As is obvious to anyone who knows me, I enjoy classic gaming. While not an obsessive Nintendo fan like many people my generation, I do enjoy the good old Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) quite a bit; I was just playing Mario 3 a few days ago, and I always enjoy popping a cart in and having at it, or playing the games via other methods, where applicable. The NES is a good, go to system for late 80’s to early 90’s gaming, and is something I think most everyone can enjoy, as compared to the more refined tastes needed to enjoy Atari era gaming.
Today, Nintendo announced a return of the NES… sort of. In this case, we have what people are calling the “NES Mini” but is officially named the “NES Classic Edition.” It looks like a miniature Nintendo Entertainment System control deck, including re-creations of the original NES controllers, and comes with 30 built in games.
Basically, if you are familiar with the Atari flashback consoles, that’s what this amounts to be, but it’s a little more awesome since, of course, it’s Nintendo. The console will feature HDMI output, which is nice for playing classic 8 bit games on your HDTV, but I do have a concern on if it will properly address aspect ratio or not – I can’t stand when 4:3 aspect ratio images (square ones, like classic TV’s) get stretched to 16:9 for widescreen – it ruins the image. I would presume Nintendo would make sure this happens, and the aspect ratio remains pure, but who knows…
The game selection is pretty cool, featuring many popular 3rd party titles, while also keeping some major 1st party titles available. Honestly the game selection, on a whole, is pretty damn good. Some whatever titles, to be sure, but most of them are top notch. I mean, all 3 Super Mario Bros. Games? Zelda 1 and 2? Castlevania? Mega Man 2? Come on, what’s not to love? Okay, maybe Tecmo Bowl is meh for me, not liking sports, but it IS a good game. Galaga, eh, a little old school for a NES compilation, but Final Fantasy? Oh heck yeah, even though the game is incredibly brutal. Metroiod? Sweet!
- Balloon Fight
- Bubble Bobble
- Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest
- Donkey Kong
- Donkey Kong Jr.
- Double Dragon II: The Revenge
- Dr. Mario
- Final Fantasy
- Ghosts N’ Goblins
- Ice Climber
- Kid Icarus
- Kirby’s Adventure
- Mario Bros.
- Mega Man 2
- Ninja Gaiden
- Punch-Out!! Featuring Mr. Dream
- Super C
- Super Mario Bros.
- Super Mario Bros. 2
- Super Mario Bros. 3
- Tecmo Bowl
- The Legend of Zelda
- Zelda II: The Adventure of Link
Let me explain one thing before I end this article though: This is NOT a “new NES.” This is a system-on-a-chip type console, like the Flashbacks and the like, that is built really just to play these games. Basically, you won’t be shoving NES game paks into this console. For some reason news outlets are using poor titles like “bringing back the NES” and this can mislead people.
It’s just a box that will play these particular games. That’s all, at least, that we know for now. It’s still a damned good buy, at $60 USD, so why not give it a shot when it’s released November 11th, 2016? Should be fun for everyone. I’ll be keeping an eye out for more information and will share my thoughts as new information arises.