Sandbox Selects: Favourite Super Nintendo Games

Compiled By: John Michael Bennett
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Super Nintendo or SNES—you hear these words and it screams nostalgia for gamers. Some consider the Super Nintendo to be a part of the golden age of video games, while others remember fondly the console wars between the Super Nintendo and the Sega Genesis. We are not here to definitively say if this was the best console; however, we thought it might be fun if ten of us talked about our favourite Super Nintendo games.

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SNES is so popular, people like to imagine modern games for the retro console — as evidenced by this photoshop by Kotaku. http://tay.kotaku.com/the-best-of-the-wii-for-super-nintendo-492825774

1) Adrian Priestley (Committee Member) – Kirby’s Dream Course

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A fusion of the Kirby franchise and miniature golf, Kirby’s Dream Course employs just the right balance of planning ahead, and technical precision. Meticulously scoping out the levels for obstacles, enemies, and power-ups before you take that perfect shot is immensely satisfying. This is a game that will challenge your brain, as well as your thumbs.

2) Tiffany MacDonald (Committee Member) – Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars

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Super Mario RPG is an RPG game developed by Square—which in the mid 90s was in arguably its prime. Not only that, but this game was produced by legendary Nintendo developer Shigeru Miyamoto. The firepower behind the scenes led to exactly what you would expect, an amazing RPG experience which contained all the love and charm of the Mario series. Super Mario RPG is the game which spawned the current series of Paper Mario, and Mario & Luigi games, and any fan of those should take it upon themselves to go back and experience how it all began in Super Mario RPG.

3) Ashley Quirke (Committee Member) – Breath of Fire 2

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Breath of Fire 2 is my favourite SNES game because it was my first time delving into the RPG world—not counting Pokemon. I liked choosing from my group of party members, then levelling them up to kick some butt! Even as a kid I really enjoyed the music in this game. Hearing it now gives me major nostalgia.

4) Matt Cook (Board Member) – Super Metroid

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A diverse and masterful soundtrack. Fine-tuned controls requiring skill and dexterity. Brilliant level design on a massive scale, incorporating innovations that would be mimicked in “metroidvanias” to this day. Gameplay that encourages and rewards exploration without hand-holding. A sense of both isolation and wonder, unmatched by any other game of its time. Super Metroid is the gold standard of action-adventure games for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Period.

5) Clint Gould (Volunteer) – Final Fantasy VI (III in English)

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Not often do you see an RPG that immerses you a world where you have so much control over how you end the game. The music, the story, the graphics, and the characters; everything you feel for, and it just makes this game an absolute masterpiece for many JRPG fans alike. And if you don’t think the main villain is cool, then you’re mad; dancing mad.

6) Jake Finlay (Volunteer) – Chrono Trigger

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As a child who spent most of his growing years glued to his Super Nintendo, it would normally be hard to pick a standout favourite, with Chrono Trigger this isn’t the case. The game blends all the aspects that I had grown to love about RPG’s from that era, such as unique characters, amazing musical tracks, and a story that seemed to make hours seem short.

This particular game however, added into all of that with an amazing battle system, the focus on time travel and how it affected the world around you, not to mention multiple endings based on the choices the player had made, giving it a more personal feel, like your options mattered. This is something games to this day still use as a major selling point. This, and a slew of memorable villains and side quests make Chrono Trigger hard to not steal my top pick.

7) Matt Daniels (Committee Member) – Secret of Mana

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Secret of Mana leveled up my childhood without turning me into an adult (nobody wants that). It felt like Chrono Trigger, which counts as praise, but battles happened in real-time, so the pacing was as smooth as honey-flavoured milk. If that’s not a thing, it should be. Most importantly, magic abilities grew based on usage; if all you use is ice, your ice magic will be glorious. It even had drop-in/out multi-player functionality. Childhood complete!

8) Angie Strowbridge (Volunteer) – Super Mario World

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About thirteen years ago I had a close friend and we spend a lot of time playing games together. Unlike me, he had a SNES with a fair collection of games. We rotated between them but the game we always gravitated back to was Super Mario World. We Would play the mode where two players rotated taking turns seeing who could get further. The game was a blast and has a lot of sentimental value to me.

9) Jillian Thistle (Board Member) – Kirby Super Star

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Kirby Super Star is a well rounded AND fun platformer made by Nintendo. It features different modes which include the now classically known kirby levels. While munching on some bad guys you can get Beam attack, sword attack, or my favourite Cutter–and many, many more. If the classic mode is not your style, no worries–there are other modes like Gourmet Race, that pits Kirby against King DeeDeeDee in an all out race for food and the finish line. All with great upbeat music you expect from Nintendo games.

10) John Michael Bennett (President) – Donkey Kong Country

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While I played Donkey Kong Country as a kid, it wasn’t my favourite then—but it is now. The reason being was the game was too hard, and while I could fly through Super Mario World no problem, Donkey Kong Country offered a challenge. Now that I’m older, I recognize the beauty that is DKC—the perfect level balance, the rhymatic nature of the game, and the incredible music and graphics for the 16-bit era.

What do you think of our favourites? What is your favourite Super Nintendo game?

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