Sega may not be the gaming powerhouse it once was, but the lasting impression the Japanese company has made on the video game industry is undeniable. Today Sega brings to mind create classic consoles like the Sega Megadrive and the Dreamcast, as well as still popular franchises like Sonic the Hedgehog and even super fresh releases such as Yakuza: Like a Dragon. Not to mention the iconic SE-GA sound effect.
This year marks Sega’s 60th anniversary, and the company has been celebrating more than half a century of making games. It’s a great opportunity to take a look through their history, back to the golden age of arcades when Sega was constantly breaking new ground and trying out new technology. The anniversary has also been delivering some interesting limited edition products like this updated Game Gear, and we’ve just seen the release of one more classic arcade inspired console…
Back in the early 90’s one of Sega best loved arcade machines was the Astro City, a 93kg machine which consumed more than its fair share of coins in exchange for the chance to play games which seem amazingly basic compared to the blockbuster-like releases nowadays.
If you missed the chance to try and grab a high score on one of these heavy-duty gaming set-ups, you’ll be excited to know that as part of the 60th anniversary celebrations, Sega will be bringing the Astro City back to life.
Sega won’t actually be shipping out full-size versions of the 1993 arcade machine, so there’s no need to rearrange the furniture to fit it into your home. Instead the chunky Astro City has been scaled down and converted into mini console small enough to carry around. Who would have believed that arcade machines would one day become handheld?
Dubbed the Astro City Mini, this interactive celebration of Sega history is only about 17cm tall and 13cm wide. It’s no model though, and even the little arcade buttons are perfectly functional. If anything the Astro City Mini is an upgrade despite being downsized; it comes equipped with a USB cable charger as well as a HDMI cable to help it adapt to the 21st century.
The very recently released gadget comes with 37 games installed, so you can expect all the best from the Sega’s era of arcade, in addition to a some lesser known releases with a cult following. Virtua Fighter will probably be the most well-known title to feature, but the Golden Axe series and Shinobi are also titles which have long held places in the video game hall of fame.
The Astro City Mini costs just over £90, making this more likely to be snapped up by collectors than casuals. If you really want to dive in however, you’ll find that the full package comes with accessories which show serious attention to detail.
Although it seems like the buttons and joystick already equipped on the Mini are all you’ll need to play, there is the option to buy a separate controller or another handheld controller for multiplayer modes. The most attractive extra you can get is a style kit which adds a little chair, stickers to add on and a base for the handheld console, which makes the whole thing look like an elaborate Gacha; except that normal Gacha can’t play retro Sega games in 720p.
Source: Sega Homepage