Want to experience 80s and 90s games on modern TVs? All you need is a Nintendo Switch to play the most famous ones

Old games on TV

Many entertaining games came out in the 80s and 90s, which many consider the golden age of video games. These games were mainly available for the Nintendo and Super Nintendo consoles (also called Nes and SNES) and only those who lived through that era know how much fun they could be!

If we are driven by curiosity, we love retrogaming or we want to relive those golden years we don’t necessarily have to recover old consoles and try to connect them to the TV, also considering the difference in technology of modern Smart TVs (which tend to be incompatible with analog video of such old consoles).

Per experience the best retro games on a modern TV we can rely on Nintendo Switchthe Nintendo console which also includes support for the old consoles of the Japanese house, with a selection of vintage games ready to be played on the console screen or on the home Smart TV (thanks to the HDMI support of the Switch stand present in the package).

READ ALSO -> Best “secret” features of the Nintendo Switch

1) Best retro games on Nintendo Switch

On the Nintendo Switch we can try some of the best games released on the old generation consoles, especially those of the Nintendo 64without going crazy configuring an emulator. On Switch everything is ready to usewe just have to download the games from the dedicated store (as we will see later in the guide).

Let’s see together a rundown of retro games that we can play with the Nintendo Switch.

Super Mario Bros.

Super Mario Bros.

The Switch console is full of Super Mario games, with practically all the titles that have decreed the success of the most famous plumber in the world. Browsing between the NES and SNES emulators it is possible to play:

  • Super Mario Bros.
  • The lost levels of Super Mario Bros. (unreleased in Italy)
  • Super Mario Bros.2
  • Super Mario Bros.3
  • Yoshi’s Island (Super Mario Bros. 2)
  • Super Mario World
  • Super Mario Kart
  • Super Mario All Stars

The presence of these games alone is worth the cost of the console, especially for those who were small in that historical period and want to savor the depth of the gameplay present on Super Mario games (particularly difficult to finish, even today).

Donkey Kong

Donkey Kong

Another very popular character at the time was Donkey Kongtraditionally an enemy of Super Mario but which has been able to carve out its own history, with highly entertaining and fast-scrolling dedicated games.

The Donkey Kong games that we can try on Switch are:

  • Donkey Kong
  • Donkey Kong Jr.
  • Donkey Kong 3
  • Donkey Kong Country
  • Donkey Kong Country 2
  • Donkey Kong Country 3

Let’s get ready for hours and hours of fun, even in multiplayer (we can play it in two by assigning the Joy-Con to each player).



Another very famous game at the time is Metroidwhich effectively introduced the free-roaming concept of maps to games (which is now all the rage thanks to open-world games).

On the Nintendo Switch we can play:

  • Metroid
  • Super Metroid
  • Super Metroid (special edition)

If we love the genre we can’t miss these three games, all well emulated on the console.

The Legend of Zelda

Legend of Zelda

Nintendo enthusiasts know Link and his adventures well, but few really played the first Zelda games released for consoles. If we want to see how it all started we can try the following games on the Nintendo Switch:

  • The Legend of Zelda
  • The Legend of Zelda (special edition)
  • The Adventure of Link (Zelda 2)
  • The Adventure of Link (Zelda 2, special edition)
  • The Adventure of Link: A Link to the Past

With these games we will get to know the story of Link and his raids in a vast world full of treasures and enemies to face.

Ghosts ‘n Goblins

Ghosts 'n Goblins

In the collection of retro games it could certainly not be missing Ghosts ‘n Goblinsa scrolling adventure with a knight who has to face monsters of all kinds, losing his armor piece by piece.

The games that we can try on Nintendo Switch are:

  • Ghosts ‘n Goblins
  • Ghosts ‘n Goblins (special edition)
  • Super Ghouls ‘n Ghosts

Let’s get ready to face many monsters and avoid deadly traps along our way.

2) How to download retro games on Nintendo Switch

Nintendo Switch Online

To play over 100 retro games (of which we have only seen the most famous) we have to do is sign up for the service Nintendo Switch Onlinerequired in order to access emulators and games provided by Nintendo.

The fastest way to register is to purchase theNintendo Switch Online membership on Amazonso as to obtain a code to activate the subscription without entering any payment method on the console.

Once we have obtained the code from Amazon, we turn on the Nintendo Switch console, open the app Nintendo eShopwe confirm our Nintendo account, let’s go to the menu Register a codeenter the code received from Amazon and confirm the start of the subscription.

With the active Nintendo Switch Online subscription let us now go to the menu Nintendo Switch Online (included in Nintendo eShop) and download the NES and SNES emulators.

At the end of the download, let’s go to the console home and press on the preferred emulator, so that we can open the list of available retro games.

To do it quickly, you can then download them on Switch:

Nintendo 64 gameswith titles such as Super Mario, The Legend of Zelda, Mario Kart, Dr. Mario, Mario Tennis, Pokémon.

SEGA Mega Drive gamescon Golden Axe, Sonic The HedgehogStreets of Rage 2, Shinobi III, Virtua Fighter 2 and also Street Fighter

With the Nintendo Switch Online subscription we can also benefit from theemulator for the Game Boyas well as being able to play other classics such as Tetris and Pac-Man.


Using the Nintendo Switch console and Nintendo Switch Online membership we can experience the best retro games on a modern TV without fiddling with difficult programs or with ROMs that cannot be found online (which made retrogaming the prerogative of expert users).

To play, all we have to do is connect the Switch to its stand, use the HDMI cable to connect it to the TV, start the emulator and the favorite game and play the old classics, at the highest quality and with functions absent at the time (such as the rewinding and saving at any point in the game).

To play old games we can also read our ai guides best emulators for Playstation, XBox, Nintendo and Sega and you have best arcade classics to play online.


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