We need to talk about boxes…

So far on my SEGA 32x adventure I have been immersing myself daily with the console, games and ways to buy them. It has been interesting to find out exactly which ones are easier to get in each region (36 Great Holes by Golf Magazine) and which ones are like unicorns (Darxide and Spiderman, Web of Fire). One thing that has surprised me is the big differences in the actual packaging that the games were supplied in.

The big soft hard box – confused? Keep reading…

As a retro games fan, with a slight bias towards SEGA personally (I was a Megadrive child) I have always been impressed by the boxes that SEGA used for supplying their games. Nintendo have cardboard boxes (Famicom, NES, Gameboy, Virtual Boy Super Famicom, SNES, Gameboy Colour, N64, Gameboy Advance) and SEGA tended to have plastic boxes. The SEGA boxes could take some beating and generally aged pretty well, apart from the annoyance of the plastic tab that was used to hang the boxes on display. Nintendo boxes however did not age well and got ripped/crushed/worn pretty easily – making them more difficult to obtain in good condition as they got older.

The Sega CD/32x hard big box

So, on to the 32x boxes – and there is a real variety in the types that were available. To begin with there is the USA box designs – if you read the previous post you will see my sealed Corpse Killer box is pretty big and also made of cardboard. This is a really strange move, after years of quality boxes – why did SEGA decide on using a cardboard box for the 32x? If anyone knows the answer to this, I would love to know! Then we have the 32x/SEGA CD USA games. These came in the same format boxes as the SEGA CD games, which basically means they are like a big chunky hard plastic CD case, but much longer and thicker than a CD case. Then you have some other games in the USA which sensibly used the hard cases commonly used by the Genesis games (including the annoying tab), so far I have seen games by Acclaim with this approach.

Classic Megadrive box from Acclaim for the 32x

The Japanese and EU games followed the unfortunate route of the cardboard box for all of their games (from what I have seen so far). The exceptions here are where people have made a “custom” case for the games, where they have taken a usual Genesis/Megadrive case and then added the print from the original box to give the games more robust packaging. 

A selection of soft boxes from different regions

I have decided where ever possible to get an original box, ideally in good condition – but sometimes you do not have so many options, so I will take what I can get within a set guideline. I will also be exploring what options I have for protecting them – the different sizes will need different solutions. 

Anyway, let’s keep collecting.

Keep playing!

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