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Restoring and Cleaning Your Classic Nintendo Games

The members of the original Nintendo generation have begun to enter their 20s and 30s. Many of them even have children of their own. For many, the onset of adult life comes with an occasional desire to revisit some of the simple pleasures of youth, and there can hardly be a better way to do this than by replaying some of the classic console games that gave us so much pleasure in childhood. Unfortunately, classic Nintendo and Super Nintendo games were cartridge-based and extremely sensitive to dust and corrosion, and when the delicate metal contacts on these cartridges were dirty, the games would often refuse to function at all. When buying a classic Nintendo game on the secondary market today, this problem is even more likely to occur as the vast majority of used cartridges that are available have been improperly stored for two decades or more. Thankfully, with just a few household items, it is possible to restore these games to their original operation while avoiding the inflated prices that are charged by game retailers for cartridge refurbishment. Getting Started Before you begin restoring your classic Nintendo games, you will need a fully-functioning and clean Nintendo console. Nintendo games are equally as susceptible to blinking and non-playability if the console is dirty as they are if the games themselves need to be cleaned, and it is far more difficult to clean the inside of a console, which was never meant to be opened by the end user. Therefore, it is strongly recommended that you purchase a refurbished Nintendo console to enjoy your games with a minimum of hassle. Alternatively, several clone consoles are currently available which emulate the original hardware to near perfection. The SNES/NES FC Twin Video Game System is a popular example of this; it is able to play both Nintendo and Super Nintendo games, and generally costs under $50. Supplies Required Before you begin cleaning your classic Nintendo games, ensure that all of your supplies are laid out in front of you in a manner that is accessible. You will need some isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol, a large supply of cotton swabs, a small dish or cup, and a place to dispose of your dirty cotton swabs. Because alcohol is a highly flammable substance, do not smoke or leave an open flame in the area where you will be working. Cleaning Your Games Pour some of the alcohol into your dish. Alcohol evaporates quickly, so using a separate dish will allow you to close your bottle...

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