I know a lot of you out there are pissed that there isn’t an easy way to play your Sega Master System games on your Game Gear. Who wants to be tethered to their couch in order to enjoy one of the masterful puzzles in Penguin Land or to explore the spooky mansion of Ghost House? I know I don’t.
I kid of course. Even when I was a young lad, the above functionality wasn’t exactly high on my wish list. I probably enjoyed the Game Gear a little more than it deserved when it was current, but as a concept playing SMS games on it was still only seen as a minor luxury. Still, the relatively low price point of the Master Gear Converter ($19.95) and my inherent desire to own everything Sega prompted me to request it as a gift at one point or another, and I got a fair amount of use out of it in the end.Like any other other game-related items I owned pre-PS1, it was eventually given away. Only last weekend did I stumble upon one for the first time since in a used media store. For a very reasonable price I reclaimed a small but somewhat hard to find piece of my childhood gaming days.
Apparently some of these were packaged by its third party manufacturer and some by Sega. I will have to do a little more research to see if there’s any difference between the two. On the surface all units appear identical.
Regardless of its limited functionality and simplistic design (the unit appears to be nothing more than a piece of plastic and simple cart slot) it’s a nice little accessory that DOES serve a purpose, albeit a minimal one. I imagine it’s sought after much like a lot of NES accessories are for Nintendo fans: Extremely superfluous but fun to collect and play around with for nostalgia’s sake. I imagine I’ll be bringing my one functioning Game Gear out of hibernation at some point this week just remember what it’s like to play Vigilante on the go. Or something.
***The Master Gear Converter goes for around $20 on eBay. Not a recommended purchase at that price save for the most die-hard of Sega fans***