Released in 1990/1991, the Sega Game Gear is Sega’s answer to Nintendo’s immensely popular handheld, the Game Boy. Also competing with the Atari Lynx and TurboExpress, the Game Gear is a full colour, backlit, handheld console.
Positioned as a much technically superior system to the Game Boy, the Game Gear is essentially viewed as a portable Master System. Its games are often very close ports of Master System versions, making it a very attractive system.
There was a significant downside to all of these superior technical benefits, the battery life. Powered by 6 AA batteries, the Game Gear only runs for around 3-4 hours. Compared to the Game Boy running over 30 hours on 4 AA batteries, Nintendo ultimately won the handheld war.
This did not stop the Game Gear from being an extremely popular system though. Selling over 10 million units and enjoying a game library of over 300 games. Unfortunately, developers were restricted by Nintendo’s tight contracts meaning they could not make games for rival systems. The Game Gear outperformed the Atari Lynx and NEC TurboExpress, making it the best colour handheld console of the era.
The system was on sale until 1997.
How to Emulate the Sega Game Gear?
Sega Game Gear emulation is reasonably well catered for, we recommend taking a look at RetroArch if you are seeking an all-in-one solution. RetroArch emulates a large number of systems including the Sega Game Gear. RetroArch is a front end that utilises emulator ‘cores’, it is reasonably easy to use and has lots of good supporting documentation on how to use it. RetroArch is available across a number of platforms including Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Raspberry Pi and many consoles. Take a look at our quick start guide for RetroArch which can get you up and running in 5 minutes.
Also, check out our best Sega Game Gear emulators article.
|KEGA Fusion||KEGA Fusion is hands down the best stand-alone emulator for Windows, Mac & Linux. It emulates SG-1000, Master System, Game Gear, Mega Drive, Mega CD & 32X games.||Windows|
A lifelong avid gamer and computing enthusiast, Matt has decades of experience in the field, so producing retro orientated content for How To Retro comes is second nature to him. Now over 40 years old, Matt now even considers himself retro, but fortunately, nobody has developed a Matt emulator (not yet at least!).