After a superfan spent 7 years re-creating 'Super Mario Bros.,' Nintendo shut it down

Nintendo‘Super Mario Bros.’ for the Nintendo Entertainment System.
  • A “Super Mario Bros.” superfan spent the last seven years meticulously re-creating the game for a classic gaming console: The Commodore 64.
  • After seven years of work, the programmer known as “ZeroPaige” released their re-creation earlier this week.
  • But Nintendo shut down the project swiftly – it issued DMCA takedown notices soon after the re-creation was made available.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

There is no Nintendo property more carefully protected than “Super Mario Bros.”

It is the Mickey Mouse of Nintendo, and the Japanese gaming giant is fiercely protective of everyone’s favourite tiny plumber.

Look no further than the news this week that Nintendo is shutting down a long-in-development fan re-creation of the original “Super Mario Bros.” as evidence. “Due to a DMCA takedown notice we had to remove the Super Mario Bros 64 download link,” an updated blog post on the Commodore Computer Club website said.

Commodore 64 ComputerWikimedia / Evan AmosThe Commodore 64, looking appropriately retro.

What is “Super Mario Bros. 64”? It’s not the Nintendo 64 version of “Super Mario” you might be thinking.

Instead, it’s a Commodore 64 version of the original Nintendo Entertainment System game.

Since the original game never ended up on Commodore 64, superfan “ZeroPiage” took it upon themselves to re-create the game for their favourite classic game console.

Super Mario Bros. on Commodore 64YouTubeThe loading screen for ‘Super Mario Bros.’ on Commodore 64 is adorable.

After seven years of working on it, the game was finally made available this week as a free download for fans. But just a few days later, Nintendo started issuing DMCA takedown notices to the sites hosting downloads of the game.

It’s a pretty common tactic for companies protecting unlicensed use of their property – rather than a lawsuit, Nintendo issues a takedown notice that informs the offending party that they’re violating a licence.

Given the amount of work that went into this re-creation of “Super Mario Bros.,” and the fact that it’s a free download, you might think that Nintendo would look the other way. But, in reality, a third-party is distributing a free version of a classic game that Nintendo still charges people money to play – it’s no surprise that the company wouldn’t want that to continue.

Nintendo has yet to respond to a request for comment.

Take a look at the Commodore 64 version of “Super Mario Bros.” in action right here:

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