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Important Importables: Cool Super Famicom exclusives

Sections: Accessories, Columns, Consoles, Consoles-Other, Exclusives, Features, Gear, Gear-Other, Japanese Imports, Nostalgia, Originals

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2011 marks the 20th anniversary of Super Nintendo, a console that many people grew up with and have warm memories of. However, if you grew up outside of Japan, you missed out on a lot of goodness. There, the Super Famicom, as it was called, received even more games and some rather interesting peripherals. Today, we look back fondly on some of these items, even the ones that failed, in honor of the SNES/SFC.

Satellaview

Super Famicom exclusive peripherals

Japan saw two Super Famicom pieces of hardware that were incredibly interesting and promising, even though they didn’t receive worldwide releases. Both were rather futuristic ideas at the time, and showed that even back in the 1990′s, Nintendo was looking for new ways to reach customers.

One of the most interesting and promising Super Famicom exclusives was Satellaview. Even though the idea of downloadable games and streaming data was fairly new, Nintendo seemed ready to look into it with this satellite modem that actually was somewhat similar to the North American Sega Channel. Well, except it relied on radio braodcasts from St. GIGA instead of cable TV. People put their Super Famicom on top of the Satellaview and inserted the BS-X: Sore wa Namae o Nusumareta Machi no Monogatari cartridge and memory pack into the system’s game slot. Your virtual character would navigate the virtual town and participate in a few activities, play NES, SNES and Satellaview original games, pop special Satellaview cartridges into the game cart for certain games, read digital magazines and listen to satellite radio through their Super Famicom. Some games were SoundLink games, which meant if you played them at certain times, you could have a radio show going on while you played, providing voice acting or hints as to what to do when you reached certain areas.

Then, there was the SF-1 SNES TV. It was a Sharp TV and SNES hybrid inspired by the C1 NES TV (an NES and Sharp TV) released in Japan in 1990. Available in 14″ and 21″ varieties, it built the Super Famicom directly into the TV set, so all you had to do to start playing as shove a cartridge in the slot at the top of the unit. Controllers and peripherals plugged in easily and even the remote control even allowed users to start the console, game or reset. You could even consider the SF-1 SNES TV to be the inspiration for two more recent console and TV combinations. After all, the DIVERS 2000 was a Fuji TV with a built in Dreamcast and Sony put a PS2 into it’s Bravia HDTV in 2010. While all were interesting premises, they weren’t hugely successful.

Live a Live SNES Box art

Super Famicom exclusive games

One of the best things the Super Famicom had going for it were exclusive games. Even though there were a lot of SNES games released in North America and Europe, the Japanese game library was even larger. There were lots of classics and fan favorites, many of which remained trapped in Japan. So here’s a brief list of 30 SFC games that were never released outside of Japan, but were all so incredible, unique or groundbreaking that they really should have been. In some cases, fan translations have been released, so people around the world could enjoy them, or ports have been released.

  • Angelique is a simulation otome game that was released in 1994.
  • Bahamut Lagoon is a strategic RPG that was released in 1996. A fan translation is available online.
  • Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon: Another Story is a RPG that was released in 1995. A fan translation is available online.
  • Clock Tower is a survival adventure game that was released in 1995. A fan translation is available online.
  • Der Langrisser is a strategic RPG that was released in 1994. A fan translation is available online.
  • DoReMi Fantasy: Milon’s DokiDoki Adventure is an action game that was released in 1996. A fan translation is available online and it is on the North American Wii Shop Channel as a Virtual Console import for $9.
  • Dragon Quest I & II is an RPG that was released in 1993. A fan translation is available online.
  • Farland Story: Yottsu no Fuuin is a strategic RPG that was released in 1995.
  • Fire Emblem: Monshou no Nazo is a strategic RPG that was released in 1994. A fan translation is available online.
  • Fushigi no Dungeon 2: Furai no Shiren is a roguelike RPG that was released in 1995. A fan translation is available online and a remake was released on the DS in Japan and North America as Mystery Dungeon: Shiren the Wanderer.
  • Hamelin no Violin Tamaki is an action game that was released in 1995. A fan translation is available online.
  • Hanjuku Hero: Aa, Sekai yo Hanjukunare is a real-time strategic RPG that was released in 1992.
  • Kouryuu Densetsu Villgust is a RPG that was released in 1992. A fan translation is available online.
  • Live a Live is a RPG that was released in 1994. A fan translation is available online.
  • Magic Knight Rayearth is a RPG that was released in 1995. A fan translation is available online.
  • Magical Drop is a puzzle game that was released in 1995. A fan translation is available online.
  • Mario & Wario is a puzzle game that was released in 1993.
  • Metal Max 2 is a RPG that was released in 1993.
  • Princess Maker: Legend of Another World is a simulation that was released in 1995.
  • Romancing SaGa 3 is a RPG that was released in. An incomplete fan translation is available online.
  • Seiken Densetsu 3 is a action RPG that was released in 1995. A fan translation is available online.
  • Shin Megami Tensei is a RPG that was released in 1992. A fan translation is available online.
  • Shin Megami Tensei if… is a RPG that was released in 1994.
  • Star Ocean is a RPG that was released in 1996. A fan translation is available online and it was remade for the PSP and released worldwide as Star Ocean: First Departure.
  • Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together is a strategic RPG that was released in 1995. A fan translation is available online and it was remade for the PSP and released worldwide under the same name..
  • Tales of Phantasia is a RPG that was released in 1995. A fan translation is available online, it was released worldwide on the GBA under thge same name and it was released on the PSP in Tales of Phantasia: Narikiri Dungeon X.
  • Torneko no Daibouken: Fushigi no Dungeon is a RPG that was released in 1993. An incomplete fan translation is available online.
  • Umihara Kawase is a action game that was released in 1994. A fan translation is available online.
  • Wizardry I-II-III: Story of Llylgamyn is a RPG that was released in 1996. A fan translation is available online.
  • Ys IV: Mask of the Sun is a action RPG that was released in 1994. A fan translation is available online.

I particularly recommend Angelique, Sailor Moon: Another Story, Live a Live, Tales of Phantasia, the PSP port of Star Ocean and the DS port of Mystery Dungeon: Shiren the Wanderer.

COMING NEXT WEEK: Important Importables looks back at Gust’s Atelier and Mana Khemia series.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Last week Important Importables reviewed Taiko no Tatsujin Portable DX for the PSP.

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