Ballz 3D

From Sega Retro


Ballz title.png
Ballz 3D
System(s): Sega Mega Drive
Sound driver: GEMS
Genre: Action

Number of players: 1-2
Release Date RRP Code
Sega Mega Drive
$? T-119126
Sega Mega Drive
£39.99More...[2]More...[3] T-119126-50
Sega Mega Drive
?F T-119126-50
Sega Mega Drive
DM ? T-119126-50
Sega Mega Drive
?Ptas T-119126-50
Sega Mega Drive
?PTE$ MD119126
Sega Mega Drive
$109.95More...[4] ?
Sega Mega Drive
R$? 046650

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Ballz 3D, or just Ballz is a fighting game developed and published by Accolade for the Sega Mega Drive. The characters are made up of spheres of various sizes, which change to attempt to simulate 3D characters with smooth animations, similar to Vectorman.


A is for punches, B is for kicks and C is for jumping, the height of the jump depends on the time the button is held down. Pushing Up or Down moves the character in the 3D space. All characters have a wide array of special moves, including the ability to morph into other characters.

After each few fights, unplaybale boss characters await, which are exceptionally tough to take down, e.g. an ostrich or a dinosaur.

While coming out after Street Fighter II, the game's simple controls and mechanics are more akin to early fighting games such as Power Athlete.

Due to many sprites being drawn at once, the game suffers from sprite flickering.


Ballz 3D was released simultaneously on the Mega Drive and Super NES, and while the two share similar gameplay, the visuals differ significantly.

In addition to making use of the wider colour palette, the Super NES version of Ballz 3D utilises the DSP-1B maths co-processor, allowing for more advanced "mode 7" scaling and rotation than many other SNES titles. This subsequently means the floor in the SNES version of Ballz 3D is textured, while backgrounds are able to make use of alpha transparency, neither of which are supported by standard Mega Drive hardware. The Mega Drive version instead uses an untextured surface for its floor, comprised of a single gradient of colour (though interestingly, the later 3DO "Directors Cut" version also opts for a similar style).

The Mega Drive version runs with a higher screen resolution and at a higher frame rate than its Super NES counterpart.

Magazine articles

Main article: Ballz 3D/Magazine articles.

Promotional material

EGM US 062.pdfEGM US 062.pdf

Print advert in Electronic Gaming Monthly (US) #62: "September 1994" (1994-xx-xx)

SegaVisions US 21.pdfSegaVisions US 21.pdf

Print advert in Sega Visions (US) #21: "October/November 1994" (1994-xx-xx)
also published in:
  • GamePro (US) #64: "November 1994" (1994-xx-xx)More...[5]

EGM2 US 05.pdfEGM2 US 05.pdf

Print advert in EGM² (US) #5: "November 1994" (1994-xx-xx)
also published in:
  • Electronic Gaming Monthly (US) #65: "December 1994" (1994-xx-xx)More...[6]

SegaVisions US 22.pdf

Print advert in Sega Visions (US) #22: "December/January 1994/1995" (1994-xx-xx)
also published in:
  • GamePro (US) #66: "January 1995" (199x-xx-xx)More...[7]

HobbyConsolas ES 037.pdf

Print advert in Hobby Consolas (ES) #37: "Octubre 1994" (1994-xx-xx)

Physical scans

Sega Retro Average 
Publication Score Source
87 More...[8]
87 More...[2]
79 More...[9]
80 №63
91 More...[10]
80 №24, p44-47
74 №45, p100
71 №10, p88/89
80 №59, p54/55
90 №37, p50/51
86 №39, p10
80 More...[11]
Sega Mega Drive
Based on
13 reviews

Mega Drive, US
Ballz3D MD US Box.jpg
Ballz3D MD US Cart.jpg
Ballz MD US manual.pdf
Mega Drive, EU
Ballz3D MD EU Box.jpg
Ballz3D MD EU Cart.jpg
Mega Drive, BR
Ballz3D MD BR Box.jpg
Ballz3D MD BR Cart.jpg

Technical information

ROM dump status

System Hash Size Build Date Source Comments
Sega Mega Drive
CRC32 b362b705
MD5 339a8c9a96fcdedb2922b04bcc34f0d2
SHA-1 4825cb9245a701cc59900c57a7a5fa70edc160f0
2MB 1994-07 Cartridge (US/EU)