10 Best SNES Games of All Time Ranked by Sales | Hacker Noon

The SNES console was released in 1990 and sold 49 million units. Donkey Kong 3: Dixie Kong’s Double Trouble! and Street Fighter 2 Turbo were the best selling SNES games of all time. Super Mario World 2: The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past was released on the SNES and it would sell 4.6 million copies on the Nintendo 64. The 3DS version of Super Mario All-Stars is the best-selling SNES game on the console.

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When it comes to iconic consoles, there’s an argument to be made that there are none more iconic than the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. First released in 1990, the SNES sold 49 million units. It was home to great games that included Super Metroid, Killer Instinct, and Mega Man X. 

With so many good games, it’s difficult to make a list of the best. However, the list of the best-selling games on the console is a lot clearer. So, here are the 10 best SNES games of all time according to sales.

Best SNES Games Ranked

  • 10. Donkey Kong 3: Dixie Kong’s Double Trouble!
  • 9. Street Fighter 2 Turbo
  • 8. Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island
  • 7. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
  • 6. Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest
  • 5. Street Fighter 2: The World Warrior
  • 4. Super Mario Kart
  • 3. Donkey Kong Country
  • 2. Super Mario All-Stars
  • 1. Super Mario World

10. Donkey Kong Country 3 – 3.5 Million Copies Sold

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Donkey Kong has been around for decades, and the character is known around the world. When you take a look at the sales of his video games, it’s easy to see how popular he is.

Donkey Kong had a great time during the SNES era, with 3 of his games being the best selling of the console. Donkey Kong Country 3 is the lowest-selling of the bunch but still sold millions of copies. 

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The third installment in the series sees Dixie Kong take the spotlight as she goes against crocodile, King K. Rool. The villain is the main antagonist of the previous two games, and he keeps coming back for more.

Although it sold less than its predecessors, it’s still one of the best SNES games according to sales. Donkey Kong Country 3 sold 3.5 million copies

9. Street Fighter 2 Turbo – 4.1 Million Copies Sold

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Street Fighter 2 is one of the most influential fighting games of all time. First released in 1991, Capcom would release several updated versions of the game.

One of these versions was Street Fighter 2 Turbo, which was released on the SNES in 1993; it’s also known as Street Fighter 2: Hyper Fighting. 

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What made this version of the game different than the original was the faster movement. Although it seems like a small change, there’s a notable difference between Turbo and the original Street Fighter. 

Another change in Turbo was the addition of more special moves for characters. Most notably, Chun-Li got her projectile move, the legendary Kikoken.

The game’s quicker speed and the addition of new moves led to fans of the series buying the game in droves. Street Fighter 2 Turbo would go on to sell 4.1 million copies on the SNES. 

8. Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island – 4.1 Million Copies Sold

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Instead of a sequel like Street Fighter 2, this game is a prequel and also fared incredibly well on the SNES. Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island tells the story of Baby Mario, Baby Luigi, and Yoshi.

The green dinosaur does his best to rescue Luigi after he is abducted by Kamek, the evil henchman of Baby Bowser.

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Yoshi was and remains one of the most popular Nintendo characters. With his name in the title and him being the protagonist, this game was destined to sell well. Super Mario World 2 sold 4.1 million copies.

The game’s success would lead to other Yoshi-led games including Yoshi’s Story which was released a few years later on the Nintendo 64. 

7. The Legend of Zelda:  A Link to the Past – 4.6 Million Copies

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It shouldn’t come as a surprise that with every Nintendo console comes a great Zelda game. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past was released on the SNES and it was the third game in the franchise.

In this game, Link tries to save Hyrule and Princess Zelda from the villain, Ganon. To do so, he’ll have to wield the Master Sword.

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Like its predecessors on the NES, A Link to the Past was also a success. It would go on to sell 4.6 million copies. The world of A Link to the Past would once again be explored on the Nintendo 3DS with the game The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds.

This game was released in 2013, almost 20 years after a Link to the Past, and it would sell 4.1 million copies

6. Donkey Kong Country 2 – 5.1 Million Copies

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The second installment in the Donkey Kong Country series sees Diddy Kong in the driver’s seat as he tries to rescue Donkey Kong from King K. Rool.

Joining him on this adventure is Dixie Kong. To get to King K. Rool, they have to go through Crocodile Island, which is swarming with enemies. 

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Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest would go on to be one of the best SNES games of all time in terms of sales. The game sold 5.1 million copies, and its success would lead to more installments in the series being made. Donkey Kong Country 3 would be released one year later. 

5. Street Fighter 2: The World Warrior – 6.3 Million Copies

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Although Street Fighter 2 Turbo did well on the SNES, there’s no beating the original. Street Fighter 2: The World Warrior is the original version of the game, and it’s the one that changed everything. It was the introduction of many iconic video game characters such as M. Bison and Chun-Li. 

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Street Fighter 2: The World Warrior is the best-selling fighting game on the SNES. It sold 6.3 million copies. Another Street Fighter 2 version that was released on the console was Super Street Fighter 2: The New Challengers.

It added Cammy, Fei Long, T. Hawk, and Dee Jay as playable characters. This version sold 2 million copies on the SNES. 

4. Super Mario Kart – 8.7 Million Copies

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The first installment in the Mario Kart series, Super Mario Kart set the precedent for the rest that followed. The game had 8 playable characters that included Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, Bowser, and Donkey Kong Jr.

Besides his inclusion in the Mario Kart mobile game, Super Mario Kart is the only installment in the series that includes Donkey Kong Jr. The game also offers 20 tracks. 

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The idea of racing as Mushroom Kingdom characters seemed fun and it intrigued fans to check the game out. Super Mario Kart sold 8.7 million copies. Its success would lead to more installments getting made, and the series is still going strong today. 

The most recent game, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, has currently sold 37 million copies on the Nintendo Switch. It’s the most sold game on that console.

3. Donkey Kong Country – 9.3 Million Copies

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The first in the Country series, the game sees Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong team up to take on King K. Rool. This time the villain has done the unthinkable; he’s stolen their bananas from under their noses.

Players can switch between the two characters depending on the situation, one character works better than the other when faced with certain problems.

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For example, Donkey Kong packs a punch, however, sometimes you need the speed that Diddy Kong provides. Fans loved Donkey and Diddy Kong and this game would go on to be a major success. 

Donkey Kong Country would go on to sell 9.3 million copies and would bring a wave of sequels. The latest installment, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, was released in 2014. 

2. Super Mario All-Stars – 10.5 Million Copies

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Everyone loves a good collection, and this one had some of the best Nintendo games ever. Super Mario All-Stars was a collection of four Mario games.

This included Super Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros: 2, Super Mario Bros: The Lost Levels, and Super Mario Bros. 3. The collection improves things from the original games such as their graphics.

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Super Mario All-Stars would go on to sell 10.5 million copies. This collection of games would once again be released to the public in 2020.

During the celebration for Super Mario Bros’ 35th anniversary, it was announced that Super Mario All-Stars would be joining the Nintendo Switch Online catalog. 

1. Super Mario World – 20 Million Copies Sold

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Super Mario World was released on the SNES in 1990. Not only is this game one of the greatest on the SNES, but it’s also one of the greatest games of all time.

As usual, Mario is on a quest to save Princess Peach after she’s captured by Bowser. However, this time he’s accompanied by everyone’s favorite dinosaur, Yoshi. 

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The game’s impact would be felt immediately. It sold like hotcakes, with 20 million copies being sold on the SNES. Super Mario World is on top of the list of the best SNES games of all time, not just because of the number of copies it sold but because of how great it is. 

Although this list showcased the best SNES games in terms of sales, there are other great games that didn’t make the list. This includes games such as Final Fight, Final Fantasy VI, and Super Mario RPG. 

More in Gaming:

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