The Sega Mega Drive (or Sega Genesis) was released in September 1990 in Europe as part of the 4th generation of home consoles. It’s main feature was the vast amount of arcade games that were ported to the console.
With the Mega Drive’s early sales lagging behind Nintendo’s SNES console, Sega soon realised that that the machine needed a mascot to match the success of the Mario series. Sega held a company-wide contest to create a mascot character and Sonic The Hedgehog was born. After the release of Sonic The Hedgehog, the Mega Drive began to rapidly erode Nintendo’s market lead in the US, and increase its already huge lead in the European market.
With over 29 million units sold, the Mega Drive became Sega’s most successful console, its library of arcade game ports, the popularity of Sega’s Sonic the Hedgehog series, several popular sports franchises, and aggressive youth marketing positioned the system as the cool console for adolescents.
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