A recent leak of Nintendo source code has potentially revealed some long-kept development secrets of some of our favorite Nintendo classics, including that Luigi was planned to be playable in Super Mario 64.Luigi’s possible inclusion in Super Mario 64 was part of a much larger leak of Nintendo data on such games as The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island, Star Fox 2, Super Mario Kart, and more.
As reported by VGC, there was an early build of Super Mario 64 called “Ultra 64 Mario Brothers” and it contains files that reference Luigi. Modders have taken these files and have begun recreating Mario’s brother and the results are pretty great.
First up is an image from @CometMedal with Luigi’s head on Mario’s body, which could also have been a horror game in some alternate universe.
@SpangleZeKankle then shared the completed model of what Luigi would have looked like in Super Mario 64.
This isn’t the first time we’ve heard that Luigi was going to be playable in Super Mario 64, as Shigeru Miyamoto had previously stated that Nintendo was planning on including him in a “Mario Bros. style minigame, but because most users probably only have that one controller when they first buy their N64, for that reason (and others) we decided not to.”
Luigi being planned for Super Mario 64 was only one small part of the leak. Other users have found an early Kokiri Forest and Deku Tree from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, a prototype for Yoshi, uncompressed audio from the original “Do a Barrel Roll” line from Star Fox 64, and so much more.
This search for Luigi has been going on since Super Mario 64 was released in 1996. In fact, we even posted a $100 reward for anyone who could find Luigi in the N64 launch game.
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Adam Bankhurst is a news writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @AdamBankhurst and on Twitch.