Happy 25th Birthday, Super Nintendo And Friends

Happy 25th Birthday, Super Nintendo And Friends

On November 21, 1990, Nintendo Japan released three amazing things — the first F-Zero, Super Mario World and a console to play them on. It was a very good day.

Releasing a new video game console with only two games to play is unheard of these days (instead we get two GOOD games and a bunch of crap), but Nintendo was setting the trends back in 1990, and it helped that one of the two games released is still considered one of the best of all time.

The fact that Nintendo’s original allotment of 300,000 units of the follow-up to the NES sold out within hours is likely largely due to Super Mario World. Still considered one of the greatest games ever made by many, the title brought us a plumber that looked sharper than ever and introduced another iconic Nintendo character in his dinosaur pal, Yoshi.

According to Steven Kent’s The Ultimate History of Video Games, the Wednesday launch of the console caused such a disturbance around shopping areas that the Japanese government asked that future game console releases take place on weekends to prevent weekday chaos.

But let’s not forget the console’s other launch game. Were it not for F-Zero and its Mode-7 raster rotation technique the Mario Kart franchise might have never gotten off the ground, and the world would be a horrible place without the occasional Falcon Punch. That we’ve not gotten a new game in the series since 2004 is a crime.

Happy 25th Birthday, Super Nintendo And Friends

The Super Nintendo will never die — to this day my original console is running and turning it on is always a good time. The 16-bit era was a sweet spot in gaming, more intricate and detailed than the primitive 8-bit days and better looking than the foggy, muddy and just plain ugly early 3D era. The Super Nintendo spearheaded that era, and it will always have a place in our hearts and entertainment centres.

Go on and share your favourite Super Nintendo stories in the comments.

Top image:”Super-Famicom-Console-Set” by Evan-Amos – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons.


  • This was the ‘oh shit they can do that with graphics???’ moment for me (and most of you). When we started it up and Super Mario World booted up… it was like a real cartoon came to life, it was that much of an improvement over the NES and Master System (and Megadrive *at the time*. The advent of the SNES really made the MD pull its socks up). Loved the SNES and always will 🙂

    • I can specifically remember looking at Donkey Kong Country screenshots in a Nintendo magazine and thinking “Oh man that looks amazing! I’m never gonna be lucky enough to play that game!” haha.

    • The advent of the SNES really made the MD pull its socks up

      Funny, I remember it being the other way around. Sonic on the Megadrive made Nintendo pull up their socks because they were still pushing the NES then.

      • Sonic was released 7 months after the snes was in japan and around the same time the next year for the snes debut in america, australia etc. Snes came out nov 1990 in japan and sonics release date was june/july 1991

        • OK, my mistake. Most of what I know is from the book Game Over, but it is mostly with an US flavour so that would explain how I got it wrong.

          • No biggie. It’s not even really Sonic and Mario, when you compare how ‘the mascot wars’ started among the two, they both started pushing their consoles harder to outdo each other, the MD hadn’t truly had a 16 bit competitor prior to the SNES so when it showed up and outdid it in nearly all areas, Sega really had to pull out the stops and started putting out some truly impressive stuff for the time.

  • I still remember the first time – the very first moment – that I set eyes on the SNES in action. I had escaped from school (year 8) to go to Myer in Melbourne CBD and see this thing running Super Mario World. It was a wonder. In my memory it was like seeing HD graphics for the first time after growing up with Atari/NES.

    Then a few years later I enjoyed reliving all the Mario madness up to that point with SUper Mario All Stars – now that was a great value cartridge.

    • I got Mario All stars bundle as well. That one cartridge was all I needed for like a year! Loved every game on there!

    • Exact same thing for me, but after seeing Mario World in Myer, we went to Daimaru and they had F-Zero…..my mind was completely blown.

  • So many memories. Zelda was the best game I played (replayed recently, still wonderful) but I’ll never forget letting my two uncles play street fighter 2 and laughter erupting when Blanka started biting his opponents head or mario kart and my friend trying to throw his snes out the window when he fell off rainbow road at 250cc for the umpteenth time.

  • I put a SNES on layby and went in each week to pay a little bit more off with my pocket money.
    The SNES was MY first console, my decision, my money. No regrets. Consequently, Lufia 2 and Breath of Fire 2 were my first introduction to the wonderful world of JRPGs.
    Ahhhh, Super Metroid, Donkey Kong Country, Lost Vikings. The golden era that cemented my Nintendo fandom for many, many years 🙂

  • When I first saw the SNES in action, it was the start of the mid year school holidays in 1992. Needless to say, I spent every day of the school holidays at Myer playing it. Then it was an agonising 6 month wait in order to save up enough money to buy one. Totally worth it in the end, though…

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