#TBT The Original Gamer Days: 9 Reasons Sega And SNES Were Everything

by Jeremiah Shea
Sega Genesis

We've come a long way in terms of gaming. From the humble beginning of Pong to today's ultra-realistic first person shooters, there have been developments in everything from graphics and music to televisions.

Even the amount of money spent on today's games has increased.

All that being said, Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo were the greatest gaming systems ever. That's certainly a bold statement to make, but the two systems leveraged all previous developments in a battle to the top during the perfect storm of innovation and timing.

Here are nine reasons why Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo were the apex of gaming:

1. We had arcade favorites at home.

The arcade was one of the best places to hang out in the '90s, and all of our favorites eventually made their way to Sega and SNES consoles.

Games like NBA Jam, Mortal Kombat, Altered Beast, Street Fighter and Killer Instinct were all so popular in the arcade, they usually produced a crowd.

But after painstakingly waiting, these games would eventually come out on Sega or SNES, and you could finally play them at home.

2. This was the graphics sweet spot.

Goldilocks and the three bears were onto something. Early gaming systems -- while incredible for their time -- were always kind of blocky and pixelated (outside of Mario and a few other franchises). The other side of the coin is where we stand today.

Most games are trying to push the realistic envelope as far as possible, often leaving more to desire in other facets of the game. Sega and SNES, on the other hand, were just right.

The graphics were amazing at a time when so many people were used to older systems. Yet, there was a threshold. Time and energy had to still be put into solid story lines, character development and music.

3. The music was epic.

If you close your eyes and imagine your favorite game, you can immediately recall the music. Think about when you fire up Sonic and hear the "Segaaaa" clip.

We all know that sound. In the same way, the music from our favorite game can bring us right back to our childhood.

4. We had the classic game franchises.

SNES leveraged some of the classic franchises of Nintendo and took them to another level. Franchises like Mario, Zelda and Metroid grabbed the attention of fans and exceeded expectations.

For Sega, this was its first rodeo. Yet, its attempts at creating classics started here, with franchises like Sonic The Hedgehog and Streets Of Rage.

5. Sega Channel was magical.

For those lucky enough to be in select cities, Sega Channel was a brand new experience.

Fifty games a month were sent directly to your Sega, through your cable company and for a monthly fee. For anyone who experienced this, it was nothing short of magical at the time.

6. System Superiority tested your friendships.

Just as the console companies themselves were constantly at war, so were you and your friends. In fact, you can still probably think back and remember which friends had Sega and which ones had Super Nintendo.

Your choice defined you as much as music defined people in high school.

7.  We had an unlimited number of games.

It didn't matter whether your thing was sports, puzzle games, action or shooters. Both systems offered a ton of options to choose from.

8. We had the best console war to date.

In the same way Apple and Samsung push each other today in terms of phone development, the battle between Sega and Super Nintendo was a two-horse race that brought out the best in both companies.

Rarely has there ever been a time when two console companies squared off like this, constantly trying to outdo one another with each subsequent release.

9. We had the original, classic sports games.

Both systems had a laundry list of some amazing sports games and franchises: NHL '94, World Series Baseball '95, Madden, Tecmo, NBA Jam, FIFA Soccer and WWF Royal Rumble.

These games are some of the best of all time, and also the likely reason behind countless hours on the controller.

It's hard to argue the facts. These two systems are simply the pinnacle of gaming.

What was your favorite game? Sound off in the comments.