PlayStation Classic vs SNES Classic: Which should you buy?

SNES Classic
SNES Classic (Image credit: Android Central)

SNES Classic

The SNES Classic proves that Nintendo's older consoles can still hold their own in today's generation, especially with a never-released game in the mix.

SNES Classic

Our pick

Includes a never-before-released game
Rewind feature
Compatible with original controllers (w/ adapter)
Includes AC adapter
Short controller cords

PlayStation Classic

The PlayStation Classic appeals to loyal fans, but it's hard to compete with the SNES Classic when it lacks certain features.

PlayStation Classic

Falls short

PlayStation exclusive games
Powerful nostalgia
More expensive
Fewer games total
Fewer features

What's the difference?

The SNES Classic by far supports more features than the PlayStation Classic, though both play games with near similar quality on modern televisions. Your brand loyalty could certainly sway your purchase, but terms of the games and features you get for the price, it's no contest.

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CategorySNES ClassicPlayStation Classic
Dimensions110mm × 40.5mm × 133mm149 mm × 33 mm × 105 mm
Includes 2 controllersYesYes
Supports rewind featureYesNo
720p resolution supportYesYes
Compatible with original controllers (w/ adapter)YesNo
Includes AC adapterYesNo

What these features mean to you

You may be unfamiliar with a few of the above terms and how important they are when it comes to your gaming experience, especially since a lot of them weren't available on the original consoles.

Rewind feature

The SNES Classic features a rewind mechanic that allows players to rewind their gameplay by about a minute or so in order to rectify past mistakes. The catch to this feature is that you can only rewind based on your game's last suspend point, which would basically be your last save. The good news is that each game supports up to four suspend points.

Should you decide to load up a saved game and aren't quite happy with where you are, you can choose exactly where you want to jump back in so long as it is within a certain timeframe before your save.

With the PlayStation Classic, you're stuck with any mistakes you make, for better or worse.

According to Nintendo, "Players can go back a few minutes in role-playing games such as Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars, while action titles such as Super Mario World offer around 40 seconds, ideal for re-trying short segments of gameplay."

The PlayStation Classic, from what Sony has revealed so far, does not support a rewind feature so you're stuck with any mistakes you make, for better or worse.

Compatible with original controllers

For those of us hanging on to our original controllers from back in the day, you can still use them on an SNES Classic. Although it already includes two wired controllers out of the box so you and a friend can play against each other, the SNES Classic is also compatible with the console's original controllers using Hyperkin's SNES controller adapter for $10.

The PlayStation Classic, on the other hand, is not compatible with any original peripheral hardware or accessories and no adapters are on the market for it.

720p resolution

Here's where each Classic system has equal footing. Both can upscale a game's resolution to 720p, which is considered standard high definition. The original systems supported graphics of around 240p.

Because of how old the games are, they also only display with a 4:3 aspect ratio. Despite not being widescreen, the SNES Classic features custom borders that change based on what game you are playing. Sony's PlayStation Classic appears to only have plain black borders.

AC adapter included

AC adapters are what allow us to power our consoles, similar to what we would use to charge our smartphones. Nintendo's SNES Classic includes an AC adapter so that there's no need to buy another separately and pay an additional fee. The PlayStation Classic does not include one, although Sony made sure you were still good to go.

Nintendo's SNES Classic includes an AC adapter so that there's no need to buy another separately.

Sony designed the PlayStation Classic so that it only needs a standard USB charger like most smartphones. Odds are that nearly all households will have some type of adapter already on hand that is compatible with the PlayStation Classic, so it's not a huge deal that it doesn't come with one. If you don't, that's where you'll need to go out and purchase another. As for the USB cable itself, the PlayStation Classic includes one.

The bottom line

Not only is the SNES Classic cheaper, you're definitely getting more bang for your buck. The PlayStation Classic has its own allure, especially when accounting for its exclusive games lineup, but it falls short when looking at what the machine can actually do.

Jennifer Locke
Games Editor - PlayStation, Android, VR

Jennifer Locke has been playing video games nearly her entire life. You can find her posting pictures of her dog and obsessing over PlayStation and Xbox, Star Wars, and other geeky things.