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Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition, known as Nintendo Classic Mini: Nintendo Entertainment System in Europe and Australia and the Nintendo Classic Mini: Family Computer (Japanese: ニンテンドークラシックミニ ファミリーコンピュータ) in Japan, is a dedicated video game console by Nintendo, which emulates the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). It launched on November 10, 2016 in Australia and Japan, and November 11, 2016 in North America and Europe. Aesthetically, the console is a miniature replica of the NES, and it includes a static library of 30 built-in games from the licensed NES library, supporting save states for all of them.

NES Classic Edition
NES Classic Edition with controller
Also known as Nintendo Classic Mini: Nintendo Entertainment System in Europe and Australia
Nintendo Classic Mini: Family Computer in Japan
Developer Nintendo
Manufacturer Nintendo
Type Dedicated console
Release date
  • JP/AUS: November 10, 2016 (2016-11-10)
  • NA/EU: November 11, 2016 (2016-11-11)
Retail availability

2016 – 2017

Introductory price US$59.99
  • NA: April 13, 2017 (2017-04-13)
  • WW: April 15, 2017 (2017-04-15)
Units sold 2.3 million (as of April 28, 2017)
Media Internal flash memory
System-on-chip used Allwinner R16,[1] Quad-Core ARM Cortex-A7
Memory 256 MB of DDR3 RAM
Storage 512 MB NAND Flash TSOP48
Graphics Mali-400 MP
Controller input 2 controller ports
Successor Super NES Classic Edition
Menu of the Nintendo Classic Mini: Nintendo Entertainment System
Menu of the Nintendo Classic Mini: Family Computer

Nintendo produced and sold about 2.3 million NES Classic Editions from November 2016 through April 2017, with shipments selling out nearly immediately. In April 2017, Nintendo announced they were discontinuing the product, leading to console confusion on the decision and price gouging for what remaining units there were. Shortly after announcing the SNES Classic Edition in September 2017, Nintendo affirmed it will produce more NES Classic Editions starting in mid-2018.



The NES Classic Edition is a dedicated console for emulating 30 Nintendo Entertainment System games.[2][3] The console is distributed in two variations; one for Japan, featuring the likeness of the original Famicom,[4] and one for the rest of the world, which looks like the original NES. For the non-Japanese variation, all of the games are based on their US release, running at 60 Hz and using the names by which they were released in the United States. The console's user interface supports up to eight languages; this selection does not affect the language in-game.

For video output, the system features an HDMI connection, which puts out 60 Hz video for all games. The controllers in the international version of the console feature the Wii's nunchuk's connector, which allows the controller to be connected to the Wii Remote for use with Virtual Console games on the Wii and Wii U. Likewise, accessories for the Wii such as the Classic Controller may be used with the NES Classic.[5][6][7] The controllers for the Japanese version, however, are hardwired into the console just like in the original Famicom, so they cannot be used in conjunction with the Wii. Also, the controllers in the Japanese version of the console are smaller and the connecting cables shorter.[8]

The console houses a new Nintendo Entertainment System emulation engine developed by Nintendo European Research & Development (NERD).[9] The emulation engine was well-received by critics and was regarded as superior in both visual and audio support when compared to the NES Virtual Console emulation on the Wii U.

A 320-page book called Playing with Power: Nintendo NES Classics, published by Prima Games, was released the same day as the console;[10] the book is a guide to some of the games included on the system. Nintendo of America brought back the Nintendo Power Line as an automated phone hotline from November 11 to 13 as a celebration of the launch of the system.[11]


Shortly after the NES Classic Edition's release, hackers discovered ways to unofficially add titles to the system's library, as well as enable emulation support for other consoles. Games from various consoles, such as the Nintendo 64 and 32X, have been successfully ported to the NES Classic Edition.[12]


The NES Classic Edition was first released on November 10, 2016 in Japan and Australia,[13] and November 11 in North America and Europe.[14] With the limited supply, these initial shipments sold out almost immediately.[15]

Nintendo produced about 2.3 million NES Classic Editions over the next five months.[16] By April 13, 2017, Nintendo announced it was ceasing production of the unit, with final shipments sent out within the next few days.[17]

Nintendo's decision to stop production of the console was met with criticism due to consumer's lack of awareness of the limited availability of the console, as described below. Following the announcement of the Super NES Classic Edition, which served as a counterpart to the NES Classic Edition but for Super Nintendo Entertainment System titles,[18] Nintendo announced it would also resume production of the NES Classic Edition with renewed shipments starting in mid-2018.[19]


Aside from criticism regarding the controller cord being too short as well as minor emulation glitches, especially with sound, the NES Classic Edition has been well received.[20][21]

One of many "plug-n-play" consoles on the market, the demand for NES Classic Edition was notably large, with various retailers collectively selling approximately 196,000 units in its first month,[22] remarkably selling out within hours of availability.[23] Nintendo reported 1.5 million units had been sold by the end of 2016.[24] On April 28, 2017, Nintendo revealed that 2.3 million consoles were sold in total.[16]

Despite the positive reception, journalists were confused about Nintendo's decision to discontinue the unit as announced in April 2017. Nintendo had not said at launch that the system was meant to be only a limited run, and its messaging for it seemed to suggest it would be a product with a longer production life. The company had clarified, when announcing the discontinuation, that "NES Classic Edition wasn’t intended to be an ongoing, long-term product. However, due to high demand, we did add extra shipments to our original plans."[25] The lack of availability of the unit since launch, with shipments immediately selling out when they reach stores, also suggested Nintendo was not prepared for the demand for the product.[26] Nintendo of America's CEO Reggie Fils-Aimé later stated that "We just didn't anticipate how incredible the response would be", having considered the sales of other similar retro-consoles, but they had to discontinue the unit as "we've got a lot going on right now and we don’t have unlimited resources."[27][28]

According to an April 2017 report by Eurogamer, the discontinuation of the NES Classic was in part to transition the production line to a Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) Classic system designed similarly to the NES Classic but featuring games from the SNES, to be launched in late 2017, though Nintendo had not confirmed this information.[29] While journalists agreed an SNES Classic would be a more enticing product and Nintendo would likely be more prepared to produce a larger number of systems, Nintendo's decision with the NES Classic may have influenced consumers to be wary of trying to buy a system produced in low volumes, or give the impression of artificial scarcity with the product as part of a longer-term strategy to keep consumers demanding Nintendo products.[26][30][31] When the Super NES Classic Edition was officially announced in June 2017, Nintendo said it "will produce significantly more units of Super NES Classic Edition than we did of NES Classic Edition" to avoid a similar shortage issue, but reaffirmed that it was not anticipated to be an ongoing product.[18]

Scalping and bootlegsEdit

The NES Classic Edition's very limited stock during its shelf life was one of its main criticisms,[32] with some stores receiving fewer than 10 units at a time. This, coupled with the extremely high demand, prompted internet scalpers to buy as many as they could, so they could resell them with extreme price markups. In the US, prices were commonly set between $200 and $500, compared to its launch price of $59.99. The separate controller that could be bought without the console suffered the same fate, often being included with the main unit.

Many have compared this situation to the Amiibo shortage, accusing Nintendo of deliberately using the limited supply to create increased demand for the product, but failing to supply enough to be bought by people who wanted to play it, instead, encouraging scalpers who would only resell and not use the product, creating frustration among fans.[33]

Nintendo's actions and past behaviors left many to speculate that the low stock was an attempt at artificial scarcity[34] that went too far, and eventually got out of hand.

Following the April 2017 discontinuation, consumers found that several bootleg versions of the NES Classic Edition appeared on third party auction sites, typically produced from Chinese companies. These bootlegs have been found to be near-identical in hardware and software, which could confuse consumers who were looking to purchase a Classic Edition.[35]

List of gamesEdit

Regardless of the model/region, the microconsole included 30 built-in games in all regions. From the 30 included titles, 22 are common between all regions, while the eight remaining ones are exclusive to either Japan or North America/PAL region respectively.[36][8]

The 22 following games are common to all regions.

Titles Original year of release Original publisher
Balloon Fight 1985 JP
1986 US
Castlevania 1986 JP
1987 US
Donkey Kong 1983 JP
1986 US
Double Dragon II: The Revenge 1989 JP
1990 US
Technos Japan JP
Acclaim Entertainment US
Dr. Mario 1990 Nintendo
Excitebike 1984 JP
1985 US
Galaga 1985 JP
1988 US
Namco JP
Bandai US
Ghosts 'n Goblins 1986 Capcom
Gradius 1986 Konami
Ice Climber 1985 Nintendo
Kirby's Adventure 1993 Nintendo
Mario Bros. 1983 JP
1985 US
Mega Man 2 1988 JP
1989 US
Metroid 1986 JP
1987 US
Ninja Gaiden 1988 JP
1989 US
Pac-Man 1984 JP
1993 US
Super C 1990 Konami
Super Mario Bros. 1985 Nintendo
Super Mario Bros. 2[a] 1988 US
1992 JP
Super Mario Bros. 3 1988 JP
1990 US
The Legend of Zelda 1986 JP
1987 US
Zelda II: The Adventure of Link 1987 JP
1988 US

The following 8 games are exclusive to the North American and PAL NES version.

Titles Original year of release Original publisher
Bubble Bobble 1988 Taito
Castlevania II: Simon's Quest 1988 Konami
Donkey Kong Jr. 1986 Nintendo
Final Fantasy 1990 Nintendo
Kid Icarus 1987 Nintendo
Punch-Out!! Featuring Mr. Dream 1990 Nintendo
StarTropics 1990 Nintendo
Tecmo Bowl 1989 Tecmo

The following 8 games are exclusive to the Japanese Famicom version.

Titles Original year of release Original publisher
Atlantis no Nazo 1986 Sunsoft
Downtown Nekketsu Kōshinkyoku: Soreyuke Daiundōkai 1990 Technos Japan
Final Fantasy III 1990 Square
NES Open Tournament Golf 1991 Nintendo
Downtown Nekketsu Monogatari 1989 Technos Japan
Solomon's Key 1986 Tecmo
Tsuppari Ōzumō 1987 Tecmo
Yie Ar Kung-Fu 1985 Konami

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Known in Japan as Super Mario USA. Not to be confused with the Japanese version of Super Mario Bros. 2, known as Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels in other regions.


  1. ^ Grant, Christopher (November 11, 2016). "What's inside the NES Classic Edition". 
  2. ^ Kickham, Dylan (July 18, 2016). "Nintendo to re-release classic NES 30 years after original system". Entertainment Weekly's Retrieved October 17, 2016. 
  3. ^ Russell, Jon (July 14, 2016). "Nintendo is launching a mini version of its iconic NES console with 30 classic games". TechCrunch. Retrieved October 17, 2016. 
  4. ^ Tumbokon, Karen (September 30, 2016). "Nintendo’s Famicom Mini Console Is Coming To Japan". International Business Times. Retrieved October 17, 2016. 
  5. ^ Kamen, Matt (July 14, 2016). "Nintendo unveils the Classic Mini loaded with 30 NES games". Retrieved July 14, 2016. 
  6. ^ Paul, Ian (July 14, 2016). "Nintendo's releasing a miniature NES console packed with 30 classic games". Retrieved July 14, 2016. 
  7. ^ Grant, Christopher (July 14, 2016). "The mini NES Classic controller works with your Wii U Virtual Console games". Polygon. Retrieved August 9, 2016. 
  8. ^ a b "ファミコンが、手のひらサイズで". Retrieved September 30, 2016. 
  9. ^ Vogel, Mitch (August 27, 2016). "NES Classic Edition Will Feature a Brand New Emulator Developed by NERD". Nintendo Life. Retrieved October 4, 2016. 
  10. ^ Humphries, Matthew (July 27, 2016). "Nintendo commissions official NES book to compliment Classic Mini console | Games |". @geekdotcom. Retrieved August 9, 2016. 
  11. ^ Schreier, Jason (November 4, 2016). "Nintendo Brings Back The Power Line For A Weekend". Kotaku. Retrieved November 4, 2016. 
  12. ^ Jones, Brad. "Hackers Tweak NES Classic Edition to Play Games From Other Consoles". Digital Trends. Retrieved 7 March 2017. 
  13. ^ Perez, Angela (July 15, 2016). "Nintendo New NES Release Date & Price in Australia". Retrieved August 8, 2016. 
  14. ^ Perry, Alex (August 8, 2016). "The re-release of the original Nintendo has some amazing new features". Retrieved August 9, 2016. 
  15. ^ "Kansas City shoppers find bargains and long lines on Black Friday". The new version has been out of stock since Nov. 11, when it sold out in a single day. 
  16. ^ a b McAloon, Alissa. "Nintendo sold 2.3 million NES Classic Editions". 
  17. ^ "NES Classic shipments end in Japan and Europe as well - NintendoToday". April 15, 2017. 
  18. ^ a b Schreier, Jason (June 26, 2017). "Nintendo Announces SNES Classic, Which Comes With 21 Stellar Games". Kotaku. Retrieved June 26, 2017. 
  19. ^ Byford, Sam (September 12, 2017). "Nintendo is bringing back the NES Classic". The Verge. Retrieved September 18, 2017. 
  20. ^ "NES Classic Edition - Game Review". Most of the games sound nearly the same as their NES versions, but devoted fans will notice a few deviations, whether it's the oddly muffled beat of the first-level music in Kid Icarus or the slightly tinnier clangs of a heart counter winding back after a Castlevania level. The games are also based on their Virtual Console versions, so StarTropics renames its yoyo weapon a “star.” 
  21. ^ "Linux On Your NES Classic Edition". Nintendo look as though they may have something of a hit on their hands with their latest console offering. 
  22. ^ "Nintendo NES Classic is Selling Almost 6 Times as Fast as Wii U" "The NES Classic sells an impressive 196,000 units in the US in the month of November, significantly outpacing the sales of Nintendo’s eighth generation Wii U console."
  23. ^ "People Are Selling Nintendo’s NES Classic Edition For Hundreds of Dollars" "Nintendo’s NES Classic Edition is out today, as in sold out today, as in chances are if you’re just stepping out the door to pick one up, it’s probably too late."
  24. ^ "NES Classic Edition Surpasses 1.5 Million Units In Global Sales". February 1, 2017. 
  25. ^ Otero, Jose (April 13, 2017). "Nintendo Discontinues the NES Classic Edition". IGN. Retrieved April 25, 2017. 
  26. ^ a b Sarkar, Samit (April 25, 2017). "Nintendo’s NES Classic strategy threatens to hurt the rest of its business". Polygon. Retrieved April 25, 2017. 
  27. ^ Peckham, Matt (April 28, 2017). "Nintendo Says it Sold Over 2 Million NES Classics". Time. Retrieved April 28, 2017. 
  28. ^ Bradshaw, Tim; Lewis, Leo (September 9, 2017). "Component bottlenecks hit Nintendo’s Switch". Financial Times. Retrieved September 9, 2017. 
  29. ^ Phillips, Tom (April 19, 2017). "Sources: Nintendo to launch SNES mini this year". Eurogamer. Retrieved April 25, 2017. 
  30. ^ Statt, Nick (April 13, 2017). "Nintendo doesn’t want your money — it wants your soul". The Verge. Retrieved April 25, 2017. 
  31. ^ Orland, Kyle (May 1, 2017). "Nintendo figured 2.3 million NES Classics was enough (it wasn’t)". Ars Technica. Retrieved May 1, 2017. 
  32. ^ Kain, Erik. "It's Time To Give Up On Getting A Mini NES Classic Edition This Christmas". 
  33. ^ "People Are Not Happy With Nintendo Over The NES Classic Selling Out". November 12, 2016. 
  34. ^ Grant, Christopher (November 11, 2016). "NES Classic Edition shortages prove Nintendo is either underhanded or incompetent". Polygon. 
  35. ^ Orland, Kyle (July 12, 2017). "Bootleg NES Classics flood market to fill demand that Nintendo won’t". Ars Technica. Retrieved July 12, 2017. 
  36. ^ Jones, Gary (July 19, 2016). "NES Classic Edition: The final 30 games list revealed as Nintendo talk mini N64". Retrieved August 9, 2016. 

External linksEdit