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Unveiling My Neo-Geo Collection: A Lifetime of Fandom.

Updated: Jun 3

Neo-Geo MVS marquee

In 1990, Japanese arcade game manufacturer SNK rocked the industry with the release of its Neo-Geo MVS (Multi-Video System). Co-developed with fellow gaming company ADK, the Neo-Geo allowed arcade operators to install multiple, freely-selectable game cartridges in one cabinet.

Neo-Geo MVS ad
Not pictured is the mighty six-slot MVS.

A Neo-Geo home system was introduced shortly afterward. This consolized Neo would house one game at a time, but it shared the same processing hardware of its arcade big brother. The sleek, black box would be dubbed the Neo-Geo Advanced Entertainment System, and it left contenders' specs in the digital dust. The system would also come with an intimidating price point of $649.99 for two controllers and a game. Each cartridge thereafter was $200. In 1991. As seen in the ad below, SNK never said the Neo-Geo would be cheap!

This is one of the Neo's tamer ads.

In 1994, the Neo-Geo CD was brought to market to mitigate the cost of bringing the arcade home. Games released on the compact disc format were considerably cheaper than the same titles on hulking, chip-filled cartridges. While the Neo-Geo CD served a niche within a niche, it received a tepid reception due to its load times. The Neo-Geo CDZ, released only in Japan in 1995, dispensed with much of the waiting. SNK backed the Neo-Geo CD until 1999.

The years 1998 and 1999 would see the release of SNK's handheld systems, the NeoGeo Pocket and NeoGeo Pocket color, respectively. The NGPC was backwards compatible and would be supported until 2001. The NeoGeo Pocket Color would be SNK's console swan song.

NeoGeo Pocket Color ad

The Neo-Geo MVS and home systems had official support until 2004, even surviving SNK's 2001 bankruptcy. (They rebounded.)

The trusty Neo is now a homebrew golden child, with awesome third-party games like NGDEV's 2014 side-scrolling space shooter Razion, and Bitmap Bureau's 2021 multi-directional, alien-blasting Xeno Crisis.

I've been a huge fan of the Neo-Geo since the early '90s, when I used to play the six-slot MVS at my childhood Time-Out. I've been actively collecting for the system family since 1999. This is the first time I've shown the world my collection of Neo-Geo games and systems. It truly is the passion of decades.

We'll start this party with my Neo-Geo MVS games and cabinets. You'll then get an exclusive look at my Neo-Geo CD frontloader system and all my Neo-Geo CD games.

Then comes the crown jewel of the Neo-Geo lineup. Yep, I'm talking about the home cartridge system, commonly known as the AES. But I don't call it that out loud, as I find it difficult to articulate. True story! Saying "AES" reminds me of this bit from Animaniacs:

We'll cap things off with my NeoGeo Pocket and NeoGeo Pocket Color collection. The NeoGeo Pocket Color was eons better than the Game Boy Color ever thought of being. Come at me, Nintendo fanboys! (If you're into handheld games, you might like our writeup on Tiger LCD units.)

Throughout the presentation, I'll go into detail about my Neo-Geo stuff, and why it's special to me. I hope this video will be more fun for you than watching a "name the games I own" quickie.

Here's my full Neo-Geo collection thus far: In truth, collecting for the Neo is a lifelong journey. Enjoy the video!

Neo-Geo freaks will want to check out Retro Injection's review of Fatal Fury: The Motion Picture. In that article, I feature my Fatal Fury anime VHS tapes. I also do my best at a Terry Bogard cosplay; I should probably hit the gym before attempting it again. And here's a review of Windjammers, a Data East gem that's one of the Neo's best competitive titles.


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