The 90s was a golden age for beat ‘em ups on the Sega Mega Drive with games like Golden Axe and Streets of Rage delivering side-scrolling, button-bashing arcade action by the bucket-load.
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Improvements in graphics and gameplay, coupled with the decline in popularity of consoles like the Mega Drive, ultimately put paid to this very special short-lived gaming sub-genre though.
Or at least, that was what we thought.
Because, in a move few expected, independent game design firm WaterMelon Games has revealed it is working on a brand-new side-scrolling fighter for the Mega Drive.
It’s called Paprium and it’s being developed specifically for the original 16-bit console. The game will also be released on a physical cartridge and, if the trailer is anything to go by, it already looks epic.
Sounding a little like a futuristic version of Streets of Rage, fused with a little Double Dragon thrown in for good measure, the official Paprium synopsis reads as follows:
Year 8A2, somewhere at equidistant point between Shanghai, Tokyo and Pyongyang, a Megapolis rose from ashes of the shortest but most devastating nuclear war in history, its name is PAPRIUM. BRUTAL, MASSIVE. You will fight your way through the city with Tug, Alex and Dice. Redefine the word justice, deal with the BLU drug temptation, and more importantly: STAY ALIVE!
With five playable characters to choose from and a whopping 24 levels to play through, the game is set to launch on September 16th.
Fans will need to move fast if they want to get their hands on this classic bit of gaming nostalgia, with WaterMelon set to start with a limited run that will see just 1988 Paprium Sega Mega Drive cartridges produced – a knowing nod to the year the console was first launched.
Keep an eye out on the company’s official Facebook page for more information.
For more Sega Mega Drive fun, did you know that you can listen to all of your favourite soundtracks on Spotify? So much nostalgia.