NES Mini has retro TV display modes

The NES Mini will have display modes that simulate old-school CRT TV gaming on high-def HDTV screens.

Published Sun, Aug 7 2016 6:23 PM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 11:59 AM CST

One of the main worries about Nintendo's new NES Mini was the aspect ratio support, especially considering old NES games were built for old CRT TV's with 4:3 aspect ratio. Anyone who's played retro games on a HDTV can tell you the picture is quite bad. Now Nintendo has stepped in to clarify.

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Nintendo kicked off a wave of NEStalgia last month by announce the NES Classic Edition console, a miniature NES that comes with 30 built-in classic games, connects to modern HDTVs via HDMI, and costs just $59.99. The system will launch on November 11, and we've broken down all the info here.

Although the NES Mini connects directly to HDTV's via HDMI, the system will have different built-in display modes that mirror gaming on older CRT tube TVs:

"What is interesting is that we can play through HDMI, but there will be different modes of how we will see the screen - a mode simulating the retro aspect of our old CRT screens. Here will be a mode which can be at the resolution of the modern screens in 4:3 format, and a pixel perfect mode which will display each pixel as a square, so people can have fun with this too," Nintendo Canada communications manager Julie Gagnon told French radio show Energie.

"It's also in the spirit where retro is very present, and finally Nintendo offers it in a formula that I think is very accessible for everyone," Gagnon concluded.

So there you have it! The NES Mini will have some display effects similar to the Super Game Boy's overlay effects for old-school Game Boy games. This way gamers can transport themselves back to the past without having to deal with ugly upscaled graphics.

This is an absolutely essential move to ensure the NES Classic Edition looks and plays like retro NES systems, and it'll go a long way in letting gamers relive the glory days of console gaming.

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The NES Mini launches on November 11, 2016 for $59.99, and comes with 30 pre-installed games. For more info check out our list of everything you need to know about the NES Mini.

Check the list below for the included games:

  • Balloon Fight
  • Bubble Bobble
  • Castlevania
  • Castlevania II: Simon's Quest
  • Donkey Kong
  • Donkey Kong Jr.
  • Double Dragon II: The Revenge
  • Dr. Mario
  • Excitebike
  • Final Fantasy
  • Galaga
  • Ghosts N' Goblins
  • Gradius
  • Ice Climber
  • Kid Icarus
  • Kirby's Adventure
  • Mario Bros.
  • Mega Man 2
  • Metroid
  • Ninja Gaiden
  • Pac-Man
  • Punch-Out!! Featuring Mr. Dream
  • StarTropics
  • Super C
  • Super Mario Bros.
  • Super Mario Bros. 2
  • Super Mario Bros. 3
  • Tecmo Bowl
  • The Legend of Zelda
  • Zelda II: The Adventure of Link

Derek joined the TweakTown team in 2015 and has since reviewed and played 1000s of hours of new games. Derek is absorbed with the intersection of technology and gaming, and is always looking forward to new advancements. With over six years in games journalism under his belt, Derek aims to further engage the gaming sector while taking a peek under the tech that powers it. He hopes to one day explore the stars in No Man's Sky with the magic of VR.

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