As exciting as it is, it came as no surprise to hear about Nintendo's plans to release a SNES Mini Classic Edition in time for the holiday season this year. The NES Mini was a tremendous success and flew off the shelves as soon as stock arrived - you could argue that Nintendo did everything perfectly, apart from producing enough of them. Therefore, following up with a SNES Mini makes perfect sense from a business perspective.
With a bit of luck Nintendo will make a lot more SNES Mini units to satisfy demand this time around, but what games might feature on it, you ask? Following the pattern laid out by the NES Mini (i.e. they've all pretty much been on the Wii, 3DS or Wii U Virtual Console at one point), here's our best guess list for your consideration. Yes, we could have gone totally bonkers and picked titles which have no chance of appearing on the system, but we played it safe and have instead included a "wildcard" section at the end.
30 Games For the SNES Mini Classic Edition
- ActRaiser - Only on the Wii Virtual Console, we're sure that Nintendo could twist Square Enix's arm to put this amazing side-scrolling action / God-sim hybrid on the SNES Mini. It's arguably one of the most inventive 16-bit titles ever made.
- Axelay - The SNES didn't get many shmups in its lifespan, but Konami's Axelay is a great showcase of the Mode 7 capabilities of the system. With both vertical and horizontally scrolling levels, this is a must-have for the SNES Mini. Shame we never got that promised sequel!
- Chrono Trigger - The SNES had so many amazing RPGs, but Square Enix's Chrono Trigger stands out from the crowd as one of the best, if not the best.
- Contra III: The Alien Wars - The NES Mini had Super C, it's a no-brainer that we need Konami's classic 2-player run and gun on the SNES Mini.
- Demon's Crest - Capcom's devilish action platformer was a commercial flop at the time of release, but it's an amazing game and would make a perfect addition to the SNES Mini lineup.
- Donkey Kong Country - Of course a Donkey Kong game will have to be on the SNES Mini, but it would be greedy of us to expect all three. It's likely we'll get the first or second instalment of Rare's classic platforming series.
- Earthbound - Having missed out on the Wii Virtual Console, it was a big deal when this eventually landed on the Wii U eShop in 2013. Now HAL Labs quirky fan-favourite RPG is also on the 3DS eShop it seems like a reasonable assumption to expect it to pop up on the SNES Mini.
- F-Zero - This SNES launch title still stands up today as a great game and it showcases the Mode 7 capabilities of the console, so it's a given that it will be included on the SNES Mini.
- Final Fantasy III - We need a Final Fantasy game on the SNES Mini, and the third instalment is a likely candidate.
- Final Fight 2 - While the original Final Fight game is the most iconic, it has no two player mode on the SNES. Much like Double Dragon on the NES Mini, we'll likely see Nintendo push for the 2-player enabled sequel.
- Kirby's Dream Course - Of course the SNES Mini needs a Kirby game, but for the sake of variety we chose Kirby's excellent take on crazy golf. There are so many platformers on the SNES to choose from, after all.
- Mario's Super Picross - Here's one for the puzzle fans, this Japanese import has been popular on the Virtual Console, so who knows it might pop up on the SNES Mini.
- Mega Man X - Like the NES Mini, only one Mega Man game can make the cut. Mega Man X is probably the most likely candidate.
- Pilotwings - Another Mode 7 showcase which needs to be on the SNES Mini. Love it or hate it, there is nothing quite like Pilotwings.
- R-Type III: The Third Lightning - We'll admit this one isn't as likely as some of the others on the list, but we love a good shmup here at Nintendo Life, so fingers crossed.
- Secret of Mana - Another classic Square Enix RPG makes the cut, how could it not? With its amazing soundtrack and gorgeous visuals, we've got our fingers crossed for this one.
- Star Fox - Now this is a interesting one. The Virtual Console has never had a release of Star Fox, presumably down to some difficulty in emulating the Super FX chip, so this might be an outside bet. However, emulators on PC and Android have been playing this game without issue for almost a year, so surely Nintendo can make it happen.
- Street Fighter II' Turbo: Hyper Fighting - The SNES Mini needs a Street Fighter game, there is no question. We're fans of the Turbo edition as it's not like fighting underwater. Super is another good choice if you are a fan of the extra characters.
- Super Castlevania IV - Simon Belmont whip tickling adventure is a must-have for the SNES Mini and we're sure that Nintendo will pick it; that soundtrack alone makes it worth a look.
- Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts - Capcom's console-only sequel to arcade classic Ghouls 'n Ghosts deserves it's place on the SNES Mini - it's one of the most challenging titles on the system.
- Super Mario Kart - The original Mario Kart game is a dead cert for the SNES Mini. It's still amazing fun to play even today. What more do we need to say?
- Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars - We've probably gone a bit RPG mad in this list, but the SNES has so many good ones. Let's go crazy!
- Super Mario World - We're really not sure if this obscure platformer will make it on to the SNES Mini, but we can hope and dream (JOKE).
- Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island - While we jest about Super Mario World, this Yoshi flavoured sequel is much less likely as it has never appeared on the Virtual Console, presumably down to its use of the Super FX chip. The SNES Mini would be a good chance to release this amazing game officially again.
- Super Metroid - How could the SNES Mini not have one of Samus' finest adventures. Consider this essential.
- Super Punch-Out!! - Punch Out was one of the games on the NES Mini which we kept going back to, so we can only hope that the SNES sequel is included on the SNES Mini as a lot of folks probably still haven't played it.
- Super Tennis - Nintendo will likely be on the look out for at least one sports game to plonk on the SNES Mini and we'd love to see Super Tennis make the cut. For some bizarre reason it's never seen a Virtual Console release, but we'd love to see it pop up here. It's still the best tennis game ever, in our opinion.
- Tetris Attack - We'll need some puzzlers on the SNES Mini to give us a break from all the excellent platformers. Even though this isn't Tetris in the truest sense, it's still a great game and we'd like to see it make the cut.
- The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past - It's a given that Link's excellent 16-bit adventure will be on the SNES Mini. It's an amazing game which has stood the test of time.
- The Legend of the Mystical Ninja - We'd love to see Konami's quirky Goemon adventure pop up on the SNES Mini. It's been a favourite on the Virtual Console, so you never know.
Some SNES Mini Wildcards Which We'd Like
Now the game list above is very much grounded in reality, but it would be remiss of us not to include a few wildcards. You never know, Nintendo might surprise us and work out some tricky licensing issues so we can relive SNES gems which never made it to the Virtual Console.
Here are a few games which we'd love to see, but we're not holding our breath:
- Aladdin and Lion King - Both of these Disney licensed games are well loved on the SNES. But let's be honest it would take a miracle for Nintendo to secure them!
- Battletoads and Double Dragon - We'd love to see this fun beat 'em up pop up on the SNES Mini, but it's very unlikely.
- Cybernator - While Konami's mech themed run and gunner isn't as loved as the Contra games, we'd love to play it again on the SNES Mini.
- Gradius III - if we don't get Axelay or Super R-Type on the SNES Mini, we'll settle for the excellent Gradius III instead.
- Harvest Moon - This classic farming simulator would be a great choice for the SNES Mini too, but it didn't quite make our cut.
- Kirby Superstar - Of course this is an amazing Kirby game and it would be ideal for the SNES Mini, but with so many platformers we're wondering if it will happen.
- Mortal Kombat - While the SNES release of this fan favourite brawler was heavily censored, we're not sure Nintendo still has the stomach for such fatalities on the SNES Mini.
- NBA Jam - We'd love a few more sports games on the SNES Mini and NBA Jam is one of the greats. But with team and players names in the game, it would be almost impossible to license we would imagine.
- Rock n' Roll Racing - Let the carnage begin! If you haven't played this, think of Super R.C. Pro-Am on steroids. Will it be on the SNES Mini? Probably not.
- SimCity - Before 'The Sims' there was SimCity and the SNES version of this classic town planning sim even has cameo appearances from Mario and Bowser. It's a possibility for the SNES Mini certainly, however the Wii Virtual Console version has now been delisted, so it's kind of unlikely.
- Star Fox 2 - Now we are really entering the realms of wishful thinking. This Star Fox sequel was practically finished, but never released. It would set the interwebz on fire if this was to be released officially somehow.
- Super Bomberman - We think a Bomberman game would be a perfect fit for the SNES Mini, why has this never seen a Virtual Console release? Make it happen Konami!
- Super Mario All-Stars - A must have for the SNES, this excellent Mario compilation has never made it on to the Virtual Console for obvious reasons. But we'd love to play the classic NES Mario games again in 16-bit style. Could it happen?
- Super Star Wars - Never say never as this did get a release on the Wii Virtual Console, but now that Disney own the Star Wars rights, the force might not be with this one.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles in Time - This one would be a licensing nightmare, but having it on the SNES Mini would save you having to sell a kidney to get the original cartridge.
- U.N. Squadron - We've got a real fondness for Capcom's obscure shmup. Based on the Japanese Area 88 manga, this would be a pleasant surprise to find popping up on the SNES Mini.
- Uniracers - This is a fun stunt racer released on the SNES in 1994 by Nintendo, and is also known as Unirally. Unfortunately Pixar sued developer DMA Design over the likeness of the unicycle design and concept from their 1987 short film Red's Dream so don't hold your breath.
- Wild Guns - There's a lot of love for Natsume's wild west themed SNES shooter, so who knows we could see it on the SNES Mini. It's been on the Virtual Console after all.
- Zombies Ate My Neighbors - This well loved LucasArts game would be a welcome addition to the SNES Mini roster. It did get a Wii Virtual Console release, but like Super Star Wars never made it to the Wii U or the 3DS for shame.
What do you think of our lists? Let us know which games you'd love to see on the SNES Mini Classic Edition with a comment below.