I don’t even remember all the games that were released on the NES Classic Edition (or NES Mini, which is what I’ll keep calling it and the SNES version from now on). I had no interest in it. I have absolutely no interest in the SNES Mini either and don’t understand why anyone wants these things, but since a lot of people do I thought I’d have some fun and try my hand at guessing what games Nintendo might include with its release.
The obvious choices:
I mean, let’s be honest. The SNES didn’t have what you could call “great” games. There were some good ones. Not many, but some. Not sure there are any you could call a sure bet though, so let’s move on.
The less obvious choices because the SNES didn’t have a lot of good games
1 – Body Harvest – Yes, it was originally released on the Atari 2600 (a version that I’ve already reviewed in this series), but a lot of people forget that DVDA Design, which would go on to become Activision, did eventually port it to the SNES with slightly enhanced graphics. Sure, it looked like a Super Cassette Vision game at best, but it added a multiplayer mode that was a lot of fun.
2 – Super Scope 6 – If you know Nintendo, you know they love peripherals, so it only makes sense they’d include this collection of lightgun games they developped themselves. I expect they’ll allow you to use an app on your phone to replace the Super Scope. Bullets will be purchasable through microtransactions. None of the 6 games here are any good of course, but if Nintendo wasn’t able to get their fans to pay money for awful games, they’d’ve gone out of business a long time ago.
3 – Mortal Kombat – Ok, yes, MK, but like the Genesis version, obviously, with the blood and stuff. All you need to do is change a few colours.
4 – Sonic the Hedgehog 2 – What? Why not? Sonic is on Nintendo consoles now, right? And this game was made for a 16-bit system, which the SNES is, so all that prevented it from working on the SNES back in the day was the shape of the cartridge. It’s the only reason why Nintendo made the SNES and its cartridges ugly grey rectangles. It was nothing more than old school DRM.
5 – Soul Blazer – I just really liked this game as a kid and never see anyone talking about it.
6 – Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island – These kinds of things, like the NES Mini, always have a couple terrible games that no one in their right minds ever liked. So, just as the NES Mini had Excitebike and Punch-Out!!, I think the SNES Mini will have Yoshi’s Island, one of the worst games ever made.
7 – The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild – Since Nintendo has already sold more BotW copies for the Switch than they’ve sold Switch consoles, I figure they’ll include it here in the hopes it’ll help with sales. The game won’t work, of course, because the SNES was a 4th gen console and BotW is a 6th gen game. That doesn’t matter though. Nintendo fans will buy it anyway.
8 – Mario Bros – Nintendo is required by law to include this game on every console it sells despite the fact that it was a bad game even when it was originally released.
9 – Ms. Pac-Man – Sure, based on the graphics this was obviously a launch title, not something released 4 or 5 years later, but with the NES Mini, Nintendo clearly showed they intend to include mediocre games on these things based solely on the fact that they were launch titles (looking at you, Ice Climber).
10 – Mario is Missing – It is a Nintendo tradition to reserve only its worst and most uninteresting games for Luigi, its worst and most uninteresting character, and this is the game that started it. I think it’s great that Luigi didn’t even deserve to have the standard jumping, going down a pipe, etc. sound effects. Luigi is such a piece of shit.
The even less obvious choices because the SNES really didn’t have a lot of good games:
11 – Shaq-Fu – I’ve never played it, but it seems famous for some reason. If I remember correctly, from what I’ve heard, Shaq doesn’t speak in the game, and Shaq is always best when he’s not being heard.
12 – The Great Waldo Search – Nintendo likes to position itself as a family-friendly company, and what better way to show this than by including some family-friendly games on the SNES Mini? I’ve never played the game, but I imagine it’s as fun as the books with all kinds of beautiful, object-filled places where you need to not only find Waldo, but also tonnes of secret items and pop culture references. I also imagine it has a great soundtrack and sound effects. Certainly it doesn’t have some bullshit nonsense like flying around on a magic carpet to grab a bunch of inexplicably floating bones. It probably had about, oh, I don’t know, a minimum of 30 levels, too.
13 – Rap Jam: Volume One – There needed to be a sports game or two and basketball is a popular sport for some reason, so why not Rap Jam: Volume One? It is clearly superior to NBA Jam. Can you play as Coolio, Queen Latifah, or Warren G. (fuck you, Nate Dogg) in NBA Jam? Or how about Public Enemy and House of Pain, both of which are totally one person? Didn’t think so. Plus, the game gets rid of all those boring rules like fouls and replaces it with the ability to straight up punch people with impunity. There’s even something like a story mode.
14 – Salamander: Gradius: Life Force: Nemesis 7: The Confusing Adventures of Vic Viper 4 – I guess this thing needs some kind of scrolling shooter. SGLFM 7: TCAVV 4 is actually the 42nd game in the Gradius series and is pretty much the exact same game as all the others, but this time there’s a new weapon and the graphics are different a little.
16 – Super Bonk – It was really tough to find a good platformer for this list, since Nintendo doesn’t seem to be very good at making them. Super Bonk is probably the best one for the SNES, along with Wayne’s World, but since Wayne’s World was made by Gray Matter Inc. and published by THQ, both of which totally no longer exist, I chose to not include it. Plus, since Hudson, which owned Bonk, was bought by Konami, we can pretty much by sure Konami will take care of their fans and allow Nintendo to include Super Bonk. Plus, this is the best Bonk game by far.
17 – Super Mario Kart – Sure, every single other Mario Kart game was much better and even Atari’s Pole Position for the 2600 had better graphics, but you can’t deny that this game had Wario. Still, the only thing super about the game was how terrible the music was. Nintendo will include it anyway.
18 – Pokémon Yellow Version – For a long time, I couldn’t figure out why they called it “Yellow Version,” but as my friends’ SNESs got older, they started getting discoloured and it was obvious. What never became obvious was why people lied all the time about loving any of the games in the series or even the anime. The entire concept clearly rips off a much earlier MSX game called 愚かな：退屈で無意味な収集 (Orokana: Taikutsu de muimina shūshū). Pokémon is a mediocre RPG, but it’s one of the two best released for the SNES, so it might be on the SNES Mini.
19 – Theodore Rex – In an alternate futuristic society where humans and anthropomorphic dinosaurs co-exist, a tough police detective played by Whoopi Goldberg is paired with a T-Rex named Theodore Rex to find the killer of dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals leading them to a ruthless billionaire bent on killing off mankind by creating a new ice age. It’s an amazing premise for an amazing game. Plus, the Ice Age movie series is actually the history of the timeline where Whoopi and Theodore don’t succeed in saving the world.
20 – Super Mario Bros.: The Movie – Nintendo is the Apple of the gaming world, always being at the forefront of trends by ripping off stuff someone else already did. With SMB: The Movie, Nintendo gives their mascot a gritty reboot and pretends they came up with the idea even though Sega had released Shadow the Hedgehog to critical acclaim the year before. Still, this wasn’t a bad Mario game. A lot of people were annoyed the game didn’t follow the movie, but personally, I enjoyed running around as Mario, kneecapping goombas, smoking crack for powerups, and especially exploring the feces-filled sewers. Nice to see SMB 2’s Wart return as the final boss, though I’m not sure they needed to have him swear so much.
22 – Battletoads & Dragon Warrior – I will admit to being jealous that all the Nintendo kids got to play this while Sega kids like me would have to wait until it was released on a compilation disc for the Sega CD a couple years later (along with Tetriscube and the FMV Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot game). What a neat idea to put Zitz, Rash, and Pimple in a medieval setting for an RPG with random battles that feature beat ’em up style fights with slimes, drakees, wyverns, etc. Unfortunately, it is only good during the first two chapters before it turns into an utterly unplayable mess where you basically need to memorize every single aspect of the rest of the game to have any chance of beating it. Who the hell thought it was a good idea to limit continues to three in an RPG?
The “hell, I guess I need to pick 10 more games because I need 30 which will be next to impossible because this is the SNES” section.
None of these are very good game, but I can’t imagine the SNES Mini will have fewer than 30 games. Don’t be surprised if none of them actually make it on the finished product because we’re really scraping the bottom of the barrel here.
23 – Chrono Trigger – Have you ever wished you could play an action RPG that was tedious, had terrible controls, AND had a poor combat system? Anyway, the music is alright and the game is kinda pretty, but wow, what an awful story. Who played this and honestly cared about any of the characters? What kind of name is Dyluck? I always called him Diduck, after the NHL defenseman, Gerald Diduck. And seriously? The bad guy is named Thanatos? Why not just call him Death or, better yet, Bad Guy? Being able to control three different characters with different skills was interesting until I got one of them lost in a cave somehow and never saw them again. Yeah, that was a fun thing to have happen 2/3 of the way through the game. Chrono Cross was way better. Regardless of all that, it could get included. There are many better games you could play, just not on the SNES.
24 – Ninja Gaiden Trilogy – Since only the worst NES Ninja Gaiden game was on the NES Mini, I figured the maybe the vastly superior Ninja Gaiden II and the also great Ninja Gaiden III could finally get some love. All three games are great, but the 2nd is the best and I will fight you over this. Like, with fists and stuff.
25 – Tetris?
26 – Secret of Mana – A game with time travel where you get to go to some of the most boring and clichèd times and places? Oh boy! The character names are among the worst I’ve ever seen. Crono? Marle? Frog? Magus? Robbo? Lucca? Aerith? Who came up with this shit, a middle school kid? I did enjoy watching everything get nuked. If only they’d’ve nuked the game instead.
27 – NHL ’95 – It doesn’t matter which hockey game I picked, the Genesis version was always going to be better, but I figured I needed another sports game and multi-player game. NHL ’94 or ’96 would also be acceptable. Still better on the Genesis.
29 – Donkey Kong Country 5: Grabby Kong’s Scandal – Everyone remembers this game, right? It’s basically the same as the first 4 games with some minor improvements, but this time we get to play as Grabby Kong, the politician in the family. It was nice to play something that wasn’t just “entertainment.” This game had things to say about society.
30 – Super Mario World – Admittedly, it was a major step back after the nearly perfect SMB 3. It’s probably the worst Mario platformer since Mario Bros. The original SMB was groundbreaking. SMB 2, my fav, is so beautiful and bizarre. SMW brought next to nothing new or interesting. Yoshi is for cheaters. Flying is for cheaters. This is a game for babies and babies are useless.
Well, there you have it: the 30 games I think will be on the SNES Mini. I know there aren’t 30 games because if you were observant you would’ve noticed that I skipped 15, 21, and 28, but with Super Scope 6 and Ninja Gaiden Trilogy, you could argue there are really 34 games. Sure, you could also argue a bunch of these games never got released for the SNES and some don’t even exist. You could argue lots of things, but who’s to say who’s right? I guess we’ll never know. Oh, and for the Kirby fans: someone needs to make a good Kirby game for it to get included on one of these things.