When you add a console to your collection, the first thing you want to do is get a handful of games to keep you busy with your new toy. However, most of us can’t spend afford to spend fat pile of cash for a few games. This budget-friendly list should help you quickly find which games will start you off well without emptying your wallet. Since the SNES is quickly growing with nostolgic collectors, it’s getting harder to find real values in the SNES market. However, as long as you don’t mind skipping the harder-to-find cardboard boxes for the games, you can find these classics for $10 or less. (Prices listed are an average eBay price for US cartridge-only games, including shipping)
| Super Mario World: $10
The massive follow-up to the Super Mario Bros series on the NES is not only the most popular SNES games, but is also one of the greatest platforming games of all time. With numerous levels full of color and creativity, Super Mario World is well worth its low price of admission.
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| F-Zero: $6
Serving as an early showcase of the Super Nintendo’s superior graphical power, F-Zero remained one of the best 2D racing games of all time. Some old-school gamers still prefer it to its newer siblings on the N64 and Gamecube due to its great course designs and balanced gameplay.
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Cybernator (aka Assault Suits Valken in Japan) game is an intense side-scrolling, mech shooter that takes you through a steep difficulty curve. In this shmup, your ‘Assault Suit’ can jump, thrust, dash, punch and use various weapons to do your damage. Control is great (but different) with a real ‘chunky robot’ feel. Cybernator boasts many original features and the mode 7 explosions throughout are huge, frequently filling the screen.
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Uniracers takes the speed and competitive nature of traditional racing games and mix in the tricks and showmanship that was eventually made popular in the Tony Hawk series. The result is one of the most unique and underrated games of the 16-bit era.
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If you are looking to take flight, why not take a look at Pilotwings. In classic Nintendo fashion, Pilotwings takes a previously complicated genre (flight simulators) and make them more accessible to the casual player while enhancing the fun. Pilotwings features a variety of aircrafts and will teach you how to lots of cool tricks. The original SNES version holds up quite well and is a great showpiece for the Super Nintendo console.
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|Star Fox: $6
The original in the shoot-em-up series is still a classic showpiece for the SNES. Star Fox’s combination of dramatic shooting action and quirky characters served as a winning formula for a treasured franchise. Of course, the SNES original shows its age more than it’s N64 sibling, but its dirt cheap and a great piece of gaming nostolgia. If only the Gamecube Star Fox games had as much shooting action as the original.
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|Killer Instinct: $6
In the midst of Street Fighter-mania, Nintendo and Rare created a new fighting franchise that had a 3D in order to give it a cutting-edge look. Killer Instinct had some unique elements and a great deal of character that made it a fan favorite in the Nintendo crowd. As one of the cheapest Nintendo-published classics, it is worth a small handful of dollars to add solid piece to a Super Nintendo library.
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|Super Ghouls ‘N Ghosts: $8
If you like a lot of fast action and frustratingly challenging gameplay that somehow beckons you to keep playing, you won’t find a better value on the SNES than Super Ghouls ‘N Ghosts. Super Ghouls n Ghosts has stood the test of time in every respect and is a genre-defining piece of work to boot.
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As one of the best exclusive SNES platformers not from Nintendo, Plok definately is worth the investment if you like running and jumping. It’s a great representation of 16-bit gaming and is a title that is often overlooked.
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|Super Game Boy: $7
This isn’t actually a game, but the Super Gameboy is an add-on to your Super Nintendo that lets you play your original Gameboy and Gameboy Color games on your SNES. There are still a number of great Gameboy games out there that can expand your library. I’ll be developing a list of good-n-cheap Gameboy games as well, so you can stock up.
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|Tetris Attack: $10
Tetris Attack doesn’t really have much to do with Tetris other than it is a block-based puzzle game. However, I must say it is just as addicting and fulfilling as the original. While you may find some cheaper puzzle games (like Kirby’s Avalanche – see below), Tetris Attack remains the best value.
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|The Lion King: $7
The 16-bit actually had a good handful of well-made licensed Disney platforming games and The Lion King is one of the best on the Super Nintendo. It’s solid platforming and wonderful animation make it one of the most enjoyable Disney-based games of all time. It’s hard for gamers of all ages not to love this one.
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|Out of This World (Another World): $5
This cinematic platformer was one of the most innovative and influencial games of its day and remains a solid classic. Originally released on the Amiga and other personal computer platforms, Out of This World has a fresh style compared to most SNES games. Weighing in at only $5, this gem is one of the best values on the SNES.
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|Flashback: The Quest for Identity: $6
Touted as a “CD-ROM Game on a Cartridge”, Flashback: The Quest for Identity was one of the most graphically impressive console games in its day (it was ported from the Amiga). The game features fully hand-drawn backdrops and for its time remarkably fluid rotoscoped animation of walking, running and jumping movements, reminiscent of the earlier Prince of Persia. It’s also worth mentioning that although very similar in a number of ways to Out of This World, Flashback isn’t really a sequel.
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|Phantom 2040: $4
With prices of high-profile SNES games on the rise, it can be quite a challenge to find the amazing Super Metroid for under $10. However, if you would like some Metroid-like action (without the high production values and depth) for a fraction of the price (or just want an under-appreciated action title), Phantom 2040 is a wonderful choice.
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|Super Turrican: $9
If you’re looking for another action shooter on the cheap, you should be able to find Super Turrican for under $10. Super Turrican finds itself an enjoyable compromise between the run and gun styling of a Contra game and the more open experience of a Metroid title. I suppose you could also consider the Turrican games to be like a Western-developed Mega Man, (minus the fun and memorable bosses).
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Other Cheap Favorites
- Kirby’s Avalanche: $6 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Spider-Man & Venom: Maximum Carnage: $9 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Legend of the Mystical Ninja: $8 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Jungle Book: $5 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Desert Strike: $6 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Jungle Strike: $6 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Urban Strike: $6 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Aero The Acrobat: $5 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Strike Gunner STG: $10 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Super Nova (Darius Force): $8 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Blazeon: $7 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Firepower 2000: $6 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Super Earth Defense Force: $5 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Gradius III: $6 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Super R-Type: $4 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Thunder Spirits: $4 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Darius Twin: $4 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Final Fight: $6 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Super Star Wars: $5 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Super Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back: $8 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Super Star Wars: Return of the Jedi: $7 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Metal Combat: Falcon’s Revenge : $4 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Tetris 2: $7 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Wario’s Woods: $8 – eBay / Amazon.com
- MechWarrior 3050: $8 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Batman Returns: $7 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Tiny Toon Adventures: Buster Busts Loose: $5 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Ignition Factor: $4 – eBay / Amazon.com
- X-Men: Mutant Apocalypse: $8 – eBay / Amazon.com
- NBA Jam TE: $7 – eBay / Amazon.com
- SimCity: $5 – eBay / Amazon.com
- King Arthur’s World: $7 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Claymates: $7 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Cool World: $7 – eBay / Amazon.com
- Zoop: $4 – eBay / Amazon.com