Game Gear Micro review — You might not need this, but I did

Promotional images use hands for a reason: the Micro is just that small

Size and form — a shocking replica

Pardon the dust, but here’s a pair of GG Micros and a larger-than-average bottle cap. Note that the bottle cap is in fact slightly larger than the screen.

Controls — wait, this works?!

I am a tall guy with big hands, so I was especially concerned about the size of the pad and cramped button placement making the games impossible to play in the first place. When I started Sonic the Hedgehog for the first time on my Micro, I was completely ready for — expecting, even — the big let-down that made me put the toy away. A few levels later I was shocked. I could play the whole game on this damn thing, and I would proceed to do so.

Games: namely, not enough of them

Another big issue with the Game Gear Micro is also Sega’s scheme for selling a lot of units: each unit only comes with four games. There are four types, and of those I bought the black and blue models, each of which feature a well-rounded set. The units I didn’t get are yellow (effectively a Shining Force collection) and red (GG Shinobi alongside two GG-only Megami Tensei games and good old Columns).

It’s important to remember when you look at these screenshots that they’re many times the size of the Micro screen.
You can read this screenshot just fine right now, but things are different on a screen the size of a bottle cap

Battery: such a thing as “too faithful”

The single greatest weakness of the GG Micro — and it’s already got a couple — is its power solution. In part to save costs, and in part out of a religious faithfulness to the original, battery-guzzling Game Gear, the Micro does not have an internal battery so that you can plug it into the wall and charge. You know, like nearly every other device of its kind you might use in the year 2020. Rather, you’re stuck either playing with a USB-C cable plugged into a power source or on two AAA batteries, which last about three hours.

Final

Obsession level: Sega used the original designers of the Japanese GG box art

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David Cabrera

David Cabrera

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Sooolar wind. Anime/games writer. Sometimes on @polygon? @Kawaiikochans is the sum of my efforts. Serious about stupid.