Nintendo’s Super Nintendo Entertainment System is truly one of the greatest consoles of all time – while it isn’t a behemoth when it comes to processing power (especially not nowadays), it is the home to many of the best video games that ever existed (and that’s not just nostalgia speaking).
From games like Super Mario World to RPGs such as Final Fantasy, to Castlevania titles, the SNES really had a little something for everyone to enjoy.
In order to allow a new generation of gamers (or just capitalize on the nostalgia of older gamers), Nintendo produced a series of SNES Classic devices back in 2017. Unfortunately, as all good things must come to an end, Nintendo stopped the production of said consoles somewhere around 2019. Of course, you can still get your hands on one of them, but you’re likely looking at a price point that’s a bit over double the MSRP of the device (which came in at $79 USD).
If you do manage to get your hands on one of the SNES Classic consoles, you’ll notice that they come with only about 20 titles in the library – which, while great, is nowhere near enough to capture the sheer breadth of amazing games that were available on this system.
Fortunately, there’s a fix for this little problem. There does indeed exist a way to hack your SNES Classic device in order to add more games on to it.
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What do I need in order to add games to my SNES Classic console?
In order to go through with this process, you’ll want to have a micro USB cable (which you’ll use to connect the SNES Classic device to your PC) and, well, you probably guessed it – a PC in order to get the necessary software.
Well, there’s technically one more thing to mention when it comes to what you’ll need in order to add games to your SNES Classic devices – and that’s the games themselves! Now, emulating games has been around for decades, and as such people have been downloading the required ROM files off the web for as much time. The legality of this is somewhat of a hot topic between gamers, however, it’s generally accepted that if you do own the title legally it’s okay to download the ROM file and use it. With all that said, we’ll not dwell on the whole morality topic and leave the choice up to you.
How do I add games to my SNES Classic?
Have everything you need? Great, we can get into the actual process of adding games to the console!
In order to add games to your SNES Classic device, follow the steps below:
- Connect the SNES Classic to your PC using the aforementioned micro USB cable; make sure to turn the console off before connecting it, and leave the HDMI cable plugged in to your TV in order to see what’s going on (if you’re having trouble with the cable that came with your device, feel free to try using a different cable as this may help)
- Download the latest version of Hakchi 2 and extract it on your PC (make sure to extract it to a folder you’ll remember)
- After extracting, run the hakchi.exe – it might prompt you to download additional updates and restart your device – if so, accept and run the executable file again after the reboot
- After running the program, you’ll get a short greeting message with a couple of instructions on how to use it – feel free to read it and click on ‘OK’ when you’re don
- If prompted to give permission to use the internet by Windows Firewall, allow the application through
- Choose SNES and the region that suits you from the dropdown menu in the upper left corner
- Click on the ‘Add more games’ button
- A browse window will pop up; navigate to the ROM file(s) of the game(s) you wish to add, select them and click on ‘Open’
- If you wish to add box art for the game you just added, select the game by clicking on it and click on the ‘Google’ button in the lower right corner in order to download the image directly from Google
- Hover over the “Kernel” dropdown menu and click on ‘Install/Repair’; if prompted to flash the custom kernel, click on ‘Yes’
- Hakchi might ask you for administrative privileges; make sure to allow them in order for everything to work properly
- Follow the on-screen instructions from this point on; if necessary, you’ll be asked to install additional drivers (this happens in cases where said drivers weren’t automatically installed)
- Once you’re done with this process, click on the ‘Synchronize selected games with mini’ button in the lower right corner
- Confirm that you have already flashed the custom kernel when prompted
- When the game upload is finished, turn the SNES Classic console off and disconnect it from your PC
- Plug the console’s power source back in and turn it on; you should now be able to see a folder titled ‘New Games’, alongside the titles you had when you got the console.
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And that’s it! You’ve now successfully uploaded your first new game to your SNES Classic console. If you wish to upload more games to your device at any point in the future, merely reconnect the console, add the ROM, and click on ‘Synchronize selected games with mini’ – you don’t need to flash the custom kernel again.
Now that you’ve been armed with the knowledge on how to add more games to your device, go on out there and remind yourself why the SNES is one of the greatest consoles of all time!