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The Sega Genesis Game That Takes The Longest To Beat

The idea of a Sega Genesis game taking a long time to beat might seem funny in the age of modern classics like "Elden Ring" and "Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild," both of which take between 50 and hundreds of hours to complete depending on how seriously you take your collectibles. In contrast, Sega Genesis games clock in at an average of just under five hours, according to HowLongToBeat. While that sounds more like a nice afternoon session than months of grinding, the Genesis is not without its long hauls, especially if you're the kind of player who likes to tick every box before shelving a cartridge.


When this topic comes up on forums, players tend to point out "Phantasy Star 4" and "Landstalker" as being particularly lengthy, "Phantasy Star 4" for its JRPG elements (which tend to focus on the grind) and "Landstalker" for its difficulty. However, there is one Genesis game that is longer than both of these games put together.

The longest Sega Genesis game

The RPG franchise "Might and Magic" launched in 1986 and, in 1995, was spun off into "Heroes of Might and Magic," now known as "Might & Magic Heroes," itself a veteran franchise. Many years later, "Might & Magic Heroes" still enjoys a dedicated fanbase, with 11 of its games joining heavy hitters like "Assassin's Creed" and "Far Cry” on Ubisoft+, Ubisoft's subscription service.


Being an RPG, players would expect a "Might and Magic" game to be on the long side. However, "Might and Magic 2: Gates to Another World" was something of a special case. Clocking in at a massive (for the Genesis, at least) 55 hours to complete on average (per HowLongToBeat), "Might and Magic 2" leaves its competitors in the dust in terms of time investment, with "Phantasy Star 2" in second place at 33 hours. Even without completionism, which could drive the total up to 88 hours, the main story for this game alone takes 41 hours on average — about as long as the main story in "Death Stranding," to give a benchmark.

Even by RPG standards, 55 hours would have been a major commitment when most games on the same console could be completed in one or a handful of sittings. So what does "Might and Magic 2" have that makes it so easy for players to sink their time into it?


255: The magic number

The answer, while a bit of an anticlimax, is not a complete surprise: sheer numbers. Building on its predecessor, "Might and Magic 2" allowed you to control up to six player-generated characters at a time, which is time-consuming in itself for a game that features turn-based combat. Additionally, each of these characters could reach level 255, which would be considered a silly cap even today. Sticking with the number 255, the game featured an impressive 255 different kinds of monsters for the player to fight, with hit points ranging from 5 to 64,000. Moreover, a player could fight 255 of these monsters at once. Coupled with the stories, locations, and puzzles to discover, it's easy to see how this game can clock so many hours.


This may sound like a slog, but players think it's worth the investment, with one user recalling how much they loved the exploration and variety of monsters available. YouTuber Michael Snow even wonders if "Might and Magic 2" could be considered a lost classic.

If you have a platform that supports it, it's worth giving "Might and Magic 2" a try. You'll just have to free up a weekend. Or two.