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Mega-Tech System

From Sega Retro

Revision as of 11:29, 25 October 2010 by KiddoCabbusses (talk | contribs)
For the UK Magazine, see MegaTech.
Sega Mega-Tech arcade machine.

The Mega-Tech was an arcade cabinet released by Sega in Europe in 1989 based on the Mega Drive home console hardware. Its design was similar to Nintendo's PlayChoice-10: players chose games from a menu of eight titles, with credits buying more play time (usually 1 minute per credit) rather than extra lives or continues; reaching a game over screen did not end the play session, and players could start over or choose a different game as long as there was some play time remaining. The unit featured eight internal cartridge slots, allowing the arcade operator to change what games were available to play.

The cabinet housed two monitors; the game itself ran on the bottom screen while the top screen displayed information including gameplay time remaining (which flashed green when time runs short), the list of games available, gameplay instructions, and a short synopsis of each game.

The Mega-Tech launched with some of the best titles available at the time, including Thunder Force II, Altered Beast, Tetris, Last Battle, Space Harrier II, Golden Axe and The Revenge of Shinobi. Other popular Mega Drive games became available as time passed, such as Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Eventually a few Master System games were ported, but the amount of games ported was small. Apart from providing additional data for the top screen the games were unchanged from the original releases, so cheats still worked and extra lives or continues could be collected during play.

The Mega-Tech was succeeded by the Mega Play, which reduced the game menu from eight to four titles and changed to a more standard system of credits buying lives or continues rather than time. Mega Play games were heavily modified due to this, with cheats and extra lives no longer being available.

Hardware

Sega Mega-Tech hardware.

The Mega-Tech hardware is a Mega Drive modified to include a timer control for arcade operations. It lacks expansion hardware support and so cannot be connected to the 32X and Mega CD. The board features eight cartridge ports. The games supplied used the Japanese cartridge design. The labels were silver and red and only had "Mega-Tech" printed on them. Standard Mega Drive games do not work with the Mega-Tech hardware, and its cartridges are not compatible with other Mega Drive designs due to the extra information on them stored to run the second monitor, and differences in the length of the edge connector, number of pins, pinouts, and spacing.

Games

Games released for Mega-Tech hardware include:


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