Michael Iantorno PhD Candidate, Game Designer, and Writer

Afterlives of the SNES/SFC

Afterlives of the SNES/SFC is my FRQSC-funded dissertation in the department of Communication Studies at Concordia University (ABD, Spring 2025).

My dissertation explores the afterlives of the SNES/Super Famicom (SNES/SFC) console and its software library, primarily through the investigation of informal technologies, practices, and industries that have emerged after its commercial lifespan. This research is a productive expansion of platform studies, joining a growing number of academic projects that challenge platform studies’ tendency to focus on industry documentation and official development practices. My case studies include:

  • Stewarding the SNES/SFC: an overview of SNES/SFC emulators, console reproductions, and fan archives which begs the question: who is the console’s keeper?
  • Satellite Archaeologies: an investigation into the citizen archivists who are working to restore access to the Satellaview, a SNES/SFC add-on that allowed users to access game content over satellite.
  • Final Fantasies: a study of the Final Fantasy VI (re)localisation scene and a reflection on the inherent instability of videogame software as it travels across borders.
  • Double Bootlegs: a look at how HyperBound, a game hack I created in 2007, ended up as a lime green cartridge on eBay (and how bootleg reproductions circulate throughout the world).

I have completed the majority of my research and I am now writing and editing chapters, with plans to defend in the spring of 2025.

Michael Iantorno PhD Candidate, Game Designer, and Writer