A programmer has rebuilt a November 1991 Super Mario Kart prototype by using last year's Nintendo Gigaleak files — and this version of the game has a pretty cool track editor.
As VGC reports, "Super Mario Kart Hacker guy" MrL314 spent the better part of nine months tinkering with the files and using his knowledge in an attempt to rebuild an early prototype of this classic kart racing game using files from last year's Nintendo Gigaleak. Now, he's finally released a playable version to the world.
How the Super Mario Kart Prototype Was Rebuilt from Nintendo Gigaleak Files
Recreating the Super Mario Kart prototype was no easy task — the associated Nintendo Gigaleak files wouldn't even launch in a playable state. That wasn't about to stop MrL314, though.
"A lot of work has been put into a Python script that repairs the game into a visually working state," read the project's page on The Cutting Room Floor wiki. "Research has also been done as to how to make the repair the most historically accurate, however, not everything can be guaranteed to be 100% accurate on all accounts."
One of the most obvious differences is the inclusion of a track editor. Super Mario Kart is a pretty old game, so it's no surprise that there are quite a few fan projects (such as Epic Edit) that already allow gamers to make their own custom tracks.
Another interesting inclusion is the "Gun Mode" — an apparent early prototype of a Battle System that allows players to shoot projectiles at one another. This game mode likely evolved into the "Balloon Battles" that players know and love today.
As impressive as this Super Mario Kart prototype is, it's still missing quite a few important features. There's no drifting or hopping, coins and lives are not implemented, and some items (such as Lightning and Boo) are not yet working. Critical features such as the AI's ability to use items are not yet implemented, either.
Going forward, MrL314 says that he'll be finishing up some smaller projects while figuring out what he'd like to tackle next. You can find out more about this prototype on its GitHub page, but be warned — you're going to need to do a little work to get it running.
What do you think of this early Super Mario Kart prototype? Would you have liked to play Gun Mode instead of Balloon Battle? Let us know in the comments below!