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Long ago, people lived in harmony with the natural world and used the power of Mana to help their nations grow. But when evil forces took control of the Mana Fortress, seeking to use it to conquer the world, a terrible war began which destroyed much of civilization but brought peace to the world once more. Over the long years, the events of the past became but legends to the new generations of humans. But history repeats itself...

One day while exploring a forbidden valley near his village, a young boy finds a rusty sword stuck in a stone. He does not realize that this is the Mana sword of legend, used in the great war of the past. By drawing the sword, the boy unwittingly summons hordes of monsters, and is expelled from his village for breaking the ancient taboo. A mysterious knight Jema who is passing through the area recognizes the sword and gives him instructions for the future. First, he must repair the sword, and then, with its help, take control of the Mana seeds which can be found hidden around the world to prevent them from falling into evil hands.

Secret of Mana is an action RPG, featuring real-time hack-and-slash style combat, in which up to two computer-controlled companions can accompany you. The protagonist has a stamina gauge: the more stamina he has, the more powerful his strike is. The player also has access to a growing arsenal of spells with various effects. It is possible to upgrade weapons, armor, and magic to higher levels.


Secret of Mana SNES Intro
Secret of Mana SNES Jema and Luka, important characters of the game
Secret of Mana SNES Strange place and strange people
Secret of Mana SNES Starting the game

Promo Images

Secret of Mana Screenshot
Secret of Mana Screenshot
Secret of Mana Screenshot
Secret of Mana Screenshot

Alternate Titles

  • "聖剣伝説2" -- Japanese spelling
  • "Seiken Densetsu 2" -- Japanese title

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

A real gem from Squaresoft, it's a shame it has so many technical glitchies SNES Bregalad (972)
A great early Action RPG SNES Idkbutlike2 (23)
Edible at best. SNES Asinine (1006)
A game that's designed to make casual gamers crazy iPhone Pagen HD (151)
Great Game, one of the best SNES Scott G (793)

Critic Reviews

Dragon SNES Aug, 1994 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100 iPhone Mar 18, 2011 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
Gaming since 198x SNES Nov 25, 2010 5 out of 5 100
RPG Kingdom SNES Jun 11, 2006 19 out of 20 95
SNES Force SNES Jan 20, 1994 95 out of 100 95
Game Informer Magazine SNES Jan, 2002 9.5 out of 10 95
Nintendo Acción SNES Dec, 1994 93 out of 100 93
Nintendo Life Wii Oct 14, 2008 9 Stars9 Stars9 Stars9 Stars9 Stars9 Stars9 Stars9 Stars9 Stars9 Stars 90
Thunderbolt Games SNES May 27, 2005 8 out of 10 80
The Game Hoard SNES Dec 12, 2017 3 out of 7 43


Topic # Posts Last Post
So what else has changed? 4 Unicorn Lynx (181557)
Nov 06, 2011


1001 Video Games

The SNES version of Secret of Mana appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


One of the first games announced for the then-announced CD-ROM addon for the SNES. Nintendo eventually gave up trying to get the peripheral off the ground after the deal with Phillips to make the drive fell flat. Square eventually released a tooled-down version, which pushed the SNES hardware constantly (hence the slowdown and lack of multiple enemies onscreen), and overall left Square bitter for having to go through the process of downgrading its game. This probably was one of the reasons Square decided to bail on Nintendo (and its then-upcoming N64 console) and take its multimillion seller, Final Fantasy VII, with it (which was first announced for the N64).

Ironically, Square signed the deal to bring the game to the PlayStation with Sony, which was the original partner for the SNES CD drive, but was publicly stabbed in the back by Nintendo with the Phillips deal. The CD drive technology that Sony had been working on for the SNES, was then used to create the PlayStation itself.


Due to technical limitations, only three enemies can ever be on the screen at one time. Sneaky players can use this to their advantage and keep 'easy' enemies alive to block the spawning of more powerful ones. The merchant cat Neko, is also affected by this and may not always appear during busy combat.


In the original Japanese version, Killroy has a chainsaw when fighting him the second time. In all Western versions, he is just a re-coloured version of the first encounter.


Secret of Mana is quite possibly the first RPG game to support 3 Players. It is certainly the only one on SNES that does (along with it's sequel, which was never officially translated). A multitap is required for the third player.


The Slime bosses are the trickiest enemies in the game, not because they're difficult, but because they're so buggy. When fighting one of these bosses it's possible to slow the framerate to a crawl, freeze the game or in extreme cases, wipe the contents from your saved battery backup.


  • Electronic Gaming Monthly
    • December 1993 (Issue 53) - Game of the Month
  • FLUX Magazine
    • Issue #4 - #40 in the "Top 100 Video Games of All-Time" list
  • Game Informer
    • August 2001 (Issue #100) - #77 in the "Top 100 Games of All Time" poll
  • GamePro
    • Vol. 6, Issue 2 - Role-Playing Game of the Year 1993
  • Retro Gamer
    • September 2004 (Issue #8) – #74 Best Game Of All Time (Readers' Vote)
Information also contributed by Big John WV, CaptainCanuck, PCGamer77 and WildKart

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Contributed to by Michael Cassidy (21142), Rik Hideto (352605), Sciere (689559), Kabushi (251102), gamewarrior (5048) and Unicorn Lynx (181557)