@Snail: Rereading your question, I feel that went off track a bit. I do not know of any way that you could tell the difference between consoles that have been "restored" and ones that have simply never been used, but it's also not something I've heard of people doing before. In 30 years it is something I would worry about. Right now, it isn't.
On a side note, I just looked up how much an NES in the box runs on eBay. It has doubled in the last year. I'm thinking I really should have bought one when I had the chance >_>
@Snail: Ah, that's a tricky situation. The thing about the Mega Drive is that it is actually still manufactured...in Brazil. I happen to have a modern one, and it is pretty easy to tell the difference once you have it in your hands. The newer ones don't contain the original hardware, they actually emulate it. as a result, they use much smaller and lighter boards. The Mega Drive was never a really heavy machine, but the new ones are practically weightless. Same goes for the controllers. I would also note that in mine the plastics felt a bit cheaper, and of course it had a bunch of games built in. That's a pretty sure sign. Then there is the engrish and badly edited box art...basically, fake game consoles are really easy to spot. I do have some very good (looking) fake Dreamcast controllers, but they are the exception.
If you want to be absolutely certain that you are getting original hardware, buy the original Mega Drive (the big one with a volume knob). That said, I took a look on eBay and there were only one or two consoles listed as new that appear to be rereleases. Consider the country that the system is coming from and how "legit" the box really looks. Also, keep in mind that boxed game consoles are still not worth as much as most people think they are.
Ah, then you have come to the right place young grasshopper. Allow me to direct the beginning of your journey in the ways of retro game console ownership.
The NES is a great starting point. It is cheap, has a great selection of games, and also marks a point where a lot of familiar game design tropes first found a foothold. The SNES, on the other hand, has a game selection that is roughly on par with 15 dollar downloadable titles of today...if those games were made by today's master craftsmen. If you want maximum fun/price ratio, the SNES is the better option.
As far as actually buying one, look in the usual places. Those would be thrift stores, Kijiji, pawn shops and eBay...in that order. eBay is usually considerably more expensive than the other options, unless you are willing to buy a large lot.
The NES is tricky to buy, because they vary so wildly in reliability. The "72 pin" connector that you plug the game cartridge into degrades severely, especially if the owner put alot of force on the cartridged when inserting them. If you buy it from Kijiji, ask the seller to insert and run at least 2 different cartridges. It's ok if they have to jiggle the cartridge and reset the system once or twice to get things going, but if it takes more than 4 or 5 tries I would pass (or at least ask them to try another couple games). Also note that the video cables are just regular RCA cables, so if those are missing you can get them anywhere.
The SNES is infinitely more reliable, and hence much easier to buy. The only thing to note is that it is normal for them to be slightly or even severely off-colour, thanks to poor plastic mixing. You could hold out for a really nice once, but I wouldn't hold my breath. Oh, and remember: it has an eject button.
There are many more exciting details to discuss, so if you have any more questions about anything classic-game related fire away!
I'm kind of freaked out about Greenlight right now actually. I'm working on a small project that I'm planning on selling, and I have no idea how I could possibly get it through Greenlight. It isn't the sort of thing that propagates through video or screenshots, and I don't expect it to achieve wild success. I do however think that it would serve its audience very well and would do well over time through word of mouth. So what the heck am I supposed to do?
Oh man, doors. Freaking doors. Let me tell you about doors.
When I was working on freaking Horizontifreakingcality... doors were my number one nightmare. Mine were simple doors in that they had a hinge that opened one way, and they opened or closed when they collided with a sword. Simple right? Functionally, easy to make. Impossible to do in a non-buggy way.
I had 2 major problems.
1: Because GameMaker doesn't have physics, if the door collided with either player in the open state the player would get stuck. Basically, skinny objects that block the player are kinda bad in GM, because objects only check collisions once a frame and you could have moved any distance in that time. MOVING skinny objects are the worst, especially when it's an object that the player will always be right next to. You are guaranteed to have collision issues.
2: Holy crap was it work with in the editor. Image rotation didn't work for my implementation, so I used a 2 sprite animation. No problem right? AGAIN NO. Because of the stupid STUPID GM editor I had to guess at exactly where the whole thing should be placed and how to rotate it, then load up the game and manually open the door to make sure it was working right. Just terrible.
Keep up the good work.
(By the way, XCOM has doors with some of the properties that you mentioned)
Better sound chips would be nice. Now that I have my PC connected to my TV (and sound system) I don't use any of my 360's media streaming features simply because the audio is so muddy. Maybe I'm spoiled by my X-Fi, but surely we can do a BIT better.
Aside from that and the obvious things (power increase, better online integration) I don't think there is much that I want to see. I guarantee you they will come up with all sorts of new features, and I hope that something genuinely useful comes of it...but I don't expect much.