Super Mario 64: The Good, The Bad, and The Mods

Today I’d like to talk to you about a special game which will always hold a spot near and dear to my heart: Super Mario 64. My younger 12-year self could barely contain himself as he tore into that crinkly cellophane wrapping, cautiously using his t

humbs to make a hole in the corner of the plastic without tearing the tabs on the box. The sweet smell of instruction manual fragrance filled my nostrils as I jammed the plastic cartridge down into my game console as if it were some type of Indiana Jones Holy Grail.

Picture-11Nostalgia

My first 3D game experience transported me to another world complete with physics-defying wall jumps, ground pounds, and tree handstands. I must have played the game for at least a hundred hours attempting to collect all 121 stars and make it to the roof of the castle. Of course, I was way too impatient for that so I eventually ended up using a GameShark instead. Chalk that up to 12 year old impatience. But either way, I enjoyed the game so much that I kept it in rotation for years and I couldn’t help but watch a few minutes of this video when I came across it while surfing one day.

http://youtu.be/H6r5oF73gNI

To me, this is just incredible! Under two hours? Get the heck out of here with that! That’s more than one star for every minute of game play. I guess it makes sense that some people would play it enough to get that good but seriously that’s just insane. I guess it follows that some people might even find some interesting glitches and add them to the mix like the next video. WARNING: If you have ever played Super Mario 64, your mind is about to be blown.

http://youtu.be/nGyUvLMfYcE
What??? You must be kidding me. If you watch anything in that video, check out 03:05. Notice how each of the long jumps come so precariously close to the lava. That’s stone cold jedi precision. But unfortunately, friend, it also happens to be an illusion. What you have just witnessed is called a “superplay” and it is created by using a special tool called Toad’s Tool 64. Using this software, editors can change a plethora of things including in-game textures, mechanics, and controls. This video is actually a series of clips which have been masterfully plugged together to create the impression that it’s a continuous shot. Using Toad’s Tool you can make changes which make it seem like an entirely different game.

Picture-21For better or worse…

For example, let’s say that you wanted to make the game Super PAPER Mario 64. Sure, why not?

http://youtu.be/XI4w-NJ0byw

Impressive, okay how about Super Mario GALAXY 64? We got you.

http://youtu.be/50OxKcp88sY

Alright, fine. But can we take it back real old-school? (Older-school?) Heck yeah!

http://youtu.be/a6nj5FlK7C0

If you had shown me any of this 10 years ago I would have said no way; that the actual programmers of the game must have gone back in and played around. But no, these game mods are simple enough for your average teenager to do them! The videos speak for themselves, technology is an amazing thing. I want to leave you with the most impressive and complete mod I found – Super Mario 64: Icy Adventure. Heads up: you may want to turn your speakers down because the music gets a little grating.

http://youtu.be/sDgLDNX7NGE

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