Console Wars: Game Gear

June 20, 2014

Excerpt from “Console Wars” by Blake J. Harris:

Kalinske nodded, returning to the moment. But before the girl could fix him a drink, she suddenly became transfixed by the Game Gear and, as with the well-dressed man, the world suddenly shrunk around her. Well, would you look at that, Kalinske mused, while having a revelation that would shape Sega, the videogame industry, and the face of entertainment as a whole. Videogames weren’t just for kids; they were for anyone who wanted to feel like a kid. Anyone who missed the freedom and innocence that comes with endless wonder. Videogames were for everyone; they just didn’t realize it yet.

I vividly remember seeing the Game Gear for the first time. A neighbor boy of my grandmother’s showed off Shinobi on the sidewalk in front of her house. Coming from the colorless world of Game Boy, the idea of rescuing different colored ninjas was a revelation. Until then, I had to imagine what Mega Man and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles looked like in full color. Say what you will about its viewing angle, the Game Gear was magic to me.