Battle stations, people! Nintendo has announced a successor to the ill-fated, ridiculously popular NES Classic that was the biggest Grinch of last year’s Christmas.
The games company announced the NES Classic at about this time last year, before failing to manufacture a fraction of the number of units that were necessary, leading to many avid fans missing out on the must-have holiday gift of 2016.
Then, just to spite those who hadn’t got hold of one yet, Nintendo discontinued the product. Boo.
Now, it’s time to go all over again, but this time for Nintendo’s second home console, the SNES.
The SNES Classic has fewer games than its predecessor, with only 21 built-in games, but it does come with Star Fox 2, which has never before been released, which is a nice comfort. Plus, it’s bundled with a second controller, where the NES Classic only had one controller in the box.
But hey, wait a second – how do these new controllers plug into the device?
Looking at the SNES Classic, the controller ports are significant. The NES Classic’s controllers plugged into the same port design as the Nintendo Wii, making them useful as a retro controller for other Nintendo consoles.
Instead, the SNES Classic appears to have ports that match the original console, but as the entire device is much smaller than an original SNES, it suggests that these ports are also in miniature. What’s more, from photos it doesn’t look as though they’re deep enough to plug a controller into in the first place – so what gives?
There’s a few options here. It could be that the SNES Classic’s controller ports are modelled purely for aesthetic purposes, and the controllers don’t actually plug into them at all.
The SNES Classic’s controllers definitely have wires, so this isn’t some special wireless Bluetooth connection (which is a shame). They might be held into place on the front of the console by magnets, or plug in on the sides instead of at the front.
Or, perhaps Nintendo has gone for a very flimsy controller port that’ll allow for controllers to pop out awkwardly during play.
One criticism of the NES Classic was that the controller cables were frustratingly short, so here’s hoping that at least this issue has been solved.
If you actually want to get hold of one of these things, though, it’s worth camping out for news of pre-orders now. Nintendo’s still having trouble manufacturing enough Switch consoles, so there’s no way there’ll be enough of these pint-sized SNES machines to go around.