By Chris Zuver, A and E Editor
Back in the early 90’s, the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) was the answer to Sega’s Genesis. It took what the original Nintendo (NES) had accomplished and doubled down with 16-bit graphics, higher quality music/sound, and superior processing power.
Now, those who do not have access to virtual consoles or an actual SNES, will have a chance to experience some of the classic games that came with the old console. Starting September 29, the SNES Classic will be available in stores for $79.99.
The console will be smaller than the original SNES, of course, and will feature an HDMI port and two SNES controllers. If you have an old SNES controller lying around, however, those will be compatible as well.
The SNES Classic will come pre-loaded with 21 games, and while it cannot play any old cartridges you may have lying around, the console includes classics like Super Mario World, F-Zero, Super Metroid, Secret of Mana, Street Fighter II, Earth Bound, and the previously unreleased Star Fox II.
Now, unless you already own most or all of these games, this is a great deal, especially if you have never owned a SNES. Many of these games that come loaded with the console are worth more today than the console itself. While this fact does not make the SNES Classic worth more than those costly individual games, many titles included in the Classic, such as Final Fantasy III are very difficult to find today, or, in the case of Star Fox II, legally impossible to get ahold of.
The question that remains now is how Nintendo will distribute the system. As you may remember, last year, the Japanese developer released a Classic edition of the NES with a similar concept. The console was released in limited supply for the fall and holiday season and then discontinued. This lead to many scalpers buying the NES Classics and re-selling them for tremendously higher prices.
Some claim that Nintendo simply is not capable of producing enough of its popular products stateside to meet demands, as we’ve seen with their new Switch console. Others accuse the company of what is known as “false scarcity,” which is when a company intentionally ships a limited number of a product to a store in order to increase the demand.
Perhaps the big N will heed the calls of demand this time around and continue producing the units past the end of the year. And who knows, maybe they will even bring back the NES Classic. Regardless, if you are a nostalgic fan of the SNES or perhaps a millennial who is too young to remember the 16 bit era, I would highly recommend keeping your ears to the ground for the announcement of a pre-sale.