In 2016 Nintendo released a new version of very old games console. Here’s what you need to know about the Nintendo Classic Mini NES release date, price, specs, games and features, and head to our NES Classic review if you want to know what we thought of it.
As Nintendo itself puts it: “The classic NES is back in a familiar-yet-new form as a mini replica of Nintendo’s original home console. Relive past glories, defeat the boss that you could never beat, or simply enjoy the classic titles of yesteryear anew.”
You may also see it called the ‘Nintendo NES Classic Edition’ or just ‘NES Mini’, but they’re all the same thing. Just don’t confuse it with Nintendo’s rumoured SNES Classic, the expected follow-up console.
Where to buy
Just in time to fill homes around the world with joy at Christmas, the Nintendo Classic Mini released on 11 November 2016.
The console quickly became almost impossible to get hold of in stores thanks to widespread stock shortages, and in April 2017 Nintendo announced that it had discontinued the NES Classic – so if you didn’t get one quickly, you’re now stuck turning to the second-hand market.
While the RRP was £49/$60, you can now expect to pay much more than that to pick one up. Amazon marketplace resellers are offering it for premium prices starting at £81 at the time of writing, while on eBay consoles are typically going for around £120.
At those prices, you might be better off tracking down an actual original NES – check out our guide to buying old games and consoles to find out how.
UPDATE: Nintendo has confirmed that more NES Classic Mini units will go on sale next year.
— Nintendo UK (@NintendoUK) September 12, 2017
We discussed Nintendo’s decision to discontinue the NES Classic – and its potential SNES follow-up – in the UK Tech Weekly Podcast, which you can listen to right here. The discussion of the NES Classic kicks off around 32:32.
Specs and features
Although it’s a NES (Nintendo Entertainment System), the new console features modern specs including HDMI so you won’t need to be searching the web for SCART adapters or such like. It’s also powered with a USB cable, although the AC adapter for the USB cable isn’t supplied in the box.
The console is pretty low-tech so can’t access the internet for things like the eShop, nor can it take any existing cartridges you might have.
What is in the box is a single Nintendo Classic Mini: NES Controller which has the same shape and style as the original NES controller. You can play two player by getting a second or using a Wii Classic Controller or Classic Controller Pro.
A cool feature of the Nintendo Classic Mini: NES Controller is that it can be used to play Virtual Console NES games on a Wii or Wii U console – you simply plug it into the bottom of the Wii Remote.
Nintendo said players needn’t worry about losing any hard-earned progress either because each game has multiple suspend points, so you can start where you left off easily.
Nintendo Classic Mini NES games
Included with the Nintendo Classic Mini is a total of 30 games including classics such as Kirby’s Adventure, Castlevania, Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda and Super Mario Bros. See below for the full list:
• 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