Nintendo is taking throwback Thursday to a new level. First, we got a hint of nostalgia with Pokémon Go, but gamers got a full dose of childhood when Nintendo released the NES Classic. The old-school replica came loaded with 30 built-in games of Nintendo’s legends, including Mario Pac-Man, Super Mario Bros (1, 2, and 3), and Mega Man 2 for our mouths to salivate in excitement.
The question now is: will Nintendo release a SNES Classic Edition? They could pioneer “old school” on an entirely new level.
With the raving success of Nintendo’s NES Classic, Nintendo would be foolish not to follow-up with a SNES. The NES classic sold over 195,000 copies in one month alone; according to BGR, that’s enough to compete with Wii U sales from April to August! Although they sold out like Hot Cakes, Nintendo plans to sell more.
So let's say the SNES Classic Edition was due for release, there are 20 Games that we NEED to see. From the staples like Zelda and Mario all the way to some of the more challenging titles like F-Zero and Doom.
In the article, we’ll be highlighting why these games NEED to make the SNES cut! It will disappoint even the casual SNES fan without these. Let us know which games you need to enjoy the SNES and if they made the list!
“FALCO…. PUNCH!” Captain Falcon made his debut in the 1990 racing hit F-Zero. As one of the most famous Super Smash Bros. characters, his game has to be featured on the console.
In an age where we’re used to respawns, health regeneration and unlimited lives, it’s easy to define F-Zero as a challenging game, especially if you’re not used to it. F-Zero is a game CONSISTENTLY on hard. It feels as if you’re in a race you’re bound to lose, but you have to pull through.
F-Zero came to the SNES in 1990 with a “no f****” mentality regarding difficulty. The races feature high-speed, hard to control obstacles and AIs who make you grit your teeth! We as gamers need a challenge, a game that will leave your head boggling.
19 Super Castlevania IV
If you're talking about difficulty, Super Castlevania IV is another strenuous title. This side-scrolling extravaganza puts players in control of the main character, Simon, through eleven not-so-easy levels. The player gets three lives and a health bar for each, but there’s a catch:
If you lose all your lives, it’s Game Over.
In Super Castlevania IV, there are no saves, no second shots, once you die that’s it. Not to mention the health bar is meager and doesn’t regenerate automatically. Instead, you find candy that enemies drop or beat the level.
The badass whip is what made this game. Simon came equipped with a whip that allowed players not only to attack, but to block projectiles and swing over dangerous obstacles and traps. Castlevania IV is a challenge, but once beaten it feels like a lifetime achievement.
18 Mortal Kombat
GET OVER HERE! Released in 1992, Mortal Kombat and MK II for the SNES were possibly some of the best fighting games of the time. With challenging computers, tons of move sets per character and out of this world combos, Mortal Kombat was, and always will be, one of the best fighting games.
It’s almost difficult to imagine the state of fighting games without Mortal Kombat. The MK series is well-known for introducing fatalities: unique finishing moves performed by the character after they've won.
Mortal Kombat has so many installments that it’s almost easy to forget it started (at home) on Nintendo. The recent Mortal Kombat X wasn’t featured on a Nintendo platform; none of them have been with Nintendo since Mortal Kombat 4.
17 Mortal Kombat II
Part two of the epic fighting game, Mortal Kombat II has to be on the SNES classic. This epic second installment included a dash of new fatalities, a hint of unlockable characters, and a plethora of new moves to make the perfect fighting game stew.
Released for both arcade and SNES, Mortal Kombat II had a harder difficulty than the original. MK II also introduces some fascinating fatalities, like Liu Kang’s signature Dragon. Not only that, but some of Mortal Kombat’s most famous characters debut in this game: Baraka, Kung Lao, Kitana and Mileena as well as a famous Mortal Kombat villain, Shao Kahn (who we all wanted to play as).
How could one not include the MK series on SNES Classic Edition?
16 Final Fantasy IV (Initially released as II in North America)
As one of the games that revolutionized role-playing, Final Fantasy is a definite must for the SNES.
The game is the fourth installment of the series, but was released as II in North America. Square were worried that North American gamers wouldn’t be adjusted to how complex the game was, so they turned the difficulty down. Due to that, for some time, there were various naming mix-ups until Final Fantasy VII was released, setting the correct name to Final Fantasy IV.
The game isn’t as mind-boggling as F-Zero, but it’s certainly not as easy as modern games. The turn-based RPG was one of the firsts of its kind and proved to be intricate. The North American version was actually retconned to fit an easier difficulty; bring on the challenge, Square!
This game brought turn-based and team RPG settings to popularity, so this legend has to make it to the SNES classic.
15 Earthworm Jim
Possibly a lost cause in the world of gaming, Earthworm Jim is a franchise that had a lot of potential but never made it passed the SNES. This badass earthworm deserved more than that, so he needs to go on the SNES Classic.
Earthworm Jim combined the elements of side-scrolling and run and gun beautifully. Players blasted enemies with their gun or whipped them with Jim’s rope-shaped head. At the end of every level was a boss trying to stay in the way.
The coolest qualities about Earthworm Jim were the levels and the bosses. Harnessing the creativity of developers, Earthworm Jim had a free-flowing hand drawn design that was unusual and which certainly stood out. The number of bosses kept you on your toes as each level ended with one.
14 Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island
The follow-up to Super Mario World, Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island, gives us the much-needed backstory for the Mario Brothers and Yoshi.
Luigi gets kidnapped and the player controls Yoshi (if you’ve played Super Mario World you know how awesome that is). The player must pass 48 levels while escorting Baby Mario to rescue his brother.
This game echoed the clean graphics that Super Mario World established while introducing some beautiful new features like Yoshi’s signature moves. This is the dino’s first time swallowing enemies—which sounds worse than it is—and spitting them out as eggs. You can also flutter jump and change into vehicles.
The captivating design still looks clean as a whistle and the levels are complicated yet endlessly entertaining.
13 Super Street Fighter II
Although mostly known for being an arcade game, a Street Fighter game is a MUST have in the collection. Street Fighter is the king of fighting games known well for its signature characters, combo system, and specialties.
Super Street Fighter II was originally an arcade game released in 1993, but with the rising popularity of home consoles, it saw a SNES release in ‘94. Immediately after, it was an instant hit with SNES players with its distinctive group battles and timed challenges.
Perhaps the coolest thing about Super Street Fighter II was how clean the animation was! The graphics were well ahead of many games SNES put out at the time and set the bar for other fighting games to come.
The game is still wildly popular, with the record holder, Chris Gleed, holding a record of 1,253,800 points!
There are many great things about Doom. Although this title isn't suitable for children, it must make it on the SNES Classic.
Doom, released in 1993, revolutionized gaming with its then-unfamiliar now-ubiquitous style: putting the player in a first person view. Doom popularized FPS and served as a birthplace for the history of FPS games. This was the game that kids lied to their parents about to get. “It’s just like Mario, mom!” Yeah, this is exactly like Mario.
The game puts players in the role of an unnamed Space Marine, pinned as Doomguy by players. As Doomguy you fight through hordes of demons spawned from hell. The demonic overtones mixed with massive violence gave the game some controversy. Nonetheless, most of us play FPS games now, so we’ll take Doom.
11 Dragon Quest VI
Most people recognize Dragon Quest games as being uncanny in appearance to the Dragon Ball franchise; Akira Toriyama drew everything, so it’s no surprise. Inspired by Western RPGs Wizardry and Ultima, the game is famous for its turn-based style and character class system.
Dragon Quest VI only made it to Japan in 1995 and came out on the Super Famicom (the Japanese name for SNES). According to Wired, Dragon Quest is an Asian cultural phenomenon, being hugely popular in Japanese gaming culture and switching consoles as it wishes.
The game had a stunning graphics update from its predecessor, Dragon Quest V, with improved character design and terrain. Although not broadly popular in the US, it would be a splendid time for Nintendo to integrate Japanese games with the SNES Classic.
10 Donkey Kong Country 2
Like Mario and Zelda, Donkey Kong is a beloved Nintendo icon. This sequel to Donkey Kong Country followed Diddy Kong and his girlfriend, Dixie, as they try to rescue Donkey Kong from King K. Rool.
Donkey Kong Country 2 had a beautiful new pirate theme and was a great game WITHOUT the title character, a tough accomplishment for most games. Combine that with incredible music, harder difficulty, and better graphics and you’ve got a sequel just as magnificent, maybe even more so, than its predecessor.
The best thing about the Donkey Kong Country series is its stunning graphics for the time. The game looked as if it could have appeared on the N64 with its rare, almost 3D-rendered appearance and feel.
9 Star Fox
Another well-known Smash Bros. character is Star Fox, a core character in Nintendo’s library. The first installment in the series, Star Fox, was known for its 3D graphics at the time of release, as the use of the Super FX graphics compressor helped the design.
Star Fox tells the story of Fox McCloud and his animal team of space pilots up against the antagonist Andross. This is the first time gamers saw anthropomorphic animals flying in space ships and blasting ray guns. Tack that on with the revolutionary graphics and you’ve got a hit.
The game had some silly large polygon faces. Slippy the frog, although a part of Fox’s team, was highly looked down upon. Past these oddities, though, this hit has to make it on the SNES Classic.
8 Mega Man X
Mega Man games feature cute graphics, fun side-scrolling action, and memorable bosses. The Mega Man series, however, released game after game and it made it increasingly overwhelming. It was time for a positive change; enter Mega Man X.
The Mega Man X series takes place 100 years after the first series and stars a new version of Mega Man: “X.” This creation of Dr. Light was given the nickname X because of the algebraic term of limitless possibilities.
The graphics got a much-needed makeover from previous Mega Man games. It featured a 16-bit, cleaner and more detailed look from its predecessor and the soundtrack was phenomenal for the time. Perhaps the best thing about Mega Man X is that it successfully revived a dying series.
7 Super Mario All-Stars
One of the best collections of all time, Super Mario All-Stars combined the first three Super Mario Bros. titles with Japan-only Super Mario Bros. The Secret Levels. That’s four games in one mix, what’s better than that?
Super Mario All-Stars gave the games much-needed graphic updates with notable differences in the NES and SNES versions. SNES gamers could now enjoy the classics from the NES on their then-new console.
Although most of the games in the collection made it on the NES Classic Edition, Super Mario All-Stars could fit on the SNES Classic as one title with four games. Not only would this save space, but it’d also put four better versions of NES titles on the console at the cost of one slot.
6 Chrono Trigger
Yet another RPG for the SNES, Chrono Trigger has to make the cut. The cutting edge set of drawings by Akira Toriyama, a cool sci-fi setting, visually remarkable graphics for the period and character selection creates the jaw-dropping Chrono Trigger, which is why it’s the top RPG of this list.
Universally regarded as one of the best video games of all time, Chrono Trigger is an epic adventure with characters from different eras in history. Crono, the main character, is from AD 1000 while Robo, a futuristic robot, is from AD 2300. Players often travel through time to aid them in their quest and find special items.
Not only did you get these astonishing features, but the game also introduced character choice, something that’s now common in mainstream RPGs. This needs to be on the SNES Classic.
5 Super Metroid
Another game in Nintendo’s core, Super Metroid was the game that truly put Samus on the map. This is another SNES game that commonly makes it on the best games of all time and even tops best SNES Games lists frequently.
The game was known for its exploratory universe, power-ups, and enhanced features. As Samus, the player explored levels and collected astonishing new weapons and power-ups. With the available inventory screen and Automap features, Metroid was definitely before its time.
Dorkly puts it wonderfully; the game is an alluring blend of “claustrophobia of Alien and badassness of Boba Fett.” The eerie soundtrack, vast world of Zebes and polished graphics sets this game as one of the best Nintendo has ever created. Not only that, but it’s incredibly difficult for a sidescroller.
4 Super Mario Kart
The first of a long-running series, Super Mario Kart is one of the most enjoyable racing game to come ever come along. It’s easier than F-Zero , sleek, still feels new, yet also challenging. Super Mario Kart was yet another creative delivery by Nintendo and set the stage for Kart-based racing game onward.
Mario Kart is another series that frequents top-selling, best of all time and best platform game lists. It introduced a refreshing kart-racing style of power up nabbing, kart bashing, and mushroom boosting qualities.
Not only that, but it also had an excellent choice of characters for its time. Players got to choose from eight different Mario Series characters, each with their own unique abilities and attributes. It's easy to say that Mario Kart should make it on the SNES Classic.
3 Donkey Kong Country
Father to Donkey Kong Country 2 was none other than its original, Donkey Kong Country. This game set the bar for the limited 3D capabilities for the time, looking as close to 3D as it could get. It is the second best selling SNES game behind Super Mario World.
The game centers on Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong who aim to retrieve stolen bananas from King K. Rool. As juvenile as that sounds this game isn’t easy and has 40 levels.
Who’s to say whether it was popularity or Nintendo’s marketing campaign that got Donkey Kong massive sales. Every subscriber to Nintendo Power received a 15-minute VHS tape entitled Donkey Kong Country: Exposed. The feature gave a tour of Nintendo’s headquarters and showed footage of Donkey Kong Country, impressing many.
2 Super Mario World
There’s no way the SNES Classic could miss Super Mario World. Highly regarded as the staple of the SNES, Super Mario World tops the gaming charts in many ways. The colorful graphics, beautiful soundtrack and semi-difficult gameplay made this game last the test of time.
In Super Mario World, the player controls Mario or Luigi (in a multiplayer scenario) on a quest to find and Bowser and save Dinosaur Land. This is the first appearance of Yoshi, the friendly green dinosaur who is now a famed character of the franchise. The seven worlds give more than enough game play for days.
Each time you beat a level on Super Mario World, you feel like a champ. The world-class soundtrack accompanies the game so well that it’s almost too good to be true. SNES may have to release SNES Classic themed Mario consoles due to how popular this game is.
1 The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
The Legend of Zelda is hands down one of the best game franchises ever created. Link (who is NOT Zelda) is another character in Nintendo’s Hall of Fame. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past is not only a fictional legend, but a legend to gamers as well. It’s hard to hit all the fantastic parameters this game managed to do since there are so many.
A Link to the Past introduced Link’s trademark items including both the master sword and the hook shot. Players also traveled across two worlds in an epic journey no one, but Link could complete. The puzzles, bosses, dungeons and gameplay are all their own pieces of fascination that make this game a timeless staple. Like Mario, a themed SNES Classic for Zelda would be ideal.