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Feature: Nintendo Life's Staff Favourites - Super NES

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Doubling the bits for Super power

We think it's safe to say that the past two generations of Nintendo home consoles — Wii and Wii U — haven't overly concerned themselves with raw graphical power; now its all about concepts and experiences. It wasn't always so, with Nintendo responding the the SEGA Mega Drive / Genesis — which enjoyed a spell mocking the NES and its meagre 8-bit credentials — with the meaty 16-bit Super NES. Retro tech-heads can happily go around the houses comparing the two, but ultimately SNES made a big point of slogans such as "playing with super power; super was the word of the time.

Thankfully, the graphics arms race didn't detract from a fantastic Super NES games library, one so strong that some will happily declare the system to be their favourite of all time. That made this vote for our Nintendo Life staff favourite games, a follow up to our NES list, exceptionally difficult, with an amazingly diverse range of selections.

In total, 19 members of the Nintendo Life team submitted their favourite 10, with 60 games earning at least one point. The results have been so tight that three positions are tied — with one having three games on the same points tally — so this list of a planned 10 favourites actually stretches to 14 separate games. Once again there was no limit on sequels, with the only games ineligible being unlicensed games or mods — opening the door for Japanese imports to be included. This isn't a top 10, but the current favourites of the Nintendo Life team.

It was an incredibly tight vote, and some of the entries may surprise you.


Capcom's alway been confused about numbering its games, opting to iterate Street Fighter II into a series rather than simply move up the numbers. Nevertheless, it often improved on the formula, and this entry on Super NES sneaks into our favourite 10 as, in our view, the finest of the 2D fighters on the system. It was the final entry in this branch of the series to hit the system, so it was a case of the best being saved for last.

Earthbound breaks into the list courtesy of our North American team-mates and import enthusiasts within Europe, expressing their views that this is one of the finest experiences on the system. Part of a proud tradition of exceptional 16-bit RPGs, its long awaited arrival on the Virtual Console will be resolved on the Wii U this year; not a day too soon, either.

This is one for the memory banks, as it hasn't appeared on a Nintendo Virtual Console service. This is classic arcade side-scrolling brawling, delivered with flair and panache. They were known as the Hero Turtles in Europe, but whatever you called them this was a fantastic action game to play with others.

You know a list is highly competitive when the title widely regarded as the best in its series comes in 8th place. An iconic title with intense action, detailed exploration and memorable presentation, this is still a delight to play as well as a significant challenge; it'll soon be available for pennies on the Wii U eShop, too.

Recently available on the Wii U, this fast-paced futuristic racer is still fondly regarded by gamers of all ages. It was particularly visually enticing when released, utilising Mode-7 for a visual effect that was a revelation, while the track design and soundtrack stand up to modern standards.

The first of a trio of games tied for sixth place, Super Castlevania IV is often held up as the shining light of the "Classic" titles in the series, before the days of backtracking and extensive exploration. Tight controls, precise level design and excellent visuals and presentation, this is one of Konami's finest.

A title that put Rare on the map, its visual approach has arguably aged, but that shouldn't detract from the impressive impact they had at the time. The soundtrack is also memorable, while its platforming is tricky enough to test platforming ninjas of any persuasion.

The battle was so close that the original and sequel couldn't be separated, with DK Jr leading the charge this time around. Truly challenging once again, this one broadened the cast of characters and introduced the rather useful Dixie into the mix.

A series making a comeback on 3DS, don't let the Super Mario World branding fool you — this one is all about Yoshi. Encouraging a more interested, thorough approach in platforming and exploration, this is flutter jumping and egg throwing at its best. The visual style was also a showcase of what the Super NES could deliver.

Rather like F-Zero, this was a visual revelation at the time, with the idea of 3D rendering being a rare commodity. It's iconic to this day for its presentation, music and exciting arcade-style music. It hasn't been the most prolific series since, but those that remember this original hope it will be back soon.

Widely regarded as one of the finest RPG titles of all time, this includes polished battle mechanics, time-travelling aspects and terrific design to deliver a perfectly-rounded experience. This is still highly rated and has gone on to have remakes and re-releases on systems such as DS and smartphones.

The original accessible multiplayer party racer — some say the best — this delighted families and friends when released and established one of Nintendo's most lucrative franchises. Some prefer its coin system and drifting mechanics, and its tracks are still reproduced in the latest releases.

Just like in our NES list, Link has to settle for second place; this is one of the best-regarded of the titles starring the hero, commonly considered the best of his 2D adventures. A vast world to explore, a dark-light mechanic and various memorable moments, the status of this title is such that the reference to The Legend of Zelda 3D being set in the same world gets many pulses racing. If any game represented the advance in design possible from the NES to Super NES era, this was arguably a defining example.

A resounding winner that probably surprises no-one. Last year we voted for this as our favourite Super Mario game, and it now seizes the Super NES crown. Still held by many as the pinnacle of 2D Mario platforming, it's defined not just by tight platforming and wonderful level design, but also by its rampant creativity and depth of secrets to discover. A classic.


So there you have it, our favourite Super NES games here on Nintendo Life. You can vote for your own choice from this list in the poll below; be sure to also keep an eye on the site this week as we reveal your community list of top NES games, and you'll have a chance to choose your Super NES favourites soon.

Which of the NL Staff's Super NES list is your favourite? (299 votes)

Super Mario World

19%

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

23%

Super Mario Kart

  4%

Chrono Trigger

11%

Star Fox

  2%

Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island

6%

Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest

  5%

Donkey Kong Country

  2%

Super Castlevania IV

  1%

F-Zero

  2%

Super Metroid

13%

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time

  2%

Earthbound

  5%

Street Fighter II' Turbo: Hyper Fighting

  2%

Sorry, I can't vote for any of those...

  4%

Please login to vote in this poll.

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User Comments (135)

Scarhino89

#4

Scarhino89 said:

Chrono Trigger!! My favorite RPG with Final Fantasy VI!! In any case, we can always play these two RPG in Europe on Wii's Virtual Console!! ;)

Xyphon22

#5

Xyphon22 said:

I can't really explain why, but for some reason the SNES games are one of my least favorite in their respective series (Zelda, Mario, Metroid). Chrono Trigger, on the other hand, is my second favorite game ever, only behind the original Legend of Zelda.

AltDotNerd

#6

AltDotNerd said:

I still can't believe DK Country was removed from the Virtual Console. Microsoft needs to negotiate a deal to sell the rights to all Rare games made for Nintendo consoles back to Nintendo. This is just ridiculous.

Zeldalover

#8

Zeldalover said:

The SNES is undoubtedly the single greatest game console ever produced! I mean seriously.. there aren't any more titles of this CALIBER!

Prof_Elvin_Gadd

#9

Prof_Elvin_Gadd said:

I think I enjoy A Link to the Past just a tad more than Chrono Trigger, but both titles are some of my favorite games ever. The SNES was and still is great, and this list is really solid. Every game on it is still fun to play.

XyVoX

#10

XyVoX said:

Interestingly Super Mario Kart, Chrono Trigger, Star Fox & Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island all had some form of assisted hardware on board the carts either a DSP Chip or SFX chip to improve the graphics output of the Snes.

KAHN

#12

KAHN said:

normally i'd never put a mario game over a Zelda game, but SMW is the exception. while i LOVE TO NO END LttP, i never had it when it was new. hell, i'd never even heard of LoZ back then. along with DKC, Mario World and Super Starwars were the first games i'd ever played. nostalgia definitely plays a factor.

Peach64

#13

Peach64 said:

Usually when you do a top ten and something ties for 5th, then you skip number 6. It's a bit odd to have a top 10 with 14 games in :s

Shiryu

#14

Shiryu said:

I'm one of those people that proclaim without question that it is indeed the best home console ever made. There is no greater proof than the fact that I just sat here after about a 40+ minute SNES game play marathon while my Wii U sits turned off next to it. It has been a constant companion for the past two decades and no matter how much technology advances, I am sure that the 90's 16 bit system truly were the golden age. It would be impossible for me to chose just 10 games, but since "F-Zero GX" is my favourite game of all time, I cast my vote on "F-Zero" but truly there is not a single wrong choice up there. Back to SNES for me.

PS: Last Xmas I released a 6 CD free album celebrating 20 years of the PAL SNES. Grab "SNES XX" from right here: https://cloudpt.pt/link/f9b0df4f-e491-4b07-868f-d3aecf9d8ff6/Shiryu-SNESXX.zip

potomas

#15

potomas said:

Can't believe the donkey Kongs made the top ten or the turtles,but yes SNES is best console of all time

Yanchamaru

#16

Yanchamaru said:

Nintendolife should make a Top Ten list of Super Famicom games that were never released outside of Japan. My favorite on this list was TMNT

Shiryu

#17

Shiryu said:

I would also like to scream "Bloody murder!" for the fact that neither "Secret of Mana" or "ActRaiser" made it to the top 10. For shame, NL staff, for shame...

Mk_II

#18

Mk_II said:

The SNES is the best Nintendo console ever (so far). All the titles in this top 10 and many others from its vast library are still very playable today.

Knuckles

#19

Knuckles said:

I am having a hard time picking which one to vote for, since I grew up on the Genesis. I know about the "Sorry can't vote option", but I want to vote.

seronja

#20

seronja said:

shame that there isn't killer instinct on the list, that is my 2. fav. game on the SNES and my fav. fighting franchise of all time... man SNES was a beast xD also earthworm jim should have got a mention... great list guy's ;)

Kirbic

#21

Kirbic said:

I was about to complain about how low Super Metroid is on the list, but reading further down...I personally would still put it further up but I've really underestimated the brilliance of the SNES library and can see why people prefer those games to Super Metroid.

Pichuka97

#22

Pichuka97 said:

I couldn't pick between Mario World, DKC2, or Yoshi's Island. In the end, DKC2 won because I really love the atmosphere and style the game brings with it. It's really unfair to choose the best games for SNES. Darn you Nintendo, why did you make such an awesome console.

Giygas_95

#25

Giygas_95 said:

Super Metroid's way too low on that list. ;) That's the one I picked.

I'm playing back through ALttP right now too. Such a good game...I love the creepy music in both the light and dark world dungeons.

I definitely want to try Chrono Trigger if it ever gets released on the Wii U VC. I've heard it's really good, but I don't want to get it on the Wii VC because it'll probably be on the Wii U eventually. I'm just going to go ahead and drop my favorite 10 here.

1) Super Metroid
2) Super Mario World ( This and the one above are my favorite games EVER.)
3) The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
4) Super Mario RPG
5) Diddy's Kong Quest
6) Donkey Kong Country
7) Dixie's Double Trouble
8) Super Mario All-Stars
9) Yoshi's Island
10) Kirby Super Star

Kevin

#27

Kevin said:

Super Metroid is the best SNES game of all time. It doesn't deserve the 8th slot and where are the Final Fantasy games? Both deserve to be on here.

ShadJV

#29

ShadJV said:

How did Super Mario RPG not even make this list? I don't get you people.

KeeperBvK

#31

KeeperBvK said:

"It was the final entry in this branch of the series to hit the system, so it was a case of the best being saved for last."

Um, Super SF II came a year after SF II Turbo.

Donjwolf

#32

Donjwolf said:

Good list. 3 of my faves made it, but I am disappointed with the lack of Contra 3 and Space Megaforce.

Tasuki

#33

Tasuki said:

Noticed a typo on the part about Street Fighter II Hyper Fighting. You stated that was the last entry in the series for the SNES but they did release Super Street Fighter II: The New Challengers on the SNES.

Dpullam

#34

Dpullam said:

I voted for Yoshi's Island since I had many good times with this game as a kid. This list is pretty good overall I think. There are only a few games I would move around in this list. Once I get the chance to play Earthbound my opinion could change though!

LinktotheFuture

#35

LinktotheFuture said:

Final Fantasy III is my favorite SNES game.
Super Street Fighter II is also better than Turbo in my opinion.

astros75

#37

astros75 said:

Its hard to argue against these 14 amazing games, but, maybe Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars could of been tied for 10th? I loved that game!

Dpishere

#38

Dpishere said:

I would have to say my favorite would have to be Super Mario World, though that was not a decision I made lightly. So many classics, so many memories.

WanderFan91

#39

WanderFan91 said:

The best SNES game is Terranigma, imo, but since it wasn't on the list I went with Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island (which is another excellent game, in my book) :)

It was a good list overall

Eisenbolan

#40

Eisenbolan said:

How is Final Fantasy 3 or 2 not on the list at all? FF3 is the best RPG ever. The opera scene is one of the best in any RPG.

How is Super Metroid not number 2? This started a trend in all platformers like Castlevania.

CanisWolfred

#42

CanisWolfred said:

Out of this List, I like A Link to the Past, Earthbound, and Chrono Trigger. I prefer the DS version of CT (better music), as well as the GBA version of A Link to the Past, and Earthbound, as great as it is, doesn't stand up to many of the greats on the system. I hate most of the other games you guys, listed, though...

My Top 10:

1) Mega Man X
2) Tales of Phantasia
3) Seiken Densetsu 3
4) Soul Blazer
5) Terranigma
6) Illusion of Gaia
7) Demon's Crest
8) Live-A-Live
9) Ninja Warriors
10) Secret of Evermore

HM: Final Fantasy V (I prefer the GBA version, but is still a 100% fantastic game)

RevolverLink

#43

RevolverLink said:

My absolute favorite Super NES game tends to change depending on my mood. The more I re-play ALttP, the higher it rises on my list of favorite Zeldas (and games) ever, but Super Mario World, Final Fantasy VI, Chrono Trigger and Yoshi's Island are all basically dead even with it when it comes to my affections. ActRaiser is high up there for me too, even with my hatred of end-of-game boss gauntlets, and I loved (granted, it was the DS remake) Dragon Quest V too.

OH, and Umihara Kawase is great too!

shredmeister

#44

shredmeister said:

Cool list. It's definitely missing Megaman X in there. Just wanted to remind you guys what I read here in the past. DK Jr. and Diddy Kong are not the same monkey. Although, that mythology is a little on the messed up side and you probably don't want to get into it.

timp29

#48

timp29 said:

That is a tough list to make. Super NES was awesome. A few on that list I never played (Super Punch Out, Super Metroid, Donkey Kong Country, Earthbound and Chrono Trigger the notable exceptions) so I can't really vote for those.

Mine would be more like (with a tie for first):
1. Super Mario World
1. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
3. Street Fighter II Turbo
4. Super Castlevania IV (Played this alot... best castlevania title for me)
5. Contra III: The Alien Wars (Many MANY multiplayer hours into this one)
6. Super Star Wars (Would replay this just to get to the last stage - was awesome)
7. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time (the best attempt to recreate the arcade experience at home - was amazed that you could play this on a console AT HOME)
8. Prince of Persia (Already an amazing game, this version added extra challenging levels and had a decent final boss fight too)
9. F-Zero (This was good enough that I never needed a second racer and didn't enjoy mario kart... until N64 of course :p)
10.

Wow, even though I owned many SNES games and played many more, there are huge gaps in my SNES experience. I had a hard time making this list after about 8, as I played the other games so religiously. I just hope virtual console does a better job of releasing those extra titles we never saw on Wii VC.

ledreppe

#50

ledreppe said:

I have four of the games on the list but SMW was my clear favourite, although I really like my other SNES games too, hard choice.

MeWario

#51

MeWario said:

I think you guys nailed this list except for the placement of Super Metriod. Maybe swap it with Mariokart and the list would be perfect. Anyway glad to see Yoshis Island and DKC2 make it so high :) I love those games

Kirk

#52

Kirk said:

Most satisfying system ever imo, there's basically nothing I could/can find fault with about it, with a library full of true timeless classics.

I switch back and forth between Super Mario World and Yoshi's Island as my favorite SNES game of all time and today I went for Yoshi's Island.

rdenton85

#53

rdenton85 said:

What a list. Super Mario World tops my list too. Been playing it again recently. It's amazing how it still looks and plays perfectly.

fluggy

#54

fluggy said:

Super Metroid is way to low. Its easily a top 2 game and really is timeless, as is ALttP. Really is as fresh today as it was years ago. Can't believe it got trumped by F-Zero, 2 Donkey Kings, Star Fox!!??!!

Zodiak13

#55

Zodiak13 said:

Final Fantasy III (US). Only game I've ever played through more than 5 times. Plus I own the remakes as well. Just an amazing game, actually my favorite game of all time truth be told.

hydeks

#56

hydeks said:

well holy cr@p, I completely agree with this list 100%!!! Go NintendoLife! :)

only thing I would have probably added would have been maybe Final Fantasy 2 or 3, both where amazing games.

Ryno

#57

Ryno said:

Best system ever! So many great games. Here's a quick off the top of my head list.
1) Super Metroid
2) Zelda: A Link to the Past
3) Super Castlevania IV
4) Secret of Mana
5) Demon's Crest
6) Illusion of Gaia
7) Soul Blazer
8) Secret of Evermore
9) Legend of the Mystical NInja
10) Knights of the Round (Best beat 'em up OST)

AbeVigoda

#58

AbeVigoda said:

Contra III should be on this list, and Star Fox is basically unplayable at this point in time. It was impressive back then, but it has aged terribly.

Ryno

#61

Ryno said:

Racing games do not belong in a top 10 or in this case a top 14.

Captain_Balko

#62

Captain_Balko said:

@CanisWolfred
"I hated most of the other games you guys listed, though..."
... How?
How could one even possibly hate such greats as Super Mario World, SMW2: Yoshi's Island, the DK Country games, and for the love of Miyamoto, SUPER METROID, the game that many consider the best in the series? How is it possible to hate Starfox or F-Zero? Or the first Mario Kart? What is happening? ERROR! ERROR! DOES NOT COMPUTE!

aaronsullivan

#63

aaronsullivan said:

So many great games. Totally disagree with this list, but that's part of the fun.

I love Castlevania IV, but it coming out ahead of Super Metroid is just nuts... and the Donkey Kong Country games I never fell in love with myself. Final Fantasy IV (II in US) was my fave console RPG period but I have to admit I've never played Chrono Trigger.

@Ryno Wut. I don't understand why. The original Mario Kart was an amazing genre starter and I've had more fun with that game playing cooperatively with my wife than at least 6 other games on that list. Have to throw you some respect though, because of your #1. It matches mine.

Zodiak13

#64

Zodiak13 said:

@Captain_Balko I have always disliked the DKC series of games. I quick polled my workplace and no one here liked them either, so Its not that odd really. I really like @CanisWolfred list he has. Some great games there.

Zodiak13

#65

Zodiak13 said:

Just remembered a game I loved that I never hear anyone talk about. KIng Arthur's World, SNES. Man I played the Heck out of that game but I'm probably in the minority of people who have played or liked it.

Shiryu

#66

Shiryu said:

@Damo and rightfully so! Gosh, it's so hard to pick 10, I have remembered about a dozen more people are not talking about: "Soulblazer", "Axelay", "Assault Suit's Valken", "Demon's Crest", "Battletoads in Battlemaniacs", "UN Squadron"... and there are so many gems left in Japan like "Ogre Battle 2", "Front Mission" and the almighty "Seiken Desentsu 3" (aka "Secret of Mana 2").

Gregor

#67

Gregor said:

@Zeldalover look out we have a doofus over here! The Wii beats it. Fact. Why? Because the Wii can play Super Nintendo games along with a plethora of others ergo nulifing the Super Nintendo.

WaveBoy

#68

WaveBoy said:

@Ryno
The complete lack of Super Mario World and Super Mario Kart is truly disturbing. :P :D

On another note, I still feel that the NES has the superior Contra, Super Mario(2&3), Punch-Out!! and classic mega man games(2 especially). And where were my sequals to Kid Icarus and Ninja Gaiden? Anyways, The NES is the console that truly started it all and gave us these beloved franchises. It was FRESH and ressurected the gaming industry. NES will always be my fav' hehe. With the SNES taking the number 2 spot followed by the Wii which I'd almost tie it with.

Gregor

#69

Gregor said:

@Captain_Balko actually I don't like Yoshi's Island. It's doesn't gel with me. But I can see why people like it. And the 2D Mario kart games have those dodgy controls, bad steering and poor level design. The 3D Mario karts have more Potential!! But the N64 one wasn't good.

LDXD

#70

LDXD said:

Super metroid is my pick its also probably sitting in the top 3 of my favorite games of all time list

WaveBoy

#71

WaveBoy said:

@Fusion14
Mario Kart 64 was a lifeless blocky 'n barren sequal that i just couldn't get into. I still feel that Super Mario Kart was the most charming and it was even boardering on being groundbreaking to the racer genre! It was more focused on actually racing instead of being convoluted with Items and there was no pesky blue shell to boot.

LDXD

#72

LDXD said:

@Fusion14 that makes no sense and no the wii cant play every snes game so that's just bad logic, in that case my pc is the best console ever because it can play almost everything . There's a ton of games not available on the eshop for snes and nes

NintendoPro64

#73

NintendoPro64 said:

Seeing this just raises my hopes for the Wii U: To be the first Nintendo home console since SNES to have a library comprised of both good first AND third party games! Even if its in the arm race (which really pointless now), I feel that Nintendo can gets its sales to surge this holiday, it can easily be considered for multiplat support alongside PS4 and Xbox 720. C'mon E3! Get here already!

On topic: My favorite SNES is and always will be:
Untitled

TheRavingTimes

#74

TheRavingTimes said:

1) The Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past
2) Secret of Mana
3) Ogre Battle Let Us Cling Together
4) Fire Emblem Thracia 776
5) Donkey Kong Country 2
6) Kirby Dreamland 3 (bias)
7) Chrono Trigger
8) Final Fantasy IV
9) Earthbound
10a) Street Fighter Alpha 2
10b) Dragon Quest V

Please note that more then half these games came right off the top of my head.

Donjwolf

#75

Donjwolf said:

I just noticed there's no FFVI.

@AbeVigoda
Star Fox plays great for me. It's the best Star Fox game in the series for me.

@timp29
You mentioned Star Fox 64 in your top 10 list. It's a N64 game, not a SNES game.

Ichiban

#77

Ichiban said:

Tough to pick just one vote!
SNES is easily my fav Nintendo console without a doubt

Ren

#79

Ren said:

weird did people not play Starfox? That and Zelda are easily the best things on there. I wasn't that into super mario world. It was really exciting at the time but didn't really break any new ground, at that point I was ready for a departure in the vien of Mario 2 or 64 that came later. I'm seriously over that style now, partly why I won't go near the WiiU and new super, just not that cool anymore, time for a new mario direction altogether.
Overall the 64 had the greatest density of great games, but super NES was really an awesome big library.
Cybernator was awesome, also the super star wars games all classics. Too many great ones to even list really. Ah, the days before shovelware was even a thing really.

dragon_rider

#80

dragon_rider said:

@AltDotNerd Nintendo owns all the assets in the first place. Rare does not own the DKC franchise. Why do you think they had that DKC Returns for the Wii?

LDXD

#81

LDXD said:

@Ren I did and to me starfox was terrible on snes I much rather starfox 64

Glad to see soul blazer on some list, that was a great game

otatious

#83

otatious said:

A Link to the Past is my favorite game of all time, so it definatly takes the cake in this contest. Chrono Trigger is pretty close though. In fact, almost all of these games would easily make it on my top 50 games list. Shows how nostalgic and good the SNES really is.

Zombie_Barioth

#85

Zombie_Barioth said:

Easily one of the best consoles to date as far as the one with the best library of its own games goes. So many quality classics including many of the lisenced games which is a pretty rare sight these days, and most of them still hold up pretty well both in appearance and gameplay. Even many wronky looking early 3D games have a certain charm to them.

Tough choice between Crono Trigger and A Link to the Past for me but Crono Trigger ended up coming out on top due to still being of of the best JRPGs I've played yet.

CowLaunch

#86

CowLaunch said:

" with DK Jr leading the charge this time around"
No, it was Diddy Kong who starred. According to Rare, the current Donkey Kong is Donkey Kong JR, and the older one is Cranky Kong. In any case, DKJR is not the star of DKC2; Diddy Kong isn't even the same species, he has a tail.

Nomad

#87

Nomad said:

The SNES is definitely one of the greatest video game consoles of all time, and arguably the best Nintendo system. Besides Nintendo's 1st party games, standout games for me where: ActRaiser, Demons Crest, Super Ghouls 'n' Ghosts, Equinox, Soul Blazer, Secret of Mana, Super Castlevania IV, MegaMan X, and so on and so forth. Too many great games to list.
I find it quite interesting when gamers go on about how one video game system has better graphics then the other, and yet the SNES has so many great games that have withstood the test of time, and are just as playable today as many of the current generation of games. Long live the SNES!

WWammy

#88

WWammy said:

I loved Super Metroid played it to death above nearly all the other Super Nintendo games but there is only one that beat it out and that's Street Fighter 2 Turbo which I still play to this day in one incarnation or other.
That game lol Street Fighter 2 turbo was so addicted to that game :D

dragon_rider

#89

dragon_rider said:

The Snes had massive third party support. In fact, that was when Nintendo had the most of any generation.

AltDotNerd

#90

AltDotNerd said:

@dragon_rider Mostly I'm referring to Donkey Kong 64 and Banjo-Kazooie. To my knowledge, the DKC games that were on the VC were removed due to some kind of claim from Microsoft. I could be wrong and am open for correction.

timp29

#92

timp29 said:

Dear @Nintendolife. People seem pretty passionate about this one. Maybe try for the top 10 votes via email again but extend the list to top 25?

hamsterfactor

#93

hamsterfactor said:

I voted for Chrono Trigger because it's my favorite from your list (reaaaally close with A Link to the Past), but in reality my favorite Super Nintendo game ever was Terranigma. Maybe my favorite game ever, period. What I'd give to see it on the virtual console...

KLZ

#94

KLZ said:

I like that NL likes Star Fox. I'm guessing it's because it was developed by English programers, but still. My Favorite SNES game.

nakamura

#95

nakamura said:

Interesting to hear peoples comments and not see it decend into arguing. I personally don't think Final Fantasy 3 is in the top 20 SNES games let alone the best RPG on the system. Some think it's the best though. All opinions.

InsertTokenz

#97

InsertTokenz said:

All sound choices in the list.
As for my personal list:

1)Chrono Trigger (My favorite game of all time)
2)Final Fantasy 3/6
3)Earthbound
4)Secret of Mana
5)Super Mario RPG
6)Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
7)Super Mario World
8)Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island
9)Super Metroid
10)Legend of the Mystical Ninja/Mega Man X/Actraiser (Too tough to call which would take the final spot, so I'll let them all have it)

NINTENBOY

#98

NINTENBOY said:

Super Nintendo was the shizzle best console ever one of Big N's only consoles that got actually way more 3rd party support then the competion. Oh those were the days if you love classic SNES games look up U.N. Squdron!

That was like the best arcade plane type I've ever played and it is soooooo underrated I miss that game so much. A re-release with online with make me cry tears of joy :')

Oh_Well

#100

Oh_Well said:

I can't really argue this list as the sheer number of incredible SNES titles is staggering. My Personal list is as follows:

1. Zelda: A Link to the Past
2. Super Metroid
3. Donkey Kong Country
4. Donkey Kong Country 2
5. Super Punchout
6. Super Ghouls N Ghosts
7. Rock N Roll Racing
8. Super Mario RPG
9. Turtles in Time
10. Super Mario World

The Lost Vikings and Secret of Mana just missed. I've also never played Soul Blazer or Illusion of Gaia, but they look like they would be right in my wheelhouse. Judging from what I've heard about them, they could possibly sneak into the top ten if I ever get around to playing them.

Frapp

#101

Frapp said:

@Xyphon22
You're not alone. I much preferred the Famicom and its library. I had the Neo Geo and the PC Engine before the SNES, and was always a bit underwhelmed by the latter. Really loved Chrono, Mana, Yoshi's Island and Pilotwings though.
Not a popular view, I concur.

Captain_Balko

#102

Captain_Balko said:

@WaveBoy @Fusion14 You guys... disliked... Mario Kart 64? THE Mario Kart 64 that etertained me throughout my childhood likely more than any other game? The Mario Kart 64 with awesome music (Rainbow Road) epic track design (Bowser's Castle) and far superior controls to the SNES version (it was the first Mario Kart with an analog stick for the love of Miyamoto)? I still play it today with friends, and even by myself if I'm lonely and in need of a nostalgia boost. I need to stop checking this topic, all it's doing is making me weep for the future of the human race. WEEP.

Blue-Thunder

#103

Blue-Thunder said:

Love your top ten choice, except I would remove Donkey kong country and the Turtles. I also think the SNES was the greatest console of all time. The design of the console and pad, couple that with ground breaking games. Nintendo were on fire. I'd also put Super Probotector (Contra 3) in the top ten. I can remember when I bought 'A Link To The Past' I had the map laid out on my bed as I played the game, it was one of the greatest gaming moments in my life. The SNES is a legend.

SparkOfSpirit

#104

SparkOfSpirit said:

It's missing Mega Man X and Kirby Super Star, but it's pretty good overall.

I also do not like Mario Kart 64.

Gregor

#106

Gregor said:

@Captain_Balko wait nono don't cry! I just... Liked Mario kart DS much much more. Not to mention I wasted 150 coins on this game and spent paid points on paper mario afterwards just to find that Nintendo put it up for coin buy In the next month batch. Dick move Nintendo.

ACK

#107

ACK said:

1. Super Metroid, 2. A Link to the Past, 3. Super Mario World, 4. FF VI, 5. Mega Man X, 6. Chrono Trigger, 7. Earthbound, 8. Yoshi's Island, 9. Contra 3, 10. Ogre Battle, and 11. Super Mario RPG are my easy top 11. Considering I played, owned, and loved them all as a kid in their prime makes them pretty rock solid for me.

Nowadays I could possibly add the likes of Demon's Crest, Out of this World, Actraiser, Terranigma, Soul Blazer, Illusion of Gaia, Tales of Phantasia, Secret of Mana, and I'm sure several others if I really thought about it... But since I didn't actually play them in their heyday, they don't hold quite the same sway.

CanisWolfred

#109

CanisWolfred said:

@Captain_Balko I did say most, albeit without specifying which ones I meant - I still like F-Zero SNES, although it's been greatly outshined by leter games, to the point where it's mostly only enjoyable as a curiousity, and Yoshi's Island is okay, I guess.

Super Mario World seriusly lacks proper conveyance when I struggled through the first 6 levels. I didn't feel like the game was giving any warning or doing anything to teach me its little tricks. It felt more like I was repeatedly running into brick walls rather than playing a game. Even Sonic isn't as reactive as this.

The Donkey Kong Country games are bland from my point of view, and their controls are the most broken I've ever seen from a successful series.

Turtles in Time is the most frustrating and overrated Beat 'em up I've played, right there with Double Dragon, except it doesn't have its age as an excuse.

For some reason I never liked Street Fighter II' Turbo: Hyper Fighting nearly as much as every other version of Street Fighter II. Even the original I liked more. I can't explain why.

Super Metroid I'll asmit I'm just being petty. I loved it, but not as much as almost the rest of the entire genre (only Dawn of Sorrow on the DS is worse. Now that game left a bitter taste in my mouth).

Super Castlevania IV - just watch this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ww_PjqYQi5E - I seriously can't explain it better than this. And yes, I know Egoraptor's not saying all that's bad, but to me, they're problems I won't accept.

Star Fox is clunky and boring compared to its sequels, and just hasn't aged well at all. Star Fox 64 was everything that was good about Star Fox, but 10x better, and with tons of great new things, too.

Oh yeah, and Super Mario Kart is Mario Kart, so it can go die in a whole, ppreferably one it fell in thanks to its own banana peel.

ParSnake

#110

ParSnake said:

@CanisWolfred Wow! You must love importing games! I would love to play Terranigma and Live a Live, but the cost and language barrier is a little intimidating after I attempted to play Mother 2 (not Earthbound).

Captain_Balko

#112

Captain_Balko said:

@CanisWolfred I don't think that you're judging some of these games fairly. It was the nineties, lots of RPGs still hold up by today's standards, but it's tough for platformers and racing games to do so.

First of all Super Mario World. I literally don't know anybody who struggled through the first six levels, that includes my four year old cousin and a young six year old me (not to offend, I just don't understand where you're coming from). I found the controls to be as good as any other Mario game. And it introduced so much into the Mario series - tons of neat World-Map changing secrets, ghost houses, cage climbing, and (I saved best for last) YOSHI! For me, it's up there with Mario Galaxy and Mario 64 as the best Mario games. Also the music is really catchy.

Also, this was the SNES, obviously Star Fox wasn't as good as it was on the Nintendo 64, but it STARTED THE SERIES. Yeah, the graphics aren't too pretty by today's standard, but they were PHENOMINAL back then, and I'd say that Star Fox is worth playing for the Nostalgia alone. You couldn't exactly call it a "bad game".

Honestly though, the comment I understand the least is your one about Super Mario Kart. You basically damned the entire series. This is, to me, unfathomable. It basically invented the Kart genre, which, I'm guessing, you dislike because it isn't as focused on the racing itself as, say, F-Zero. On a personal basis, I'd take Mario Kart over F-Zero any day. Don't get me wrong, I love F-Zero, and think that it's a fantastic series, but Mario Kart has more charm, is a less stressful experience, and honestly, I'm far better at it than F-Zero. And Mario Kart isn't only about the items - there is still a lot of strategy involved. The drift - boost gameplay can be learned quickly, but it takes a LONG time to master it. The person with the best items doesn't always win, contrary to popular belief. If you are truly good at Mario Kart, items rarely play a large factor in the end. I win 80% of the time when I play MK7 online. With my friends, that moves up to 90% of the time. Obviously, skill IS a MAJOR factor. And no, I don't use cheap tricks like Snaking, I just know when to boost, how to avoid items, and am good at drifting. Honestly, Mario Kart is my favourite racing series, and, from my (biased) perspective, I can't see what isn't to like.

Zodiak13

#113

Zodiak13 said:

@Captain_Balko A very detailed reply I must say. I get what both you and @CanisWolfred are saying. As a previous reply of mine said, I loved his list, but I also liked a lot of those game he does not like. I must say I also can't see how SMW was hard at all, but we all have games that give us trouble. Me and Mario 64 never did mesh control wise :P.
Side note- what happened to the results of the NL member's Favorite NES games go. Thought he said they were gonna be here during the weekend??

Zeldalover

#114

Zeldalover said:

@Fusion14 We may both agree that from a technical standpoint (given the hardware level and massive amount of features when compared to the Wii), the Wii is superior (and it has the Virtual Console emulating service for titles of past generations like the SNES with suspend states and stuff). But for a physical (cartridge stuffed) library, it has no competition (considering the amount of original titles it had and the much more inventive storyline concepts, character development).

Dreamcaster-X

#116

Dreamcaster-X said:

I'm gonna take a stab at this...

1.Link to The Past
2.Super Metroid
3.Final Fantasy II aka IV
4.Contra III
5.Super Mario World
6.Earthbound
7.Turtles in Time
8.Actraiser
9.Final Fantasy V...yes V. The fan rom is excellent!
10.Mega Man X

Frapp

#118

Frapp said:

@Ren Ah, the days before shovelware was even a thing really.

There has been cheap copycat tat on every system since the dawn of consoles and the early home computers. The Atari 2600 was inundated with shovelware, PlayStation too. The SNES was no exception when it came to poor, uninspired games–it had its fair share of dump too.
It's part of the joy of gaming, sifting through the junk to find the gems.

CanisWolfred

#119

CanisWolfred said:

@Captain_Balko Personally, I don't believe in letting Nostalgia get in the way of my Judgment. If it's not fun to play nowadays, I'm not about to call it a good game. There are tons of games that have held up on the SNES, and I believe those ones deserve more recognition than games that only hold up under rose-tinted glasses.

I believe Star Fox is a bad game now. What marks a truly great game are ones that can stand the test of time and still be enjoyable today. Nothing about Star Fox stands out anymore, something that I can't say for most of other good series, and honestly, I find it hard to believe its controls and aesthetics were ever considered good.

I like most racers I've played, just so you know. Even other Kart Racers. Yet Mario Kart is the single most frustrating set of "racing" games I've ever played. The tracks and items take a huge amount of precedence over genuine racing skill, and it drives me insane. Winning through some lucky items just seems to suck out all the joy of winning for me.

I meant The first 6 Worlds of Super Mario World, btw.

Giygas_95

#120

Giygas_95 said:

@CanisWolfred I agree about nostalgia. I don't let it taint my opinion of SMW, Link to the Past, or Super Metroid. When I play those games, all I think about is how fun they are not how much fun I used to have playing them. (I still wish I could try Star Fox though since it's the only one I've never played.)

Can't say I agree about SMW or DKC though. I love those games! I do however think it's silly in Mario Kart that you can lead the whole race but get second or third or worse because some idiot decided to throw a blue shell. Keep luck and skill separate!

ACK

#121

ACK said:

@CanisWolfred: Let's give credit where it's due. Mario Kart is as solid a racing series as any. I'm talking the racing. If you master any MK you'll discover some of the most balanced, polished, and well-designed racing anywhere. The strategic opportunities are immense for the racing genre and the physics incredibly sound. Don't get me started on the glitchy, wonky Sega MK-wannabes of late...

If you doubt the racing chops and level design of the series, I challenge you to set a world-class time trial run and then come back here with your criticism. I've played every other worthy kart racer I know of and they all falter in the time trial department (the true test of racing physics and level design), usually revealing frustrating, inconsistent physics and design. In my opinion, every other kart racer rather shamelessly apes the MK foundation while paling in comparison.

As for the items, there are generally ways to deal with such instances where luck is involved. Like real racing, most of the time the best racing line will win out, but there are always going to be circumstances and variable out of your control. Adapting to those possibilities is the key to winning consistently. And if that is unacceptable, change the item settings. Maybe it's because I primarily play multiplayer games with my wife and other female friends involved, but I cherish the balance provided by the various items. Chicks love racing games but the only ones any of these women want to play are Mario Kart, Excite Truck, and Burnout (Takedown/Revenge mostly because they loves crashing cars...).

The truth is, Mario Kart keeps them motivated, compelled, and competive. The items allow adaptive strategies and suitable inspiration to deal with far superior racers such as myself. Look, I personally adore F-Zero GX as much as any racing game ever made, but no one wants to play it with me... And for that reason Mario Kart Wii or 7 (games that everyone wants to play) will always be superior in my eyes. (As for SMK, it was a groundbreaking game in so many ways--racing design, splitscreen multiplayer, strategic depth, battle mode, drifting mechanics, etc.--and stands as one of the best racing games of it's era. Not only that, but it's still as fun as ever if you can adapt to the technical aspects that seem antiquated nowadays.)

Also, those criticisms of Super Mario World are ridiculous. The joy of the series in that era (in particular SMB3 and SMW) was the discovery of techniques and strategies to navigate the challenging gauntlet of platforms and enemies. What captivayed most of us for endless hours in those days was utilizing Mario's abilities to explore the nooks and crannies of each world. Also, remember that everyone who seriously played games in those days fawned over instruction booklets when their parents told the to stop playing Nintendo.

Understand there's a difference between nostalgia and a lack of perseverance and perspective due to an overstimulated, instant gratification modern society. Honestly, your criticisms reek of shallow, quick-fire dismissals based upon haphazardly formed opinions. We are all entitled to such opinions, of course, but in disregarding such a diverse list and criticizing the inclusion of all time classics... I at least hope you would attempt to establish some perspective and appreciation of the interests of the greater gaming public, as well as the relevance of the games in question.

CanisWolfred

#124

CanisWolfred said:

@ACK You want perspective? I've played every Mario Kart since I was a kid, alongside my brother. My brother would put in hours of practice and dedication, learning every track and every trick needed to win. I'd do the opposite, and just pick up the controller and race him. I still won half the time, all thanks to sheer Goddamn luck. I think that should be proof enough that the series is a freakin' dice-roll.

As for your criticisms of my criticism of Super Mario World: So what if I'm different and didn't "fawn over instruction booklets"? So what if I'm not a masochist who enjoys being beaten into the ground a zillion times before I finally figure out what I'm supposed to do? And so what if I dislike a bunch of games the idiot masses consider "classics"? How does that make my opinions any more "shallow and haphazard" than yours? As far as I can tell, you're just some nostalgia-ridden, simple-minded fanboy who can't take that other people think differently than you.

Captain_Balko

#125

Captain_Balko said:

@CanisWolfred Wow. Yeah, man, Super Mario World is OBVIOUSLY one of the hardest games of all time. That's why six year old me could beat it without too much trouble, my four year old cousin does pretty well at it, and people who RARELY PLAY VIDEO GAMES (I have assorted cousins who almost never play games, along with a few friends) that figured out what to do in a few minutes. Yeah, everyone is entitled to their opinion, but some opinions make sense and others clearly do not. "Beaten into the ground a zillion times"... and what are you talking about? Super Mario World... Man. It's such a simplistic, easy game. I honestly feel sorry for you if you had even a bit of trouble with it.

So, we're all idiots because we like great first party games made by Nintendo. But you, oh, you're the coolest kid in school because you play imported RPGs on your SNES. Dude, 7 out of 10 of your top ten SNES games were RPGs (and one of the three that weren't had many RPG elements). Yeah, everything else is too "mainstream", right? You sound like a pretentious hipster, which I'm guessing you just might be. Nobody likes hipsters. Stop being a hipster.

Oh, and by the way, YOUR BROTHER SUCKS AT MARIO KART. That's the only logical explanation, other than that you are some sort of Mario Kart genius (which I doubt after hearing about your apparent prowess in SMW). Sure, he learned the tricks of the courses, but clearly, he doesn't know how to drift. I do, and I beat my brother LITERALLY EVERY MATCH. Every. Single. One. And he's not bad. I'm just better. I have more "skill", not more luck. I already stated that I win in online matches 80% of the time. If you knew anything about probability, if I'm facing eight other people, chances are I'd only win 12.5 percent of the time if everything is "random". 80 is a big departure from 12.5 percent. Opinions are one thing, but facts are another, and the fact is, although there is an element of luck in Mario Kart, the game relies far more on skill. Both @ACK and I have demonstrated this.

I tried to play nice, but I really don't like the fact that you think you can call people "idiot masses". That's insulting, and frankly, absurd. Classical music has been kept alive all of this time because people recognized how exceptional it was. The same goes for classic movies, and, you guessed it, classic video games. But you're too cool for classics, we all get it.

ACK

#127

ACK said:

@CanisWolfred: I'm pretty much in line with @Captain_Balko here....

SMW is an easy game and it was easy when I was 10 years old (and, no, even at that age it's not a game that should require instructions; my point was they were an intrinsic part of the era). I never lose at Mario Kart unless I'm playing with an absolute expert and I play MK Wii and/or 7 almost every day with average to above average players in local multi.

Finally, he's completely right, your list lacks diversity... There's nothing wrong with that, but excuse me if I'm a bit skeptical of your insight regarding the undisputed classics and your apparent contempt for the people who adore them. (And, if it matters, my opinions are not shallow and haphazard because I haven't efforted to express poorly formed ideas that revolve around disdain for other gamers and their favorite games. Not to mention, I haven't questioned the integrity of two of the most popular and influential games from the golden era of videogames.)

Donjwolf

#128

Donjwolf said:

I guess I must be the only one who thinks Star Fox is a much better game than SF 64. Lots of people prefer SF 64. It's not a bad game, but it lacks the music and challenge that SF had. I also must be the only person who LIKES the graphics in Star Fox. Just what is so wrong with it? So what if the polys lack textures. It doesn't make it 'ugly.' I'd buy a port on 3DS in a heartbeat. It doesn't need updated visuals. It will ruin the game.

Williaint

#129

Williaint said:

1. Super Mario World
2. Kirby Superstar
3. Super Metroid
4. LoZ: LttP
5. Yoshi's Island
6. Super Mario RPG
7. FF3/Chrono Trigger (I like them equally)
8. Metal Warriors
9. Earthbound
10. EWJ: 2

I've never been a big fan of Racing games; I enjoyed Mario Kart, but... It's not one of my favourites. I liked F-Zero, especially the music, but it just wasn't my kinda game. Star Fox was fun, and the characters voices were funny. I liked the '64 game, however, not enough to buy the 3DS one. I've never played any Castlevania title, though I regret this, now.

Zodiak13

#130

Zodiak13 said:

You guys above are getting a little to heated. Try to chill out folks, no one wants this to become IGN comment board, lol.I would just say this, if a game has had a following for many many years, it should be regarded as a classic. Taste's vary, but games that no one likes never stir up debate. I admit that my personal tastes of games borders on snobbery toward what I consider "pop" gaming. Stuff like FPS's and GTA (and GTA clones) I view as utter garbage personally. However, it would be dumb for me to say the the 1st GTA or possibly it's sequels, will not be classics. A large group of people find them to be amazing, I just don't, doesn't mean they won't be classics. Am I making sense?? Probably not.

SamiCetinSMK

#131

SamiCetinSMK said:

A lot of mixed opinions here, and i guess we all have our reasons for our favorites. I play in the professional crowd for some of the racing games including Super Mario Kart, so they will be higher up my list, but i have always enjoyed the rest. Infact i could safely say that i equally like most of the games mentioned in all the above posts. It shows how the SNES console was so great!

1. Super Mario Kart - Perfectly designed kart racer with controls to die for. The items are not as randomnised as the later versions, allowing for more driving skills to be involved. Many players around the globe are still active in the Time Trial and Multiplayer circuit, with yearly World Championships in France (also partially sponsored by Nintendo of France with some nice Nintendo related prizes and consoles!) Here is a video of my niece's Time Trial Record set at a large Retro video gaming even in the UK earlier this year: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOFKUgsY1UM

2. Super Mario World - The game that set the console in motion, still so playable and fun today. Pure platforming perfection!

3. Donkey Kong Country - We thought this was gona be on the N64 when we saw the first screenshots... but it wasnt! Graphics, gameplay and music was awesome

4. Donkey Kong Country 2 - As per the above

5. F-Zero - Another mode 7 classic, although it lacked a multiplayer mode, the Time Trials certainly kept me busy. Does anyone else love the tune in Silence... and Big Blue, and Port Town... and Mute City! All of it!

6. A Link to the Past - Awesome game, i cant run through it as quickly as the platformers so i didnt put this one on top but enjoyed it every bit as much as OOT on N64.

7. Donkey Kong Country 3 - The 3rd one was still just as great, slightly prefer the first two but a lot of fun here.

8. Super Mario RPG - Got a nice boxed copy for my NTSC SNES and a pretty mint Japanese SFC copy too. Awesome to play through.

9. Super Street Fighter II - Slower than Turbo but good 2 player fun and extra features.

10. Yoshi's Island - Really enjoyable platformer and music, wasn't as good as the others i felt but still class.

ToxieDogg

#132

ToxieDogg said:

I don't own Earthbound or Chrono Trigger carts (played them though) but I've got original copies of all the others. I like Super Mario World, but it's massively overrated and I'd put it behind both Yoshi's Island and Super Mario Bros. 3 in terms of which 2D platformers I like best. I'd have had Secret Of Mana on that list somewhere too....probably in the place of the original Donkey Kong Country which is decent, but finding the bonus levels was too much trial and error and it wasn't as varied or enjoyable as Donkey Kong Country 2.

Relias

#134

Relias said:

Actually I never understood what made A Link to the Past so great.. it's one of my least favorite Zelda's (Along with Links Adventure) I thought the Original was a classic.. and Links Awakening on GB was when Zelda got it's magic back.. (Then came OOT arguably my favorite game of all time). Super Mario World was okay.. but I liked the NES and Gameboy Mario games better... Donkey Kong Country while visually impressive.. (Loved the music too) I found
boring.. F-Zero was awesome but frustrating... I loved Super Metroid though... and the hours I wasted on Castlevania 4... and Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo.. (Hyper fighting) is insane.. Chrono Trigger is one of the Best RPG's of all time.. but everytime I see a list like this I can't help but wonder.. where is Gradius 3... and more importantly.. the Hardcore RPG game called 7th Saga.. (Often forgotten unfortunately... I wish they would remake that one.. just update the graphics.. leave the gameplay as is..)

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