Footage of Kaze Emanaur

The N64 is still being pushed past its limits, 28 years later — homebrew devs won’t give up on the Nintendo 64, compare 2024 Mario to his 1996 ancestor

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Despite the existence of functioning N64-to-PC ports with ray tracing, the ambition of homebrew software developers to target original hardware remains resolute, even 28 years after the release of Nintendo 64. From devs like Kaze Emanuar, pushing Super Mario 64 ROM hacks with ambitious 60 FPS engine rewrites, to the Smash Remix team expanding the first Smash Bros title into a glorious 30-character FFA, there’s no shortage of new games to run on real hardware in 2024.

(Image credit: Smash Remix Team on YouTube, Nintendo for original Smash Bros 64 development)

It turns out Nintendo’s first 3D console is something of a sleeping giant, since it was the most powerful console of its age (graphics, storage speed) but plagued by limited cartridge capacity compared to CD-based consoles of the same era. Meanwhile, Sony PlayStation games could be played across multiple CDs, which ultimately led to the most ambitious multi-disc titles being limited to PS1 and PC despite less refined 3D graphics on Sony’s hardware.



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