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The NES Classic Can Play Games From Other Consoles

If you're one of the people who were lucky enough to snag an NES Classic and you don't mind getting your hands dirty, you can now play games that originally appeared on the Game Boy, Super Nintendo, and Sega Genesis on Nintendo's mini-console All you need is a RetroArch emulator, a collection of ROMs, and a little bit of patience.

As reported by Nintendo Life, hackers have successfully gotten games from all three of the above-mentioned consoles running on the NES Classic, although the new capabilities come at a cost. For one, emulating games from other systems is legally pretty dicey, given that you'll have to use ROMs, or digital copies of old game software, to get the games running. Additionally, RetroArch's UI isn't as user-friendly as the NES Classic's native operating system, and games designed for 16-bit consoles don't run quite as smoothly on the NES Classic as they do on their native hardware.


However, it's still early days for the NES Classic hacking community, and these issues emulators might improve as tinkerers learn more about the device. Previously, hobbyists installed a custom version of the Ubuntu Linux operating system on the NES Classic, and figured out how to load a number of original Nintendo games on the mini-console, unofficially expanding the NES Classic's library from 30 to 700 titles.

The NES Classic, which looks exactly like the original Nintendo Entertainment System (except smaller) and comes with a handful of that system's most famous games, launched in November, 2016. It also sold out almost immediately, as Nintendo grossly underestimating demand. Device shortages lasted throughout the holiday season, and while Nintendo says that they've increased production of the sort-of-retro machine, Norwegian game retailers claim that Nintendo is on the verge of discontinuing the device permanently.


A trademark registration hints that a follow-up machine, the Super Nintendo Classic, might be arriving in time for the 2017 holiday season—but, sadly, there's been no indication that these other, mostly-forgotten retro consoles will ever be receive resurrections.