A reader offers his ideas for Nintendo’s next Classic Mini retro console, and rates the best games on the N64.
GameCentral recently published my Reader’s Feature about the Mini SNES. Afterwards, I asked myself this question. What miniature console will Nintendo make next? Mini SNES 2, Mini Game Boy Advance, or Mini N64? All possibilities will appeal to retro gamers, but the latter option seems most likely, based on current trends.
There is no guarantee we’ll be playing our Mini N64s on September 28, 2018 (roughly one year after the Mini SNES release date). Large elephants in the room definitely need addressing beforehand.
Four-player multiplayer support is essential. This could revive a traditional gaming experience; playing with friends whilst socialising in the same room. Similar to the Mini SNES, two controllers should be packaged with every console.
The M-shaped N64 controller was one of a kind and had an unusual expansion port on the rear side. This was used for the controller pack (memory card), rumble pack, and transfer pack.
The rumble pack has to be included in some form, ideally powered by the console itself. Regarding the other features; the controller pack is no longer needed in this era of save states. The transfer pack was mainly used in two Pokémon Stadium games to import data from the Game Boy Pokémon titles. Probably a fun optional extra at the time, but not essential today.
One common complaint about the N64 controller is the 3D stick. For a while, everything is fine. Then the residue builds up and the movement becomes stiff and unresponsive. I hope Nintendo find a way to incorporate a more durable stick without sacrificing authenticity.
What about the number of games? The Mini NES had 30 and the Mini SNES will have 21. If we follow this pattern for the Mini N64, 15 games is the most likely amount. In terms of cost, I’d suggest a recommended retail price of £74.99. This works out at about £5 per game, a good bargain compared to the Wii U Virtual Console prices.
Anything else? Yes. Please make the cord longer than the Mini NES.
So if Nintendo can solve these problems (and the potential licencing issues), what games need to be included?
You have to start with the top tier heavyweights. Super Mario 64, GoldenEye 007, and The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time are amongst the highest selling games on the N64. All were revolutionary in their respective genres and many developers used these ideas as a template for their own titles.
Next up are a tremendous threesome that you may prefer compared to the trio above. I’m talking about Banjo-Kazooie, Perfect Dark, and The Legend Of Zelda: Majora’s Mask. The latter two games used the expansion pack and would be ideal to demonstrate how the graphical quality improved throughout the console’s lifespan.
Sports games are excellent for multiplayer, so I’d put in Mario Tennis and WWF No Mercy. Some pro wrestling fans say the AKI developed games have never been bettered. That’s a subject of debate for another day…
The N64 had plenty of great racing games such as Diddy Kong Racing and F-Zero X. Personally, I would include the obvious Mario Kart 64 and the underrated Snowboard Kids. If you’ve ever had a four-player game on this with evenly matched players, you’ll know exactly what I’m referring to.
Star Fox 64 (Lylat Wars in Europe) and Star Wars: Rogue Squadron would be great for those who prefer dogfighters to first-person shooting games. Save Slippy Toad again or not, that’s up to you. Rogue Squadron II on the GameCube may be superior but the original would be a curiosity for Star Wars fans if nothing else.
I’ll wrap up with three picks from genres that were horribly underrepresented on the N64. Super Smash Bros. (fighting), Paper Mario (role-playing), and Blast Corps (an action puzzle hybrid).
I sincerely doubt we’ll get all these titles if Nintendo ever make a Mini N64 but it doesn’t hurt to dream once in a while.
Thanks for reading.
By reader Philip Regan (Twitter)
The reader’s feature does not necessary represent the views of GameCentral or Metro.
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