SEGA Master System: A Visual Compendium Review
An exciting history lesson
Bitmap Books have been on a hot streak of producing some beautifully designed and ultra-informative books for fans of retro gaming. Their new creation, SEGA Master System: A Visual Compendium, is packed to the brim with developer interviews, behind the scenes info, and detailed descriptions and pictures of seemingly every game and peripheral ever released for the console.
Every page is printed in high quality, and the hardcover book is very heavy and sturdy. It even comes with a pair of 3D glasses to experience what it was like to view Master System games in 3D, a privilege very few had at the time. The whole package is just top-notch, and since the SEGA Master system is a console that I knew very little about (I grew up with SNES & Genesis), this was a really fun read and I learned a lot along the way.
SEGA Master System: A Visual Compendium has a lenticular cover, which shows off some sprites from the console’s greatest games. It looks and feels fantastic, features multiple bookmarks, and looks great on a shelf. It matches its predecessor, SNES/ Super Famicom: A Visual Compendium, perfectly.
The full-page pixel art featured on almost every one of the 420 pages make both reading every detail about the console and flipping through the 8-bit artwork a fun time. The book even comes with a heavy-duty slipcover to protect it. There are in-depth interviews with Rieko Kodama (Phantasy Star, Alex Kidd), Mutsuhiro Fujii, Takashi Shoji, and Steve Hanawa and even Mark Cerny, the man responsible for designing the PlayStation 4, PS Vita, and the upcoming PlayStation 5 is here to tell some fun and interesting stories.
There are over 150 games covered in SEGA Master System: A Visual Compendium, from the games you know and love from childhood to lesser games you’ve never heard of. Every game gets a full two-page spread with plenty of information about the game and some behind the scenes info. There are even plenty of pages showing off the Master System’s accessories and even some Japanese cover art. Lastly, there are a few fold-out pages showcasing stages from a couple of games.
If you’re a fan of the Master System or just a fan of video game history like me, SEGA Master System: A Visual Compendium Review is definitely worth buying. Like its predecessor, this is a beautifully designed and luxurious package that would look great on any gamer’s bookshelf. It’s a nostalgia trip and history lesson all in one, and I can’t recommend it enough.
SEGA Master System: A Visual Compendium can be purchased here on the company’s website.
Review copy provided by Bitmap Books.