The NES mini just released, and as soon as stores opened it immediately became impossible to find. Sold out, out, out. But for all its 30 pre-loaded games glory, it is missing one glaringly important component to buying any video game in a pre-internet world:
But the release did inspire Nintendo to do something it hasn’t ever really done before: scan and upload full, original-era print manuals as free PDF downloads.
Check those illustrations!
Now the normal NES manuals definitely get our nostalgia muscles working, but they’re also not impossible to track down. Tons of self-appointed game historians have been uploading them to the internet in massive archives.
Where it really gets interesting, is the rare, Japanese stuff.
That was Castlevania!
Above is a Japan-exclusive illustration for Super Mario Bros 3.
And then we have the manuals for the systems themselves, many of which never made it out of Japan. Check out these rare manuals below, in which the Nintendo cartridge gets the shit kicked out of him.
Please, I beg of you, don’t push your finger into that pour disks brains.
Again, you can check out the full list of PDFs here: