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Jumpin said:
curl-6 said:

Don't get me wrong, I'm not dunking on the SNES or trying to undermine its success; it was still a very successful console that won its generation comfortably.

But I'd say the reason it sold less than the NES was primarily due to much, much stronger competition. The NES only had to deal with a few weak opponents; the Megadrive/Genesis on the other hand was a formidible foe that gained a lot of marketshare by leapfrogging the NES and beating the SNES to market, as well as aggressive marketing.

I wouldn't say the SNES vanished quickly either; it continued to get games like Donkey Kong Country 3, Kirby's Dreamland 3, and Harvest Moon and even a revision in the SNES Junior after the release of N64.

I’m not saying the SNES sold fewer units, or that it didn’t have stiff competition. I’m saying the SNES sales aren’t because of decline in interest, rather interest in Nintendo was bigger than ever during the SNES generation. It sold about 80% of the units of the NES in around half the time of the NES.

It releases 6-8 years before the SNES, while SNES released only 4-5 years before the N64. And unlike the SNES, the NES also overlapped SNES for a few years, extending the generation even longer. On the other hand, the SNES was basically dead at, or shortly after, the N64 launch. And the three games you mentioned didn’t change that as Harvest Moon and Kirby’s Dreamland 3 weren’t widely available or advertised (many were surprised Kirby’s Dreamland 3 existed when it launched on VC), and DKC came out before the N64 launch outside of Japan. And even if Harvest Moon and Kirby’s Dreamland 3 were actual big games, they would still only be token releases, releasing less than a year after the N64–so, not really extending the generation much.

The SNES was the first time that Nintendo artificially killed off a generation. A strategy they’d repeat on the GBC, DS, and Wii later on.

SNES wasn't killed off prematurely, it was manufactured until 1999 in America, three years after its replacement, and 2003 in Japan, a whopping 7 years post-replacement.

It has to be remembered that the N64 was late to the party; PS1 and Saturn arrived in 1994 so SNES was already facing an uphill battle against newer next gen machines long before it was replaced; it managed to hold its own thanks to phenomenal late life titles like Yoshi's Island, DKC 1-3, and Super Mario RPG, but interest in it could only last so long once it was firmly in last gen territory.

Dreamland 3 saw release in the system's two biggest territories, JP and NA, and Harvest Moon even saw a PAL release. The situation was nothing like the Wii or DS which were dropped almost immediately.