Attempting to grab an NES Classic Edition was an ordeal for me and ended in ultimate failure. It entailed several weeks of following up with Target stores and showing up before their doors were open almost every three days and culminated when news spread of Toys R’ Usgetting a large shipment of NES Classics. I lined up at the store around 4am and, after about four hours of very cold and slightly rainy weather, the manager stepped out and started handing out tickets. There would be a ticket for each available unit. The rumor was that each store was getting around thirty units and I was 28th in the line so my hopes were high. Then, I watched as the manager handed the last ticket to the person four spaces ahead of me and shouted “That is it, guys! No more NES Classics today.” My heart sank and I had to endure the sleepy ride back home with nothing to celebrate. That became my last attempt for the NES Classic.
When the SNES Classic Edition was announced, I seriously cursed Nintendo. My mental reaction was Why are you doing this to me again? But, this time around, Nintendo was promising there would be enough units to go around and vocally discouraging fans from yielding to scalpers. So, low and behold, my hopes were up again. I really could not line up early on launch day so, by the time we had a chance to get to Target, their thirty units had been sold. Is thirty some kind of supply magic number? Having resigned myself to not aggressively pursue the SNES Classic, I just kept going on with my day to day life. My hoped was that, if it was meant to be, it would happen.
Wednesday afternoon came around and I receive a phone call from one of my best friends. He had just confirmed that GameStop had received SNES shipments that day. Wanting to just go home and relax after a day at work, this was the last thing I wanted to hear. But, now I had to; I called my GameStop. They did not have any stock left but gave me the number to a store that might, which so happened to be my “secondary” store. I called them and, wait for it, they had ONE left! Somehow, at close to 5pm they still had one! I asked them if they could hold it for me; that I was on my way to the store. They confirmed that they could hold it for thirty minutes. We booted up the GPS app (hoping to avoid traffic) and headed on there.
It’s so tiny!
Once at the mall, I made my way to the store and patiently waited in line; there was only one person ahead of me. When the guy called me over, I mentioned being there for the SNES Classic. He confirmed my name and brought this tiny box out from beneath the counter. I had heard these classic editions were small and seen the pictures of hands holding them. But, the size of the box still surprised me. Buying it was all a little bit surreal. After my failed ordeal with the NES Classic, this just felt so easy. Those GameStop guys were awesome! Some of the stores that my friend had called were not holding units for people so I was super lucky.
After dinner at the food court and a shameless photo shoot, taking advantage of all that natural mall light, we made it home and the unboxing began. Upon opening the box and pulling out the inner cardboard tray, a very familiar sight welcomed me: a poster showcasing some off the games within the console. What was so special about it? It is styled like the posters that came with the original SNES back in the 90’s!
The next surprise was how small the console itself is. It looks like something I should be able to open up and find candy inside! All necessary cables came in the box, including a Nintendo branded wall outlet to USB brick! Needless to say, finding an open HDMI port was harder than finding space for the physical console. It has such a small profile that, if all else fails, placing it on top of the TV stand would not block the TV in any way. I found it a nice spot next to my Switch controllers.
For as toy like as the console looks, the purple power and reset sliders are fully functional. Upon turning on the console a very nice looking menu popped up showing all the available games, several configuration and display settings, and access to every game’s instruction manual. Being the nostalgic guy I am, there was only one real option to start this SNES Classic journey with: Super Mario World. It was the very first game I played during the original’s launch and it felt right to do so again.
For context, I still own a working SNES console with about a third of the games contained within the SNES Classic. Yet the Classic, because it connects through HDMI, looks much better than the original. We are not talking improved graphics here, but a very sharp and clean look at what the original Super Nintendo Entertainment System could output. The two controllers included look and feel like brand new repurposed originals. There is a lot of quality that went into the design and production of this classic edition. I never got to see or hold an NES Classic but I assume the production values are there too.
I am not entirely sure what my intention was when I originally thought of purchasing this console, aside from playing games like Secret of Mana and Super Mario RPG, which I do not own. Yet, now that I have played it a bit, I am toying with the idea of making it a personal goal to slowly work my way through most the titles contained within. It might take a while, but I am confident it will be a very fun while!