Nintendo NES Classic Edition Gaming System

Last updated date: September 10, 2020

DWYM Score
9.7

Nintendo NES Classic Edition Gaming System

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We looked at the top Gaming Systems and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Gaming System you should buy.

Overall Take

This gaming system comes preloaded with 30 popular games, including Super Mario Bros., Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda and PAC-MAN. You'll get support for two-player games, and the console connects to any TV that has an HDMI input. If you'd prefer to play on your laptop or desktop computer, you can just connect via USB and start playing. In our analysis of 51 expert reviews, the Nintendo Nintendo NES Classic Edition Gaming System placed 1st when we looked at the top 5 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note September 10, 2020:
Checkout The Best Gaming System for a detailed review of all the top gaming systems.

Expert Summarized Score
8.4
9 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
9.2
6,068 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
Modern updates like HDMI make set-up a snap. Iconic styling brings a blast from the past to any living room. The abundant included games make it a remarkable value.
- BestReviews
It includes 30 classic 8-bit games, perfectly preserved. It connects to any current TV with HDMI, and has multiple save slots available to freeze progress in any game. Supports two-player games.
- CNET
Authentic retro-gaming experience
- Tech Radar
If you love NES games, buy this thing. It’s a great value, it has a few (though not nearly all) of the best games available for the system and it plays like a dream.
- Tech Crunch
Access to lots of classic games without an expensive console
- Digital Trends
The NES Classic Edition is a miniature Nintendo Entertainment System with 30 classic games, an HDMI output, and a fantastically nostalgic design.
- PC Magazine
You can also run the console off of USB power, which is awesome, so you can just plug it into your laptop and play it right there on your laptop screen (or desktop, etc.)
- Forbes
The selection of 30 beautifully emulated, mostly classic games makes a strong case to own a NES Classic as a way to easily revisit old favorites and introduce them to new generations.
- IGN
The slick presentation of the hardware, an adorable, miniaturised design, and a list of games that are a whirlwind tour of 80s essentials make it a must-have.
- Games Radar
What experts didn't like
The controllers' only upgrade is compatibility with the Wii and Wii U consoles.
- BestReviews
The one included controller isn't wireless, and the cord is really short.
- CNET
No expandable games library
- Tech Radar
That said, the cord for the controller is way too short. Well shorter than three feet, which doesn’t help when you want to pass it to the next person on the couch.
- Tech Crunch
Minor framerate and screen-tearing issues on some games
- Digital Trends
Can't be expanded or updated in any way.
- PC Magazine
The second gamepad issue is the fact that there is no second gamepad. I understand this would have made the system a tiny bit more expensive, but it also would have made the system more of the genuine deal.
- Forbes
I just can’t understand why somebody thought limiting us to 2.5ft controller cables was a good idea, because it really limits where and how you can enjoy these games.
- IGN
Can’t be expanded (officially)
- Games Radar

From The Manufacturer

There is nothing like a gaming console that ensures uninterrupted action for every gaming enthusiast. Keeping this in mind, Nintendo brings to you a gaming console that has been designed on the line of the path breaking NES, which was originally released in 1985.

Overall Product Rankings

Nintendo NES Classic Edition Gaming System
1. Nintendo NES Classic Edition Gaming System
Overall Score: 9.7
Expert Reviews: 9
Nintendo Handheld Switch Lite Gaming System
2. Nintendo Handheld Switch Lite Gaming System
Overall Score: 9.2
Expert Reviews: 9
Xbox One S Gaming System
3. Xbox One S Gaming System
Overall Score: 9.1
Expert Reviews: 9
PlayStation 4 Pro 1TB Gaming System Console
4. PlayStation 4 Pro 1TB Gaming System Console
Overall Score: 9.0
Expert Reviews: 9
Sega Genesis Classic Gaming Console System
5. Sega Genesis Classic Gaming Console System
Overall Score: 8.8
Expert Reviews: 6

An Overview On Gaming Systems

Gaming systems have come a long way since the early days when you had to buy cartridges to play your favorite 8-bit game. Those cartridges gradually progressed to compact discs, but today, all you need is an internet connection and you can download games and start playing.

But advancing technology has also expanded the types of gaming consoles you can buy. You can find systems that support the latest video advancements, displaying your game in high definition on your big-screen TV. But you can also find classic gaming consoles that give you a nostalgic experience while you’re playing retro games like PAC-MAN and Donkey Kong.

There’s also the option of a mobile gaming console that allows you to take your fun on the road with you. With these lightweight, portable units, you can play at home or while you’re on vacation or in the waiting room of your doctor’s office.

There are three brands that dominate the gaming industry: Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft. If you’re looking for the latest innovations in gaming, you’ll likely be choosing between the latest Sony PlayStation, Nintendo Switch or Sony Xbox One.

With Nintendo Switch, the company has focused on providing a simple, streamlined gaming experience, so you may not get the power you want. The best thing about the Switch is that you can detach the box to take with you and play anywhere.

PlayStation attracts consumers by providing exclusive games, and those games have become popular in recent years. These gaming consoles pack plenty of power, allowing you to play complicated games that feature stunning graphics. If you have a PlayStation, though, you’ll probably want to invest in the latest high-definition technology for your TV to take full advantage of the graphics built into the game.

But Sony’s Xbox is no slacker itself. You’ll get power with this model, too, but you’ll find the games are more versatile than PlayStation’s. You can play your Xbox games on other gaming consoles, which comes in handy when you’re hanging out where there’s only a PlayStation or Nintendo.

Before you start shopping for a gaming console, take an assessment of how you’ll play. Do you mostly play alone? If so, you can get away with one controller, but you may want to have at least an extra one so you can play with friends. You should also look at the capacity of your TV so that you can make sure you get a system that will render graphics in the high-definition display you want.

DWYM Fun Fact

Even with all the advancements in gaming in recent years, gamers seem to still enjoy the old-school experience. The classics have endured since their inception, but game developers have realized that embracing retro gaming pays off. You can find not only classic games, but also consoles specifically dedicated to giving you the true arcade experience.

Instead of buying a dedicated console, you can get the retro experience online, thanks to developers who specialize in retro gaming emulation. You can also retrofit your newer consoles to play older discs, if you have them. Of course, if you have the room and the money, you can invest in a full arcade game that gives you the same experience that gamers of the 1980s had when they slid a quarter into the slot.

The Gaming System Buying Guide

  • Look for the ease of getting games for the console you choose. Some consoles have their own exclusive games, while others are more universal in nature. You’ll probably need an internet connection to download any games you want to play, although you can still buy discs if you want to play that way.
  • If you’re buying discs, pay close attention to the used market. You can get great deals on games that others are selling because they’ve upgraded or are relying on the internet for downloads.
  • Pay close attention to the way the console connects to your TV. You’ll probably need an HDMI port on your TV, as well as an HDMI cable to connect things up.
  • Some consoles have a secondary USB cable that lets you play games on your laptop or desktop monitor.
  • If you opt for a mobile gaming console, make sure you get a storage bag to carry it around with you. Also check the weight to make sure it won’t become burdensome if you’re carrying it in your backpack or laptop bag.
  • Battery life is also important in a mobile gaming console. You won’t be near a power outlet at all times, so having a battery that can provide hours of play between charges will be a huge benefit.
  • Style is probably the least important factor, but you’ll find gaming consoles are available in a variety of styles. Some retro gaming consoles even come with a retro look to add to the fun.
  • If you ever plan to play DVDs, make sure your chosen console not only supports DVDs, but plays them in high definition.
  • Although modern gaming consoles allow you to download games and other assets, each manufacturer has its own online library. Look into what’s available before you decide on a brand.
  • If you want to save all your favorite games, look at the storage provided with each console. Many of the best boast 1TB of storage. Keep in mind that the most high-powered games will take up quite a bit of space, so that storage will go quickly if you like a big collection of games.
  • You may get at least a couple of free games with your console. This is especially prevalent with retro consoles, which often come with dozens of free games.
  • Xbox has something called Game Pass, which gives you a substantial discount on games for a monthly subscription fee.
  • If you want to take advantage of virtual reality technology, you’ll be limited in your consoles. PlayStation supports it, but some others may, as well. Check to see what gear you’ll need if you want to take advantage of this.
  • By the time you buy your console, chances are, it will already be outdated. The latest, greatest gaming system is always just around the corner. You may want to wait until a new version releases, then enjoy it until the next version debuts.
  • Families looking for kid-friendly consoles should take a serious look at the Nintendo console. You’ll get a bigger selection of youth-geared games, along with features like being able to later invest in a smaller console like the Switch Lite without having to buy all new games.