The Sega Nomad was a portable, handheld Sega Mega Drive, manufactured by Sega. It's full name is the 'Sega Genesis Nomad'. The console played the Sega Genesis / Mega Drive cartridges, and it would play every Genesis / Mega Drive game, apart from games that used lightguns. There was another handheld Genesis / Mega Drive console released by Sega, that of the Mega Jet. The Nomad was basically a Mega Jet with a different casing and a color backlit screen. The Sega Nomad was never released over in PAL regions and Australia, but as it will play every Mega Drive / Genesis game, it can be purchased in these regions and still play games. The Nomad's codename was 'Project Venus', after Sega's planet enthusiasm. The handheld is very large.
Due to the rising popularity of the Sega Mega Drive / Genesis all over the world, with consoles selling in the millions, the general public wanted to see a portable, on-the-go handheld that would play these games. So Sega of America released the Nomad to the public, at an RRP of $180. It didn't do particularly well, but enjoyed a moderate success. The console was the newer variant of the Japanese Mega Jet, except the Nomad had a screen, battery and didn't require an AC adapter.
The Nomad has 3.25 inch screen, requires six AA batteries to power it, power usually only lasted for around six hours (something that gained it negative critiscism), and it also had an AV Out port, allowing for use on a large TV acreen. The handheld is very, very large in size, much larger than the Turbo Express and GameGear. It had a controller port, with the same shape and amount of pins as a Sega Mega Drive / Genesis controller port, allowing for a control pad to be connected for two player games. The console had a large d-pad, and six oval-shaped buttons. It had a headphone jack and an AC adapter port.
The Nomad had a lot of issues, which stopped it from doing well in the market. The size of the machine was bulky, much bigger than that of the rival system, the Nintendo Game Boy. The system also took a lot of batteries, and wore them out in a very short time. The handheld could not work with the Mega Drive / Genesis' add ons (i.e. the Sega 32X, Sega CD / Mega CD, and the Master System Power Base Converter. The console was able to function with them, but due to the shape of the console's cartridge slot, third party adapters or modifying the slot was needed in order to use them.