Though you may have your eyes stuck on Amazon this week due to Prime Day promotions, the site wound up making news for a select segment of retro gamers on Wednesday by leaking a new Sega product: the Genesis Mini 2. Roughly one hour later, Sega made it official by rolling out a dedicated Sega Genesis Mini 2 website.
If this mini-console concept looks familiar, that’s because Sega of Japan already announced its own version of this product, the Mega Drive Mini 2, earlier this year, slated to launch overseas in October. Today’s newly announced “Genesis”-themed version has a firmer release date of October 27, and it, too, will include “over 50” classic games from the Sega Genesis, Sega CD, and arcade. As Sega reps have previously explained, both the Mega Drive Mini 2 and Genesis Mini 2 are powered by an entirely new system-on-ship (SoC) compared to 2019’s original Genesis Mini, which means it will include larger flash storage and improved processing needed to properly emulate the Sega CD console.
Speaking of upgraded hardware: The box art confirms that Sega is including a six-button Genesis controller this time, though only one, not a pair. Sega has confirmed that any three- and six-button pads made for the original Genesis Mini will work on this hardware.
Deflated yen discount, muted a bit by extra shipping
As originally spotted by journalist Alex Donaldson, the Genesis Mini 2 appeared on Wednesday in a listing that was possibly generated by Sega’s Japanese Amazon account, as it restricts orders to American addresses but requires that buyers pay for shipping from Japan. As of press time, Sega of America officially links to this Amazon listing as the miniaturized console’s exclusive retailer, and it still requires a hefty shipping fee from Japan to the United States. The order I placed, for example, charged $21.99 for shipping—that’s over 20 percent of the listed retail price of $103.80.
Sega of Japan may be running the show on this Western release, then, as the Genesis Mini 2’s official site is hosted at a “sega.co.jp” address. As of press time, Sega of America representatives had not yet answered Ars Technica’s questions about orders and shipments from Japan.
Sega is rolling out new-game announcements at a once-every-three-weeks pace, so we’re still left wondering exactly which games will fill out the system’s Western version—and how many of the games will be derived from exclusively Japanese versions. This week’s Genesis Mini 2 premiere includes a few boxes taken from the Japanese Mega Drive and Mega CD versions of certain games, though for the games in question, much of the text is already in English.
The 23 games announced for the Western Genesis Mini 2 thus far:
- After Burner II
- Alien Soldier #
- Bonanza Bros.
- Fantasy Zone (arcade port to Genesis spec)
- Lightening Force
- Mansion of Hidden Souls **
- Night Striker ** #
- The Ninjawarriors ** #
- The Ooze
- Rainbow Islands Extra
- Rolling Thunder 2
- Shining Force CD **
- Shining in the Darkness
- Silpheed **
- Sonic 3D Blast
- Sonic CD **
- Splatterhouse 2
- Star Mobile (previously unreleased)
- Super Hang-On
- Vectorman 2
- Virtua Racing
**: Sega CD
#: Japanese version
As a reminder, this list does not include any games that already launched on 2019’s Sega Genesis Mini. Four of the games in the above list had not yet been announced for the Japanese Mega Drive Mini 2: The Ooze, Outrunners, Super Hang-On, and Sonic 3D Blast. Sega of Japan will host another game-announcement event for its miniaturized system variant on Friday, July 15, so those games may show up soon enough on that side of the Pacific.