What if video games had their own Criterion Collection, much like movies, including a wealth of extras and audio commentary? These images show one possible collection. Focusing on various Super NES games, the staff at GamePro tried their hands at dreaming up Criterion versions of their favorites. There’s been much debate about whether or not games are art, with famed critics like Roger Ebert even chiming in controversially on the matter. It’s not the sort of subject that can easily come to a consensus, but to many gamers, the games in these images are true works of art.
Super Metroid is one of the games chosen, and the dream double-disc set includes such extras as two audio commentaries, two hours of documentaries, and a complete soundtrack with original and remastered tracks. The game would also ideally be released in a 16:9 format for HD televisions, but presumably with the graphics untouched beyond that. Earthbound would be ideally enhanced with opening and ending cinematics by Studio Ghibli and a documentary about the “troubled production” of the game’s cancelled sequel for the Nintendo 64 (later released for the Game Boy Advance.
The Super Star Wars Trilogy consisted, unsurprisingly, of three fantastic and oft-underrated games. They were also incredibly difficult, so one Criterion addition would be the inclusion of a save system much like that on an emulator. Digital strategy guides would also be included, for a bit of extra help. Super Mario Kart is another of the included games, which should come as no surprise. The original kart racer for SNES spawned a number of sequels, with Mario Kart 7 slated to be released on the 3DS. The fictional version of the original would include digital remastering with updated sprites and a director’s cut with completely new polygonal graphics replacing said sprites. Digital remasterings of the classic soundtrack along with biographies and gameographies of the various racers would also be included.
It’s hard to say the exact impact that SimCity had on gaming, but it definitely spawned the popularity of the city-building game and likely led to the bevy of Sim and Tycoon games throughout the ’90s. The Criterion Collection of the game would have a voiced tutorial, allow you to connect to the cities of friends, and a documentary about the Sim franchise. Last, but not least, is Street Fighter II, a version which would include every arcade and console version of the game (Quite a few, as any SF or Capcom fan knows). It would also allow you to unlock Sheng Long, the character from the classic EGM hoax. Unless that would also be a hoax, of course. For more SNES fun, check out the SNES Bluetooth Controller for Android. If you’d rather feel more gaming nostalgia, though, don’t miss this video of the evolution of gaming.