Random, Video Games

25 Exclusive Classics for the Sega Genesis

There are only so many ways we can make a best-of list for a fixed event. The Sega Genesis / Mega Drive only lasted X years, and only sported Y games worth talking about. Y, it can be argued, tends to hover suspiciously close to the length of such lists, making the order ragged and repetitive. With a handicap of exclusives-only (or, at the very least, platform-dominance), this should be even more difficult.

Without breaking believability or succumbing to hipster philosophizing, we’ve lovingly crafted a list of the 25 best 16-bit Sega games to sweep players off their feet, with a preference to both hopeful originality and exclusivity. Let’s see how we did.

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Book Reviews, Novels, Video Games

Game Write: Sheldon J. Pacotti’s Gamma (2016)

Game Write is a recurring series dedicated to the fiction of game industry veterans. From the best-selling titles of Drew Karpyshyn and Austin Grossman, to the obscure classics of Jane Jensen and Sheldon Pacotti, this series hopes to unearth both the gems and the trash we tend to leave buried in the credits. In this entry, we look at Sheldon Pacotti’s newest novel, Gamma — the first new piece of fiction from Pacotti since he entered the game industry with Ion Storm’s Deus Ex in 2000 — and a fascinating look at a near future ruled by biotechnology and growing social unrest.

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Book Reviews, Novels, Video Games

Game Write: Marc Laidlaw’s the 37th Mandala (1996)

Game Write is a recurring series dedicated to the fiction of game industry veterans. From the best-selling titles of Drew Karpyshyn and Austin Grossman, to the obscure classics of Jane Jensen and Sheldon Pacotti, this series hopes to unearth both the gems and the trash we tend to leave buried in the credits. In this entry, we look at Marc Laidlaw’s 1996 horror novel, the 37th Mandala, a tale of new-age charlatans and Lovecraftian beasts, recently reprinted for the first time since 2000.

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Random, Video Games

The Classroom Computer: The Best of Apple ][ Edutainment

Apple’s line of Apple II — or apple ][ — computers were the vehicle of choice in America for teaching typing and computer technology to Generations X and Y. From 1980 to the late ’90s — long after the models went out of date, thanks to the embarrassment that is public school funding in the U.S. — these archaic, clacking beasts filled lab after lab of our elementary and middle schools (often with 200-pound Xerox machines providing the ambiance).

We primarily remember the apple ][ in our classrooms for teaching us to type with clever software like MasterType (1981) and Home Row! (1987); or, if we finished our lessons early, edutaining us with games like Rocky’s Boots (1982) and Lewis and Clark Stayed Home (1991).

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Book Reviews, Novels, Video Games

Game Write: Marc Laidlaw’s Kalifornia (1993)

Game Write is a recurring series dedicated to the fiction of game industry veterans. From the best-selling titles of Drew Karpyshyn and Austin Grossman, to the obscure classics of Jane Jensen and Sheldon Pacotti, this series hopes to unearth both the gems and the trash we tend to leave buried in the credits. In this entry, we look at Marc Laidlaw’s 1993 sci-fi novel, Kalifornia — a quirky cyberpunk tale mixing humor and eastern mysticism into a typically-gruff genre.

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Book Reviews, Novels, Video Games

Game Write: Sheldon J. Pacotti’s Demiurge (2000)

Game Write is a recurring series dedicated to the fiction of game industry veterans. From the best-selling titles of Drew Karpyshyn and Austin Grossman, to the obscure classics of Jane Jensen and Sheldon Pacotti, this series hopes to unearth both the gems and the trash we tend to leave buried in the credits. In this entry, we look at Sheldon Pacotti’s 2000 novel, Demiurge, set in a distant future where the creation of the demiurge, a sort of 3D printer of limitless potential, has made anything and everything possible — including immortality.

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Book Reviews, Short Stories, Video Games

Game Write: Sheldon J. Pacotti’s Experiments in Belief (2013)

Game Write is a recurring series dedicated to the fiction of game industry veterans. From the best-selling titles of Drew Karpyshyn and Austin Grossman, to the obscure classics of Jane Jensen and Sheldon Pacotti, this series hopes to unearth both the gems and the trash we tend to leave buried in the credits. In this entry, we look at Sheldon Pacotti’s short story collection, Experiments in Belief — featuring a variety of science fiction stories written throughout the ’90s on the complex interplay of science, ethics, religion, and politics.

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