A Simple Hack To Add More Games To Your Mini SNES

Expanding your library of games on the new Mini SNES is not only possible, it's trivially easy. Though it may not be entirely legal.

Image: Gizmodo

Not long after the NES Classic Edition came out, a Russian coder named Cluster built a tool called Hakchi to cram more games into the little emulation box. Given that the Mini SNES has most of the same off-the-shelf parts as its predecessor, it was only a matter of time before an SNES-friendly version came along.

The kinks have been ironed out of the early builds that began circulating last week. Hakchi 2 is here, and it's unbelievably simple to use.

After downloading the (Windows-only) application and following the detailed instructions, Hakchi 2 will flash the kernel of your mini console. Yes, there's a chance this could brick your system, but its a slim one, and once Hakchi works its magic, installing new games takes all of two clicks.

Like its previous iteration, the tool makes adding box art, publisher information, and other metadata a cinch. (As you might have noticed above, what's used as box art is very much up to your own discretion.)

The missing ingredients not included with Hakchi are the games themselves -- easily downloaded if you know where to look. But game ROMs occupy a fussy grey area, legally speaking.

In some circles downloading a digital copy is thought to be kosher if you own the game in some other form (the original cartridge, for example). Nintendo, however, is particularly inflexible in its stance against ROM use. In that regard, load up an Mini SNES at your own risk.

For the sake of argument, lets say you have an extensive library of SNES games: the Mini SNES has 256MB of onboard storage. With most game ROMs clocking in around 2MB each, it won't fit all 700+ games made for the console, but there's more than enough room to add the fan favourites missing from Nintendo's baked-in roster.

In case you're wondering, Hakchi can add games from other consoles -- in that they will display in the menu -- but the emulator in the Mini SNES won't know what to do with them and kick you back to the menu almost immediately.

What games would you add to the Mini SNES if you were, hypothetically, going to use a piece of software to semi-legally expand the library on it? Tell us in the comments. We aren't the police.


Comments

    Yeah, I modded mine, best thing I ever did and having the ability to create a custom control to go back to the menu screen without getting up and pressing the reset button. That alone was worth it.

      Down+select has made the rewind feature actually useable!

        100% Seems stupid they did not do that in the first place. :P

    Did mine on the weekend, i added IGN's top 100 SNES titles to it, as well as a few personal favourites (PLOK, Super mario all stars, Bubsy, Power Rangers).
    Also it plays other systems fine, not sure why the article says it doesn't - you just need to add RetroArch to it when installing HackChii - I popped a few NES and GameBoy titles on there such as Pokemon Yellow and the original Zelda.

      Hey man can you tell me where you got the ROMS from I can’t seem too find them!? For the games ?

    But game ROMs occupy a fussy grey area, legally speaking. In some circles downloading a digital copy is thought to be kosher if you own the game in some other form (the original cartridge, for example).

    There isn't really any grey area. Game roms you have downloaded, regardless of whether you own the original cartridge, are illegal. Some laws allow you to make one backup copy of a piece of software, but this needs to be a copy of your own personal license - you're not supposed to download a copy made by someone else and you definitely aren't supposed to give your copy away or put it on the internet for other people to download. Remember when you buy any piece of software, you aren't buying the software itself, you're buying a license to use it and you agree to the EULA (end user license agreement) by using it.

    Considering the floppy disk devices themselves that are used to create the roms in the first place are also considered mostly illegal, like modchips (with Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft all successfully filing lawsuits against the makers of those devices resulting in the companies dissolving and products being seized by customs), it really is pretty black-and-white - roms are illegal. No point in sugar coating it. The only exception to this is when the companies that own the games freely make them available.

    What games would you add to the SNES Classic if you were, hypothetically, going to use a piece of software to semi-legally expand the library on it?

    Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest
    Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble
    Chrono Trigger
    Seiken Densetsu 3 (official English translation)
    Illusion of Time/Gaia
    Terranigma
    Killer Instinct
    The Lost Vikings
    The Lost Vikings II
    Mortal Kombat II
    Batman Returns
    Blackthorne
    PLOK
    Battletoads in Battlemaniacs
    Castlevania Dracula X
    Rock n Roll Racing
    Stunt Race FX
    Unirally
    Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time

      It's illegal, then why does nintendo use Roms/Emulators from the net? It was found looking through the code of their roms/emulators they have the same line of code as the "illegal" versions online made by a specific person who cracked them.

        Yes, they did get sprung for that, although only once to my recollection (using a rom of Super Mario Bros.)

        However, as Nintendo are actually the legal owners of the software, I'm unsure if that grants them special exemptions.

          Something that is illegal but never enforced, is for all practical purposes legal. No one cares enjoy copying your roms and worry about more important things like government corruption and the rich hoarding all the money for themselves.

    Tried it last night played super international cricket one of my favs from the nineties be adding a few more tonight doom, adventure island ,dkc2 and 3 .aladdin

    What are the chances of it bricking my system i really don.t want to have wasted my money if i try to do this and fail.

    Super Swiv

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