Thursday 19 October 2017

Super Nintendo Classic Mini review: Classic hits in the palm of your hand

Super Nintendo Classic Mini (€90) ★★★★★ Age 12+

Super Nintendo Classic Mini
Super Nintendo Classic Mini
Ronan Price

Ronan Price

Nintendo should know better. After drastically under-estimating the demand for its nostalgic revival of its NES console last year, the Japanese have repeated the cardinal error again with the SNES Classic Mini. The shelves are bare of stock in even Nintendo's own store, mirroring the drought in other retailers.

It's not as if it's a sneaky marketing strategy. It's not as if the clamour couldn't have been anticipated. The SNES is one of Nintendo's great contributions to gaming and the Classic Mini perfectly recreates its 1990s brilliance in a scale-model version loaded with 21 titles, many of which are bona-fide masterpieces.

The SNES Mini smooths over a handful of flaws that marred the NES Mini (chiefly, the criminally short length of the controller cables and some visual/audio glitches). It replicates the elegant case design in miniaturised form and includes two controllers, HDMI output and a USB cable (supply your own plug).

In software terms, it acknowledges the difficulty level of many of the bundled games by enabling a time-rewind function - the ability to skip backward by a minute to a point before losing a life, for instance.

But it's the collection of SNES smash-hits that justifies hunting down the console. Many of the games still hold up incredibly well today and the remainder of the list isn't too shabby either. The likes of Secret of Mana, Zelda: Link to the Past, Donkey Kong Country and Super Mario World remain spellbinding in their originality and in some ways have never been bettered.

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