Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine is a puzzle video game in the Sonic the Hedgehog series developed by Compile and published by Sega for the Sega Game Gear and Master System. The Game Gear port was released in North America in November 1993, while the Master System port was released in Europe, Australia and Brazil in 1994. Like its Sega Genesis counterpart, the game is based on the Game Gear port of Sega's C-2 version of the Japanese puzzle game .
The game's story and gameplay are very similar to its Sega Genesis counterpart, but with the version-exclusive Puzzle Mode. Similarly, Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine has received numerous ports and re-releases like its Sega Genesis counterpart.
The gameplay of Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine is similar to its Sega Genesis counterpart in terms of controls and mechanics. The Scenario Mode, 1P VS. 2P Mode (also called "Gear to Gear Mode) and Excercise Mode are also included on this version without any major changes. Due to the technical limitations of the Master System and Game Gear however, the game differs slightly in terms aestetics, sound effects and other minor details.
16-bit and 8-bit differences
- The demo mode does not include a brief showcase of the game's rules and controls.
- The cutscenes for each opponent in the Scenario Mode are removed.
- Violet Beans are colored pink instead.
- In the Scenario Mode, Stage 1-8 have the traditional rocky tiles in the background (like on the Sega Genesis version). Stage 8-13 on the other hand, feature a more machinery-themed background. The Stage number has also been split and moved above both Bean boards.
- Difficulty settings are removed.
- The ending sequence is simplified and does not include the game's cast during the end credits (unlike in the Sega Genesis version).
Game Gear and Master System differences
- Slight visual changes are made. This includes wider menu backgrounds and extended cutscene images.
- The machinery-themed tiles featured in Stage 8-13 are replaced with the standard rock tiles.
- The credits screen in the Game Gear version has a blue background, while the Master System version has a black background.
|left/right||Move Beans horizontally.|
|down||Speed up Beans' descend.|
|/||Rotate Bean blocks.|
|START button||Pauses the game.|
|Stage 2||Frankly|| /|
|Stage 5||Davy Sprocket|
|Stage 10||Sir Ffuzzy-Logik|
|Stage 11||Dragon Breath|
|Stage 13||Dr. Robotnik|
Puzzle Mode ("Nazo Nazo Puyo Puyo" in) is a mode exclusive to this version of Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine. This mode consists of thirty challenges where the player must solve different puzzles using the game's core gameplay mechanics. When pausing a challenge, the player is given the option to quit the Puzzle Mode. Completing a challenge gives a password that lets the player continue from that point when restarting the game. Completing all thirty challenges makes the end credits roll.
List of lessons
Much like its 16-bit counterpart, Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine received positive reviews. Sega Magazine praised the Game Gear version for its presentation, playability and challenge, and concluding the game as being "brilliantly executed and great fun to play." GamePro described it as absorbing and complex, and pointed it out for having easy controls to use and learn.
For the game's Nintendo 3DS re-release, Neal Ronaghan of Nintendo World Report gave the Game Gear version an 8 out of 10, praising its addicting and fun puzzle gameplay, but also noted that it can be hard to play in its original resolution. For the game's multiplayer mode, Ron DelVillano of Nintendo Life stated that "sharing the frustration among pals can be fun, and there's little more satisfying than performing a crushing combo that subsequently dumps a bunch of beans into your friend's column, then laughing right in their face as you parade in victory." He criticized the game's graphics for being outdated, but also praised the gameplay for remaining fresh nearly 20 years after its initial release.
The Game Gear version of Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine has been included as an additional game in Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut (2003) which can be unlocked after collecting 130 Emblems and clearing ten missions. The Game Gear version of the game is also included in Sonic Mega Collection Plus (2004) and the Plug-and-Play game console called Freetron’s FunPlay 20-in-1, the latter of which was released in 2009 by Atgames.
In 2003, Sega of America released the Game Gear version of the game for mobile platforms under the Sega Mobile label. Also, in 2013, the Game Gear version was re-released on the Virtual Console for the Nintendo 3DS at the price of 300 points.
- Producers: Max Taylor, Moo Niitani
- Directors: Katsuhiro Hasegawa ("Hase"), M.Tsukamoto
- Planner: Kazu&Kozu
- Programmers: E.D.A., Wahaha, Nattoh
- Designers: 7LY Big King, Noburin, AAA↲, Takako Kawaguchi ("Choko"), U·D·K, Max Taylor, Brian Ransom, Dave Albert, Tokifuru Morita
- Sound programmers: Masayuki Nagao ("Nagao'N'Gee"), Masanori Hikichi ("Hiki"), Haruyo Oguro ("Lotty"), David Javelosa
- Speical thanks: Tsuka-P, 16Bit Staff
- ↑ Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine (Game Gear) United States instruction manual pg. 10.
- ↑ Mega Drive Review: Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine (January 1994). Retrieved on 7 September 2016.
- ↑ Dr. Robotnik*s Mean Bean Machine (January 1994). Retrieved on 7 September 2016.
- ↑ Ronaghan, Neal (18 June 2013). Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine. Nintendo World Report. Retrieved on 7 September 2016.
- ↑ DelVillano, Ron (18 January 2013). Review: Dr Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine (3DS eShop / Game Gear). Nintendolife. Retrieved on 7 September 2016.
- ↑ Four New Game Gear Titles for the Nintendo 3DS eShop. Sega Blog. Sega (13 June 2013). Archived from the original on 18 June 2013. Retrieved on 7 September 2016.
- Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine at official minisite of Nintendo 3DS re-release
- Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine at The GHZ
- Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine at MobyGames
- Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine at GameFAQs
- Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine (Game Gear) at SMS Power!
- Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine (Master System) at SMS Power!