Sunday 1 August 2010

Top 10 SNES Games

Super Mario World Map

The era of the Super Nintendo defined the formative years of my gamerhood. During the SNES' reign, videogames graduated from being a hobby of mine to being a full-blown infatuation. I loved the 2D sprite-work, I loved the 16-bit sound, and most of all I loved the games.

I'm immediately buoyed by the opening few notes of an original SNES musical score, and screen grabs of my favourite games are highly coveted for wallpaper duty.

A discussion in the pub with a similarly besotted friend escalated enthusiastically, and it has yielded my official Top 10 SNES Games of all time. If you've never played these classics then I beseech you to consider joining our church by downloading them on the Wii's Virtual Console, or by using the ZNES emulator for the PC. Thank goodness they've been preserved in perpetuity; I'd have them guarded in the Tower of London with our nation's Crown Jewels, just to be safe!
  1. Super Mario World
  2. Pilotwings
  3. Actraiser
  4. Super Mario Kart
  5. Front Mission
  6. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
  7. Contra III: The Alien Wars
  8. Zombies Ate My Neighbors
  9. Cybernator
  10. Super Bomberman
As with all Top 10 lists, it was excruciating to omit some games that are legendary in their own right. If you're looking for more titles to play beyond the Top 10 then I heartily recommend: F-Zero, Gradius III, Secret of Mana, Super Castlevania IV, Donkey Kong Country, Rock 'N' Roll Racing, Street Fighter II, Final Fight, Super Mario All-Stars, Super Punch Out!!, and Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island.


  1. What, no love for the greatest Final Fantasy of all time?

  2. I've been a strategy RPG player since UFO: Enemy Unknown blew my mind.

    I do enjoy a classic JRPG now and then, but there's no room for fleeting fancies my top 10.

    What would your chart be then Blaise?

  3. Yours is pretty spot on, but I would substitute Actraiser, Front Mission, and Zombies, for Secret of Mana, Rock N Roll Racing and Street Fighter II Turbo (In no particular order).

    Street Fighter definitely has to be in the top 10 somewhere as it was such a landmark for a game of its genre and caliber to be played on a home system.

  4. That's a good list, though some of the choices puzzle me. I found DKC 2 and DKC 3 were both more fun to play than the original. I did expect FFVI to be in the top 5, that seems kind of weird. My personal favorite game of all time is Chrono Trigger, so I would have loved to see that at number 1. But with most people I've talked to that played a lot of snes games, they tend to rank Zelda and Chrono Trigger 1 and 2, so I'm surprised that it is so far down on this list.

    Regards: Eve Hunt

    1. Nice to hear you've got so much love for the SNES Zaved.

      At the time, DKC's pre-rendered 3D sprites transported me deeply into its world. The connection I had with the avatars and their environments couldn't be usurped by the iterative mechanical improvement of the sequels.

      I think it's common to have a strong connotation invoked by games that take you to a favourite time and place.

      I guess that's why there is no consensus as the "best" games of all time, as ludic value is subjective to the player!