A Link to the Past needs no introduction, as many still consider it one of the best games in the series. In many ways it set the standard for the Zelda series in terms of story, dungeon design, and structure.
You’d have to be living under a rock in the 90’s to not know what The Lion King was. Millions of kids cried in theaters as Mufasa was killed by his jerk of a brother, and Simba instantly became one of us. This SNES game allows us to join Simba on his entire journey as we help him navigate levels full of enemies and other threats, listen to some sweet Disney game tunes, and become the king of the jungle (as we justly deserve).
Super Mario All-Stars
It’s no secret that the Super Mario Bros. series is Nintendo’s biggest, so when they decided to put all of the NES games, along with The Lost Worlds (the real SMB 2) it was an instant hit. Seriously, this needs to be on an SNES classic.
NBA Jam took official NBA-licensed teams and the best players of the time (early 90’s) and eschewed realistic gameplay. Instead, you had 2-on-2 high flying b-ball full of flaming jump shots, rim-shaking dunks, and easily the best announcer in video game history.
You wouldn’t think that an earthworm of all things would excel at pushing back alien foes, but Jim is an exception. Using his robotic space suit he runs and guns through vivid levels full of humor at every turn. Tight platforming and fun shooting make this a must have.
Earthworm Jim 2
The sequel to the well-received Earthworm Jim didn’t tamper too much with what was such a great thing. Instead, you get more of the same with more attacks and weapons that up the frenetic action. What was new, were the new stealth levels that required you using a disguise to break up the action and add some variety.
Before Wipeout was a thing, players were already piloting insanely fast vehicles around intergalactic tracks thanks to SNES’ F-Zero. The series that introduced us to Captain Falcon was unique with its simulated 3D levels and tight racing action.
Super Metroid is an absolute gem of a game, and has inspired video games to this day ever since its release. We have this title to thank for helping craft the idea of Metroidvania.
Earthbound was an incredibly overlooked game when it released on the SNES, not gaining huge attention but garnering a dedicated cult following. We’re still waiting for a localization of the sequel, Mother 3, but this title is a sure fit.
Pilotwings is a great game to play if you just want to unwind for a bit. It’s a light pilot simulator that puts you in control of a plane hang glider, flight suit, and even a jetpack. There are tons of different objectives and activities spread across the island you play on, so you can just kick back and fly around for a bit. Pilotwings also had some really impressive graphics for the time it released.
Mario Kart has always been one of the best series to break out for a party and play with friends, and Super Mario Kart helped define it. This was the first title in the incredibly successful series, and gave the world a new type of racing with crazy powerups and colorful characters. Countless other titles would follow suit.