The SNES Classic Has Already Been Hacked

SNES Classic Edition
(Image credit: Nintendo)

The SNES Classic Edition just recently came out during the tail-end of September. The highly anticipated retro machine has been selling out like crazy, just like Nintendo's other hybrid gaming device, the Switch. Well, some gamers weren't satisfied with the current offerings of the SNES Classic Edition and decided to hack it.

According to Polygon, the hacks have been successful and just weeks after landing on the market, the SNES Classic Edition hacks have taken over the internet. Hackers got to work right away at attempting to crack open the mini-console and spill out its guts in order to understand how it worked. They did the exact same thing to the NES Classic Edition when it launched, and they managed to teach others with the mini-console how to increase the ROM count to include far more games than the initial 30 that it shipped with.

In the case of the SNES Classic Edition, it's now possible to increase the ROM count by using a publicly available exploit that hackers cobbled together. The process is not an easy one if you're attempting to overhaul your console, though.

For instance, the tutorial to execute the first iteration of the hack is 15 minutes long. You'll have to first download four tools, including installing some Python utilities in order to get the system hacked. After you unzip or install the utilities, you have to turn off your SNES Classic Edition and then hook it up to your PC. You have to go through a process of resetting the system and then you need to dump the kernel from the system.

You then have to flash a custom kernel to the SNES Classic, and then you have to install the Python utility, create a ROMS folder on the same drive where you installed Python, and then put the Python script in the folder. From there you can start putting ROMS in the folder, but they can only be .sfc files.

You then have to go through some rather complicated ROM conversion processes in order to convert the ROMs into the appropriate file-type in order to place it onto the SNES Classic Edition. But, before you can do that you have to copy one of the folders from the original dumped file and then rename the folder and files to the game you want to install.

The process for adding just a single game is extremely complex and very cumbersome. As noted in the Polygon article, if you don't do the dump and conversion process correctly, you can end up permanently bricking your system.

Some gamers are suggesting to wait for a better and easier process to become available, and the article notes in an update that an updated version of the conversion process has become available to download.

I don't know how well Nintendo will take to people hacking and modifying the SNES Classic Edition, but it was bound to happen, given that it happens to every single game console that's ever released. So far, modders have not been able to properly crack the PS4 or Xbox One yet, nor have they been able to get into the Nintendo Switch, but it'll happen eventually.

The SNES Classic Edition is available for purchase right now from participating retailers and online e-tailers.

Will Usher

Staff Writer at CinemaBlend.