NINTENDO ENTERTAINMENT SYSTEM
The NES Mini comes with thirty games. Of those thirty, ten feature simultaneous two-player modes, while six feature alternating multiplayer. These are the cream of the console’s crop, but only a handful of them are really better with two players. The NES isn’t typically thought of as a party console, and had less of a multiplayer focus than the consoles that followed. Many of the games that allowed for multiplayer did not let players play simultaneously – in Super Mario Bros 1 and 3, for instance, competing was simply a case of taking turns, with progress for each player being tracked.
While games on the NES may not have often oered multiplayer options, but they still often encouraged players to come together. Try beating The Legend of Zelda or Metroid without the Internet, and without talking to anyone about what to do or where to go – it’s very di cult. At the same time, Nintendo was fostering an image as a family-friendly company, an image that would stick with them for years to come. Back then, it was extremely uncommon for kids – the NES’ target audience - to have their own televisions separate from the family unit, so the system needed to appeal, on some level, to all ages. This would turn into a guiding philosophy for Nintendo.