The Games: Winter Challenge is a sports video game developed by Canadian developer Mindspan and published by Accolade for MS-DOS compatible operating systems in 1991 and as Winter Challenge for the Sega Genesis in Europe in 1991 and the United States in 1992. The game portrays eight winter sports events that are competed in during the Winter Olympics. The game is unlicensed and not endorsed by the International Olympic Committee or similar organisations.
Winter Challenge (Sega Genesis)
Upon release, Winter Challenge received praise from several publications, with attention directed to the game's variety of events and visual presentation, with some criticism towards the inconsistency and difficulty of events. A sequel to the game based on the Summer Olympics, The Games: Summer Challenge, was released by Accolade in 1992.
Winter Challenge features two modes. In Tournament mode, the player can create a competitor and participate with up to ten players, with selectable names, countries and user pictures. Once the players are selected, the game shows an opening ceremony for the tournament and then takes the player to a tournament screen where they can see their icons for the events, as well as four buttons that shows their current standings, starts a new tournament, allows the entering of a password to return to an existing tournament, or return to the main menu. In this mode, computer-generated opponents have a skill level, from 'Amateur' to 'Professional' and 'World Class', affecting their speed and stamina in events. In Training mode, the player can participate in a single event as one player. Several events are simplified for the training mode to allow error, such as being able to miss flags in the giant slalom. Once completed, the player can play again, return to the main menu, or watch an instant replay of their performance.
Winter Challenge features eight events. Most events use the directional pad for steering, and buttons for performing certain functions like shooting, running, braking, or pushing off. Button mashing is necessary for some events, with others focused on timing and accuracy. The ski jump is scored by distance, the biathlon by time and shooting accuracy, and all other events are scored by time. A list of the events are provided below:
Players navigate turns in a downhill luge course in the fastest time possible, gaining speed by using the outside curves, whilst avoiding losing control on the course.
Downhill skiing: Players guide their skier between all the flagged gates in the fastest possible time to reach the end of a downhill course.
Cross-country skiing: Players navigate a long-distance course, and are required to manage an energy meter to maintain the optimum speed.
Bobsled: Players navigate a narrower course in a bobsled, similar to the luge event.
Speed skating: Players complete three laps of a circuit, starting to a gun and being required to press keys as quickly as possible to maintain speed.
Giant slalom: Players knock over as many flags as possible on a downhill course. The player relies on a course overview map to locate the flags. Players can 'tuck' their position to increase speed, at the cost of motion.
Biathlon: A mixture of the cross-country mode and shooting, players ski to five targets across a course and aim with their rifle. Inaccurate shots lead to a time penalty.
Ski jump: Players time a downhill jump, managing mid-air wind resistance to reach the greatest distance on the jump. Players need to align their landing to avoid wiping out.
Find digital download of this game on
This version of Winter Challenge was designed for Sega Genesis (known as Sega Mega Drive in Europe), which was the first ever 16-bit
video game console manufactured
by Sega in the years 1988 - 1997. It was a direct competitor to the SNES console and the successor of the well known 8-bit console Sega Master System.
The unit price of Genesis was approximately $ 190 and worldwide about 40 million units of this console were sold. More information about Sega Genesis
can be found here.
Recommended Game Controllers:
You can control this game easily by using the keyboard of your PC (see the table next to the game). However, for maximum gaming enjoyment, we strongly recommend using a USB gamepad that you simply plug into the USB port of your computer. If you do not have a gamepad, buy a suitable USB controller on Amazon or AliExpress or in some of your favorite online stores.
Available online emulators:
5 different online emulators are available for Winter Challenge. These emulators differ not only in the technology they use to emulate old games, but also in support of various game controllers, multiplayer mode, mobile phone touchscreen, emulation speed, absence or presence of embedded ads and in many other parameters. For
maximum gaming enjoyment, it's important to choose the right emulator, because on each PC and in different Internet browsers, the individual emulators behave differently. The basic
features of each emulator available for this game Winter Challenge are summarized in the following table:
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