When Mario made his videogame debut as “Jumpman” in Donkey Kong circa 1981, he sported his classic overalls, moustache, and hat. What most people don’t realize is that Mario, the father of videogame protagonists, looks like this because arcade technology was so limited at the time. His shirt and overalls were made a solid color so that the movement animations didn’t make his arms disappear. His hat, sideburns, and moustache were invented because precise details such as ears and hair couldn’t be properly communicated at the time.
But with modern technology, the classics are getting a push forward. Though companies are eager to make a quick buck porting their classics in their original form, fans are leading the charge in innovating graphics and gameplay.
Legend of Princess
Original Game: Zelda II: The Adventure of Link
A one-level labour of love, it was made “for no reason but being a big damn nerd," says creator Joakim Sandberg.
Legend of Princess
is an arcade interpretation of Zelda II
, featuring tight controls, varied gameplay and pop-art style graphics. Put together during breaks from professional game projects, the polish of an expert shines. Sandberg also has a unique IP available for purchase, titled Noitu Love 2
, which features similar arcade-style action.
Quest for Glory II VGA
Original Game: Quest for Glory II: Trial by Fire
is a non-profit company licensed to remake classic Sierra Entertainment adventure games. Already having completed remakes of King’s Quest I
and King’s Quest II
, Quest for Glory II
was released in 2008 after being delayed by over three years.
Featuring new graphics, animations, and a new battle system, the project was made on Adventure Game Studio.
Metroid 2 Remake
Original Game: Metroid 2: Return of Samus
In development, demo available
Broaching the one-year mark in development time as of January, 2008, the progress shows. The ugly green and grey of the original Metroid 2
are awash with colour. The gameplay is fast-paced and the tinny sounds of the Gameboy are replaced with modern remixes and sound effects.
Original Game: Chrono Trigger
It was a sad day for Nathan Lazur and his team on September 6th, 2004, when Square Enix Co., Ltd issued a Cease and Desist letter demanding they halt all work on their Chrono Resurrection.
It was a business move on Square Enix’s part to protect their intellectual property, but one look at the Kingdom of Guardia in 3D and it’s hard to not be disappointed by the loss.
"[The game] was meant to replicate the feel of the 16-bit classic while enticin g the player with current-generation graphics, sound, and animation,” says Lazur.
Original Game: GoldenEye
Remaking the entire GoldenEye
game using the Source engine made popular by Half Life 2
, this total overhaul mod brings the hard edged graphics and gameplay into the 21st century with style.
“We want you to look at this mod and remember the first best multi-player first-person shooter ever made,” the GoldenEye: Source
website states. Fans may download the beta here