Tuesday, March 23, 2010

John's All-Time Favorite SNES Games

John Marine | 3/23/2010 10:36:00 PM | | | |
(UPDATED: January 18, 2015)

Time to kick it old school! The Super Nintendo Entertainment System has been my favorite 16-bit console of choice even with those who were into the Genesis/Megadrive. This blog entry encompasses some of my all-time favorite Super Nintendo games that I've ever played and why I've loved them. This is a great opportunity to know what I think are some of the finest games for the Super Nintendo that I've played. You may even get some insight as to where to get these titles. I'll try to offer some Amazon links. And since I'm doing this, it's time to show my disclaimer:

NOTE: This blog entry contains links to Amazon products. You are welcome to click on images and links to learn more about each item. You are free to order any items featured in this section or in any widget if you choose. Please see "An Important Amazon Note" in my blog's sidebar to see more information on any Amazon items shown.


JAN 18 2015 - updated overall look of post

--- The Super Nintendo in General ---

In this generation of high-definition and online multiplayer, most of the "kids" aren't exactly sure what the Super Nintendo is or what games it plays. So here is an introduction for the younger generation and a throwback for today's generation:

Super Nintendo Entertainment System or SNES
^ from: chandrakantha.com

Through the magic of Amazon, I'll try to share with you all some items and such for the Super Nintendo. I think it's probably no use talking about classic gaming if I don't give you something to help you to experience this system and its games for yourself.

If you want to experience the Super Nintendo, I can help you out. Check out all of these things below so you can have your own SNES experience:

^ This is the Super Nintendo itself. That's the system I've used to play all of the games I will discuss in this blog entry. Want your own? Click on the above item and order. Get yourself some old school gaming goodness! :)

That should come with everything, I believe. Here is some more stuff to enhance your SNES gaming experience:

^ You're going to need a controller or two if you want to actually play the games. Here you are.

^ You can use one of these if you have a bunch of people who want to play the same game. Consider getting one of these for four-player games and if you want to have four people play.

^ If you have one of these for the Gamecube or Nintendo 64, you can just use those to connect to whatever. This is a multi-out for the SNES. If you prefer an RF switch, however, I've found an RF Switch that works for the NES, SNES, Genesis/Megadrive, and the 3DO.

^ Honestly, I've NEVER used the Super Scope. This device is a bigger, meaner Zapper. Have some fun with this thing! Just remember not to shoot your eye out ("A Christmas Story" reference).

& I've never played Mario Paint. If you want to experience what Mario Paint was all about, go check this deal out.

--- My Favorite SNES Games ---

It's time to share some of my favorite games. If you see this by each game: (!), it means that I once owned this game. If you see this: (!!), it means that I still own that game in my collection. I've tried to find as many of these games as I could on Amazon. Any graphics you see accompanied by each game I mention can be ordered if you want to purchase your own titles. Please remember to read "An Important Amazon Note" for any Amazon items featured. If you see a game you like, PLEASE click on each graphic or link supplemented and order the game. I would appreciate if you do so just to show support for all of my hard work talking about each game and in directing you to Amazon items to help enhance your SNES experience.

Super Mario World. (!!)

To say that you like Nintendo but don't like Mario, it's like saying you love Sega, but hate Sonic. I've had many a great time with Super Mario World. I remember so much about trying to collect extra lives and trying to avoid those rough enemies. When you unlock the Special section, you're literally in for the fight of your life. Those were the absolute hardest levels! I remember as a kid struggling so hard to clear each level in the Special world. I think I even had an Apple Jacks cereal box with hints on how to clear each level there! Almost any true Mario game is a classic. This is one of them.

Maybe in a future blog entry, I'll make a confession about Super Mario World. It involves a vision I had as well as inspiration from a Mario edutainment game... that was severely disliked. More in the future!

Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island.

Never beaten it, but this was a very different experience. Yoshi was the star of this game along with Baby Mario. The goal was to unite Baby Mario with Baby Luigi. The game is very childish, but it was pretty fun.

Super Mario All-Stars.

A modern makeover was given to the three classic Mario titles in Super Mario All-Stars. Perhaps the biggest reason to play this game is to play "Super Mario Bros. The Lost Levels," a Japan-only title made available to the American market. Play through this game to enjoy all there is to be offered. It's a modern take on the three classic Super Mario Bros. games.

Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars. (!!)

It's very important I mention this- I still remember wanting to get this game and beat it. How much so? Here's an example of my weird memory. I still remember when I saw a preview of this game in an old edition of Nintendo Power. Sometimes over the Summer, my brother would take me up to the University of Houston to get on the Internet. Back then, I think Internet Explorer 4 was the preferred browser (please note that this was between 1994 and 1996). NCSA Mosaic was also a popular browser then. Anyhow, I looked online for images of some of what this game had to offer.

As the game was about to be released, I still remember wanting my mom to get "Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars" for me. I was NOT disappointed at all. This game is the perfect blend of Nintendo creativity with Squaresoft (now Square Enix) as the king of RPGs. You had to travel around to seek all seven stars. Each of the stars represent hopes and dreams of people around the world. The strangest aspect of this game? This is a game where Mario, Bowser, and (then) Princess Toadstool... ALL GOT ALONG AS A TEAM! That's right- you and Bowser join forces, and instead of Bowser kidnapping Peach all the time, you could basically have a team of Mario, Bowser, and Peach. Your party consists of three party members at a time.

Maybe my favorite memory (not to spoil the game) in this game was a battle against a monster named Culex. When you go that far, you HAVE to have played any SNES Final Fantasy to appreciate that fight!

Super Mario Kart.

The fun and joy of this series all began with this title. No matter how you slice it, this game epitomized fun and enjoyment. Many more game companies would make their own childish kart racing games, trying to capture the glory a game like this provided.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.

Since first seeing it in 1994, I've wanted this game for the longest. I pulled into a game store and bought this game used in 1994. I've loved this game since playing it. I've even beaten it a few times. It's the best Zelda game I've ever played and enjoyed. The Amazon graphic also allows you to get this game for the Game Boy Advance.

Final Fantasy Mystic Quest. (!)

This was the first-ever Final Fantasy game I've played. This was somewhat a spinoff title from the classic Final Fantasy games. Your task was to save the world by recovering four different crystals scattered about four parts of the world. The centerpiece of this world is the Focus Tower. As many as three enemies and as many as two party members can take on this challenge. This title was pretty funny as well. I've beaten this game quite a few times. It had fantastic music.

Final Fantasy IV (Final Fantasy II in USA) (!).

The first proper Final Fantasy I've ever played was Final Fantasy 2. I could listen to the beautiful opening song all day. You could have a party of up to five members and battle as many as... maybe seven or eight enemies. You could summon creatures to help heal you or dish out justice against monsters. This game has about three parts to it, and the protagonist goes through two different forms. This game even has memorable music. I sometimes find myself humming some of the tunes such as the song to Kingdom Baron, the mountain songs, Into the Darkness (the song you normally hear in caves), the airship theme, Troian Beauty, Illusionary World, Within the Giant, and more. This game had some solid tracks and power magic.

Final Fantasy VI (Final Fantasy III in USA) (!!)

Okay, let's get one thing perfectly clear. I don't care what any of you Fable people or World of Warcraft people have to say- Final Fantasy III is one of the all-time greatest RPGs. I've logged so many hours playing this game and exploring every nuance of this game. This game was a beautiful of art. It had the most fantastic of almost everything. Between this game and Final Fantasy 2, a lot more technology was brought into the world. You fight against many more technological enemies (though not as many as every Final Fantasy since FF7). Memorable enemies, memorable fights... you're not a real gamer unless you've played Final Fantasy 3. It was about as close to perfect as any RPG can ever be.

Chrono Trigger.

Chrono Trigger is the other all-time greatest RPG to me. Trouble is, I've never bought Chrono Trigger. Chrono Trigger is a trip through time. The present is 1000 AD. Basically, this is a game where you look to the future to try to save the world. You go ahead in time and back in time. Maybe the most intricate element of this game was the fact that this game had as many as 10 different endings. So if you wanted to see all of them, you'd have to play this game for a long while while doing certain things differently that affect the ending. This game had fantastic music. My favorite song? "Secret of the Forest," for when you enter forests. The song is just so beautiful to listen to.

Secret of Evermore.

While I've played Secret of Mana, I didn't enjoy it as much as I did Secret of Evermore. Secret of Evermore involved you as a little boy his dog. All the while, you go from the present (1965 AD) to the past and even head into the future. This was a Final Fantasy-style game, but the combat was very much real time. The basis of magic in this game is through alchemy. You needed a few parts of one material and some of another material to make magic. You could purchase extra items to have more magics stocked. I've only gotten as far as the future stages. It was something different.

Illusion of Gaia.

Illusion of Gaia was a very cool game when I played it. I could only get as far as Island of Mu. That place was terribly hard to get through! Can't remember how many times I died trying to clear that level. It had some nice music and a pretty decent storyline.

Sim City. (!)

Believe it or not, the SimCity series is perhaps my favorite game series of all time. Yes- love even more than the Gran Turismo series! This very first game didn't give youu too much to build with environment-wise. I've always loved building cities and watching them grow. You have no idea how fun it is to make and maintain cities in this game. You even had some scenarios to tackle from different eras. This game takes you through the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906, the crime wave in Detroit in the 1970s, a scenario in Tokyo that Godzilla can appreciate, nuclear disaster in Boston and more. Only a few times have I ever made a Capital (50,000 people or more) from start to finish. I re-created one city as best as I could from an image in SimCity's instruction guide, and that got me over 420K+ people! I even pulled off a little cheat to have all kinds of money to further build my city without fear of going bankrupt. Great times! You could actually build a city to be as big as you want it with not much in the way of a serious storyline. There wasn't really a right or wrong way to play this game. If there was a major goal, just build a city to Megalopolis level.

Aerobiz Supersonic.

Aerobiz Supersonic was a game that put you in control of your own airline. Ever wanted your own airline making lots of flights to places around the world? This game gave you that opportunity. Be warned, though... because three other airlines will challenge yours for domination of the skies! Improve the service of your airline by purchasing services within each city that most needs support. Purchase any number of airplanes from actual manufacturers like Boeing, Airbus, Lockheed Martin, and more. The real key to this game is in becoming the best airline across four different eras. There are three real-life scenarios ranging from time after World War II to the oil crisis of the 1990s. There is even a fictional fourth scenario in which supersonic travel is the ONLY way to go! This game was good because it really challenged you to think about where all you would want to go to expand your airline and stay financially stable. You have to send members of your staff to negotiate for slots to expand your global network and to enter new grounds. You can even negotiate (and this is important if you want to really win) to make international hubs so you can enter other international markets. You also need to keep up to date with current events that impact travel. For example, you have to know about where are some of the most popular of-the-moment spots as well as having to deal with war and natural disasters that impact travel.

The one thing I hated about this game... I couldn't base my airline in Houston. Apparentely, Houston is too small a city to have an international airline. That's despite the fact Continental Airlines is based right here in Houston. So I had to base my operations in Dallas. This game features lots of major cities. Unfortunately, you can't fly flights to the lower portions of South America or the lower portions of South Africa. With lots of trouble going on, basing your airline in the Middle East isn't a very good idea. Then again, you could always base your operations in India if you are making your airline in this game.

MegaMan X.(!)

This game was classic for me. I am a HUGE MegaMan fan, and I wasn't really sure what to make of this game at first. The X series was basically a more serious MegaMan class of games than the rather cartoonish classic MegaMan games. I've beaten this game a number of times. One time, I even beat this game from Start to Finish in one play-through. The only thing I HAVEN'T done in this game was unlock that popular cheat code where MegaMan X can attack with the Hadouken.

MegaMan X3.

I actually consider X3 to be the best of all X games. Primarily since this game featured so many different ways to play. And best of all, this was the first ever time you could play as Zero (though you'd have to go back to MegaMan X in some sections. This was probably the last great X title until later versions just wouldn't be as good as this one or even the first.

I excluded Megaman X2 because while it was good, it wasn't all that good to me personally.


Pilotwings was all about flying. Take to the skies flying a light plane, skydive from many feet above the ground, strap into your rocketbelt, and do some hanggliding. I didn't play this a whole lot, but it's a classic experience. The aerial events in "Wii Sports Resort" is somewhat of a throwback to Pilotwings. Still, I would love to see a proper 21st century Pilotwings for the Wii. The music is wonderful to listen to. My favorite Pilotwings song of all time is the theme for Birdman in Pilotwings 64.

Super Street Fighter II.

This was the last true Street Fighter game for the Super Nintendo. That is, until Street Fighter Alpha 2 made its debut on the SNES. Super Street Fighter II was a very good title. The tournament play and such made for an enhanced and expanded experience for a fighting game like this. The Amazon graphic also includes versions for the Game Boy Advance and Sega Genesis/Megadrive.

Killer Instinct.

This game combined the intense fighting of Street Fighter and the bloodfest of Mortal Kombat. But WHY do you play Killer Instinct? The insane combos, of course! My man in this game was Jago. I've NEVER executed an Ultra combo in this game. But man, this game has no shortage of fun times!

As an extra note, I may be a bit skeptical showing that link because that graphic links to the PAL version. I'm not sure if the NTSC version is available.

Star Fox.

This game was the game that exhibited the awesome power of the Super FX chip. This game delivered a gaming experience like never before for the Super Nintendo. I've played "Star Fox 64" more than this title, but this game is an absolute classic.

Final Fight 3.

Called "Final Fight Tough" in Japan, this game was basically the last great Final Fight game. The very first Final Fight (especially the arcade version) was one of the most offensive as well as controversial games. The second Final Fight was pretty good. Final Fight 3, however, was a very good title. Certain routes you took depend on where you go in the game. This game's storyline has Metro City under siege as various gangs try to battle for supremacy among gangs The notorious Mad Gear gang have fallen, and the Skull Cross gang reigned supreme. Four different characters can be selected to clean up the streets. Go solo or tag along with a friend. The characters can also deliver intense Super moves as well as various special moves. This game was the first and only home version of Final Fight to feature Guy as a character. Guy is my personal favorite character in the Final Fight series, and he is AWESOME in this game.

Donkey Kong Country. (Late addition)

I admit that I'm not really a Donkey Kong fan. However, this game was VERY cool when I played it.

Those titles are more of my personal favorite titles. Maybe your personal favorite SNES game can be found in my widget. Look around with this widget to look for SNES games that you probably love or want to play:

Thanks to all of you for reading! I have two more things to show you before closing this blog entry. Both of which are things from Amazon I'd like to offer in thanks for you viewing my blog.

The thing about most of these SNES games is that you could play all or most of these games on the Wii's Virtual Console. You can enjoy these games on your fancy Wii system. My first gift to you for reading all of this is for you Wii players. If you need more Wii points to check out these games and others, why not click this Amazon link to get a Wii 2000 Points Card (Honorable Mention)?

But if you're one of the true old schoolers, these games are best enjoyed with an actual SNES. They are best enjoyed having to blow into the cartridge just to get them to work. Lord knows I remember having to blow into cartridges just to get them to work! As a way of saying thank you, I have one more Amazon item to feature for all of you! This is one more thing I want you to check out if you're interested:

(Honorable Mention)

^ This modern device will allow you to play both SNES and NES titles without needing to switch. There are two different slots for both SNES and NES game cartidges. It's 21st century old school cool for those of you who have old NES and SNES cartidges! There are three colors to choose from.

Again... thank you so much for reading! I hope I've inspired you to go check out the Super Nintendo. Keep old school gaming alive and well!

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