30 Games Nintendo Should Put On The Mini SNES

30 Games Nintendo Should Put On The Mini SNES
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Look I’m not saying the Nintendo SNES is absolutely going to happen. I’m saying it should happen.

It should happen because it’s greatest console of all time, and the market for something like this clearly exists.

It should happen because I think about the games Nintendo could put on a device like this and I literally get giddy inside.

So I decided to make a list.

So here, for your consumption, is my list. Nod your head in agreement, get furiously angry and tweet me the games I missed. But mostly remember how incredible the SNES was and what an incredible time it was to play video games.

No particular order, but my favourite games are sorta at the top!

1. Legend of Zelda: A Link To The Past

It’s probably my favourite game ever made, so yeah. Should be on the list! It’s seamlessly designed, effortlessly charming, beautiful and (most importantly) utterly timeless.

2. Super Mario World

Still my favourite 2D Mario game. There’s something unique about it. The movement, the jumps, the level design. It feels more unhinged and inventive than other 2D Mario games. I love it.

3. Street Fighter II

Completely changed my life. Made me obsessed with video games. Most important fighting game ever made.

4. Super Metroid

I mean Jesus Christ Super Metroid is amazing. In terms of pure design it’s flawless. I’ll never tire of being in that universe.

5. Yoshi’s Island

The scale and ambition of the level design is just otherworldly. I dunno if any game has matched it since.

6. Donkey Kong Country

Perhaps not as good as the sequel (in hindsight) but at the time… this was the game.

7. Secret of Mana

The ending, the flying, the world. I doubt it has aged well (haven’t played in decades) but for pure nostalgia reasons this game makes my list.

8. Final Fantasy VI

It’s still the best Final Fantasy ever made, right?

9. Chrono Trigger

And this is probably still the best JRPG ever made. I replayed it on the DS a while back and was astonished at how well everything held up.

Also: that soundtrack.

10. Super Mario Kart

Still the best Mario Kart game ever made.

11. Mega Man X

Probably the best Mega Man game ever made.

I’m seeing a pattern here.

12. Zombies Ate My Neighbours

People tend to forget about this game, but it was one of the all-time best on the SNES. Incredibly inventive, funny and well put together.

13. Super Bomberman

With four players this remains masterful.

14. Unirally

Or Uniracers, or whatever it was called in your region. I love this game. I know there’s weird legal issues surrounding this one, I wish they’d get fixed so a sequel can get made.

15. Starfox

Was it Starwing or Starfox in Australia? Either way this game has not aged well, but it was such an important game at the time. Would feel weird if it didn’t make the list.

16. F-Zero

This was a launch title if I remember correctly? This game — and this series — still resonates. It’s been too long since we’ve had a sequel.

17. Super Tennis

Most people wouldn’t add this to their list, I suspect. But I have, because Super Tennis was awesome. The end.

18. Super Mario RPG

I always forget this game existed. It was very good.

19. Shadowrun

If it wasn’t for Way of the Exploding Fist, I’d argue that Shadowrun is the best game ever made in Australia.

20. International Superstar Soccer

It was the greatest football game ever made up until that point.

21. Super Ghouls N’ Ghosts

Dark Souls is a walk in the park compared to this shit. Jesus wept.

22. Contra III

Another minor classic people tend to forget about. I’d love to replay this again.

23. Super Mario All-Stars

I dithered about adding this, mainly because it meant putting Super Mario World in the list twice, but seriously… this package was incredible.

24. Super Castlevania IV

It’s Castlevania. One of the good ones. Probably not the best one, but it belongs on the list regardless.

25. EarthBound


26. Rock n’ Roll Racing

Hey, remember when Blizzard made a goddamn racing game for the SNES.

27. Pilotwings

An acquired taste, but I always loved Pilotwings.

28. Mortal Kombat II

The original Mortal Kombat was a bit weird on the SNES and this series was always more of a Mega Drive thing, but still. This was an instant classic.

29. Donkey Kong Country II: Diddy’s Kong Quest

Probably the best of the early Donkey Kong Country games,

30. NBA Jam

Come ahn, indulge me on this one. NBA Jam was immense.

I’m aware you probably have opinions on this. Please shove them down my throat in the comments below!





    It’s still the best Final Fantasy ever made, right?

    …..If you need to ask, you no longer deserve the right to play it.

    [Takes Mark’s copy of the cartridge away]

    • Did FF III even get a PAL release? I started with vii and played vi when it got the the psx treatment.

    • It’s the only one I didn’t own (my friend did though) so it might just be a ‘other side of the fence thing’ but I always thought it was by far the best.

    • Opinions are opinions, but you’re wrooooong.
      Weakest probably goes to DKC1, which after playing the other two feels unpolished and rough. Which is unfair, because it came out first, but they just improved the gameplay so much with the second one, and the third one also felt smooth to play.

      The third one however lacks *something* that I’ve never been able to put my finger on. Still a fun ride though.
      The only decent argument I’ve seen for why 2 and 3 aren’t perfect is that you don’t play as DK in either of them.

      But, opinions.

  • This is an incredible list…the SNES was truly gaming nirvana

    Add Earthworm Jim to the list and I’m sold

  • Seiken Densetsu 3 (Secret of Mana 2) is also worthy. It never had an official Western release….let’s change that!

    Secret of Evermore is a worthy footnote too. It lacked the Mana charm, but the music was still excellent.

    • Seiken Densetsu 3 (Secret of Mana 2) is also worthy. It never had an official Western release….let’s change that!


      [Does so but has the game released exclusively on Origin, the ending is DLC included only on first time purchases and cannot be gifted, and the story is broken into chapters with optional quests accessible via micro-transactions]

    • Secret of Evermore was boss even if it had an annoying alchemy/magic system. I loved the time travelling setting and how your dog would change depending on the time … good times 😉

  • Street Fighter 2 needs to be Super Street Fighter 2, The New Challengers. Other than that, I’d only suggest Stunt Race FX and Top Gear 3000.

  • How about a sd card and wifi for downloading off the Nintendo store, preferably with the entire snes library for sale. If emulators can do it, there’s no reason Nintendo cant.

  • Can any old farts clarify:

    Was Chrono Trigger ever released here?

    Were Final Fantasy games on the SNES ever released here?

    Was Super Mario All-Stars + World ever released here?

    Unirally is either tied up with Pixar or Rockstar and if Nintendo tries to do anything with the license they’ll find a horse’s head in their bed?

    • As far as I know…

      All Stars…not that I remember but World…Yes.

      Could be wrong. Im just a guy using his memory.

    • Yes to Chronotrigger
      Regarding Final Fantasy, they were all released including some of the off shoots (mystic quest for example) and then later, on playstation you could score things like final fantasy anthology which had 5/6 in it with added FMVs
      I don’t believe All-Stars + World was released in Australia, (European/American release), though the regular All-Stars was.

      • Cheers team.

        I must clarify, I was referring to each game’s SNES version. For some reason I thought Square wasn’t getting its flagship RPGs here until PSX.

        Same with Super Mario RPG, I don’t recall seeing that released here.

        • Chrono Trigger never got a PAL release. Only way to play it was with the Super Famicom cartridge and an adapter. Same goes for FFVI (was called Final Fantasy 3).

    • I am an old fart but I was a Sega guy, so I’ve cheated by using Wikipedia:

      “The game was never released in PAL territories before the Nintendo DS version.”

      Final Fantasy
      No PAL releases of NES/SNES games.
      This page gives a good release overview:

      Super Mario All-Stars + World
      “In December 1994, an alternate version of the compilation titled Super Mario All-Stars + Super Mario World was released in both North America and Europe both as a stand-alone game and as a pack-in game for the Super NES console.”

      No mention though if that version was also released in other PAL territories.

    • – You could only buy a NTSC copy of Chrono Trigger for the SNES in 1995. Square had a tendancy to make their RPGs strict 60Hz
      – See above. Final Fantasy 6 had issues working on PAL consoles and was never released officially. If you’re running the game on a PAL console, you’ll only get to see part of the ending. AFAIK the only SNES Final Fantasy to make it to PAL was Mystic Quest.
      – I have no idea on that last one.

  • Rock and Roll Racing. You sir are on the money. They could rerelease the SNES with just that on it as far as I am concerned.

    (Please don’t)

    • I scrolled through this list for the sole purpose of ensuring that it was represented. I second the motion for SNES with only that game.

    • Super R-Type is actually not very good, and suffers from endless slowdown on the SNES. R-Type III would be the one to go for.

      Also this list has too many Donkey Kong Country games and not enough Parodius games.

      • Wow i had completely forgotten about Parodius until I read your comment. I loved that game so much as a kid.

  • Probably pretty close to what I would have picked.

    Perhaps no Fzero, ISS, and Unirally and add in Terranigma, Legend of the Mystical Ninja and Baseball 2020. With apologies to Tecmo Super NBA.

    Oh and Tournament Edition for NBA Jam and Turbo for Street Fighter.

  • As someone who didn’t own a Nintendo console until Goldeneye I always found that NES games just didn’t hold up if you play them today.

    Going back to the SNES however is a completely different story and I would absolutely buy a mini SNES even though I never owned one back in the day.

  • Wait, what about Super International Cricket! Best cricket game of all time. There was a button to ‘Howzat’!

  • Shadowrun is one of my favourite games of all time. Still have my SNES cart in a box.

    This is a very good list, but I imagine licencing would be an issue with a few of these. wouldn’t it? Still, awesome to dream.

  • Good list, don’t think I’d disagree with any of it/can’t think of anything I’d add.

    Except maybe Bubsy.

  • Pretty solid list overall, I’d only replace a few of them:

    What I’d take out:

    Super Tennis – I don’t really care for tennis.
    Super Mario All Stars – Super Mario World is already on the list and the other games in this pack (excluding the lost levels) are already on the Classic NES, so it would be a bit silly to take up a slot with this.
    Super Bomberman – While this was fun, later games in the series were better (see below).
    Super Castlevania IV – Again, not the best choice for Castlevania game (see below).
    Pilotwings – Was never really my kind of thing.
    Unirally – This would be great to include but legal issues will probably mean it can’t be.

    What I’d add:

    Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong’s Double Trouble – Even though DKC3 was probably the weakest of the original trilogy, it’s still worth putting it in.
    Battletoads in Battlemaniacs – Nowhere near as frustratingly difficult as the original game on the NES but a large part of that is because it’s much better designed. And it’s still one of the hardest games the SNES had to offer.
    Super Bomberman 5 – This is the Bomberman game that should be included. Plenty of powerups and the game featured those weird kangaroo type of things that you could ride.
    Castlevania Dracula X – This is the Castlevania game that should make the cut.
    The Lost Vikings – I don’t care what game needs to get cut, but The Lost Vikings needs to be included. Heck throw the excellent The Lost Vikings 2 in there while you’re at it.
    Soul Blazer, Illusion of Time/Gaia, Terranigma – Find a way to include all three of these in some kind of super pack. Please.
    Killer Instinct needs to be in here somewhere. It’s a requirement.

    • Oh yeah, Mario World wasn’t actually part of All Stars. There apparently was a version that had both SMW and SMAS packaged in there together, but that was like how the NES had SMB and Duck Hunt in separate versions as well as a combo cart.

      • Yeah I had the version of All Stars *without* Mario World. But they did later on release an updated version that included Mario World.

        For the purposes of this theoretical Classic SNES though, if you’re including Mario World as a separate game then there’s no need to include the All Stars pack, even the original version without Mario World in it. This is because all of those other games (except The Lost Levels) are included in the Classic NES (granted they are the 8 bit versions, and not the updated 16 bit versions that were included in the All Stars pack) so would seem a bit of a waste to include the same games.

  • Demon’s Crest.

    There are maybe more that I’d want, but that one leaps to mind. Demon’s Crest.

    Oh, and Star Ocean.

    • Super Empire Strikes Back was much harder, but I’d argue it’s the better game. More to do, more options.

      But we’d really be splitting hairs on that. Super Star Wars is still a great choice!

      • Super Empire Strikes Back was much harder

        Really? This I gotta see….

        [Goes to SNES off frame. A laud scuffle ensues and I’m suddenly thrown into the next post code.]



        SNES: “Come back when you get some skills, n00b!!!!!!

      • You are right, Super Empire was waaaaay harder degree of difficulty than Super Star Wars. But both were amazing. Riding the Tauntaun and the flying around in the snow speeder were pretty great fun in Empire.

        Meanwhile, how about Super Return of the Jedi. A weird mix of easy levels and then ultra hard (like the speeder trip to Jabbas Palace). And Luke wore what seemed like an electric blue body suit with long blonde locks….not sure what that was about, but still fun as hell!


        • That was the only one I didn’t own. I rented it and finished it but after spending so many hours with the first 2, and being 14yrs old with really limited pocket money, decided to not buy.

          God the memories though! I remember getting super donkey kong country for xmas and playing it all day, piping the music through my dad’s stereo. That was the best!

    • You might already know, but Super Star Wars had a re-release on PS under the Stars Wars PS4 Mega Bundle.

      It also includes PS2 titles, Bounty Hunter, Racer Revenge and Jedi Starfighter, but I know nothing about those.

  • There is nothing on this list which doesn’t deserve to be on it.
    But by GOD there is so much missing… the tyranny of limits! Only 30? I need Act Raiser, Alien 3, Battletoads, Blackthorne, Demon’s Crest, Desert/Jungle/Urban Strike, E.V.O., Equinox, Front Mission, Harvest Moon, Jurassic Park, Kirby [everything], Lost Vikings, Metal Marines, Parodius, Pocky & Rocky, Populous, Probotector, Super Bomberman, Wild Guns, and so much more…

    • Bonus points for Demon’s Crest, Aliens, E.VO, Act Raiser, Harvest Moon and Kirby. Those are all really good.

      Blackthorne… hm. That might not actually still be good, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was good on PC.

      • Last I checked,.you can get Blackthorne for free from Blizzard if you’ve got an account. Still a great game!

      • Sweet tip, @welbot!
        I might check that out. Dat over-the-shoulder backwards shotgun firing… mmmmmm.

    • Wild guns! Hell yeah! He mentioned contra 3 though. It was sold as probotector here. They replaced the human sprites with robots which imo was much cooler.

  • Just put the entire back catalogue on the Switch… it would be like Nintendo hit “print money” button

  • No Super Star Wars? Or BUBSY!?!?!?
    Also, Mario All-Stars has SMW? Could’ve sworn mine doesn’t – I have Super Mario World but I’m sure it’s a seperate game like you had at the top of the list…

  • I went to the dark side (megadrive) for 16bit generation (and loved every second of it – especially SoR2 :P) – so i never really played any of these games. Think I’d be more interested in this over the mini NES. Don’t get me wrong, my NES nostalgia is strong but I was a dumb 6 yr old and i remember owning mostly licensed games (star wars, batman, tmnt… talespin) – in fact i think the only 1st party nintendo game i remember having was SMB3.

  • This should tell you all something.

    This industry could never return to this sort of state, where one overall platform holder is the arbiter of which games are going to be sold to the public and in what fashion.

    Publishers today enjoy the flipped role of being able to tell Sony/etc when and where their games will be ready and how it’s going to be designed. Hell, wasn’t the PS4 practically built with requests and ideas from third parties?

    Case in point, the Mega Drive Disney games.

    Virtual Console will never truly please everybody, simply because of the licensing nightmares prohibiting some of those greatest titles from being released on a machine that grants the one-time platform holder the biggest share of profits.

  • I’d want Cybernator, Bubsy, Killer Instinct, Mega Man & Bass, Super Smash TV, Vortex, Lufia 2, and Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3

  • Except knowing how Nintendo works Super Mario All Stars + Super Mario World would be counted as 5 games, not 1 🙁

  • Noone’s mentioned Axelay? I loved that game. I remember my jaw hitting the floor in 94 (hey that rhymes!) when I got to the first side scrolling level. Those gfx!

    And it still looks pretty nice today.

    I would cut out Castlevania IV. I own it, completed it many times and I don’t think it’s all that.

    I would add Super Turrican and Flashback.

    I would give anything to go back in time to that age. I was so innocent. No responsibilities.

    • Yeh man, it was a great time in my life,it was just SNES, friends, school. And we all wanted to grow up so fast. Smh!

      • Yep. All I wanted to do was look cool, smoke cigarettes, talk to girls and listen to music.

        I was so clueless. If I could go back in time I’d just give myself a big hug and tell myself to chill out and enjoy the moments.

  • Super International Cricket – probably still the greatest cricket game that was ever made. Obviously would only appeal to the Australian market.

    I also loved World League Basketball. Back in the days preceding official licensing and the big names didn’t matter when one possessed an imagination.

  • I mean I have a good emulator and can play all these on my tv with a 360 controller ( and I never do tbh ), but my god this would be a cracker of a console to get.
    Also Mark, you need to replace something with UN Squadron. I know it’s hard as balls but the non-linear structure and purchasing of weapons to suit your play style was ahead of its time in a way. Still recall hiring a SNES for the night during primary school and staying up all night to play it. Sigh. Simpler times.

  • Ugh. Couldn’t bring myself to finish Link to the Past or Secret of Mana. I’d replace both with Breath of Fire 2 and Lufia 2.

  • Seeing as though it’s the Super Nintendo I think Nintendo should super size the number of games.

    I would replace Secret of Mana with Secret of Evermore though.

    Don’t think anyone has mentioned Super Aleste (aka Space Megaforce) which is still my favourite vertical scroller.

  • Was Shadowrun *made* in Australia????

    I used to hire that every weekend from Video Ezy and pray someone hadnt hired it midweek and erased my save. Absolute phenomenal game. Great list.
    Zelda, Rock ‘n roll Racing, Shadowrun, Mario Kart and Int. Superstar Soccer are all timeless classics in my mind. The mini NES was good – a mini SNES would be un-freaking-believable.

  • I came here ready to re-write the list – but holy shit, this is PERFECT!
    This is pretty much exactly the bundle you would want to see.
    EXCEPT i would swap NBA Jam for NBA Jam TE. It was the superior version.

    Problem is that I think to fully make people happy you would need 50 games on this baby – more games!!! MOREEE!!!

  • I think Breath of Fire II needs to be added to this list, that game was an absolute classic. I sunk a lot of hours into it as a kid.

    Other than that I think that is a great list, my list would be pretty similar except I would swap out Unirally, Tennis and Shadowrun (never played it) with Illusion of Time, Secret of Evermore and (Urban/Jungle/Desert) Strike.

  • That’s not a bad list, though I would hope for the inclusion of Terranigma.
    I mean, Chrono Trigger was US/Japan only, and Terranigma (which is amazing by the way) was Europe/japan only…
    So… Why not?
    I mean, I’d love a translation of Seiken Densetsu 3 (which would if translated officially end up as Secret of Mana 2), but that’s unlikely, since there is no official English translation, and an entirely new translation for a device like this seems quite improbable.

  • Sorry for being pedantic but the picture you put under F-Zero it’s actually not from F-Zero, it must be from one of its sequels (I’m not sure which, since on the SNES I only played the first).

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