Super Mario Bros is owned by Nintendo. We all know that. The game is iconic as well. That is probably why it is the focus of fan ports. That is exactly what is going on here. The fan port to the Texas Instruments 99/4A is now at preview number 4. Please note, this is not a stock Texas Instruments computer, there is an add-on board – F18A – installed. Does not make it any less impressive.
Nintendo’s lawyers probably already know
Nintendo is one of those companies that just blanket stops fan projects. Legally, to protect their intellectual property, they must. The way the laws are written does not favor fans recreating their favorite media without permission.
That is why seeing these previews is interesting. The developer, in this case Christian Palmer, is taking a big chance releasing anything. It just gives Nintendo’s lawyers more to work with when the inevitable cease and desist is created.
The Texas Instruments port
As you can see from the video, this port is spot on. There are some animations out of place though. In some segments you can see Super Mario doing his running animation while jumping. This fan port even allows layers to be turned on and off, as evidenced later in the video. This gives the original 8-bit Super Mario Bros parallax scrolling. A neat effect.
Super Mario Bros is iconic
It is quite clear why people choose Super Mario Bros or other popular games. Fans, and the developer, can easily see how close things are. This also allows quick assertion to what needs work and what needs left alone.
The feel of Super Mario Bros is extremely sensitive. The nuances in the gameplay are hard to pinpoint but make the game. This is part of the reason I believe independent homebrew developers choose it. If they are off with the mechanics, it is easier to pinpoint and improve.
What do you think of this fan port of Super Mario Bros to the Texas Instruments 99/4A? Sure, there is an expansion board in play here, but this is still impressive. The TI-99/4A is not a powerhouse alone.
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