Nintendo wants gamers to kick it old school with the NES Classic Edition, a pint-sized version of the popular NES console from the 80s. Available on November 11th for $59.99, the miniature console comes with 30 beloved NES games pre-installed. There’s a single controller inside of the box, but you can buy another NES Classic Controller separately for $9.99. Not a bad idea, since there are quite a few games available for two-players.
Whether you go head-to-head or team up to fight the forces of evil, these are the five best two-player games on the NES Classic Edition. 2P, press Start!
Super Mario Bros. 3
We love the original Super Mario Bros., and you can play that game and the offbeat Super Mario Bros. 2 on the NES Classic Edition, but the third installment tops them both. Super Mario Bros. 3 goes back to the Goomba stomping and brick breaking antics of the original (no vegetable throwing from SMB2), but with superior visuals, more imaginative worlds to explore and some of the coolest secrets in video game history; the warp whistle will change your life. You can’t play with a buddy at the same time. Instead, you take turns, with one person controlling Mario while the other controls his brother, Luigi, which is perfectly fine. You can always strategize how to beat different levels – make sure you grab the Frog Suit for the water stages – and see who beats which world first.
Double Dragon 2: The Revenge
Enough taking turns! Team up to lay the smack down on some bad guys. Double Dragon 2 features arcade-style beat-em-up action, with players controlling either Billy or Jimmy Lee. The game serves up tons of enemies to pummel, with such moves as the famous Cyclone Spin Kick, the Hyper Uppercut and the Flying Knee Kick. While it doesn’t take long to beat, you’ll have an incredible time mastering each level – we love the stage where you can punch enemies out of a moving helicopter – and listening to catchy 8-bit music. Fun solo, but even better with a friend.
It would’ve been cool to play the original Contra on the NES Classic Edition, but we’ll gladly take the follow up. Super C lets two people join forces to battle the alien menace known as Red Falcon, with familiar Contra weapons, like the spread shot (so awesome) and flamethrower. There’s a story in there somewhere, and a contraption called The Babalu Destructoid Mechanism, but all we care about is intense arcade shooting and hanging onto our precious lives. Unfortunately, the famous Konami Code didn’t make it into Super C, but there is a code to get 10 lives.
Move over, Madden NFL! The best NES football game is back! Tecmo Bowl makes a welcome return with the NES Classic Edition, allowing you and a friend to compete against each other for gridiron glory. Even if you don’t understand football, Tecmo Bowl is easy to get into. There are only 12 teams to choose from with four plays each! Mess around with the game for a few minutes, and it won’t be long before you take a kickoff to the house for a touchdown. This is the epitome of classic sports gaming, long before complicated playbooks and controllers with 100 buttons. All hail the king!
If you can’t beat your friends at Tecmo Bowl, challenge them to some Dr. Mario. In this beloved NES puzzle game, the goal is to clear all of the red, yellow and blue viruses with pills of the corresponding colors before the other person does the same. Destroy multiple viruses at once, and you’ll send a bunch of unwanted capsules onto the other player’s side of the screen, which will likely cause some arguments and the worst of all, the dreaded player rage quit, where he or she angrily forfeits before the game is over. Hey, a win is a win!
What is your favorite NES game of all time? Let us know, and check out the best multiplayer video games you can buy right now, including another fun Nintendo game, Mario Kart!