Review: 'The SNES Omnibus: The Super Nintendo and its Games, Vol. 2 (N-Z)'

'The SNES Omnibus: The Super Nintendo and its Games, Vol. 2 (N-Z) by Brett Weiss. 'The SNES Omnibus: The Super Nintendo and its Games, Vol. 2 (N-Z) by Brett Weiss. SCHIFFER PUBLISHING

Picking up (quite literally) where the first volume left off, The SNES Omnibus: The Super Nintendo and its Games, Vol. 2 (N-Z) is the second half of a two-tome history of the Super Nintendo's 700-some-odd games.

Written by journalist (Sacramento BeeGame Informer) and author Brett Weiss and published by independent book publisher Schiffer Publishing, the 464-page hardcover coffee table book tells the stories of Nintendo's 16-bit video game system and its titles.  Whereas the first volume covered games alphabetically through the letter "M," Vol. 2 begins at "N" with Natsume Championship Wrestling and end with Zoop (a game released in 1995 exclusively in the North American market).

Vol. 2 continues telling the nuts-and-bolts details of each game along with interesting tidbits, narratives, and review snippets from those inside of the video game industry.  Just like in the first volume, this is all supplemented by full-color images such as screenshots, box art, and advertisements.  While most games get only a single page each, larger and more impactful titles such as Super Mario World and Starfox are given more real estate.  In fact, there is an entire special section in the latter half of the book entitled "A Deeper Meaning for Super Metroid."

Not unlike its predecessor, The SNES Omnibus: The Super Nintendo and its Games, Vol. 2 (N-Z) is as entertaining a read as it is informative.  Revisiting these titles from a bygone video game era is a true treat whether it's a well known and well loved title such as Super Mario Kart, one rooted in popular culture like those in the Madden NFL series, or an obscure one along the lines of Uniracers.  And similar to the the first book (which looked at the console war between Nintendo and SEGA), Vol. 2 gives the Super Scope 6 and Nintendo's greater affinity towards games with guns some attention.

As an encyclopedic-like publication, this second volume of The SNES Omnibus doesn't have to be owned in conjunction with the first volume as all readers would be missing out on would be the entire first half of the SNES video game library.  That stated, it would be a tad awkward just having the second half of a two-part series from a collector's/owner's standpoint.  And, at $49.99 each, it's not exactly easy on one's budget to own both.  Then again, that's what birthdays and Christmas is for.  Just saying.

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