SNES Mini: The Games That Should Have Been

With over 30 years of gaming history it’s no surprise that Nintendo is reaching back to the classic titles of the past and reminding gamers of some of the richest experiences and memorable moments which ever graced our television screens.  The quality of the titles being shipped with the SNES Mini make it an absolute must have, but we all feel a slight twinge of disappointment when some of our personal, favourite games don’t quite make the cut.

So, here’s my list of what I would have loved to see included and perhaps if another product is released they will be!

Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles IV: Turtles in Time

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There’s a heavy nostalgia factor whenever anyone mentions the Turtles franchise, it’s a massive part of my childhood – the TV series was imaginative, bold and memorable and was perfect for video game titles.  In 1992 the SNES played host to a stunning conversion of an arcade hit, a side scrolling beat-em up where, once you had chosen your favorite turtle, you could traverse varied and authentic stages kicking the shell out of the foot clan.  The SNES port was slightly different from the arcade and included different enemies, an extra boss battle and an additional Technodrome level.

The plot was nuanced and introduced fun historically based scenarios, starting with the familiar plot elements – Shredder and Krang do something terribly evil (Stealing the Statue of Liberty in this case), the four heroes set off to pursue the evil duo, punching and kicking their way through New York City, into the Sewers and eventually reaching the Technodrome.  It’s here where the genius of the game begins to reveal itself, in an exciting, somewhat unique boss battle with Shredder, where you view the action from his Point of View where he is in a machine, the only way to defeat him is by throwing his legions of foot clan soldiers at him, cracking his screen.

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Once you defeat Shredder, you would assume that, like any previous Turtles Title that the game would be over, but no, your heroes are caught in a time vortex and you must fight your way through time until the final battle with Krang and Super Shredder. These historically based levels are the main draw in the game, they are filled with humorous touches, feel fresh and help keep the players interest in a genre which at times can become monotonous and samey.  A favourite level is the hoverboard level which makes full use of the SNES’s mode 7 capabilities as your chosen turtle speeds towards New York City.

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Each of the turtles genuinely handles differently, Donatello has the longest reach, Raphael has the fastest attack but the weakest defence whilst Leonardo is an all-rounder.  There’s a good range of attacks and my personal favourite is the ability to grab a foot soldier, swing them backwards and forwards over the Turtles head damaging any enemies that happen to be near them.  The expanded move set brings more longevity to the title

It’s the best game of the history of the Turtles franchise and insanely popular with fans of beat-em-ups.  It’s inclusion in the SNES mini’s library would have brought many hours of Turtles co-op action into the bedrooms and living rooms of fans worldwide.

Chrono Trigger

This is almost always included in list based articles cataloguing the highlights of the SNES’s game library.  After it’s release towards the end of the consoles life in 1995, it quickly became regarded as one of the most unique and impressive games ever made.  It was a fundamental title which brought interest to the RPG genre from gamers who wouldn’t have been attracted to the genre before.  I personally believe that this game paved the way for Final Fantasy 7 to have been universally accepted by gamers regardless of their genre tastes.

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The story is immediately engaging and easy to follow, The Kingdom of Guardia gathers to commemorate it’s thousand-year anniversary, our hero Crono has slept in and we join him as he is being roused out of bed by his mother.  He races to the festivities and watches the public demonstration of the inventor Lucca’s latest invention with a young girl Marle.  Disaster happens as Lucca’s experimental teleportation device malfunctions sending Marle through space and time.

Crono and his wooden sword follows Marle into the past and begins a long, thrilling adventure to stop a potentially tragic future from unfolding. Along the way, Crono encounters a cast of unique and captivating characters to aid him in his quest from a heroic frog, whose motivation is to defeat the evil Fiendlord who changed him from a medieval knight into an amphibian to a futuristic android from the future who reveals that he enjoys gardening.  There’s a strong emphasis in plot development and character building in a captivating, fresh manner.  Narrative is key in Role Playing Games and this title has a deeply satisfying, emotionally stirring story with a total of 14 potential endings.

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It’s graphically superb and refines the Active Time Battle system from Final Fantasy VI.  You can perform specialised moves which perform powerful hits on enemies – these are called ‘Techs’ and it’s possible to team up with a party member or two members to perform Double or Triple Techs for devastating results. 

Chrono Trigger will always be one of the most unforgettable experiences in gaming history, from the moment that you begin to play through it, you realise that you are playing something special, it’s unique and one of the long-standing testaments to the Super Nintendo’s diversity and appeal for RPG fans.

Zombies Ate My Neighbours

This is a unique tribute to B grade horror movies, it’s a game which has gained much popularity since it’s release – to the point where it is now considered as a cult classic.  It takes the B grade theme and builds a hilarious action game which is a cross between a shoot-em-up and a scavenger hunt. These aspects combine to make one of the most enjoyable experiences on the SNES console.

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Your goal in the game is pretty simple, locate and rescue your neighbours who are trapped and evade or eliminate the Zombies and other monsters as you do so.  The enemy character design is varied and cleverly and clearly inspired by popular horror films, from the Chainsaw wielding madmen in hockey masks to the massive 50ft babies in diapers.  Each of these are designed so to elicit a smile from the gamer and armed with your trusty water pistol filled with holy water, you are tasked to take them down.

The water pistol is your main weapon, but along the levels you will find bigger guns and a potion that turns you into a cartoon demonic monster. Once you rescue all your neighbours a door will open up and warp you to the next level where you begin the process again.  The early levels can be completed easily, but the difficulty soon ramps up and the action can become intense.

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It’s an incredibly fun game with responsive controls, the option for co-op and despite the unchanging gameplay from level to level never becomes repetitive.  In my opinion this game is as good as Contra 3 with it’s humour pushing it ahead of the other shooters in the SNES library.

So there you have it, three of my favourite titles that didn’t quite make the cut to be included in the SNES Mini’s game catalogue.

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