Reviving your precious childhood Nintendo boils down to this:

Old-school video game systems will always be cool, no matter how many more pixels or animations they have compared to today’s models.

It seems like nostalgic nods to the nerdiest times of our lives are everywhere, sending us down a neverending throwback spiral. If you’ve ever found yourself longing to play a little Legend of Zelda on your Nintendo, but can’t because both the device and your childhood hopes have died, listen up.

By using some H20, a little bit of heat and a lot of patience, the geniuses over at GQ found a way to give your Nintendo new life.

Can you say score?

Step 1: Remove screws



Carefully remove all six Phillips screws located on the bottom of the console. After you’ve successfully removed all screws, flip the console over and take off the top.

Step 2: Pull metal cover


Once you remove the top of the console, you’ll see a thin metal cover. Remove all seven of the Phillips screws holding it down, before pulling the metal cover up.

Step 3: Remove connector


Remove the two silver and two bronze Phillips screws holding down the black cartridge tray. Then slide the black cartridge tray toward you, and take it off the 72-pin connector.

Step 4: Slide connector back off motherboard


You’ll need a little muscle to achieve this next step. Slide the 72-pin connector back off the motherboard. This won’t be an easy move, but it will give with a little push.

Step 5: Boil connector


Take the 72-pin connector to your stove, submerge it in a clean pot of water, and then boil it for 30 minutes. The boiling will remove any dirt and oil found in the connector, and the heat will, for the most part, return the pins to their original shape.

It’s important that you let the hardware cool and dry before you reassemble and re-install your Nintendo.

Step 6: Clean games

If you’re still seeing blinking after completing steps 1–5, the problem might be the games you’re using. Though the labels on the backs of games warn ‘Do Not Clean With Rubbing Alcohol’ you need to break the rules and clean them with rubbing alcohol. You can do this with a Q-tip, and you’ll need to swab both sides of the contacts. If this still doesn’t work, try using Brasso metal polish instead of rubbing alcohol.

If this works?—?and it did for the gaming nerds over at GQ?—?you’ll be well on your way to revisiting the nerdy digital bliss of your youth.

Sarah Driscoll