Retro Gaming is big business, and nobody knows this better than Nintendo. Both the NES Mini and SNES Mini sold incredibly well, creating increased interest and nostalgia for classic Nintendo games.
While the NES Mini has some great titles on it, the best classic games are included on the SNES Mini. The micro-console comes with 21 games installed and most, if not all, are great. Yet, there are a few standouts…
- Super Mario World
- Super Mario Kart
- The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the past
- Super Metroid
- Street Fighter II Turbo: Hyper Fighting
- Super Punch-Out!!
- Super Castlevania IV
- Donkey Kong Country
- Mega Man X
- Kirby Super Star
- Final Fantasy III
- Kirby’s Dream Course
- Star Fox
- Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island
- Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars
- Contra III The Alien Wars
- Secret of Mana
- Super Ghouls ‘n Ghosts
- Star Fox 2 (which was, until now, unreleased)
Here are our top three SNES classic games you should play right now.
Donkey Kong Country
Rare Limited, a British video game developer, is known for its platform games, and their first great masterpiece saw gamers introduced to Donkey Kong. Instead of being the villain of an arcade title starring Jumpman (Mario), Donkey Kong Country made Donkey Kong and his nephew Diddy the heroes.
When it was first unveiled, the gaming press thought Donkey Kong Country must be running on the, as yet unannounced, Nintendo 64. That’s how impressive the visuals were, alongside its many other quality features. In fact, Donkey Kong Country was so impressive that the main character branched out into all other types of entertainment – such as board games, arcades, mobile games and slot machines.
The gameplay was near flawless. It was brutally difficult while remaining fair, it introduced a platformer vastly different from Super Mario and Sonic the Hedgehog and these combined to put Rare on the map.
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
Just about every Legend of Zelda title is a classic, but A Link to the Past is something altogether more special. It introduced many of the mainstays of the Zelda franchise, including warping between dimensions/time, Master Sword, and many of the weapons and items.
In A Link to the Past, we are also introduced to the Light World and the Dark World. This is mirrored in future Zelda titles, most notably in Ocarina of Time.
In fact, Ocarina of Time can be considered a semi-remake, or spiritual remake, of A Link to the Past as it features many of the same story and gameplay as the SNES title.
Easily one of the best Action-RPGs ever made, A Link to the Past is a game that everyone has to play at least once.
Super Metroid may be the best game in the entire Metroid franchise.
Credited with helping to create the Metroidvania subgenre, Super Metroid is a masterclass in game design. The map, backtracking and combat all come together to form a flawless action adventure while featuring a narrative that’s surprisingly deep for a 16-bit title.
Following the events of the original Metroid, Super Metroid sees heroine Samus travelling to the planet Zebes to track down the Space Pirate Ridley who has stolen a Metroid larva.
While players are initially quite weak and underpowered, they become a force to be reckoned with once they recover equipment and items.
Not only that, the more weapons and items that are unlocked, the more doors and areas of the map can be accessed. It’s this kind of back and forth and backtracking nature of the gameplay that makes Super Metroid so enjoyable, even today.
While the SNES Mini Classic includes 21 great games, these are the three best of the best. If you’ve got one of the SNES Mini consoles, you should make sure you play these games. If you don’t, you still have a chance to buy one and play three of the greatest games ever made.