The Super Nintendo Entertainment System, also known as Super Nintendo, Super NES or SNES, is a 16-bit video game console released by Nintendo in North America, Brazil, Europe, and Australia. In Japan, it is known as the Super Famicom. In South Korea, the Super Nintendo was distributed as the Super Comboy by Hyundai Electronics. Unlike the Hyundai Comboy, which is a renamed American NES, the Super Comboy is a renamed Japanese/European model.
The Super Nintendo Entertainment System is the second video game home console released by Nintendo internationally. The successor to the Nintendo Entertainment System, the Super Nintendo Entertainment System featured enhanced graphics, a brand new controller, better sound and more features. While not as successful as the Nintendo Entertainment System before it, the SNES still proved a formidable competitor in the 16-bit era, claiming second place behind the Sega Genesis (Mega Drive in Europe and Japan) initially, and far surpassing NEC's TurboGrafx-16.
Later, due to higher technology capabilities, the SNES managed to hold it's ground during the 32-Bit era, while Sega and NEC had dropped out earlier. Nintendo's overall success during both generations can be attributed in part to the fact that Sega left the 16-bit market early in favor of the 32-bit market.
The Super Nintendo Entertainment System was host to numerous classic video games, including titles such as Super Mario World, Super Metroid, Final Fantasy VI, Chrono Trigger, Donkey Kong Country,Street Fighter II, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, Star Fox and Super Mario Kart. These titles sold millions of copies and would help cement the SNES as the leader of the fourth generation. Third parties such as Square, Enix and Capcom would assist in the huge success of the console.
The Super Nintendo Entertainment System was first released in Japan under the name Super Famicom (the Nintendo Entertainment System was named the Famicom in Japan) on November 21, 1990. In a little over half a year, the system was released in North America in August of 1991 and in Europe and Australia in 1992. Nintendo would eventually manufacture SNES systems with different casings and label them with new names such as Super Famicom Jr. and SNS-101. The new systems didn't offer anything new to the gaming experience, though were meant to spark interest in the system once again long after the initial shipment.