The Sega Genesis Mini Faithfully Recreates the Experience of Not Having a SNES

Nostalgia plays inevitably fall victim to bad memories as well.
A photo of a Sega Genesis Mini.
Image courtesy of Sega

Sometimes nostalgia isn't all positive feelings. So when a product drops that's meant to tug at your memories of childhood, it will inevitably bring along the bad with the good. The Genesis Mini reminded me both of how I enjoyed the early Sonic games, and how much I through the SNES controllers were far superior. We dive into the Sega Genesis Mini's lineup, discuss therapy and characters in Eliza, and talk about the games we've played from this sudden rush of new releases on this week's Waypoint Radio. You can listen to the full episode and read an excerpt below.


Cado: So, I had one of these as a child.

Austin: You had one of these?

Cado: No.

Austin: You're a time traveler!

Cado: Yeah, yeah, I came forward, then took it back.

Patrick: No, no, saying he had "one of these" is what us SNES owners referred to [people like] Cado as. "Oh, you've got one of these."

[Cado groans]

Austin & Danielle: One of these!

Cado: You know, it's weird. It's weird being in that position of, I wanted a SNES, my parents got me a Genesis 'cause they don't understand what things are. And I was small enough that I wasn't,

Austin: You weren't going to be like "go return this and give me the good one."

Patrick: "I do like Altered Beast! It's a great packet game! Just like Super Mario World. Quality! Rise from my grave to play this game."


Cado: Here's the other thing, it was a late is late in the console's lifespan.

Austin: Ok, so you had good stuff to play.

Cado: It came with Sonic 3 was the bundle for this specific one. So I was like "Oh Sonic, I know Sonic, that seems good right?" Sonic 3 is great by the way, but there's definitely still that lingering like "But that's not what I really wanted." And strangely, I'm having the same kind of feeling with the Genesis Mini.

Austin: Daaamn.

Rob: Wow.

Cado: We have a SNES mini here in the office that I've played around with a few times and,

Austin: You can take that home! It's just sitting in a

Cado: I know, I'm gonna take that home someday. It's something about the [controller]. It doesn't feel good. So, first thing the controller doesn't feel good.


Austin: The Genesis controller was never as good as the SNES controller.

Cado: No!

Austin: Is it the six-button?

Cado: I had the [original] six-button, and I open this thing up and it's the three-button and I'm like "What the fuck? What is happening?" I didn't even know the three-button existed!

Austin: Oh buddy.

Cado: The buttons feel strange, and every time I hit down and hits down twice on [accident], it's like almost there but not. It feels a little bit like how I remember feeling after coming home from playing my cousin's SNES and being like "Well, I got Sonic."

Austin: Daaaamn

Patrick: Woooooooow!

Rob: This has been the most depressing segment we've ever done. any reality child status? I remember.

Austin: This is brutal!

Cado: Here's the thing!

Rob: This is like a remembrance of things passed, but like "Yes, I have returned to this shitty reality of childhood."

Patrick: "It was as bad as I remember!"

Rob: Not even like "This takes me back," it's "Oh no. 20 years later I've returned to this moment."

Cado: The thing of going in picking a game, playing it, getting in and out of those menus is actually goo, 'cause you don't have to get up and press the reset button, which is a good thing. But, you know, Altered Beast is on there.

Austin: Yeeahh. It's important to put it there, but it's bad, they shouldn't have put it there.

Cado: Yeah! There's a couple of weird games on there that I had never heard of that seem interesting.


Austin: I think this list is all right. I really think this list is alright. I'm like comparing the SNES classic to the Genesis Mini now and I think it's fair to say the SNES Classic has more top tier, you know, undisputed champions of gaming on it. I think I would rather, the true real like deep gamer heart in me, would rather the Genesis Mini's collection.

Patrick: Can you list those games really quick?

Austin: Which ones I'd rather play or just the whole list?

Patrick: Just the list, I forget what's actually on this thing.

Austin: Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle. I don't really care. Alisia Dragoon I game I've never played I don't even know what that is,

Cado: It's weird.

Austin: Is it weird? What's the deal with it?

Cado: It's like, you don't aim. It's like if Contra had auto aim.

Patrick: What a setup!

Austin: You Don't Aim.

Patrick: You don't aim?

Austin: It's like a 2D Action game?

Rob: "What's this game? Let me tell you what it isn't."


Cado: But like literally it feels like, even the scale of it feels like Contra? The way your character moves.

Austin: Oh this is cool! I love how Genesis games look, I'm just fucked up like that! This looks fuckin' dope!

Cado: And you know what? The fucking Genesis sound chip is fucking *mwa*.

Patrick: Look at this lady shoot electricity out of her hand!

Austin: She doesn't aim!

Cado: She doesn't aim!

Austin: Or she aims, you don't aim!

Danielle: She does it for you!


Austin: Altered Beast.

Danielle: Wooooo!

Austin: Yeah, Altered Beast is a mess.

Danielle: I think you just have to "woo!" every time. Wooo!

Patrick: Altered Beast is such a product of its time, if you've never experienced Altered Beast,

Cado: I still haven't

Patrick: It is worth it for that alone.

Austin: Wait really, you didn't play it? You should play it.

Cado: Yeah, so I didn't spend that much time with it yet, but for the few hours I was mostly playing Sonic.

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