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Where can I download video game emulators to play these games? What is SMS? How can I cheat? ...
Q: Where can I download video game emulators to play these games?
I've got all the good ones in my emulators page.
Q: What is SMS?
The SMS is the Sega Master System. It was Sega's 8-bit system. Learn more about it on Sega Master System at Wikipedia.
Q: I'm having trouble with the video game emulators. I need help.
You can refer to my emulation help subsite, Video Game Emulation for Newbies. I have tutorials for (most) of the popular emulators.
Q: What is “M3U” and “VGM”? How do I play these M3U soundtracks you distribute here?
M3U & VGM music is the exact programming of the song ripped from the game. They're very small in size and the highest music quality possible. They require special software for playback. And if you'd like, you can convert them to WAV or MP3. You can learn more about them in my extracted music tutorial.
Q: How come most of these games are missing a KSS soundtrack?
Game Gear isn't a very popular system. For other systems there are extracted soundtracks for nearly every game, but not this one.
Q: How can I cheat?
GameGenie.com has a good collection of Game Genie cheats. You can also use any search engine of your choice to find more cheats. Search with keywords like “<name of game> cheats” to find 'em.
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Mini reviews by the FantasyAnime webmaster. Last revised 3-12-17.

Aladdin
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Visually, this is a gorgeous game; the best cartoon graphics I've seen on the Game Gear. The cut scenes immerse you in the story of the movie (the best way Game Gear can). It mixes up gameplay by having two types of stages: “dash” stages (like dash games on smartphones) and platformer stages. It's not as action packed as the Genesis version of Aladdin, but it's still good.

Aladdin (Sega Master System)
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Same game, just a bigger screen.

Arena: Maze of Death

Arena: Maze of Death

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This is a great game!! It has the best graphics I've seen on Game Gear! Gameplay is fun. You get to pick up different weapons. The soundtrack is cool, too. The only complaint people have is that the status of your health and weapons isn't shown.

Ax Battler

Ax Battler: A Legend of Golden Axe

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Released the same year as Golden Axe Warrior, Ax Battler is kind of like Zelda 2. You walk around an overworld map and encounter random battles just like in an RPG. But like Zelda 2, enemy encounters take you into a side-view mode. Death starts you back at the inn. There are towns and dungeons to explore. Dungeons are side-scrolling platformers. There are no experience points, but you do get magic vases, which act as a form of currency. You can find towns and enter training centers, which will teach you new skills for the combat. Most people say Ax Battler is a terrible game. Maybe it's just fuzzy Game Gear nostalgia, but I find this game has a certain charm.

Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse

Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse

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This is an excellent game! At first it seems like a tame, simple platformer, but it surprises you with a variety of gameplay. Some areas and bosses are actually a bit challenging. Each stage is full of colorful, beautiful graphics. Game Gear's library is plagued with highly repetitive platformers. Castle of Illusion, however, is not repetitive at all. I'm tempted to call it a watered down version of the Genesis version of Castle of Illusion, but they completely remade it from the ground up for Game Gear. The music isn't too shabby either. It's a high quality game! It was good enough to have a sequel: Land of Illusion.

Columns
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I prefer Game Gear Columns over the Genesis Columns. And the reason why is because I kinda like the music better and I enjoy the pretty (futuristic city?) background. The background slowly shifts from day to night as you progress in levels. And if you get tired of those plain 'ol crystals, Game Gear Columns (not Genesis Columns) gives you the option to change the crystals to dice, card symbols or even fruit! It's nifty.

Ecco the Dolphin
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A port of the Genesis version. Obviously, it's been watered down for Game Gear's hardware. What's cool is that, layout wise, it's the entire Genesis game. All the stages are present. So in Ecco the Dolphin your pod has been kidnapped by aliens and your goal is to save them. In the game you swim around oceanic mazes to solve puzzles. Ecco has a dash attack to defend himself against offensive sea creatures. Ecco can talk to others by emitting a sonar. It's a unique game. Although it's not for everyone. I recommend it if you don't mind something slower paced and about solving puzzles.

Ecco the Dolphin (Sega Master System)

Ecco the Dolphin (SMS)

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Same exact game as the Game Gear version, just a bigger screen.

Ecco the Dolphin 2

Ecco the Dolphin 2: The Tides of Time

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A port of the Genesis version. The sequel offers better graphics and more variety of gameplay. At certain points Ecco can transform into certain sea creatures to proceed further into stages. As for the story, you deal more with the aliens that were introduced towards the end of the first game.

Fatal Fury Special
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I can tell this game was made with love and great care. I think it's the highest quality fighting game the Game Gear has to offer. The graphics and animation are stunning. Some stages are even animated, giving you a feel of the arcade version. Most importantly, play control is great! It doesn't feel clunky like other portable fighting games of the era.

Golden Axe Warrior
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Released the same year as Ax Battler, Golden Axe Warrior is a clone of Zelda 1. Although a clone, it's actually pretty good. In a sense you could kind of view this as a sequel to Zelda. It has better graphics, a detailed story, and towns with inns, shops, and people to talk to. As for the battle system you can use magic spells, you have special attacks, and you can equip other weapons. I recommend Golden Axe Warrior. Some say this is one of the best games on the Sega Master System.

Jurassic Park
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Jurassic Park is probably the most impressive Game Gear game. It's fun, the graphics are cool, the play control is good, and the music ain't too shabby. This was one of my first Game Gear games. I've beaten it so many times; it's pretty easy. There are five fun-filled action-packed stages to go through. Before you enter a stage, you go through a Duck Hunt kind of stage where you shoot off raptors and pteranodans. This driving stage is important because you can pick up items that increase your health. Your guy can use 3 weapons: a wave gun (shoots a small wave of electricity), a small bazooka thingy (only shoots diagonally into the air), and dynamite (explodes on contact). All these weapons can be used infinitely. The best thing I like about this game is the fact that there's a wide variety of enemies and different stages. Most Game Gear games are quite simplistic with the same handful of enemies and stages that all look virtually the same.

Land of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse

Land of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse

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This is the sequel to Castle of Illusion. The graphics and animation is better. There's a good balance of challenge, it's not another ridiculously easy Disney game. Mickey has the same moves from Castle of Illusion. You have your “butt attack“ after pressing jump twice. You can throw small objects or pick up keys. It's a good game.

Land of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse (Sega Master System)

Land of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse (SMS)

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The Sega Master System version is superior in this case. With other Game Gear/SMS games, the Game Gear port doesn't feel squished. But with Land of Illusion it does feel squished on Game Gear.

Mega Man
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This Mega Man title wasn't made by Capcom! It was by some company called US Gold. You'll notice immediately when you play it by the different feel of the play control that it's not made by Capcom. The usual Mega Man title has 8 boss stages and several Wily stages. This one only has 6 boss stages and two short Wily stages. The graphics and music are okay. I like that rooms are larger than the screen, but that can get annoying when you're jumping because the cropped screen doesn't let you know if there's a floor or pit under your feet as you fall. Overall, this is a very average Mega Man title. Despite its faults, GG Mega Man can be viewed in two ways: (1) If you compare it to other Mega Man titles, it's average; perhaps even dull, or (2) If you compare it to other Game Gear action games, it's a freakin masterpiece! Seriously. Because Game Gear action games are usually AWFUL in every way. So would I recommend GG Mega Man? Hmm, yeah, I would. If you're a fan of Game Gear or a Mega Man fan who absolutely must play every Mega Man title - then go ahead!

Ninja Gaiden
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I remember Ninja Gaiden being one of those early games being advertised on Game Gear posters. It's a pretty cool platformer. It has everything you'd expect from a Ninja Gaiden game, cut scenes and all. It's a step up from the NES titles with slightly better graphics and gameplay.

Ninja Gaiden (Sega Master System)
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The same company behind Psychic World made this installment of the Ninja Gaiden series. It's (thankfully) nothing like the Game Gear version. The graphics are awesome. Basic cinematics are between stages. Climbing mechanics are different: you need to time your wall jumps to cling onto them and there's no hand-over-hand climbing on branches/poles. Special weapons include the famous giant shuriken, a projectile that shoots in four directions, and homing fireballs. The challenge is lower in this game compared to others. The special weapons are almost cheating. Overall, this is a great game. It's respected as one of the best games on the Sega Master System.

Power Strike (Sega Master System)
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There are six rounds to complete. In each round, numbers (from 1 to 8) can be found on the ground either enclosed by a ring, or in the air carried by a ship. Getting these numbers will upgrade your firepower. Get more of the same number for a maximum upgrade. Unfortunately, whatever the type of firepower you get, you will have a limited supply of ammo, so you need to stock up on the same type of firepower if you get too low. It's a pretty cool game. The sequel is phenomenal!

Power Strike II
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Power Strike 2 is so awesome! Wow, I totally did not expect Game Gear to be capable of such an awesome shooter. The weapon system is great! It consists of protective rotating orbs, multiple lasers, homing missiles and napalm missiles. Each one can be upgraded when you pick up the “P-capsule” power-ups. My only complaint is that sometimes the background distracts you from the gameplay, especially in the first level.

Power Strike II (Sega Master System)
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Power Strike 2 was also released for the Sega Master System. However it is quite different from the Game Gear version. The stages of the SMS version are mostly based on planets, while the stages of the Game Gear version are mostly based on outer space.

Psychic World
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This is my most favorite Game Gear game! It's so fun!!! You control a psychic girl who has the power fire, ice, sonic waves, temporary invincibility, levitation, and more! Well, she doesn't get them all immediately. She gains her special powers little by little as you pick up special items that enemies drop. Best of all, this game actually has good music! The opening song is awesome!! Psychic World is definitely worth playing. Oh by the way, you need to press down+button 2 to access your powers. It took me a while to figure that out the first time I played it.

Psychic World (Sega Master System)
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Psychic World was also released for the Sega Master System. However it is quite different from the Game Gear version. The stages of the SMS version are different. The graphics and color palettes are ugly.

Robocop Vs The Terminator

Robocop Vs The Terminator

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This is a pretty cool game! It's a good example of how an action based platformer should be: just big guns and mindless violence. You pick up a variety of fun weapons like a laser rifle and rocket launcher.

R-Type (Sega Master System)
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R-Type was originally an arcade game. This Sega Master System version is just one of many ports. R-Type has a really fun weapon system. You pick up a variety of cool weapons. You obtain this invincible orb that protects the front of your ship. You can send it off to help you attack enemies from a distance. It's a great game. You should also check out Super R-Type for SNES.

Samurai Shodown
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I would label this as the second best fighting Game Gear game, under Fatal Fury Special. It's very well made. The backgrounds are gorgeous. From looking at the screen shots it might look pixel-ish and hard on the eyes, but the animation flows well and makes up for it.

Shinobi
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Shinobi is awesome!! It's one of the better platformers on Game Gear. Already in the first stage you're thrown into an exciting Matrix-style battle across highway cars. It's a very good game.

Shinobi II: The Silent Fury

Shinobi II: The Silent Fury

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Better graphics and more awesome! This is a worthy sequel.

Sonic Chaos
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This came out after Sonic 2 so Sonic Chaos could be considered Sonic 3. What was cool about Sonic Chaos is that it's the first Game Gear Sonic game where you can play as Tails. Tails can fly for a short period of time, making it easier to find secrets and fly over obstacles. Other than that, Sonic Chaos is not very different from Sonic 2.

Sonic Chaos (Sega Master System)
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Same exact game, just a bigger screen.

Sonic Drift
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Sega's 8-bit take on Mario Kart. It's a pretty cool game if you're into 8-bit racers.

Sonic Drift 2
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The sequel has better graphics and new features to stages such as ramps and tunnels. There are also double the amount of tracks and more characters to choose from. For a Game Gear game it's impressive. This is probably the best and highest quality racing game the Game Gear has to offer.

Sonic the Hedgehog
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Although it's easy to assume that this version of Sonic came out first, it actually came out after the Genesis version! This game is pretty cool. It's fun, the graphics are good, the music is quite catchy and the stages have lots of eye candy. Honestly, I think the ending stages in this game are more interesting than in Sonic 1 for Genesis. I also think it has better graphics than the rest of the Sonic Game Gear titles.

Sonic the Hedgehog (Sega Master System)
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Sonic the Hedgehog was also released for the Sega Master System. It's the same game here, just a bigger screen.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2
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The famous pack-in game when you buy the Game Gear system. It's a good game. Some parts can be really difficult, though. There's one point when you need to ride a hang glider over spikes that has awful play control.

Sonic the Hedgehog: Triple Trouble

Sonic the Hedgehog: Triple Trouble

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With the exception of slightly better graphics, this is the same kind of game as its predecessors. This came out after Sonic Chaos so Triple Trouble could be considered Sonic 4. Sega was persistent with sticking to their “winning formula” with developing Game Gear Sonic games. It's not a bad game, though. It'll satisfy your Sonic fix as good as the others.

Star Wars
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The official Star Wars game for Game Gear. It's a rather generic platformer. You travel through simplistic looking stages while battling one or two types of enemies. Although I do like the MIDI-ized tracks from the movie. I would recommend this game only if you're into Star Wars nostalgia (in 8-bit fashion).

Star Wars (Sega Master System)
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Same game as the Game Gear version, but with a bigger screen.

Super Return of the Jedi

Super Return of the Jedi

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Inspired by the Super Nintendo release of Super Return of the Jedi, here's the Game Gear version. It's heavily watered down to squeeze into an 8-bit system. The gist of the game is intact. You go through the same stages, fight the same bosses, and there are multiple playable characters to choose from.

Sylvan Tale

Sylvan Tale (Fan Translated)

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Released towards the end of the Game Gear's lifespan, this gem never left Japan, but was fan translated by Aeon Genesis in 2001. Sylvan Tale plays a lot like Zelda 3. More accurately, the game is like a watered down version of Beyond Oasis. Both games were released around the same time, so it leaves one to wonder if the likeness was intentional. Anyway, in Sylvan Tale you fight enemies, talk to townspeople, go through dungeons and solve puzzles. Similar to Beyond Oasis with the ability to summon spirits, in Sylvan Tale you collect "Seeds" that allow you to transform into various creatures. Most of these creatures are essential for solving puzzles or passing through areas you can't enter as a human. This is a really fun, high quality game. There's no other like it on Game Gear that offers such an in-depth adventure. If it wasn't released so late, I'm sure it would've been brought over to NA.

Tails' Adventures
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This is not what you're expecting. Tails' Adventures is a traditional platformer. The stages are oriented around a world map. Tails can't damage with a jump attack. Rather, he can equip a variety of weapons to blast away enemies. It's an ok game. I'm late to play it; it seemed too easy and kiddy for me. But I appreciate that Sega tried something different instead of make another carbon copy Sonic game like they did Sonic Chaos and Triple Trouble.

Vampire: Master of Darkness

Vampire: Master of Darkness

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If you ever wanted to experience a Castlevania title on Game Gear, then now's your chance! =P I swear, this game is such a Castlevania rip-off. Just look at the screen shots! The enemies and stage design are screaming out Castlevania. You get to grab an assortment of special weapons, which are a carbon copy of Castlevania's special weapons. I just wish they would've also copied the quality of Castlevania's soundtrack, because it's not all that great. The game itself has decent graphics. I thought it was fun. The boss battles get quite challenging as you progress. All in all, I think the game is worth playing.

Vampire: Master of Darkness (Sega Master System)

Vampire: Master of Darkness (SMS)

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Vampire: Master of Darkness was also released for the Sega Master System. They're both the exact same game. The Game Gear version is a direct port, with a smaller screen size as the only exception.

Wonder Boy 3 - Dragon's Trap

Wonder Boy III - The Dragon's Trap

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Wonder Boy 3 is considered by many to be the best game on the Sega Master System. The Game Gear version is the same game, just re-worked to fit the screen and some larger rooms were removed entirely. What makes Wonder Boy 3 so fun are the different monster forms and the Metroid style gameplay. You can choose which areas to explore, but certain obstacles block paths until you get the monster form that allows you to pass it. Each monster form gives you different attacks and abilities. Instead of an experience system, there's a “charm system” with charm points (CP). Your CP is determined by your equipment, your current form, and by rare items called Charm Stones. As your CP increases, shops offer better/stronger inventory. If you re-visit areas when you have more monster forms, with their abilities you can obtain special items and power-ups you couldn't obtain before. The game's only issue is that it's very easy. Stages are designed rather simplistic and linear. Then again, keep in mind this game was originally released in 1989. Its highlights were quite innovative for the time and should be appreciated as such. Wonder Boy 3 is an excellent game worthy of its praise.

Wonder Boy 3 - Dragon's Trap (Sega Master System)

Wonder Boy III - The Dragon's Trap (SMS)

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The Master System version is, of course, the superior version. Here's a comparison video so you can see the difference between the Master System and Game Gear version.

X-Men
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You start the game with Wolverine and Cyclops. You need to rescue the rest of the X-Men from various parts of the world, and then go after Magneto! You rescue X-Men such as Rogue, Storm, Nightcrawler, and more! Storm and Rogue can fly! Nightcrawler can teleport through walls! Storm and Rogue are cheat characters in linear stages, and Nightcrawler is a cheat character in maze-like stages. Using them will get you to the boss in half the time. X-Men (and its sequels) are not very popular games due to them being repetitive and having awkward gameplay. And what I mean by awkward gameplay is that the hit detention is not very good. However I'm a child of the 90s, when the 90s X-Men cartoon was extremely popular. For that reason I somehow find this game entertaining and highly nostalgic. Back in the day I spent many nights and car rides playing through this game (and usually beating it).

X-Men: Game Master's Legacy

X-Men: Game Master's Legacy

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This could be considered “X-Men 2”. It's exactly like the first X-Men game, just with slightly better graphics. Again, the gameplay and hit detention is pretty lousy here. But if you're all about 90s X-Men nostalgia then I think you'll enjoy it.

X-Men: Mojo's World
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This could be considered “X-Men 3”. I'm not sure if I could call this game an improvement. The graphics, at least, are slightly better in this version. They did away with the stage select, but you still gain a character after each level.