Super Nintendo Entertainment platform
With one of the greatest game libraries, spanning from the “simplest” pong game to the amazing Donkey Kong Country series and beyond, the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) is the top of line in home gaming systems – by far.
Let’s step back a bit. I started working on this article back in 2016, back when I bought my first Super Nintendo (yes, this was my very first Nintendo console) and have for the last few weeks tried to finish this story, but every time I try to go forward, it ends up with something already made – all stats and release dates – almost wiki like.
From Retro Trade, Germany
The SNES has always been, to me, the real home gaming console. I know there are other great systems, but to me, the SNES is the only real thing (Well, the NES is also alright). I think this is related to the number of releases for the console, and not just any type releases – mainly high-quality releases – almost arcade quality.
The game that introduced me to the SNES console was Dr. Mario, and this was the version where you also get Tetris in the same “pack”. This was a borrowed system and besides Dr. Mario & Tetris there were also the Donkey Kong Country series.
If you, like me, started with the black and white home computer systems like the ZX81 moved to the MSX, then glanced at the Commodore 64 for a moment, worked intensively on the Commodore Amiga and Atari ST you never seen anything like Donkey Kong Country before. Besides the stunning graphics and incredible soundtrack, the game and gameplay itself blew you mind!
I remember playing this game for hours – repeatedly. At every playthrough, I discovered new paths, hidden areas and bonus stages. The design of the enemies is awesome and detailed, not like other games that sometimes lacked a bit of imagination in that area (toilets and burgers). It’s almost like every villain and unfriendly creature have their own backstory.
In the games you play as either Donkey Kong, Diddy Kong, Kiddy Kong or Dixie Kong as both main character but also as sidekick. The sidekicks can be used as both co-ops or for contest and each character has a special power or ability that are useful or even needed during certain parts of a stage and with a push of a button, you can switch your character to use that power. The sidekick also served as a form for extra life so if the main character was hurt/hit the sidekick would step in.
The game series also introduces Candy, Cranky, Funky, Swanky and Wrinkle Kong, characters that will help you with hints, shopping and saving your progress of the game.
Even though the game is a simple side scroller, the graphics is done in a way, so it doesn’t seem 2D at all, as the platforms often shifts visually with you going into or outwards in the scene. Also, when navigating the world selector, your character also went into the picture or outwards on small paths.
As all the game graphics is pre-rendered sprites, created on the advanced 3D software already existing on the Silicon Graphics platform, this took the design of the game to a whole new level. As the console itself doesn’t have to produce all that much within the game, there was plenty of leftover power to handle the music and sound effects.
The music in the game series is generally great, very moody and fitting the levels very well. Also, the music in the bonus areas and the success/completed fanfares are uplifting and encourages you to move on.
The game music covers a variety of genres including rock, jazz, blues, reggae and calypso and all with a great feel that sounds authentic due to a great instrument choice.
Game music from ‘Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong’s Double Trouble!‘. Game was created by Rare and published in 1996 by Nintendo Co., Ltd.
Look and feel
There is of course a theme to each game where the story takes place, and to spice the game up you can return to a world and now the weather is acting up as you enter a rain storm, the whole world is covered in snow and you are in the middle of a blizzard or you are running along in the caves or mines when it gets foggy or the lights are dimmed way down or even worse, flickering so you only can see for a second or two at a time.
Very simple effects to make a whole lot of difference.
List of wanted games
A short list of the games on my wish list.
There might be a few more that I just haven’t found yet.
- Donkey Kong Country @YouTube
- Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest @YouTube
- Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong’s Double Trouble! @YouTube