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Magazine MADNESS
Retro Fire

#50: Mass Destruction -87%
#49: King of Fighters '95 -89%
#48: Shining Wisdom -N/A
#47: Enemy Zero -88%
#46: Actua Golf -90%
#45: Pandemonium! -90%
#44: Athlete Kings -90%
#43: Dark Savior -92%
#42: Daytona USA CCE -90%
#41: Space Hulk -90%
#40: Soviet Strike -90%
#39: Jonah Lomu Rugby -91%
#38: Manx TT SuperBike -91%
#37: Saturn Bomberman -90%
#36: Croc: Legend of the Gobbos -91%
#35: Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo -86%
#34: Baku Baku Animal -93%
#33: Bust-A-Move 3 -91%
#32: Fighting Vipers -94%
#31: SEGA AGES -91%

Let's continue...


Two epoch-making Taito platform games arrive on Saturn. The graphics might be crap, but the gameplay is golden.

"Bubble Bobble's cool, but the real star of the show is Rainbow Islands. It might not be quite arcade perfect, but the depth of this game is astounding (there's more to it than Mario 64). Couple that with perfect gameplay and I can't recommend it enough." -Editor Rich Leadbetter


Rainbow Islands

#29: LAST BRONX -92%

Big men, little girls, bulging weapons -- sounds like a dodgy p*rn flick. But it isn't, it's the awesome Last Bronx.

"The highly anticipated conversion of AM3's first fighting foray certainly doesn't disappoint. Excellent hi-res visuals, 60 fps update and unequivocally violent gameplay culminates in one of the best 3D beat 'em ups to grace the Saturn to date." -Lee Nutter

              Tommy doesn't
              play! No sir ree!

#28: WIPEOUT 2097 -92%

A speedy racing game that was one of the few reasons to buy a PlayStation... until it was converted (rather well too) to the Saturn!
"Cool futuristic racing, with eight tracks to race around. The hover-cars handle really well, and the extra-colorful courses all look fantastic in this Saturn conversion. Some of the special effects from the PlayStation version are missing, but who cares? It plays brilliantly and that's what counts." -Gary Cutlack

                   Sleek and

#27: MADDEN NFL '98 -92%

It was compulsory for every MegaDrive owner to have at least one Madden game, and the legendary US football series continued on the Saturn -- just about the only EA sports title to continue the quality in the move to 32-bit...
"And it continued with style. One of the best multi-player games that consenting adults can enjoy, this '98 update is faster, smoother and tougher than ever before. This year's players and stats, and the ability to build your own team from scratch make Madden '98 the best yet." -Gary Cutlack

        The legendary QB
        Favre is coming
        back for yet one
        more go-round...


The first Saturn snowboarding game to hit the UK and it's a blast! 17 characters, six challenging courses and hundreds of cool tricks.
"Board stupid? You won't be with Steep Slope Sliders, an amazing game that faithfully recreates the world's most popular winter sport with incredible detail and much playability. Play the game as a straight forward racer and beat the clock or pull off blazing stunts to rack up massive scores. If you've never been snowboarding before, Steep Slope Sliders is the perfect downhill trainer." -Matt Yeo

           And we thought
           Fighting Vipers
           was rough...

The following comes from the legendary Gary Cutlack...

"Many years ago, I went on a school skiing trip to Austria. It all went very well until, on the sixth day, I had a small accident and broke one of my skis. Initially, I was quite upset at being left out of the skiing fun that my friends were all enjoying, but then I had a brainwave -- what if I put both of my feet on my one remaining ski and 'surf' down the slope? It seemed to work, and was bloody good fun too. The rest of my class started doing it as well, and by the end of the week the entire town was copying my idea. Little did I know that I had just invented the sport of 'snowboarding' and this activity would become one of the biggest trends in the 1990s! Funny how things work out, isn't it?"


Electronic Arts attempt to grab a slice of the lucrative Command & Conquer action more than makes up for the absence of Red Alert.
"Taking a medieval slant on the strategy based C&C formula, EA's Warcraft II plays virtually identically to Westwood Studios classic. It may look complex but it's very easy to pick up. With over 52 huge missions to complete and the Beyond the Portal expansion pack toss in for good measure, this is awesome stuff and well up there with C&C. What we like to call 'a victory of gameplay over graphics.' Well worth a look." -Lee Nutter

                   Well put!



#24: SONIC JAM -92%

Dubbed as the "ultimate retro pack" in issue #22 of SSM, Sonic Jam shows off the Sonic Team at their very best.

"The MegaDrive Sonic series was the main reason that many people (myself included) first got into games. Putting all four games on one disc was a masterstroke for the Sonic Team, and with the mind-blowing Sonic World -- this is an essential slice of the retro cake." -Lee Nutter

                       Sonic 1

Sonic 2

                                      Sonic 3

Sonic & Knuckles

                Sonic World

                (1 level)

                                   Man, had Sega release a 3D Sonic game in '96... we'll never know


Cyclops, Wolverine, Juggernaut and pals battle it out in one of the most outrageous 2D fighting games ever conceived.
"Before X-Men: COTA no one knew the potential of Saturn's 2D capabilities. X-Men showed the world that no machine can match the Saturn (sans Neo Geo of course). When COTA appeared, work at EMAP stopped completely and many happy hours were spent pummelling CVG's Tom Guise (and others) into pulp as he squealed like a stinking pig... but I digress..." -Editor Rich Leadbetter

              Don't bother with the
              crappy PSX port

#22: DAYTONA USA -92%

The first conversion of AM2's classic coin-op and arguably one of the finest racers on the Saturn.

"Yeah, the graphics are looking a bit crap now and the PAL conversion is quite poor. But the fact remains that AM2's Daytona conversion sounds, feels and plays just like the coin-op, not something we could say about the more recent conversion." -Lee Nutter



Platform kings Treasure combine classic RPG elements with some hard-hitting, side-scrolling beat 'em up action. Explore mystical lands inhabited by fair maidens and bizarre monsters.
"Only rivalling Capcom in terms of 2D mastery, Treasure's epic adventure is an innovative and challenging game. The fact that Guardian Heroes manages to breathe new life into the stale scrolling beat 'em up genre can't be a bad thing either. A truly ace game." -Matt Yeo

        3 planes of manic
        hi-octane action!!

Some thoughts....

  • Bobble Bubble Featuring Rainbow Islands... very easy to like if not love this retro pack. I too prefer playing RI over BB, just like former great SSM editor Richard Leadbetter. The RI game allows you to pick regular or enhanced graphics. Regardless of which you choose, it still plays the same and quite frankly, plays brill

  • Last Bronx... consider me a fan! Cool describes it well. Not to mention violent and senseless. Kurosawa is one of the coolest fighters of all time (he's the badass in purple). And that Nagi Hojo? She's the first video game L***ian fighter that we know of. That has to count for something, right? You damn right it does.
    Yeah, it can get a little glitchy (especially in certain win poses) but it's a fun game nonetheless. I like how everyone's storyline is jointed together. The subtitles in the US version is also a nice touch

  • WipEout 2097... this came out in Japan as WipEout XL. Pretty tough to find, I bought it but never even played it... part of the "collector trap" I fell into in 2004-2005...

  • Madden 98... not a big football nut. I got this game as part of a bigger package and one day I finally sat down and whadaya know -- I had a blast. Using one of the legends team, "Sweetness" Walter Payton tore it up for me. I don't play a lot of football games but I found Madden 98 very playable and enjoyable

  • Steep Slope Sliders... man this game was disappointing. Bought in 2001, sold in 2002, then rebought in 2004 after reading SSM's showcase and praise, and eventually sold it again in 2006. It's not as fun as I hoped it would be. 1-player only hurts it too, and why no analog 3D controller support?  Meh

  • Warcraft II... one of the few PC games I can count on one hand which my brother went out and bought. So was its popularity and success. I recall a-many nights just hearing the orcs' grunts emitting from the computer screen while I was watching TV or doing homework in the living room... brings back good memories. Saturn port is just fine

  • Sonic Jam rocks. It really is a shame a 3D Sonic in the form of Sonic World never came out... I know it's been said a bajillion times before but man, if it came out in '95... who knows what ramifications it would have made. A ripple in the water here leads to a victory there. With it as Sega's killer launch game, Saturn could have been King, not PlayStation. Alas, we'll never know...

  • X-Men: COTA is cool. I guess SSM was right, it really was the first game to show off the power of Saturn's 2D capabilities. I prefer COTA slightly over Marvel Super Heroes

  • Daytona USA... I have like 3 copies of this lying around somewhere. Who doesn't? =p
    The code to change your car to a horse is good for a laugh too!

  • Guardian Heroes... on one hand you have the diehard supporters, and on the other hand, your GH rippers, doubters and shouters. I fall somewhere inbetween the two warring factions. I didn't like the 3-plane system. I found it too intrusive and never felt like I could get into a groove. Very good game, just not one of my personal top faves... made it on EGM's top 100 countdown (November '97) which by the way, I'll probably post some time in the future

Well, that concludes #30 through 21. Join us next time as we get down to the nitty gritty top 20!

Sega Saturn Magazine Top 50 Part 3