I avoided buying any flash drives for a long time because when I get access to piracy on a console, the breadth of choices for what to play can sometimes be paralyzing to me. I'm not sure why I have this problem really, because most of my systems are modded. Once I realized that, I decided it was time to go ahead and buy some flash drives. There's Chinese clone cards and then there's the official ones. The clones are very cheap... the originals really aren't. There's a lot of vitriol online regarding the clones, but my suspicion was that they are comparable to the originals. So far, it seems that my suspicion was correct.
I invested in two clone cards; one of the Everdrive MD and another of the Super Everdrive. So far, I've received the Everdrive MD. I purchased the card from AliExpress (this is where all fake things come from) and it was shockingly delivered in 10 days. I paid $26.65, which is damn good for the value. I had bought quite a few of the cheap $3 pirate carts from AliExpress before and decided that with the clones getting cheaper and cheaper there was no reason to keep buying the pirate carts. In terms of options, I was far more interested in the Everdrive MD than the Super Everdrive. Mainly because this thing is basically a fucking swiss army knife of Sega gaming. This card will do a few things for you...
- Plays any Sega Genesis game you throw at it and supports saving
- Plays any 32X game you throw at it and supports saving (note that you need to actually have a 32X)
- Plays any Master System game you throw at it and supports saving
- Allows you to boot Sega CD BIOS files from different regions, bypassing region locks (again, Sega CD required)
So this card gives you some serious gaming options. I was particularly interested in Master System support as it is one of the few Sega systems that I don't own and I've always been somewhat hesitant to invest. It's uncommon and expensive.
Before I go much further, there's something I should clear up. A flash card is not emulation. Yes, it is loading a ROM but it's feeding the data to the Genesis the same way that an original cartridge would as well. I suppose it's emulating a mask ROM on a cartridge, but the game functions the same. Master System functionality is actually not emulation either. The Genesis has a Master System mode that it switches into. More on that, later.