Some of the greatest video games originated decades ago and formed a firm part of growing up for many childhoods. Thankfully, many of those games can still be played now even though the consoles are a little smaller, more versatile, and more dependable. Plus, you no longer have to store tens of cartridges, plus give them a quick blow when you want to play them again. The retro games remain as playable as ever on retro gaming consoles like the Nintendo NES and Super NES Classic Editions, Sega Genesis Mini, Sony PlayStation Classic, and Neo Geo Mini. 

Nintendo NES Classic Edition

The Nintendo NES Classic Edition began the trend in retro gaming consoles as it came directly from Nintendo so you knew you were getting the real deal. As well as being rather cute and portable, it simply looks like a miniature version of that trademark console that likely started a keen interest in gaming back in the day. Part of the appeal is simply how the console looks and how the controller has barely changed since then. If you still want to play the likes of Super Mario Bros. 3, The Legend of Zelda, and Castlevania, then plug it in and off you go.  

Sega Genesis Mini

If you preferred Sega to Nintendo then opt for the first console that the company has made ever since their Dreamcast. Though there are some great games, not all of the classics are available, while it does come with decent emulation. Try the likes of Mega Man: The Wily Wars, Streets of Rage 2, and the classic Sonic the Hedgehog 2. You can even ramp it up with the accessory pack designed for the Genesis Tower Mini along with cartridges for Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic & Knuckles. 

Nintendo Super NES Classic Edition

Of course, after the Nintendo NES Classic Edition did so well, Nintendo followed up their 8-bit mini-console with their 16-bit offering. The Super NES Classic will have fewer games then its predecessor yet still includes some of the greatest 16-bit video games ever. That includes Super Mario World, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, and even Star Fox which all remain as playable as they did back then. There is even a superb feature to save, suspend, and rewind your game while the gameplay and visuals keep up. 

Sony PlayStation Classic

For one generation, the Sony PlayStation was their go-to console for their childhood, its classic version still looks the part. That console design is simple, cute, and to the point in an affordable package that comes with a popular set of games. Though the emulation could be improved, this does come with HDMI and USB cable ports. If you still want to play Metal Gear Solid, Tekken 3, and Ridge Racer Type 4, grab yourself a controller and get going.

Neo Geo Mini

Granted, the Neo Geo was not quite as commercially successful as the more mainstream offerings from Sega and Nintendo. However, it remained in arcades and the retro games console can provide a verifiably retro experience, just as if you were in the arcade all over again. This console is more for fans of the arcade rather than those who played at home. That should mean some of the best fighting games including Samurai Shodown II, The King of Fighters ‘98, and Metal Slug X. 


Buying the best retro console should mean looking back to your childhood and working out what you want to play. You could have had a Nintendo NES or a Super NES and the lure to play as Mario in both 8-bit and 16-bit may prove impossible to resist. Then again, you could simply want to see Sonic the Hedgehog zoom across your screen once again. You should also consider whether you want to be social with your gaming too as you could opt for a console with several controllers or a handheld console just for you.

Several of the retro gaming consoles look pretty much exactly as they did back in your youth with the same classic design and even the controllers are the same size. Be wary of the emulation though as some retro game consoles have failed to invest in ensuring that the games play as well as they did. Some of the consoles even fail to have the big-hitting games that you would expect so carry out some research first so you do not miss out. If you are ready to reminisce about your first console then plug it in and get playing.