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Game gear codemaster games: how to tell reigon?


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Hey all. Been actively going for a complete loose cart game gear set. I haven't acquired any code masters games yet. But as far as I can tell most if not all of the NTSC copies appear identical to their PAL counterparts. Is there any way to tell if something like cosmic space head, micro machines, cj elephant, ect are NTSC or PAL? Or are the carts literally the exact same inside and out since they're reigon free? Like if I import a Sampras tennis will it count towards a US set?

 

Thanks for any help on this!

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Hey there's I've got a complete set of all US released carts for the Game Gear. From my understanding, Fantastic Dizzy and CJ Elephant Fugitive are both the same carts. The others all have differences. You can see more about this on the SegaRetro.org pages for the games.

Edited by CodysGameRoom
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Member · Posted

I recently started to go for the Game Gear set and decided to start with the rares and codemasters too.  It's my understanding that they are the exact same games, and we shared the same labels with the UK that have the Purple, Game Gear branded bars.  I picked up a Pete Sampras from the UK a while ago. 100% the same as the US version but even with shipping it cost me half as much (possibly even more since one has yet to show up in the US since then.)

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4 minutes ago, RH said:

I recently started to go for the Game Gear set and decided to start with the rares and codemasters too.  It's my understanding that they are the exact same games, and we shared the same labels with the UK that have the Purple, Game Gear branded bars.  I picked up a Pete Sampras from the UK a while ago. 100% the same as the US version but even with shipping it cost me half as much (possibly even more since one has yet to show up in the US since then.)

Unfortunately this is not correct. For example, you can see the difference on Pete Sampras here:

spacer.pngUS Versionspacer.pngUK Version

Edited by CodysGameRoom
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Member · Posted

Well, I got that US version from the UK.  I guess there's a chance that someone in the UK picked it up in US.

I never could figure out GG labels, even as a kid.  There's always multiple variants and I would swear that depending on the day they produced the games, they'd swap out labels.  I could be wrong, but I very much remember having the same games as my friends and very often there would be differences between mine and theres.

Edited by RH
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Just now, RH said:

Well, I got that US version from the UK.  I guess there's a chance that someone in the UK picked it up in US.

I never could figure out GG labels, even as a kid.  There's always multiple variants and I would swear that depending on they produced the games, they'd swap out labels.  I could be wrong, but I very much remember having the same games as my friends and very often there would be differences between mine and theres.

I wouldn't be surprised at all. The games are region free which I think leads to a lot of the confusion. And there is a LOT of confusion, to be honest, I can't even be sure EVERY cart in my collection is the official US release. But I did my best to research and make as sure as possible. Some games have clear label differences but others its exactly the same and really confusing. 

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Member · Posted
1 minute ago, CodysGameRoom said:

I wouldn't be surprised at all. The games are region free which I think leads to a lot of the confusion. And there is a LOT of confusion, to be honest, I can't even be sure EVERY cart in my collection is the official US release. But I did my best to research and make as sure as possible. Some games have clear label differences but others its exactly the same and really confusing. 

@Craigly1234

As you can see with my discussion with CodysGameRoom, there are no perfect answers.  I do not claim to be an expert but, honestly, if you start going down this rabbit hole, even a little, you'll have a tough time getting definitive answers.  I mean, you might find with good certainty that a specific variant was released in the US, but that doesn't mean that other regions didn't look the exact same and, heaven's no, there might even be a chance they took the same art from the US release and produced very-similar labels.  I can't say that for sure, but it's not impossible.

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1 minute ago, RH said:

@Craigly1234

As you can see with my discussion with CodysGameRoom, there are no perfect answers.  I do not claim to be an expert but, honestly, if you start going down this rabbit hole, even a little, you'll have a tough time getting definitive answers.  I mean, you might find with good certainty that a specific variant was released in the US, but that doesn't mean that other regions didn't look the exact same and, heaven's no, there might even be a chance they took the same art from the US release and produced very-similar labels.  I can't say that for sure, but it's not impossible.

Man. Game gear is wild. Thanks to both of you for the tips with these! I feel much less stressed out about it now honestly just knowing specific variants were released in the US so I can try to match up with those.

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3 minutes ago, RH said:

there are no perfect answers

Totally agreed. I still doubt that CJ Elephant Fugitive was ever actually released in the United States and have never been shown definitive proof. I've never seen a copy for sale or sold from US soil. All recent eBay sales are from UK/France. The Sega Retro page for it shows two different box designs but neither of them actually indicate they were US released. They could both be box variants from the UK. the scans don't show any UPC barcode and I can't find anyone with a US box to show a barcode.

Still skeptical.

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Member · Posted
Just now, Craigly1234 said:

Man. Game gear is wild. Thanks to both of you for the tips with these! I feel much less stressed out about it now honestly just knowing specific variants were released in the US so I can try to match up with those.

@CodysGameRoom Can follow up with his own comments because he's much more of an expert on this than mean, but it has been my observation that those purple labels, generally, originated in the US.  I think for any game, if it's a purple label, it's probably a variant that was released in the US, but that copy might not have been sourced in the US.

Of course, there are other variants and some games that didn't have purple bars, but sticking with them where you can is probably a safe bet.

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Member · Posted
Just now, CodysGameRoom said:

Totally agreed. I still doubt that CJ Elephant Fugitive was ever actually released in the United States and have never been shown definitive proof. I've never seen a copy for sale or sold from US soil. All recent eBay sales are from UK/France. The Sega Retro page for it shows two different box designs but neither of them actually indicate they were US released. They could both be box variants from the UK. the scans don't show any UPC barcode and I can't find anyone with a US box to show a barcode.

Still skeptical.

When was that game released.  If it was in the US, certainly the box would need a Rated KA or Rated E logo.

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1 minute ago, RH said:

I think for any game, if it's a purple label, it's probably a variant that was released in the US, but that copy might not have been sourced in the US.

I agree with this 100%. 

And some US released games do not have the purple label at all. Which makes it more confusing lol

Edited by CodysGameRoom
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3 minutes ago, RH said:

When was that game released.  If it was in the US, certainly the box would need a Rated KA or Rated E logo.

https://segaretro.org/CJ_Elephant_Fugitive

Game was released in 1994, which put it in an iffy area for ESRB rating. Neither box has an ESRB rating. The first box clearly has the indications of the purple US color scheme. But was it actually ever sold here? Or created, packaged, but never left the UK? These are my questions.

Edited by CodysGameRoom
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1 minute ago, CodysGameRoom said:

https://segaretro.org/CJ_Elephant_Fugitive

Game was released in 1994, which put it in an iffy area for ESRB rating. Neither box has an ESRB rating. The first box clearly has the indications of the purple US color scheme. But was it actually ever sold here? Or created, packaged, but never left the UK? These are my questions.

They do have different product codes according to the box. EU is 16014 and US is 17014. I've held a CJ Elephant US box at MGC last year and ALMOST bought it (something I'm probably going to regret forever). But like all the Codemasters games, it's impossible to find any concrete info on release dates and such for the US releases. There was 1 other US Codemasters game but it was cancelled shortly before release. It was 100% completed and was sent out to review. it was called Dinobasher starring Big Nose. Apparently the reviews were so bad they cancelled it, or so the rumors say. I saw a review cart on ebay a few years back in a lot. I was sadly outbid at the last second. 

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Editorials Team · Posted
12 minutes ago, CodysGameRoom said:

Totally agreed. I still doubt that CJ Elephant Fugitive was ever actually released in the United States and have never been shown definitive proof. I've never seen a copy for sale or sold from US soil. All recent eBay sales are from UK/France. The Sega Retro page for it shows two different box designs but neither of them actually indicate they were US released. They could both be box variants from the UK. the scans don't show any UPC barcode and I can't find anyone with a US box to show a barcode.

Still skeptical.

@MovieTom are you SUUUURE CJ Elephant was released in the US?

Edit: haha you ninja'd me

Edited by Splain
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Member · Posted
1 minute ago, MovieTom said:

 

They do have different product codes according to the box. EU is 16014 and US is 17014. I've held a CJ Elephant US box at MGC last year and ALMOST bought it (something I'm probably going to regret forever). But like all the Codemasters games, it's impossible to find any concrete info on release dates and such for the US releases. There was 1 other US Codemasters game but it was cancelled shortly before release. It was 100% completed and was sent out to review. it was called Dinobasher starring Big Nose. Apparently the reviews were so bad they cancelled it, or so the rumors say. I saw a review cart on ebay a few years back in a lot. I was sadly outbid at the last second. 

How... how much did that lot go for?  How big was it.  I'm just curious.  If I saw a lot like that... well, let's just say I'd be apologizing to the wife later.

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1 minute ago, MovieTom said:

I've held a CJ Elephant US box at MGC last year

Do you recall if there was a US barcode on the box? I'm just curious. I don't doubt the box exists of course. My theory is that the game was completed, both versions made, but the us release never actually left the UK, and eventually got sold there. 

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3 minutes ago, RH said:

How... how much did that lot go for?  How big was it.  I'm just curious.  If I saw a lot like that... well, let's just say I'd be apologizing to the wife later.

A couple hundred I think? It was a lot that included a GG system and a couple of games including that and a no label mystery Codemasters game. The image of that lot is burned into my brain. LOL!

4 minutes ago, CodysGameRoom said:

Do you recall if there was a US barcode on the box? I'm just curious. I don't doubt the box exists of course. My theory is that the game was completed, both versions made, but the us release never actually left the UK, and eventually got sold there. 

Sorry, I can't recall. Your scenario is completely possible! I mean, they are the same exact innards, just a different sticker, box, and product code. I've never found a review of the game in the US so who's to say if it truly was released here? I still count it as part of the set because of the differences congruent with the other Codemasters releases. Game Gear is weird cause there are other cases of Sega releasing euro versions here (i.e. Columns first release). 

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3 minutes ago, MovieTom said:

I still count it as part of the set because of the differences congruent with the other Codemasters releases.

I can get on board with this. I still want that definitive proof somehow though. haha. There was an ad in a US magazine but, we all know how many games showed up in ads that never ended up released soooo. lol

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7 minutes ago, CodysGameRoom said:

I can get on board with this. I still want that definitive proof somehow though. haha. There was an ad in a US magazine but, we all know how many games showed up in ads that never ended up released soooo. lol

Now I want proof too! LOL. Your theory is so dang intriguing! 

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4 minutes ago, CodysGameRoom said:

WHELP! I did some digging. Check out this photo from the SMS Power forums, showing what looks like it'd be the US release box, with a UK price on it:

spacer.png

Cool! That definitely holds water to your theory! I wonder if they were going to release this at the same time as Dinobasher but CJ made it into production where Dinobasher didn't? They cancelled both but since CJ was already made, they sold it in the area that produced better sales for them: Europe. 

Also sorry @Craigly1234 for hijacking your thread! 

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1 hour ago, MovieTom said:

Cool! That definitely holds water to your theory! I wonder if they were going to release this at the same time as Dinobasher but CJ made it into production where Dinobasher didn't? They cancelled both but since CJ was already made, they sold it in the area that produced better sales for them: Europe. 

Also sorry @Craigly1234 for hijacking your thread! 

Don't be! Love learning about this stuff and theorizing unproven history with stuff like this! I just want the answer as well LOL but we may never know

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