Thanks for sharing that Harvey
To begin with Contra III.
Contra III (Super Probotector in Europe) was made by Konami. The ones who created Contra III left Konami short after to start their own gaming company called "Treasure". Treasure released several ace games on Sega Megadrive like, Gunstar Heroes, Dynamite Heddy and Alien Soldier for exemple. Gunstar Heroes was like Contra III on turbo. Konami released Contra Hardcorps for the Sega Megadrive console and used the sheer speed of the 68000 processor to practically outclass the SNES version in terms of graphics.
I was also a big fan of Contra III when it was released in Europe 1992.
Else i just loved the Sonic series on the Megadrive and Streets of Rage. Sonic II is still one of the best games ever made if you ask me. Then i enjoyed Nights, Sonic Jam, Fighters Megamix, Baku Baku and Guardian Heroes (made by treasure), kind of RPG fighting sidescroller that was a joy to play.
If you like puzzle games, don't forget to try Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo by Capcom. Play it on MAME. Then "Bust a Move" series by Taito has always been awesome lots of fun to play.
One underrated good game on Sega Megadrive was Ristar made by Sonic Team.
One of the best games ever made is Mercenary. When i first got it for my Atari 800 i was totally absorbed by this unique game for months. Then i bought it on Atari ST and later the follow up Damocles.
What makes these games unique is the total freedom to travel around in a 3D vector world. You can't die, you can't get any game over, you don't have do to any mission in the game, unless you want. Mercenary was the first game to give the impression of a solid 3D world when you walked around in the underworld by taking an elevator to explore the corridors and rooms.
Imagine this for the game Damocles (on the ST), you have a whole solid universe to travel around in. You can enter ANY house and examine everything. Just the moon Midas has 16.000.000 of numbered pyramids that you can visit.
How do you fit such enormous game in just around 360 Kb? Impressive.