Super Multitap

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The Super Multitap.

The Super Mulitap is a video game peripheral developed by Hudson Soft for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and Super Famicom which allows the console to support up to five controllers instead of its built-in two. There were at least 20 similar multitap peripherals made for the SNES/Super Famicom, but Hudson Soft's Super Multitap was by far the most popular, not just because Husdon Soft was a bigger name than the others, but also because it was promoted with a popular video game, Super Bomberman. Like with other video game consoles, support for additional controllers would only work on games designed to take advantage of it. In older platforms like the Nintendo Entertainment System, support for more than two controllers was limited to only a handful of games, but developers for the SNES created over 100 games which supported more than two controllers allowing for game play sessions which could accommodate more players. No doubt this increase in entertainment value (not to mention controller sales) helped influence Nintendo to build four controller ports into their next console, the Nintendo 64.

The Super Multitap was released in Japan, the USA, and Europe. In the USA it was released bundled with the Party Pak version of Super Bomberman or individually. In Japan, it was released in three different ways. Each version was sold individually. The first two just used different packaging, but they both included multi-colored stickers for the ports and controllers to help keep the mess of wires in order. The third release, called the Super Multitap 2, was reworked to be in the shape of a Bomberman's head. I've read that the Japanese and American Super Multitaps work interchangeably, but that the European Super Multitap is region-locked for PAL devices, but, if bypassed, works fine everywhere.


Back in the days of the NES, I was always enamored by the idea of a big party with all my friends playing at once, as depicted in advertising for the NES Four Score and NES Satellite. This was especially the case after I bought Gauntlet II and saw that it had support for 4 players simultaneously, just like the arcade game. But, the truth is, being a shy weird kid, I never had such parties, and, even if I did, few NES games actually supported four players, and even fewer were any good. So, looking back, I'm glad I never bothered with the peripheral. However, when I was totally blown away by Secret of Mana, and saw that it could handle three players simultaneously, my interest was re-piqued, but, again, I didn't know of enough games to justify buying a multitap. When the Nintendo 64 came out, and I saw people playing four player Mario Kart 64, I became really interested. Having bought a copy of The Lord of the Rings: Volume 1 from FuncoLand, and seeing it supported up to 5 players, I finally bought a multitap for my SNES, and, since it was the easiest to come by, I got a used Super Multitap. I finally played Secret of Mana with three players, and, to my dismay, I found that it wasn't that great. It's just too difficult to convince three players to all go in the same direction all the time. We all wanted to do different things, but, because the game locks the camera to the players, we were frequently stuck near the edges. The Lord of the Rings: Volume 1 is even worse because it doesn't lock in the players, and they can easily get lost off screen! It wasn't until I played Super Bomberman that I realized just how well four-player games can actually be on the SNES, but, by that time, I was primarily emulating games on my PC and didn't need it.

I own a US Super Multitap without the box.



This is an incomplete list of SNES games which support more than two controllers.

Title Max Players Notes
Bakukyuu Renpatsu!! Super B-Daman  ? Japan only
Bakutou Dochers  ? Japan
Barkley Shut Up and Jam! 4
Battle Cross 5 Japan only
Battle Jockey  ? Japan only
Bill Walsh College Football 5
Bomberman Collection 4 Super Game Boy
Bomberman GB 4 Super Game Boy
Capcom's Soccer Shootout 4
College Slam 4
Crystal Beans From Dungeon Explorer 3 Japan only
Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story 3
Dream Basketball: Dunk and Hoop  ? Japan only
Dynamic Stadium  ? Japan only
Elite Soccer 5
ESPN National Hockey Night 5
F-1 Race 4 Super Game Boy
Faceball 2000 5 Super Game Boy
Fever Pitch Soccer 5 PAL only
FIFA International Soccer 5
FIFA - Road to World Cup 98 5
FIFA Soccer '96 5
FIFA Soccer '97 5
FireStriker 4
From TV Animation Slam Dunk - SD Heat Up!!  ? Japan only
Go! Go! Dodge League  ? Japan only
Hammerlock Wrestling 4
Hat Trick Hero 2  ? Japan only
Head-On Soccer 5
Hebereke no Oishii Puzzle ha Irimasenka  ? Japan only
Human Grand Prix III - F1 Triple Battle 3 Japan only
Human Grand Prix IV - F1 Dream Battle 3 Japan only
Hungry Dinosaurs 4 PAL only
International Superstar Soccer Deluxe 4
J. League Excite Stage '95  ? Japan only
J. League Excite Stage '96  ? Japan only
J. League Super Soccer '95  ? Japan only
J. League Super Soccer  ? Japan only
Jeopardy!: Deluxe Edition 3
Jeopardy!: Sports Edition 3
Jikkyo Power Pro Wrestling '96: Max Voltage 4
Jinsei Game 4 Super Game Boy
JWP Joshi Pro Wres: Pure Wrestle Queens  ? Japan only
Kunio-kun no Dodge Ball: Zenin Shuugou! 4 Japan only
Looney Tunes B-Ball 4
The Lord of the Rings: Volume 1 5
Madden NFL '94 5
Madden NFL '95 5
Madden NFL '96 5
Madden NFL '97 5
Madden NFL '98 5
Micro Machines 4
Micro Machines 2: Turbo Tournament 4
Mizuki Shigeru no Youkai Hyakkiyakou  ? Japan only
Multi Play Volleyball  ? Japan only
Natsume Championship Wrestling 4
NBA Hang Time 4
NBA Give 'n Go 4
NBA Jam 4
NBA Jam Tournament Edition 4
NBA Live 95 5
NBA Live 96 5
NBA Live 97 5
NBA Live 98 5
NCAA Final Four Basketball 5
NCAA Football 4
NFL Quarterback Club 5
NFL Quarterback Club '96 5
NHL '94 5
NHL '98 5
Olympic Summer Games 5
The Peace Keepers 4 Versus mode only
Pieces 5
Rap Jam: Volume One 5
Rock 'n Roll Racing 4 Requires ROM hack
Saturday Night Slam Masters 4
Secret of Mana 3
Seiken Densetsu 3 3 Requires ROM hack
Shin Nihon Pro Wrestling: Chou Senshi in Tokyo Dome - Fantastic Story  ? Japan only
Shin Nihon Pro Wrestling Kounin: '94 Battlefield in Tokyo Dome  ? Japan only
Shin Nihon Pro Wrestling Kounin: '95 Tokyo Dome Battle 7  ? Japan only
Slam Dunk TV Animation 5
Smash Tennis 4 Japan and PAL only
Soccer Shootout 4
Sporting News: Power Baseball 4
Sterling Sharpe: End 2 End 5
Street Hockey '95 4
Street Racer 4
Sugoi Hebereke  ? Japan only
Sugoro Quest++: Dicenics  ? Japan only
Super Bomberman 4
Super Bomberman 2 4
Super Bomberman 3 5 Japan and PAL only
Super Bomberman 4 5 Japan only
Super Bomberman 5 5 Japan only
Super Family Tennis 4 Japan and PAL only
Super Fire Pro Wrestling 2  ? Japan only
Super Fire Pro Wrestling III: Final Bout  ? Japan only
Super Fire Pro Wrestling Special  ? Japan only
Super Fire Pro Wrestling X  ? Japan only
Super Final Match Tennis  ? Japan only
Super Formation Soccer II 4 Japan only
Super Formation Soccer 95: della Serie A 4 Japan only
Super Ice Hockey 4 Japan and PAL only
Super Puyo Puyo Tsu: Remix 4
Super R.C. Pro AM 4 Super Game Boy
Super Tekkyu Fight! 4 Japan only
Super Tetris 3 4
Tiny Toon Adventures: Wacky Sports Challenge 4
Top Gear 3000 4
Turbo Toons 4 PAL only
TV Animation Slam Dunk 5
Vegas Stakes 5
Wario Blast: Featuring Bomberman! 4 Super Game Boy
WCW Super Brawl Wrestling 4
World League Soccer 4
WWF Raw 4
Zero4 Champ: RR 4 Japan only
Zero4 Champ: RR-Z 4 Japan only