Video games, being an interactive medium, make certain demands of the player. Most require a time commitment, patience, and a degree of skill. Here are five Sega games that I’ve given near infinite time and patience, but could never develop the skill needed to become competent at them. I love all of these titles due to their concepts, aesthetics, and controls, so maybe if I just keep trying…
Space Channel 5
I think Ulala is just the coolest. Seriously- her outfit, personality, movement, EVERYTHING just oozes style and effortless radness. I love the idea of playing as a space-reporter within the game’s Jetsons-chic vision of the future, I just wish I could see more of Ulala and this world beyond the second stage. As I confessed in my review of Space Channel 5 Part 2, I have no rhythm- like at all, which makes music games kinda tough for me. I may never see Ulala through her adventures, but at least I have the soundtrack…
It’s quite rare to see a Virtual On cabinet in an arcade these days (I’m fortunate to have one at my local arcade). Anytime I see one in the wild it feels like finding a holy grail, and I simply can’t not play. It’s exhilarating as I sit down in the cockpit, adjust my seat, grip the Twin Sticks, select my mech… and proceed to get blown to bits. In my defense, I can usually win the first two or three battles against the A.I., but then no amount of strafing and vertical boosting can save me from the technicolor mecha assault and my destruction under blue skies…
Chu Chu Rocket
Panic. Pure, unrelenting, incapacitating panic is what I feel when playing Chu Chu Rocket. As I rush across the grid to place my arrows, my brain just sorta stops. Shortly thereafter, the panic sets in and I start making bad decisions. The type of bad decisions that send mice to their untimely deaths. It’s probably a good thing that I’m not a bomb technician.
True story: one Saturday sometime in 2006, I played Sega Rally on the Saturn for about 8 hours straight. I sat in front of a small CRT TV in the tiny Japanese apartment I was living in at the time, with my laptop open beside me. On the laptop, I watched Youtube videos of top Sega Rally players and tried to emulate their racing lines to the best of my ability. It turns out the best of my ability isn’t enough, because their times were still double-digits-faster than mine.
Easy left? Yeah, right. Nothing in this game is easy for me.
Nintendo is known for their easy-to-learn-but-tough-to-master games for all ages, but this joint collaboration with Sega’s Amusement Vision is both hard to learn and seemingly impossible to master for me. Still, the visuals and speed are still amazing today, the art direction is timeless, and the tracks are brilliantly designed (by someone who hates me).
All screenshots courtesy of Moby Games
What are some of your favorite Sega games that you are completely awful at? Share your shame in the comments!