Top 10 in Sales - Sega Genesis / Mega Drive

by William D'Angelo, posted on 17 December 2012 / 11,202 Views

Welcome to the ‘Top 10’ weekly feature. Each week we will be taking a look at the top 10 selling games in a particular genre, platform, most recent month, even sprinkling in the top 10 selling games from a past year. All sales specified will be worldwide, unless stated otherwise.

This week we will be looking at the top 10 bestselling Sega Genesis (known as the Mega Drive outside of North America) games. Last week we looked at the top 10 bestselling games in November 2012 and the week before that the top 10 bestselling Super Nintendo games. If there is a particular top 10 you want to see leave a comment and it may be featured in a future top 10.

Looking at the top 10 bestselling Sega Genesis games, one game was released in 1990, one in 1991, one in 1992, three in 1993, three in 1994, and one in 1995.

The top 10 bestselling Sega Genesis games sold a combined 25.68 million games. Sonic the Hedgehog 2 is the only game to sell five million or more units on the Sega Genesis. The top five games did sell two million or more units, while all the games in the top 10 sold one million or more units.

There are six first party titles, published by Sega, and four third party titles. The six first party titles sold a combined 18.21 million units or 70.9 percent of the total games sold in the top 10. The four third party titles sold a combined 7.47 million units or 29.1 percent of the total games sold in the top 10.

Taking a look at the top 10 bestselling Sega Genesis games as a graph it is easy to see how important two titles and one franchise was for the system. The franchise of course being Sega’s answers to Mario, Sonic the Hedgehog. The first two titles in the franchise for the Sega Genesis sold a combined 10.37 million units. Also the four games in the franchise in the top 10 sold a combined 13.95 million units or 54.3 percent of the total games sold in the top 10.

Mortal Kombat is the bestselling third party title and one of four fighting / beat ‘em up games in the top 10. The other three titles are Streets of Rage, Street Fighter II and Mortal Kombat 3. The three games sold a combined 8.27 million units or 32.2 percent of the total games sold in the top 10.

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sethnintendo (on 17 December 2012)

Sonic 2! Oh Yeah! Had found memories playing 2 player split screen with one of my sisters.

Nem (on 17 December 2012)

I think Sonic 3 didnt sell that well cause it was insanely priced. I remember it cost the equivalent to 70-80 euros. I dont know what SEGA was on back then. Sonic 3 + Sonic and knuckles lock on is rock on the most complete Sonic game you can get. sonic 2 is pretty awesome aswell though. Deserves the top spot if we think the others are 2 separate games.

ganoncrotch (on 19 December 2012)

I think they were both 55 irish pounds here back when they launched, given that it was 1 irish pound = 1.24 euros that would make them indeed 68euros a piece. Nasty money :D

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Serious_frusting (on 17 December 2012)

I owned every single game on this list lol.

zedo0 (on 17 December 2012)

No Streets of Rage 2......well that sucks.

torok (on 17 December 2012)

Streets of Rage as fantastic, I've player it a lot in Master System/Genesis. I miss the old days with Sega still in the console market.

Serious_frusting (on 17 December 2012)

Nice article. you have however made an error and typed Super Nintendo in the 3rd paragraph instead of genesis. It might also be worth a mention to clarify that the genesis was called the megadrive in markets outside of North America.

Devil_Survivor (on 17 December 2012)

Could you do the top 10 Dreamcast games?

zuvuyeay (on 17 December 2012)

good old sonic,crikey the lion king,time flies by

kumagawa (on 17 December 2012)

4 fighting games in the top ten god i miss those days. Haven't all the fighting games this year flopped?

tbone51 (on 17 December 2012)

Dont worry SSB4 is coming soon (not yet really) and on two platforms.

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sethnintendo (on 17 December 2012)

Sega, Acclaim, and Virgin.

Deanff3 (on 18 December 2012)

Ah some error in the list, no? Where Aladdin, 4 million games sold!

KungKras (on 18 December 2012)

I find it odd that there isn't more EA and other sports games up there, considering that they were the bread and butter of the Megadrive.

sethnintendo (on 18 December 2012)

Sega sports game were decent rival to EA sports games.

"Prior to the release of Montana, Park Place had developed the game so well that it surpassed Madden, and they believed it would hurt the sales of Madden. According to Michael Knox, they took Montana and "scaled it back" just before releasing the game back to Sega"

2K sports games actually started outperforming EA games during the Dreamcast era. They were ahead on baseball games (World Series) on Genesis.

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Serious_frusting (on 17 December 2012)

I owned every single game on this list lol.

Sensei (on 17 December 2012)

Street Fighter II was really published by Sega? That's really surprising, I thought Capcom developed and published it.