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The Best Sega Mega Drive Games | Retro Games

Want to know what The Best Sega Mega Drive Games you should add to your retro gaming collection? Check out this list below!

The Best Sega Mega Drive Games

It's pretty much common knowledge that Sega was very popular in the UK, compared to the US who were seemingly dominated by Nintendo.Personally, I can verify this claim from my own personal experiences as the fist time I picked up a controller was when I was a toddler and it happened to be the Sega Mega Drive. It was definitely the console that got me started into my video game journey and I've got so many fond memories revolving around the games I use to play in my early childhood.

Now I've been part of the gaming community for almost ten years now and one of the main questions I get asked time and time again are - what are my favourite Mega Drive games? or If I were to recommend some Mega Drive titles, what would they be? So I thought I would just create a list of The Best Sega Mega Drive Games!

The Best Sega Mega Drive Games


Jewel Master

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I would argue that Jewel Master is one of those hidden gems on the Mega Drive and am astounded that this hasn't been given the love it deserves!

In Jewel Master, you play as this unnamed character, simply known as the Jewel Master where you equip a number of rings of various elemental magic to defeat creatures that have plagued the once peaceful kingdom. What really sets this game apart is the gameplay, here you can equip a combination of different rings to change up how your elemental magic behaves.Not only that the music is just beautiful, but fans of King Crimson and Rush would approve.

Castle of Illusion

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I'm not going to lie, I do prefer the Master System version (I am a sucker for those 8bit graphics) however the Mega Drive version isn't without it's charm!

You take control Disney's mascot, having to traverse the castle of illustion in order to save Minnie Mouse from an evil witch. It's a game that's easy to pick up and play witht the puzzles and levels themselves being full of decent challenges. Graphically it's stunning and takes me back to the 90's era of Disney which I miss! It's certainly one of The Best Mega Drive Games in my opinion.

Sonic the Hedgehog

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It's the game that certainly gave Nintendo a run for their money and propelled a once unknown blue hedgehog to be the official mascot of Sega. There is so much nostalgia bursting at the seams with this games that it's hard not getting taken back to your childhood. Everything from the 'SEY-GA' intro, to the music and sound effects, everything just tickles those nostalgia senses.

Probably one of The Best Sega Mega Drive Games to even exist, Sonic the Hedgehog is a 2D platformer which sees Sonic traversing various levels, overcoming obstacles and collecting chaos emeralds in order to defeat Dr Robotnik. Even to this day, the controls are responsive and the colourful graphics are pleasing to the eye that it's a classic to go back to every now and again.

Golden Axe 2

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Okay, you caught me! I'm certainly being biased when I say that Golden Axe 2 is The Best Sega Mega Drive Game of all time, even being better than the first game. Hopefully there are a few retro gamers that agree with me on this one.

It's a side scrolling beat'em up in a fantasy setting where you play as either one of three characters and fight your way through several levels until you face the games main antagonist. The gameplay is fun, the graphics are still amasing and the music is probably some of the best I've heard on the system.

Streets of Rage

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Streets of Rage is such an iconic game and one of The Best Mega Drive Games to ever grace our screens. I think it's a game that every retro gamer should have at least played once in their life time. It's yet another side scrolling, beat 'em up where you control one of three ex cops (Blaze, Axel or Adam), and take to the crime invested streets to take out petty thugs until you reach the game's main antagonist, Mr. X.

Like many games on this list, Streets of Rage still holds up to this day, with colourful 16bit graphics that really capture your attention and that driving music pumping you full of adrenaline throughout every stage. Hats off to the composer, which is the legend himself, Yuzo Koshiro.

Jungle Strike

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If platformers and cheesy beat 'em ups aren't your thing, may I recommend any game from the strike series? Preferablly Jungle Strike as I do personally feel like it is the strongest from the 16bit era.

In this isometric shoot em up, you essentiually take control of a helicopter and have to take on several objects in each level which can include saving hostages, to blowing up enemy vehicles. It's not as violent as it sounds and overall at times does take some thinking as at times you need to ration your fuel and ammo. Do you think Jungle Strike should be included on this list of The Best Sega Mega Drive Games?


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Does anyone else remember Taz-mania? Or even Taz himself? In this game, you control the Looney Tunes character as he searches the ficitional world of Tazmania for this giant seabird that can lay giant eggs and can feed the whole family for over a year.

It's another action-adventure platformer where the main character must reach the end of every level, facing numerous (and rather hilarious) enemies and obstacles with spin attacks and fire (in Taz ingests a certain item). tt's not the strongest title out there for the Mega Drive but its certainly worth a play!

Streets of Rage 2 

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How could I not include one of The Best Sega Mega Drive Games of all time on this list? Often regarded as one of the best gaming sequels, Streets of Rage 2 joins up with some old characters, and some new ones, to take down Mr. X’s crime syndicate once again. 

The game almost follows the same formula of the original, whilst bringing some new, exciting elements to the game, keeping players on their toes. Once again, the graphics still hold up to this day, the controls are still responsive and that music is just, chef kisses. Streets of Rage 2 should certainly be in every retro gamer’s collection. 

Desert Strike 

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Considered a commercial success and one of EA’s highest selling games at the time, there is a reason why Desert Strike can be considered one of The Best Sega Mega Drive Games of all time. 

Just like the previous entry, Desert Strike is a shoot 'em up, played on an isometric view. Unlike most shoot ‘em ups of its time, it was less hectic and relied on the player exploring the map to seek out their objectives for that level and even managing fuel supply and ammo. It certainly required a lot more skill than simply dodging and spamming the shoot button that’s for sure. 

Golden Axe 

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Probably regarded as one of the best games in the Golden Axe franchise, there’s a reason why I had to include this game on The Best Sega Mega Drive Games list. Golden Axe is a side-scrolling, beat ‘em up set in a medieval fantasy setting, where you control one of three characters in order to take down Death Adder- the game’s main antagonist. 

Players progress through each level by defeating hordes of enemies on the screen and eventually beating bosses at the end of each round. Taken from the original arcade game, the Mega Drive version does a good job at emulating it. 

Sonic the Hedgehog 2

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Released in 1992, Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is considered one of The Best Sega Mega Drive games of all time. It even won two Golden Joystick awards. Although following the same formula of its predecessor, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, many critics considered it a massive improvement on the first game, praising things like the visuals, improved gameplay and music.

If you haven’t already, I would 100% recommend adding this to your retro gaming collection, as it’s a timeless classic that is best played over and over and over again. Do you think Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is better than the original?

Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle 

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Although I mentioned in The Best Sega Master System Games, that Alex Kidd didn’t really have many good games apart from Alex Kidd In Shinobi World and Alex Kidd in Miracle World, a lot of people I know regard Enchanted Castle as one of The Best Sega Mega Drive Games. 

The only game of the franchise to be released on the Mega Drive, Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle sees our protagonist Alex Kidd, traverse many colourful levels and part take in a fair few games of Rock, Paper, Scissors, a clear throw back and known mechanic in Miracle World. 

Micro Machines 

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I wouldn’t say that this is a hidden gem or anything, but I often feel like Micro Machines often get left out of The Best Sega Mega Drive lists for some reason. Inspired by the original Hasbro toys of the mid- late 80’s, Micro Machines for the Mega Drive is a fun, little racing game played through a top down perspective. 

The game has the players race off against other ambitious racers in vehicles such as cars and speed boats, across many landscapes such as a bathtub and even kitchen table. Micro Machines is literally a virtual version of racing hot wheels against your mates in the living room, and I for one am here for it! 

Zombies Ate my Neighbours 

The Best sega mega drive games

Yet another game that tends to miss out on many The Best Sega Mega Drive lists, is Zombies Ate my Neighbours. In this game control either Zeke or Julie and must rescue their neighbours from the monsters that have taken over. 

If you’re looking for a Mega Drive title that is slightly on the zany side then I highly recommend Zombies Ate my Neighbours. It somewhat reminds me of Mars Attacks meets that idyllic American Suburbs- but with monsters. 


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Disclaimer: I did not create these gifs! They were found via google and the images belong to the rightful gaming studio's, ie EA and SEGA! Title image was created by myself.


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