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30 years of the Super Famicom

Peklo

Oh! Create!
(they/them, she/her)
Today is the day! Celebrate a system that is surely one of the foundational, or codifying, cornerstones of this forum's affinity for the entire medium, if past precedent has proven anything. Stick to the Japanese original, or tangent into the subsequent localized releases, it all derives from the same root fondness--just share your memories and new discoveries alike. On short notice, here's a slim selection of some favourite SFC cover art, as seen in the box art list thread on the previous forum.



 

Phantoon

I cuss you bad
While it may not be the best console of all time it's got to be close and it's certainly my favourite. This generation was a huge one for the medium, making better and more interesting games possible. And the console wars at the time were absolutely insane.

Best game for me? Super Metroid, now and forever.
 

FelixSH

(He/Him)
Despite never owning one (my cousin had one, that I borrowed sometimes and played a lot at his), this is still what I think of, when I hear "gaming console", or something like that. It is the archetypical console for me, and probably my favourite. While the artstyle differs from game to game, obviously, I still find that there is an overarching style to the games. Many of the games still look great, and it's often a style that I love. Also, back then, box art was so much more interesting or cooler than it is today.

It's a shame, that many JRPGs came never over to Europe. I only got o play and enjoy them, when I got a PC in 2001. I used the chance to play through all these cool, old games. Which are now so much older. It's incredible that this console, that I would have loved so much to have, is now so incredibly old.
 

Phantoon

I cuss you bad
It's a shame, that many JRPGs came never over to Europe.
Yeah, it's telling about the quality of the SNES's library that I didn't get to play some of the most iconic games in its collection and it's still my favourite console.
 

Aleryn

Gravity is overrated.
Still can't get over the superiority of JPN covers. Lovely picks up there.

Lovely system, can't hold a candle to the MegaDrive's CPU speed for action games but everything else? A real golden age.
 

Issun

Could be a fren
Nintendo's first party output in the 16 Bit era was truly a thing of wonder. I think the Wii came close, but then there's Super Mario World, Yoshi's Island, Link to the Past, Super Metroid, StarFox, EarthBound, Kirby Super Star/Dream Course/Dream Land 3, F-Zero, DKC 1&2, and others. So good.
 

Sarge

hardcore retro gamin'
It really was astounding how many all-time classics came out on SNES. I know there were a lot of Sega kids, too, and I get why they were, but for my tastes, the SNES was where it was at. As @Issun says, just Nintendo's first-party output was astounding, and it shows in the games they put on the SNES Classic.

I only own three in-box Super Famicom games, but they've got some pretty decent covers.



 

Phantoon

I cuss you bad
Lovely system, can't hold a candle to the MegaDrive's CPU speed for action games but everything else? A real golden age.
The SNES wasn't quite as weak as we've been led to believe, and the SA-1 was eventually available (and it was probably quite a bit more powerful with that), but yeah. And it was a golden age, a real burst of creativity that the new hardware enabled.

I think of the Sonic and Donkey Kong Country series as the exemplars of their respective console's designs. Both are platform games, the most fashionable genre of the time. DKC shows off every graphical trick that the SNES could pull off (OK, no Mode 7, but there's colour blending, HDMA tricks aplenty) and has a fantastic synth soundtrack. Sonic shows off the Mega Drive's faster processor, and has an equally fantastic FM soundtrack. Also the Mega Drive's higher resolution is quite important to Sonic. Neither use helper chips. If you want to say what stock hardware can do they're pretty good, and they're completely different as they play to their respective hardware's strengths.

I guess Super Mario Bros would be the NES equivalent for that, it uses no mappers and was intended to be the ultimate cartridge Famicom game at the time.
 

Sarge

hardcore retro gamin'
The SNES wasn't quite as weak as we've been led to believe, and the SA-1 was eventually available (and it was probably quite a bit more powerful with that), but yeah. And it was a golden age, a real burst of creativity that the new hardware enabled.

I think of the Sonic and Donkey Kong Country series as the exemplars of their respective console's designs. Both are platform games, the most fashionable genre of the time. DKC shows off every graphical trick that the SNES could pull off (OK, no Mode 7, but there's colour blending, HDMA tricks aplenty) and has a fantastic synth soundtrack. Sonic shows off the Mega Drive's faster processor, and has an equally fantastic FM soundtrack. Also the Mega Drive's higher resolution is quite important to Sonic. Neither use helper chips. If you want to say what stock hardware can do they're pretty good, and they're completely different as they play to their respective hardware's strengths.

I guess Super Mario Bros would be the NES equivalent for that, it uses no mappers and was intended to be the ultimate cartridge Famicom game at the time.
Pretty much this. I've done some reading on various boards, and some folks in the know estimate the SNES CPU was about 70% of the performance of the Genesis. Not better, certainly, but not the massive gap you'd expect, either. That mainly comes down to the architectures, where the SNES CPU is pretty efficient on an instructions-per-cycle basis. Another factor that helped the Genesis was just how prolific the 68000 was in arcades, so there was a lot of talent that really knew how to code well for it. The SNES definitely required some deft coding and off-loading to the PPU whenever possible.

I noticed that Game Sack put up a video last night that was appropriate, pitting the SNES and Genesis against each other with a lot of playful console wars ribbing. But the ultimate conclusion was both systems are well worth playing, and I absolutely agree with that. It's hard to imagine the SNES being nearly as good as it was without Sega pushing them to the absolute limit.
 

Phantoon

I cuss you bad
It's hard to imagine the SNES being nearly as good as it was without Sega pushing them to the absolute limit.
Yes. Nintendo vs Sega with both in their Imperial phase was brilliant for us and I think it played a huge part in elevating the generation to the heights it achieved. I think that Sega not being a contender after that generation is a bloody tragedy (hugs Saturn)
 

4-So

False is the dawn that promises anything
The SNES is GOAT for my money. Just so, so much great content.

In terms of box art, while FF3 US has a kind of menacing charm, the FF6 SuperFami box is chef's kiss. Just love the Amano stuff.

 

Aleryn

Gravity is overrated.
Damn. Look at that up there. Its like everything I wanted from Japanese RPGs in some ridiculous pure form.
 

Lokii

It's always time for burgers
(He/Him)
Staff member
Moderator
I love the SNES it is my baby and I kiss it tenderly on the top of its head. SNES hit just as I was growing into my early teens so it defined a lot of my preferences, as I'm sure it did for many of us here. Kind like growin up with the RPGs right? It's brought me many good times and discoveries, and continues to do as as I delve deeper into the SFC library. I heard last year about this overlooked adventure game Ihatovo Monogatari based on the work of Kenji Miyazawa, a famous japanese author. This led me to a newly released translation of his stories and it was a real joy last year when I traveled through his quasi-fairy tales. I read the stories before playing the game it was fun seeing how the stories were translated into a top-down JRPG format. A real unique and interesting game, one that's only recently come to my attention despite a life-long interest in SNES stuff. I'm sure the SFC still has plenty more surprises for us.

It has a cool box too!



 

Sarge

hardcore retro gamin'
Oh, yeah, I've been meaning to get around to that one. SNESdrunk took a look at it recently, and I know Tom did a great job with the translation.
 
I love the SNES it is my baby and I kiss it tenderly on the top of its head. SNES hit just as I was growing into my early teens so it defined a lot of my preferences, as I'm sure it did for many of us here. Kind like growin up with the RPGs right? It's brought me many good times and discoveries, and continues to do as as I delve deeper into the SFC library. I heard last year about this overlooked adventure game Ihatovo Monogatari based on the work of Kenji Miyazawa, a famous japanese author. This led me to a newly released translation of his stories and it was a real joy last year when I traveled through his quasi-fairy tales. I read the stories before playing the game it was fun seeing how the stories were translated into a top-down JRPG format. A real unique and interesting game, one that's only recently come to my attention despite a life-long interest in SNES stuff. I'm sure the SFC still has plenty more surprises for us.

It has a cool box too!



Man, that box has such a "70s book cover" feel to it. Digging it.
 

Dracula

Video Nasty
(He/His)
I got my SNES as a reward for learning how to ride a bike, at age 9. It came with a copy of Super Mario All-Stars purchased from a rental store. First video game system I played and owned.

I bought a Super Famicom a few years ago for the express purpose of having a little shelf of those beautiful game boxes we've been sharing. SNES package art has a nostalgic charm for me, but there's often no comparison to the artwork they had overseas.

And how about that console box art?



Delicious.
 

MCBanjoMike

Infamous third lava dolphin
(He/him)
As a kid, I sold off all my NES stuff so I could buy a Super Nintendo at launch. It's too bad, because I had a half-decent collection of NES games that I'd be pretty stoked to still own today, but it was 100% worth it. About 10 years ago, on my first trip to Japan, I couldn't help but buy myself a Super Famicom, for the sheer beauty of the thing. It wound up being something of a dud, because it doesn't work as reliably as my original Super Nintendo does, but it was worth it just to get two SFC controllers with very low mileage on them. Then, around 2 years ago, I was at Calorie Mate's house just before he was going to move and he had a box with things he was going to get rid of...including his Super Nintendo. I couldn't bear the thought of it being sent to Goodwill, so I grabbed it and brought it back home with me. A little while later, the SNES Classic Mini came out and a friend helped me to get one from the Nintendo World Store in Manhattan. And finally, on my 40th birthday I was given a Super Nt. And that's how I came to own 5 different Super Nintendos. One could argue that's probably enough, but I wouldn't be surprised if I added a couple more to my collection some day!
 
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