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Super Nintendo Entertainment System
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The Super Nintendo Entertainment System and Super Family Computer, colloquially shortened to SNES and Super Famicom, was a family of 16-bit home consoles produced by Nintendo during much of the 1990s, and was Nintendo's second set-top unit following the blockbuster success of the prior Nintendo Entertainment System. It is considered part of the fourth console generation of video game hardware. As with previous consoles, the SNES used interchangeable cartridges for its games.
The Super Nintendo initially faced heavy competition from its closest rival, Sega, which had a nearly two-year head start with its Genesis (Mega Drive) system in North America and parts of Asia. However, as more popular titles began to appear on the console, it would eventually outsell the Genesis by wide margins and become the most popular system of the era.
Although SNES cartridges had various technical limitations, many game publishers used special supplemental chips to bypass such limits, creating early 3D games such as StarFox as well as expansive role-playing games with vibrant graphics and rich sound. The SNES would become exceptionally notable for the wealth of Japanese RPGs produced within its lifetime, including Squaresoft staples in the Final Fantasy series and new properties such as 1993's Secret of Mana and its 1995 follow-up Seiken Densetsu 3.
Originally discontinued in 1999 for North America and in 2003 for Japan, the SNES experienced a short-lived revival in 2017 with the release of a microconsole, the SNES Classic Edition, adapted for modern high-definition TV hardware. The device included 30 pre-packaged games, with Secret of Mana among those selected for the international versions.
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