The Best Mini Consoles: Classic Gaming Time Machines

Super Metroid

by William Lobley |
Updated on

No matter whether you were around for the first wave of Commodore 64 Datasettes, or can only recall echoes of Wipeout’s rave rhythms from the PlayStation One, it’s time to get excited about the new plug-and-play mini consoles.

Mini replicas of classic consoles from the likes of Sony, Nintendo and Sega have been released, preloaded with dozens and dozens of classic games. Since hitting the shelves, they've been greeted with much deserved fanfare from gamers young and old.

The success of the little plug-and-play machines is down to more than simple nostalgia (though that certainly plays a part) – no, these consoles are saviours, allowing players to enjoy genuinely charming, thrilling and engaging games which would have otherwise been lost to the realms of time and collectors’ cabinets.

All the games are just as they were on launch day, with one exception: the resolutions have been updated to work on new HD TVs. Don’t worry though, this hasn’t changed thier glorious 8 and 16-bit charm.

Draw the curtains, grab a Panda Pop and bag of Monster Munch – it’s time to revisit the glory days.

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Mini Consoles

SEGA Mega Drive Mini1 of 5

SEGA Mega Drive Mini

This is the plug-and-play console of the moment. The Mega Drive is an icon of video game history, and this mini retro time-machine is loaded with 42 timeless classics, including; Sonic the Hedgehog, Earthworm Jim, Ecco the Dolphin, Streets of Rage, Golden Axe and Street Fighter

Sony PlayStation Classic Console2 of 5

Sony PlayStation Classic Console

Slamming its way into the zeitgeist in the mid '90s, the PlayStation was a trailblazer of mainstream video gaming. The Mega Drive Mini has set the bar high, and while the PlayStation Classic Console doesn't match its game quantity, it certainly matches the quality. The 20 preloaded games include; Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee, Final Fantasy VII, Metal Gear Solid, Resident Evil, Tekken 3 and Ridge Racer Type 4.

Nintendo Classic Mini Entertainment System3 of 5

Nintendo Classic Mini Entertainment System

The ripples of influence from the original Entertainment System can still be felt today. The mini console is loaded with 30 genre defining games, including; Castlevania 1 and 2, Metroid, Donkey Kong, Final Fantasy, Galaga, Pac-Man and The Legend of Zelda. Those looking to battle it out with friends will need to purchase a second controller separately, as only one is included in this bundle.

Nintendo Classic Mini Console4 of 5

Nintendo Classic Mini Console

The Super Nintendo Entertainment System is a colossus as far as gaming prestige goes. This 16-bit console is preloaded with 21 games. The price tag may seem to have a digit too many for such a modest catalogue, but if you can see beyond this hitch then you're in for an absolute treat. Games include; Super Mario World, Super Mario Kart, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, Super Metroid, Star Fox 1 and 2, Contra III and Donkey Kong

The C64 Micro Computer (2019 Model)5 of 5

The C64 Micro Computer (2019 Model)

Just one look at the Commodore 64 is a testament to the huge developments in gaming over the past 40 years. The 2019 model comes complete with a keyboard, joystick, and three modes – C64, VIC-20 (the C64s predecessor) and the games carousel. There are 64 installed games, including; Battle Valley, Cosmic Causeway, Robin of the Wood, Boulder Dash and Netherworld. True to the C64's roots, users can even add their own games and programs (via a USB-stick, which isn't quite so 1982).

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