why Is Everybody So Bad At Everything? If you like the little jokes I put in the links, this is of the same ilk.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Sega Genesis Cardboard Box Games: The Basics

The Sega Master System, with whatever flaws it may have, did one thing that has left all other retro game collectors envious. So what did Master System do? It pioneered the Plastic Clam shell case, the forerunner of DVD and BluRay style case. It's true some random games on other system before the SMS ( Sega Master System) had clam shells, but it was the North American SMS that brought a full uniformed library of plastic clam shells to the market. This fine tradition of games in hard, long lasting, durable, plastic cases was continued on the Genesis, except for when it wasn't. Yeah about that...

Enter the Cardboard Box Titles: The Cardboard box titles come in many styles but we can narrow it down to 3 basic types, The Accolade Hard Top (HT), The Flip Top (f), and the most common Slide Out Tray (s).

The Accolade Style Case- These CB's look like old computer game boxes, they have a top and a bottom, with the top lifting off to expose the manual inner tray and cart.

The Flip Top- These Boxes are similar to Original Nintendo NES boxes, as they open from the top to expose the game, but they are more akin to Nintendo 64 boxes in that they have a built in structure to house the game and manual.

The Slide Tray- The Slide Tray uses an inner tray that slides out from either the top or bottom out of the outer box it hold the game in front, but hold the manual inside the tray. This make the manual frustrating to get to and it can't be done easily without damaging the inner tray. It is the most plentiful of all the Sega Genesis Cardboard box types and was used to house most of the Sega 32X games as well.

Others Box Types- Aside from the three basic types we have a smattering of other titles that came in different style cardboard boxes. Some games only came packed with accessories and have no proper case to speak of; Miracle Piano and Lethal Enforcers. Some of them are true Oddities like Outback Joey which only came with a Fitness System. Two games came in gatefold boxes (the front of the box swings open) T2 and Menacer 6 in 1. Another type are the Big Box Games, these are games that come with in a standard clam shell case but because they come with an accessory they have been jammed into a bigger out cardboard box like Mario Lemieux Hockey with Puck, and Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego. QVC gave us a variant on this style with their QVC Exclusive Maximum Carnage Special Edition. The last variant on these worth mentioning is the Cardboard Hang Tab. I don't know how or why these made it into production and in fact I only know of 2 games that have them Sonic 2 and NHL All-Star Hockey. These are flip top games that have a hang tab attached. Sonic 2 is very rare and hard to find, All-Star Hockey has the tab only on the Canadian version which doesn't appear that often. I have found one other hang tab game and that is Tecmo Super Bowl 3. Tecmo Super Bowl 3 is not a flip top game, it is a slide box and the hang tab is found on the slide tray and can be tucked into back. I have confirmed this tray type only on Tecmo Super Bowl 3 and I have done so on multiple copies.

Tray Types
Having just mention the tray of Tecmo Super Bowl 3 I feel like it's a good time to go over some of the Slide Trays you may find inside your Cardboard Box games. Some trays will hold the game sideways, others will hold the games in an up and down fashion. Some of trays have Genesis written at the top of the tray in big white letters, some have it written on the bottom, other have it on the back, and some don't have Genesis written anywhere. Some of the Trays that have Genesis on the top also have Sega printed in the lower right hand corner, but not all of them. On the portion of the tray that holds the game firm the cardboard flaps might be shaped like triangles, while others are squared triangle and others are just rectangle shaped. I have found that College Football's National Championship II can come with a white inner tray, (I have seen it twice) but I have never seen another game to have a white tray. Lastly, as already mentioned, Super Tecmo Bowl 3 has a hang tab that is punched out of the back of it's tray.

What is with all the tray variation and do all games come with specific trays?
 The variation in trays might have to do with the game title and I have shown that in a few games, but I think it is more likely that the tray types have to do with when they were produced and where they were produced. Most Cardboard box games were produced in one of three locations, Mexico, Japan, and the USA. The difference in the production quality from these three plants varies to a large degree, sometimes you will notices some labels on your games are very dark or look fake, while on others the text looks blurry or bolded on the title and Sega logos. I have noticed the blurry text on many of the Mexico carts. It is safe to assume that these plants all got their production material from separate plants which would explain the differences. It could also do with the production run. A game could have a tray that hold the game up and down in the beginning of its production but by the 3rd or 4th release they may have only had trays that held the game sideways. This is of course all speculation but I feel these could reasonable explain the differences.

Misconceptions about Genesis Cardboard Box Games
1. They all have Black and White Manuals. Nope, while many do have B/W manuals quite a few have color manuals.
2. All CB games are rereleases. Not even close Over 100 games were Cardboard Only.
3. Games only come in one type of Box. No, many CB games have clam shell versions and some even have multiple cardboard types, like say a flip top and a slide box.

4. Sega CB games are Pirates or non North American Releases. No they are official.
5. All Cardboard Box games came late in the Genesis life cycle and typically came in Red Boxes with Genesis in white up the left side. No, but yes several do come just like this; however, companies like EA and Accolade produced Cardboard titles well before the Red Box games were released.
6. Cardboard box games are easily damaged. Yes, actually that is true. Genesis CBs tend to feel thinner than Nintendo boxes and flimsier.

7. Cardboard box games are cheaper. No I feel like the opposite is true. While many people understandable do no like CB Genesis games, the fact that the cardboard is easily lost or discarded makes these games harder to find complete. In years to come I feel the price on these will rise because of the rarity of the boxes and condition will be a huge determinant in the overall cost.

Thank You for reading and I hope you found this post informative. Stay Tuned Next Week for a post a I know a few of you have been waiting for and a video.


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Complete Sega Checklists Posted and Numbers Adjusted

As stated in my first post my goal is to complete the US Sega Console library. With that goal in mind I posted a Running Tallies Section on the side of this blog for you guys to see my progress. I slacked for a good long while on updating them, but that is taken care of now. I have also been doing a lot of research and I noticed my numbers were off on a few systems so I have adjusted them. While it is nice to have numbers, I thought it would be even better if you could see my lists so I am posting links to the google docs . After the links you will see a brief explaination of how I arrived at my numbers and what my criteria are.
Sega Master System
Sega Genesis
Sega 32X and Pico
Sega CD
Sega Saturn
Sega Dreamcast
To have a complete set for me that means one of every game title for each Sega System. Why the distinction? Well lets look at the Sega 6 pack.
and Compilations in general:
This compilation has several great titles in it, and all of them were individually released. This means to complete my set I need one of each of the 6 games listed and The Sega 6 Pack. I feel like most collectors view it the same way I do but I know a few who don't. Now lets consider variants like Raiden Trad for the Genesis. It came with two covers because Big Net decided to rerelease it with more exciting art.
 Variants: variants it is the same title, so I wouldn't have to pick up both versions (but I will) for it to count for the complete set. For the Genesis I also excluded the Mega Hit, Video Game Classics, and Sega Classic Series games. While I consider them additional games or subsets at the very least some collectors feel they are just variants. If I find some others that strongly disagree I will reincorporate them. In the alpha tabs on the Genesis list these games are listed.
Not For Resale titles: These are also not counted toward the final number, unless NFR was the only way in which the game was release an example would be Daytona USA NetLink Edition.
I hope this clears up how I got my numbers, also you guys should note that for the Sega Saturn I counted the two games that came with the Netlink modem as individual titles.

 These list aren't prefect I am sure of that, so if you see some errors or something I missed feel free to let me know and I hope this helps.