The Best Sega Dreamcast Exclusive Games - Top 10 Dreamcast Exclusives Ranked!

The Dreamcast was Sega's swan song, sadly being discontinued after only a few short years on the market (Sega made the announcement that they would be abandoning the hardware in January of 2001, only 15 months after its launch in North America). The last home console Sega ever released certainly made its mark on the industry, as well as the gamers who owned one back in the day. Although its time in the spotlight was short, the Dreamcast managed to amass a library full of unique, quirky, and memorable games that helped to give the console the cult classic status it enjoys today. While many of the system's best games have since been ported to other platforms, there are still quite a few great games that can only be experienced on the Dreamcast. So in order to highlight a few of the best original games the Dreamcast still has to offer, we've compiled this list of the top 10 best exclusive games for the Sega Dreamcast! The rankings are a little arbitrary due to personal tastes, and since we were limited to 10 games there were plenty of deserving titles that had to be left out, but with that in mind, here's our list of the top 10 best Dreamcast games that are still exclusive!


Illbleed Sega Dreamcast screenshot

A game that has become almost legendary amongst Dreamcast fans, Illbleed slipped through the cracks when it originally came out as a late Dreamcast release, but this very strange and unusual survival game has since become a highly-sought after cult classic for the system (which means that it unfortunately is now a very expensive game to buy today). Breaking tons of new ground in the genre, the game features a unique mechanics like having to scan all over the environment for deadly traps as you make your way through the levels, as well as monitoring not just your health but also your heart rate and adrenaline levels, and trying to make sure you don't bleed out when injured. The game is renowned for its insane B-movie style, with tons of blood and gore, hilarious tongue-in-cheek horror-comedy settings, and some of the most entertaining storylines, cutscenes, and voice acting ever seen in a horror game. Think something like Dead Alive in video game form. If you're a fan of survival horror and own a Dreamcast, Illbleed is an absolutely essential title for the system, and it's still exclusive to Sega's last console.

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D2 Sega Dreamcast screenshot

 Another survival horror exclusive for the Sega Dreamcast, D2 is the third and final entry in the D series of games, following D and Enemy Zero. While the plot and setting are completely unrelated to either of the earlier games in the series, the game features plenty of gameplay similarities and shares some of the same "digital actors", which was one of the developer WARP's signature game design concepts. Taking place in the snow-covered mountains of Canada, D2 has you playing as Laura, a survivor of a plane crash who must survive the harsh environment that just so happens to be crawling with humanoid mutants that are out for blood. It's a survival horror game that takes a few pages from its predecessors in the series, with on-rail first person point-and-click adventure style gameplay when indoors, although outdoor segments now play like a traditional third-person horror adventure game ala Silent Hill. And speaking of Silent Hill, D2 has some very similar vibes to that classic series with its plot, themes, atmosphere, and stilted voice acting. It also features some light RPG mechanics with random battles that take place in first-person shooting segments, which award you with experience points so you can level up. Oh, and did we mention it's a hunting simulator, too? D2 is a bizarre and eccentric horror tale, and one of the most unique experiences on the Dreamcast. For fans of the genre, this is a must-play.

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Daytona USA 2001

Daytona USA 2001 Sega Dreamcast screenshot

A souped-up remake of the arcade classic, Daytona USA 2001 is a Dreamcast exclusive racing game that delivers all of the pulse-pounding arcade action you know and love with a fresh coat of paint and lots of new content. Featuring all of the tracks from the original arcade game, the Saturn/PC remake Championship Circuit Edition, and three all new tracks, Daytona USA 2001 expands on the legendary arcade racing game while remaining faithful to its source material. The upgraded graphics for this Dreamcast version make it look even better than the arcade game, while the soundtrack still boasts all of the fan favorite classic music tracks the game is famous for. The handling is a little different from the original and can take a bit of time to get used to, but Daytona USA 2001 is a spectacular fast-paced racing package that offers all the thrills from the arcade game, and then adds even more!

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Dynamite Cop

Dynamite Cop Sega Dreamcast screenshot

The Sega Dreamcast was full of arcade-style action games, and Dynamite Cop is a great microcosm of the Dreamcast experience. When it comes to 3D beat-em-up games, it doesn't really get any better than this. The game is chockful with over-the-top action, allowing you to use almost every item in the environment as a weapon - beyond the typical guns and knives, you can also brandish arcade cabinets, loaves of bread, pepper shakers, and whatever else you can find strewn about the levels. The story, setting, and characters are pure B-movie cheese, as you and your pet monkey suplex pirates wearing turtle costumes, fight a krakken on board the ship, and launch tactical nukes at your enemies. Dynamite Cop is just a great game all around, with the only complaint being that it's pretty short, but you and a friend can have hours of fun playing this one over and over again in two-player co-op.

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Record of Lodoss War

Record of Lodoss War Sega Dreamcast screenshot

Record of Lodoss War is a Dreamcast exclusive action-RPG that is very similar to the Diablo games. Based on the anime series of the same name, you take control of a long-dead warrior resurrected by a wizard to help defeat a goddess of destruction. Along the way, you'll battle all sorts of enemies like zombies, skeletons, magicians, and ogres in real-time combat to gain experience points and find loot like new equipment. It's a really well made RPG with a lot of depth while also managing to still be approachable for new players. The game is pretty long with a lot of quests to complete, and while it can feel a little grindy sometimes, if you're looking for some solid action-RPG adventuring for your Dreamcast, Record of Lodoss War is definitely one to check out.

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Sword of the Berserk: Guts' Rage

Sword of the Berserk Guts' Rage Sega Dreamcast screenshot

Based on the classic manga and anime series Berserk, Sword of the Berserk: Guts' Rage is a hack-n-slash game in the same vein as Devil May Cry, with a strong emphasis on cinematics and storytelling. The game features an original story that was written specifically for the game by Berserk's creator Kentaro Miura and is considered canon in the series, so fans of Berserk are definitely going to want to check this one out. The game's story and voice acting are both great, which is a good thing as you'll be watching a lot of cutscenes here. When the game does cut to the action, you'll be fighting hordes of enemies in a combat system that's extremely fun and satisfying while also offering a surprising amount of depth - there are a ton of weapons at your disposal, and while swinging your giant sword is definitely the most enjoyable part of the combat, sometimes it's best to put it away and engage in some hand-to-hand brawling or long-range crossbow attacks, as the sword can be difficult to wield in cramped environments. Action-packed and bloody as all hell, Sword of the Berserk: Gut's Rage remains an excellent Dreamcast-exclusive hack-n-slash/interactive movie full of fan service. And you don't have to be familiar with the manga or anime to enjoy it, either, as this was my introduction to the Berserk universe back when it came out, and I've been a Berserk fan ever since.

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Soul Calibur Sega Dreamcast screenshot

If you're familiar with the Dreamcast at all, then you already know about SoulCalibur - It's one of the consoles most iconic games as part of the system's launch day lineup in North America and Europe, and was the first title in what would go on to become one of the most popular 3D fighting game series of all time. The game blew away everything that came before it when it came to graphics, showcasing smooth character models, detailed 3D environments, and some extremely pretty lighting and particle effects. It was a great pick-up-and-play fighter that wasn't too intimidating for first time players, but also featured a lot of depth as well for those who were interested in truly mastering it. SoulCalibur pretty much redefined 3D fighting games when it came out, and it still provides a phenomenal fighting game experience.

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Toy Commander

Toy Commander Sega Dreamcast screenshot

Published by Sega and developed by French developer No Cliché (led by the legendary creator of Alone in the Dark Frédérick Raynal), Toy Commander is one of the best Dreamcast games ever released, and it's still only available on Sega's swan song console. It's a mission-based vehicular combat/racing game that has you take control of various toy cars and planes as you fight the rogue toys who feel neglected because you no longer play with them. The game totally captures the essence of whimsy and imagination of a child playing with his toys, offering tons of unique missions to play through each with their own playable vehicles and objectives, along with unique level designs that take place in the various rooms inside your house. With great graphics, tight controls, a realistic physics engine, and tons of missions to complete, Toy Commander provides hours of entertainment and is one of the system's most charming titles. Honestly it's pretty surprising that Toy Commander was never ported to any other platform, but that's just as well - it just feels at home on the Sega Dreamcast, and I couldn't imagine playing it on anything else. If you own a Dreamcast, you owe it to yourself to play this amazing game.

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Blue Stinger

Blue Stinger Sega Dreamcast screenshot

Released as a launch game for the Dreamcast in both North America and Europe, Blue Stinger is a survival horror adventure game that became one of the console's most recognizable and best-selling games. It's a fully 3D action-adventure game in the survival horror genre, released at a time where having true 3D environments as opposed to fixed, prerendered backgrounds was a pretty big deal. Unlike its contemporaries, the game focuses on combat, rewarding you for taking on enemies, rather than running away from them, as you'll earn money from killing zombies which can be used to buy more ammo, weapons, and healing items. This is a horror game that was unlike all of its peers at the time, providing an action-oriented gameplay experience with colorful, lively environments and a bombastic soundtrack that blends perfectly with its silly, B-movie horror-comedy plot. It's one of the most fun horror games ever made, playing way more like Dead Rising than Resident Evil. You get tons of over-the-top weapons at your disposal to use against some truly awesome-looking enemies that seem like they could have come straight out of Dead Space, and one of the most original stories of any game back then. Blue Stinger is a definitive Dreamcast classic, an amazing horror game that belongs in every collection.

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Elemental Gimmick Gear

Elemental Gimmick Gear Sega Dreamcast screenshot

The Dreamcast's answer to the classic Legend of Zelda games, Elemental Gimmick Gear is a very unique action-RPG game that's brimming with character and delivers an outstanding J-RPG-style adventure saga that is among the best of its genre. The game offers open-world exploration of a beautiful and highly-detailed world, featuring some stunning hand-drawn 2D graphics that unfortunately weren't very common on the Dreamcast. It definitely gives off some strong Super NES RPG vibes, bearing resemblance to not just Zelda but also games like Chrono Trigger, Final Fantasy 6, and Secret of Mana as well. I know comparing a game to Chrono Trigger is incredibly high praise, but Elemental Gimmick Gear really does give off the same timeless classic feel that game did, and the fantastic art direction and musical score do a great job of setting the tone and making this one of the most epic adventures you can play through on the Dreamcast. If you're a fan of Zelda-style action-RPGs/Metroidvania type games (and really, who isn't), Elemental Gimmick Gear is a true hidden gem that shouldn't be missed. All in all, it's just a fantastic experience that gets my top spot for the best Dreamcast exclusive game.

It was very hard to narrow this list down to just 10 titles, and there were plenty of other great exclusive Dreamcast games like Super Magnetic Neo, Metropolis Street Racer, Carrier, and Draconus, that unfortunately didn't make it onto this list purely due to lack of space. For even more great Dreamcast exclusive games, check out our complete list of games that are still exclusive to the Dreamcast.

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Top 10 Best Sega Saturn Exclusive Games

Sega Genesis/Mega Drive Games That Are Still Exclusive - Complete List

Sega Genesis Mega Drive Exclusive Games

Although the Sega Genesis (known as the Mega Drive outside of North America) came out all the way back in the late 1980's, there's still quite a few games that still remain exclusive to the console. After doing many, MANY hours of research, here's our complete, definitive list of all of the games that are only available on the Sega Genesis (we'll be counting games that were also released in the arcades as exclusive as long as the Genesis/Mega Drive version is the only home release of the title).

So, what Sega Genesis/Mega Drive games are still exclusives? Quite a few, although it's interesting to note that many of these are either sports games or licensed games. Which makes sense, as there isn't much point in re-releasing an old sports game with outdated rosters, and obviously there are licensing issues that probably make it not worth the trouble to re-release stuff like Bonkers or Animaniacs. Still, it's pretty crazy how many exclusive sports games and licensed games the Genesis had during its lifetime.

Sega Genesis/Mega Drive Exclusive Games Released in North America and/or Europe:

-Titles that were released in Europe but not North America are in italics

-Titles that were released in North America but not Europe are in bold

*Titles that were also released in arcades are noted with an asterisk*

The Adventures of Batman & Robin

Air Diver


Arcade Classics

Ariel The Little Mermaid

Arnold Palmer Tournament Golf

Arrow Flash

Art Alive!

Asterix and the Great Rescue

Asterix and the Power of the Gods

ATP Tour Championship Tennis

Australian Rugby League

Awesome Possum... Kicks Dr. Machino's Butt

Ayrton Senna's Super Monaco GP II

Ball Jacks

Barney's Hide & Seek Game


Batman Returns

Beast Wrestler

Beauty & The Beast: Belle's Quest

Beauty & The Beast: Roar of the Beast

Beavis and Butt-Head

Bill Walsh College Football '95

Bimini Run

Blades of Vengeance

Blaster Master 2

Bloodshot (AKA Battle Frenzy)

Body Count


Bulls vs Lakers and the NBA Playoffs

*Caliber .50

Captain Planet and the Planeteers

Chakan: The Forever Man (there's a version on the Game Gear but the levels are different)

Chi Chi's Pro Challenge Golf

Coach K College Basketball

College Football USA 96

College Football's National Championship

College Football's National Championship II

Combat Cars


Crystal's Pony Tale

Cyborg Justice

Dashin' Desperadoes

David Robinson's Supreme Court

Death Duel

Desert Demolition Starring Road Runner and Wile E. Coyote

Devilish: The Next Possession

Dick Vitale's "Awesome, Baby!" College Hoops

Dinosaurs For Hire

*DJ Boy

Double Clutch

Double Dribble: The Playoff Edition

Dragon Ball Z (AKA Dragon Ball Z: Buyū Retsuden & Dragon Ball Z: L'Appel du Destin - France/Spain/Portugal/Japan only)

Dragon's Revenge

Duke Nukem 3D (exclusive recreation of the original game made by Tec-Toy for the Brazilian market)

Dungeons & Dragons: Warriors of the Eternal Sun

Earnest Evans

Earth Defense

El Viento

Elemental Master

European Club Soccer



F-117 Night Storm

F-22 Interceptor


FIFA Soccer 95

Fighting Masters

*Fire Shark

The Flintstones

Funny World & Balloon Boy



Gauntlet IV

General Chaos

Generations Lost


Goofy's Hysterical History Tour

Greatest Heavyweights

*Grind Stormer

High Seas Havoc

IMG International Tour Tennis

Instruments of Chaos starring Young Indiana Jones

Jennifer Capriati Tennis

Pigskin Footbrawl

Jewel Master

John Madden Football '92

King Salmon: The Big Catch

The Lost World: Jurassic Park

Magic School Bus, (Scholastic's) The: Space Exploration Game

Mario Andretti Racing

Mario Lemieux Hockey


Mazin Saga: Mutant Fighter

McDonald's Treasure Land Adventure

Menacer 6-Game Cartridge

Michael Jackson's Moonwalker

Mike Ditka Power Football

Muhammad Ali Heavyweight Boxing

Mutant League Hockey

Mystic Defender

NBA Action '94

NBA Action '95: Starring David Robinson

NFL Football '94 Starring Joe Montana

NFL '98

NFL Sports Talk Football '93

NHL All-Star Hockey '95

NHL Hockey

Nightmare Circus

Outback Joey

OutRun 2019 (technically this had a re-release in 2005 as a TV plug-n-play game, but meh, still counts)


Pat Riley Basketball/Super Real Basketball


Pelé II: World Tournament Soccer

PGA Tour Golf III


The Pirates of Dark Water (completely different from the SNES version)

Pocahontas (there's a Game Boy version that functions as a demake, but it's pretty different)

Prime Time Football '96

Pro Moves Soccer

*The Punisher

*Quad Challenge

Rambo III

Ranger X

Red Zone

The Ren & Stimpy Show: Stimpy's Invention

Rings of Power

Road Rash 3

RoboCop Versus The Terminator

*Rolling Thunder 2

Rolling Thunder 3

Rolo to the Rescue

*Saint Sword

Sampras Tennis 96

Scooby-Doo Mystery

Sesame Street: Counting Café

Shadow Blasters




Sorcerer's Kingdom

Splatterhouse 2 (included as an unlockable in the 2010 reboot)

Splatterhouse 3 (included as an unlockable in the 2010 reboot)

Sports Talk Baseball

*Street Smart



Sylvester and Tweety in Cagey Capers

Task Force Harrier EX


Taz in Escape from Mars

Team USA Basketball


*Time Killers


Tiny Toon Adventures: ACME All-Stars

Tiny Toon Adventures: Buster's Hidden Treasure

Tommy Lasorda Baseball

Toughman Contest (also available on the 32X)

Toxic Crusaders

Trampoline Terror!


Triple Play Baseball '96

Triple Play: Gold Edition

Trouble Shooter/Battle Mania: Daiginjō

Vapor Trail: Hyper Offence Formation

Virtual Pinball

VR Troopers

Wacky Worlds Creativity Studio

Warrior of Rome

Warrior of Rome II

Whac-a-Critter: Mallet Legend

Whip Rush

Wimbledon Championship Tennis

World Championship Soccer 2

World of Illusion


X-Men 2: Clone Wars


Notable Japan-Only/Asia-Only Mega Drive Exclusive Games:

Making a complete list of Japan-only/Asia-only Genesis exclusives is quite the undertaking and there simply isn't a lot of (if any) information available for many games that were only released in Japan/Asia. As such, we've decided to simply go with a list of some of the more notable games released only in Asia that are known to be exclusive.

Games that have received fan translations or are easily playable without knowing Japanese are in bold

Advanced Daisenryaku: Deutsch Dengeki Sakusen (English translation patch available)

Bahamut Senki (English translation patch available)

Battle Golfer Yui (English translation patch available)

Chibi Maruko-chan: Waku Waku Shopping

Chōkyūkai Miracle Nine (difficult to navigate menus but actual gameplay is understandable)


Cutie Suzuki no Ringside Angel

Dahna: Megami Tanjō (English translation patch available, although easily playable without)

Dangerous Seed

Eliminate Down

Fastest 1

The Hybrid Front

Kyūkai Dōchūki

Madō Monogatari I (English translation patch available) (the last official Mega Drive game released in Japan)

Mamono Hunter Yōko: Dai 7 no Keishō

*Master of Weapon


Mystical Fighter

Nakajima Satoru Kanshuu F1 Grand Prix

Nakajima Satoru Kanshū F1 Super License

Osomatsu-kun: Hachamecha Gekijō

Party Quiz Mega Q

Rent A Hero (English translation patch available)

Slap Fight MD

Surging Aura

Tel-Tel Mahjong

Tel-Tel Stadium

Thunder Pro Wrestling Retsuden

Tōgi Ō: King Colossus (English translation patch available)

Twinkle Tale (English translation patch available)

Uzu Keobukseon (only released in South Korea)


Vixen 357 (English translation patch available)

XDR: X-Dazedly-Ray

Yū Yū Hakusho Gaiden

Yu Yu Hakusho Makyō Tōitsusen (English translation patch available, although not necessary)

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Sega Genesis console photo credit: By Evan-Amos - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

Developer Interview: Yoshihisa Tomita on Evolution World of Sacred Device For Sega Dreamcast

This is an interview with Yoshihisa Tomita from Sting Co., Ltd, director of the Sega Dreamcast RPG Evolution: The World of Sacred Device. It was originally published on the game's official US website, and a small portion of the interview can be found in the game's manual.

Evolution The World of Sacred Device Sega Dreamcast cover art

When did you first start working on Evolution?

The original Evolution was planned two or three years ago. It was set to be an RPG for the Sega Saturn. In the end, the settings and the game system were much different from the Evolution we originally planned.

Is everyone on the team a big fan of adventure/RPG games?

We have our favorites, but yes, most of us play RPGs often.

Tell us about the concept behind Evolution's theme, the premise.

Basically, even when there is adversity to endure, never back down and always think positive.

What inspired the development of the Evolution characters? Do you have a favorite?

We developed the story line then decided on each character's personality and role. We chose cheerful friendly characters because it gives life to the story. My favorite character is Chain, she's cute. She has a crush on Mag, but cannot express her mind. A problem a lot of us experience.

Why did you choose an anime-type look for Evolution characters and environments instead of a more realistic approach?

Everyone goes for realistic 3D graphics now. With evolution, we wanted to show that it is possible to create unique and cute anime-style characters. However, we also wanted to demonstrate the technique of high quality textures, even though it is anime.

Why did you decide to use the name of weapons for the character names?

The person in charge of the Evolution setting, Mr. Matsumura, loves the military. It was his idea to use the different type of weapons as character names. The names are not in accordance with the image of the weapons. We selected each name by the sound image which Japanese people hear.

Why did you decide to go with randomly generated dungeons?

We always intended to make good use of what we started in Baroque.

Are there multiple towns or just the main town near the ruins?

Several countries and towns are part of the story, but only one town, named Pannam actively appears in the game. Mag's house is here, which is his base of operation.

Are the dungeons the only location that combat takes place in?

Ah-ha! Basically yes… but there are special exceptions. You will see!

What kind of enemies are included in the dungeons?

Most of them are huge insects and great beasts native to the world. There are, however, extremely powerful and bizarre boss monsters at the end of every dungeon.

Explain the combat in Evolution? Are you introducing an all-new system?

Combat is the typical 'choosing command' style, but you actively put your party in 3x3 squares. The action takes and movement order, as well as each parameters changes depending on the position of the characters, so you will have to consider strategies in battle.

How did you take advantage of the Sega Dreamcast hardware?

By virtue of the GD - ROM, it became possible to handle large capacity data at high speed. Only on the Dreamcast can we make an RPG game with characters using thousands of polygons along with high quality textures. You can see these advantages in the game. In the past, there was a large discrepancy between the quality of a game and a movie. With the Dreamcast the difference is negligible.

Any final thoughts?

We created Evolution with enthusiasm and passion over. We hope you recognize this passion and enthusiasm even more than the 3D design and new technical aspects.

Copyright 2024

The Best Sega Saturn Exclusive Games - Top 10 Saturn Exclusives Ranked!

The Saturn is one of Sega's most underappreciated consoles, and the system still offers a fairly large library of games that remain exclusive to the console. So to highlight some of the best the Saturn has to offer, we've made this list of the Sega Saturn's top 10 best exclusive games! The rankings here are obviously going to be somewhat arbitrary as it comes down to personal preferences more than anything else - all of these are great games for the Saturn that are worthy of consideration, and plenty of excellent Saturn games didn't end up making the cut as there were only ten spots on this list. So with all that in mind, let's take a look at what are, in my opinion, the 10 best Sega Saturn exclusives:

10. Clockwork Knight/Clockwork Knight 2

Clockwork Knight Sega Saturn screenshot

I'm going to cheat a little bit here and give the #10 spot on this list to both the original Clockwork Knight and its sequel, Clockwork Knight 2. The first game was a launch title for both the North American and European Saturn releases, and it gave Sega fans a nice 2.5D action-platformer with plenty of pizzazz and spectacle thanks to the processing power of the Saturn. It's a fun, traditional platforming game with a cool Toy Story-esque story and characters, and some creative level design and gameplay elements that elevated the game over its 16-bit platforming predecessors. One main criticism is that it's a little short, but that's why the sequel is here on this list as well - Clockwork Knight 2 offers more of the same, and a lot of it, so if you liked the first game, you'll probably want to play the sequel as well.

Shop for Clockwork Knight on eBay

Shop for Clockwork Knight 2 on eBay

9. Shining Force III

Shining Force III Sega Saturn screenshot

Shining Force III was one of the last Sega Saturn games released in the west, and the last numbered entry in the Shining Force series definitely helped the system go out with a bang for fans of strategy RPGs. This one features the same tactical battles you know and love from the previous games, while enhancing the presentation with some nice 32-bit 3D graphics and a fantastic CD soundtrack. Featuring an engaging story with plenty of branching paths that enhance the game's replay value, fans of strategy RPGs are definitely going to want to check this one out, although adding it to your collection is going to be quite costly, as it's a highly sought-after late Saturn release that had a low print run.

Shop for Shining Force III on eBay

8. Dark Savior

Dark Savior Sega Saturn screenshot

If you've ever played LandStalker for the Sega Genesis, you have a good idea of what to expect with its spiritual Saturn sequel Dark Savior - it's another 2D overhead isometric action-RPG with a lot of tricky platforming due to the angle of the camera. It's a very fun and rewarding experience once you're able to adjust to the controls, however, with lots of environments to explore and plot twists to unfold. The battle system here is pretty interesting, too, as fights with enemies play more like a fighting game or beat-em-up than your typical action-RPG. Dark Savior also features a lot of branching paths as you progress through the story, offering some extra replay value. If you liked LandStalker or other action-RPG games of this ilk, you'll definitely like this one as well.

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7. Burning Rangers

Burning Rangers Sega Saturn screenshot

Burning Rangers was the last Sega Saturn game developed by Sonic Team, and one of the last Saturn releases in the west. The game has you playing as a jetpack-toting firefighter of the future as you explore various environments, attempting to put out fires and rescue civilians while encountering a few boss fights along the way. Running on the NiGHTS into Dreams engine, Burning Rangers mixes third-person shooting action and 3D platforming with an emphasis on exploration to provide a pretty unique experience on the Saturn. The graphics, sound, and overall presentation are definitely all top notch for the system, with some nice anime cutscenes and solid voice acting accompanying the game's impressive 3D graphics with lots of colored lighting and transparencies. It's a fun but short game that was very unique in its time, as the focus was on saving people instead of killing enemies. Sonic Team delivered a very well-designed and memorable title for their last effort on the Saturn, and Burning Rangers remains one of the best exclusive games on the platform.

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6. The Legend of Oasis

Legend of Oasis Sega Saturn screenshot

The Legend of Oasis is a great action-RPG that is a bit similar to the 2D Legend of Zelda games, although with a more action-oriented focus. It's a sequel to Beyond Oasis for the Sega Genesis, and it definitely does the series justice as a worthy follow-up to that game. With combat being just as much of a focus as exploration, The Legend of Oasis has a pretty extensive list of moves and combos you can pull off as you fight your way through the game. It's fast, fluid, and fun, and makes the game stand out from the typical action-RPG as you make your way through the various dungeons throughout the game. There's also an elemental system here where you find new creatures you can summon as you progress throughout the game, which can help in combat as well as puzzle solving. If you're looking for a solid and unique action-RPG for the Sega Saturn, you can't go wrong with The Legend of Oasis.

Shop for Legend of Oasis on eBay

5. Shinobi Legions/Shinobi X

Shinobi Legions/Shinobi X Sega Saturn screenshot

Released as Shinobi Legions in North America and Shinobi X in Europe, this is the Saturn exclusive sequel to the popular Shinobi games that came before for the arcade, Genesis, Master System, and Game Gear. It's a great entry to the series that features the same type of action-platforming gameplay the games were known for with some tweaks and upgrades, along with a fresh new coat of paint for the Saturn. While the game's aesthetic choices are a point of contention for some, I personally love the direction they went with the game here - the digitized graphics have that unmistakable mid-90's vibe, and the delightfully cheesy live action cutscenes provide a super entertaining low-budget ninja B-movie that looks like something you would have seen on some obscure late night cable channel. It looks great, plays well, and offers tons of fun for Sega Saturn owners looking for some classic 2D arcade-style ninja action.

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4. Deep Fear

Deep Fear Sega Saturn screenshot

Deep Fear is a survival horror game released exclusively for the Sega Saturn. The game is extremely similar to the early Resident Evil titles, with prerendered backgrounds and fixed camera angles, tank controls, and a focus on exploration that requires finding keys to open new areas. It does feature some unique twists to the formula that make this more than just a typical Resident Evil clone, with the need to constantly monitor the air level as the underwater environments you explore slowly run out of oxygen, adding to the tension. This is also probably the first survival horror game that allowed you to move and shoot at the same time, which definitely improves the combat system when you fight enemies. If you're a fan of old-school horror games like this, you'll definitely enjoy Deep Fear for its atmosphere, story, and cheesy voice acting. This was the last Saturn game released in Europe, and it was never released in North America.

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3. Magic Knight Rayearth

Magic Knight Rayearth Sega Saturn screenshot

The last Sega Saturn release in North America, Magic Knight Rayearth is a charming 2D action-RPG very much in the same vein as The Legend of Zelda and Secret of Mana series of games. It's based on the anime and manga series of the same name, and features an endearing, silly lighthearted story, characters, and atmosphere, where you take control of 3 schoolgirls just trying to get back home after being transported to another world, each with their own unique abilities. The game features classic overhead 2D action-RPG gameplay, where you'll explore the world to progress through the game, fighting whatever enemies that get in your way along the journey. You can switch between the 3 main characters on the fly, providing an extra bit of depth and strategy to the gameplay, It's a fun, polished, and whimsical adventure that combines tons of charm with well-done, action-based J-RPG gameplay. If you like action-RPGs, Magic Knight Rayearth is definitely a stand out in the Saturn's library - Just be prepared to pay a very high price if you want to own a legitimate physical copy, as the game's rarity and reputation have made it an extremely valuable collector's item for Saturn fans.

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2. Panzer Dragoon Saga

Panzer Dragoon Saga Sega Saturn screenshot

The best J-RPG on the Sega Saturn, Panzer Dragoon Saga is a legendary masterpiece of game design. Developer Team Andromeda did a fantastic job of world-building throughout the entire Panzer Dragoon series, and the shift of focus to open-world exploration for this RPG allowed them to flesh out this part of the game even further. You'll get to travers gorgeous, intricately designed environments as you make your way through this epic adventure, all gloriously rendered in some of the most stunning graphics seen on the system. Panzer Dragoon Saga also offers some fresh and unique features for the RPG genre, including a more action-oriented turn-based battle system where you must constantly change positions during battles to gain the advantage when attacking and also to evade oncoming attacks. The story and presentation are also phenomenal, of course, rounding out what is definitely one of the console's best games. It's just too difficult to describe how incredible Panzer Dragoon Saga is in one short paragraph. Of course, this reputation as a Sega Saturn exclusive gem, along with its rarity, makes this one of the most expensive video games ever - It'll cost you around a grand for a complete in box North American copy of the game.

1. Panzer Dragoon II Zwei

Panzer Dragoon II Zwei Sega Saturn screenshot

Most likely the finest rail shooter ever made, Panzer Dragoon II Zwei earns my number 1 spot on this list as the best Sega Saturn exclusive. Everything from the game's atmosphere and incredible aesthetics to the fluid and addictive gameplay, is just total perfection. This was a big-budget AAA game developed specifically with the Saturn's strengths in mind, and it shows. The game has some of the best art direction in a 5th generation console game, with stunning worlds full of set pieces and special effects, and well-designed character and enemy models. And then there's the game's phenomenal soundtrack as well, featuring some of the most memorable video game music of all time. But Panzer Dragoon II Zwei isn't just about its presentation, as the game backs all of this up with an amazing 3D rail shooter experience that will leave you asking "Star Fox. who?" This is not just one of the best Sega Saturn games, it's one of the best video games of all time, period.

This was a really hard list to make, as there were many more games that could have definitely made the cut like Saturn Bomberman, Astal, and Fighters Megamix, but we had to make some sacrifices to narrow it down to just 10 games. Obviously there are plenty more Saturn exclusives that are worth your time - see our list of Sega Saturn games that are still exclusive for a comprehensive list of games that you can only play on Sega's 32-bit powerhouse.

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What Horror Games Are On The Sega Genesis/Mega Drive? The Complete List of Genesis Survival Horror Games!

While the Sega Genesis was more known for it's colorful, fast-paced action games, platformers, arcade ports, and sports games, it also featured a few grittier, horror-themed titles for those looking for a more mature gaming experience. The survival horror genre didn't even really exist during the 16-bit era, but there were still some games available that offered an early look at what was to come in horror gaming, as well as some games with a more cartoonish and light-hearted take on the horror theme. So let's take a look at the complete list of horror games available on the Sega Genesis - I had to be somewhat generous with what classifies as a horror game here for some of these, since there aren't many mature, pure-horror games on the system, but all of these games feature a unique, 16-bit take on the genre with at least some kind of horror theme or aesthetic.

Sega Genesis/Mega Drive Horror Games:

Splatterhouse 2

Splatterhouse 2 Sega Genesis screenshot

Namco brought the horror home to the Sega Genesis with Splatterhouse 2, a gory arcade beat-em-up heavily inspired by classic 80's slasher movies. You resume the role of Rick from the first game, who just so happens to bear a strong resemblance to Jason Vorhees from the Friday The 13th series. Although the game is more focused on action than pure horror, all of the usual tropes are here and done very well. The game features tons of gruesome monsters that look straight out of cult horror flicks like The Evil Dead, From Beyond, and The Thing, and the amount of gore in the game was pretty extreme for a console game in 1992. Featuring some appropriately dark and foreboding levels and a haunting soundtrack, Splatterhouse 2 is a masterpiece of 16-bit horror game design.

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Splatterhouse 3

Splatterhouse 2 Sega Genesis screenshot

After the success of the Genesis port of Splatterhouse 2, Namco released a Sega Genesis exclusive sequel called Splatterhouse 3. The game features the same horror theme and storyline as the earlier titles in the series, but mixes things up by adding another dimension to the levels (you can now move up and down in addition to left and right) and a non-linear exploration-based structure where you're free to progress through the level as you see fit. Splatterhouse 3 also upped the production values with numerous cutscenes that were rather impressive for a cartridge-based system at the time. Gore levels are at an all time high here, and the atmosphere is absolutely on point. All in all, this is a great entry to the series and one of the best and most iconic horror titles for the Sega Genesis, definitely the crown jewel of Genesis horror games when it comes to presentation. Definitely a must-own for any serious horror game fan.

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Castlevania Bloodlines

Castlevania Bloodlines Sega Genesis screenshot

The Sega Genesis got its very own exclusive entry in the Castlevania series with this sequel to the NES classics by Konami. The game is a throw-back to the gameplay style of the first three games in the series after the Super Nintendo-exclusive Super Castlevania IV changed the formula a little bit. You'll get to explore creepy environments throughout Europe filled with all of the classic Castlevania baddies (along with some new ones) as you hunt down the vampire Elizabeth Bartley (based on the real life historical figure Elizabeth Bathory) as she attempts to orchestrate World War 1. It's the same classic Castlevania gameplay you know and love, with some incredibly creative and dynamic level design only possible thanks to the blast processing capability of the Sega Genesis. Castlevania Bloodlines is a true classic that shouldn't be missed by anyone.

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Zombies Ate My Neighbors

Zombies Ate My Neighbors Sega Genesis screenshot

Zombies Ate My Neighbors is a light-hearted, comedic take on classic horror and sci-fi movies in 16-bit video game form. It's not meant to be scary, just campy B-movie style fun. The game is full of classic enemies like zombies, werewolves, UFOs, giant babies, and chainsaw-wielding guys wearing hockey masks that look like they just wandered off the set of Friday The 13th Part III, and you're tasked with defeating or evading these mutants while exploring a variety of environments while trying to rescue your dim-witted neighbors. It's a fast-paced action-adventure game that utilizes an overhead perspective akin to the 2D Zelda games (ignoring the oddball Adventures of Link), and it's tons of fun. The game also features a 2-player co-op mode so you can share the scares with a friend. Zombies Ate My Neighbors is a timeless classic, and the Sega Genesis port is well worth checking out if you're looking for a more cartoony horror-themed game for the system.

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Ghouls 'n Ghosts

Ghouls 'n Ghosts Sega Genesis screenshot

Sega ported Capcom's hit arcade game to the Sega Genesis as an early release for their just launched 16-bit console. Ghouls 'n Ghosts is a tough-as-nails arcade action platformer that takes place in a medieval Europe overrun by Lucifer's demon horde as your character, the knight Sir Arthur, must fight your way through hellish landscapes in order to rescue your princess. The game features plenty of ghoulish enemies and spooky environments, with some very nice graphics for an early 16-bit game, and a haunting soundtrack to boot. Only hardcore gamers need apply here, as Ghouls 'n Ghosts is extremely unforgiving, but if you can handle the challenge, this is a great platformer with a nice gothic horror atmosphere.

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Zero Tolerance

Zero Tolerance Sega Genesis screenshot

Zero Tolerance is a Sega Genesis exclusive first-person shooter developed by Technopop and published by Accolade. The game plays similarly to Wolfenstein 3D and Doom with a bit of System Shock vibes. You play as a 5-person team tasked with eliminating a hostile alien force that has taken over a space station and killed all of its human inhabitants. It's just you against the alien invaders as you explore the space station against the clock before the damaged cooling system fails and destroys the colony. Zero Tolerance was a bit ahead of its time as an early console exclusive FPS and the game features an eerie atmosphere throughout. You get five different playable characters to switch between, and when one dies, they're gone for good. 16-bit Doom, anyone?

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Alien 3

Alien 3 Sega Genesis screenshot

Alien 3 is a side-scrolling action-platforming game loosely based on the movie of the same name. You take on the role of series icon Ellen Ripley as you explore the space prison colony, racing against the clock to save as many humans from the Xenomorphs as you can before time runs out. The game is surprisingly tense and features a great sense of atmosphere and dread that manages to do the franchise justice. If you're a fan of the films, Alien 3 for the Sega Genesis is worth a look.

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Sacred Line: Genesis

Sacred Line Sega Genesis screenshot

Sacred Line: Genesis is an indie game developed by Sasha Darko and published in 2015 for the Sega Genesis by Watermelon. It's one of the more unique games on this list in the context of the Sega Genesis's library as it's a visual novel/graphic text adventure with a horror theme. There are some light pen-and-paper RPG elements as well as you'll occasionally engage in battles with enemies which involve rolling physical dice to determine the outcome of the fight. It's not a very complex game, but it definitely delivers when it comes to the horror atmosphere. If you're looking for something spooky and unique for your Sega Genesis, Sacred Line is definitely worth a look.

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Undeadline Sega Genesis screenshot

Undeadline is a pretty weird action game that plays like a vertically-scrolling shooter, although you control a human character and the levels are all ground-based. While the gameplay may not evoke much of a horror mood, some of the enemies and environments, as well as the overall aesthetics, certainly do. You'll be fighting Jason Vorhees knockoffs, vampires, and other ghoulish creatures in bloodstained haunted houses and cemeteries. The game was only released in Japan, and the official Japanese version of the game has become a highly sought-after collector's item that sells for several hundred dollars, but if you just want to play it there are English-translated reproduction cartridges available that are pretty cheap.

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Haunting Starring Polterguy

Haunting Starring Polterguy Sega Genesis screenshot

Haunting Starring Polterguy is a strange and unique game that's pretty hard to describe. You play as the eponymous Polterguy, who's out for revenge against the boss of the skateboard company who caused his untimely death. It's basically like The Sims, as you assume the role of an invisible character that manipulates the environment to scare the inhabitants of the house you're currently haunting. It's not a scary game, but there are a ton of very creative and sometimes gory traps that you can trigger, all with their own unique animations. It's like a 16-bit version of the plot of Beetlejuice, so if that sounds interesting to you, definitely give Haunting a try.

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Dark Castle

Dark Castle Sega Genesis screenshot

Dark Castle is a puzzle-platformer that's somewhat vaguely horror-themed. You explore a medieval castle infested with the iconic video game villians bats and rats. It's not really horror but has some of the aesthetic, so it makes the list if only for completion's sake. It's not great, but it's also not bad. If you like puzzle-platformers you might want to check it out.

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Alien Storm

Alien Storm Sega Genesis screenshot

Alien Storm is a 2D beat-em-up/run-'n-gun/rail shooter by Sega that was released for the Sega Genesis in 1991. A port of the arcade game, the Genesis/Mega Drive version of the game is a fast-paced action game that's very similar to Golden Axe, albeit with a sci-fi horror aesthetic. It's a campy, sci-fi B-movie type of affair, with entire towns being overrun by aliens, and only your band of gun-toting heroes can put a stop to it. There are some enemies here that look like they came straight out of the Splatterhouse games or the movie From Beyond, and the variety of environments and gameplay styles keeps the game fresh all the way through. If you're looking for some intense beat-em-up action with a light horror theme, Alien Storm offers great arcade action that's well worth your time.

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Scooby-Doo Mystery

Scooby-Doo Mystery Sega Genesis screenshot

Zoinks, Scoob! Looks like we've got another mystery on our hands! Scooby-Doo Mystery is a point-and-click adventure game based on the popular Scooby Doo series, released exclusively for the Sega Genesis (there's a Super Nintendo game with the same name, but it's a completely different game). You'll control Shaggy, alongside your trusty sidekick Scooby Doo, as you attempt to unfold the mystery in two separate scenarios: a hotel haunted by the ghost of a Native American, and a carnival being terrorized by a creepy, evil clown. The game totally nails down the vibes of the show, featuring some fantastic graphics with impressive sprite-scaling and an eerie soundtrack, and while some of the puzzle-solving can be frustratingly obtuse, it's a great game if you're a fan of these old-school point-and-click adventures. Scooby-Dooby-Doo!

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