Super Mario Bros 2 - The official romhack by Nintendo

You were probably just as shocked as i was when you first found out that something wasn't quite right about the way Super Mario Bros 2 looked and played when you started it for the first time back in 1988. It feels like another game! Yeah by now we all know that it's just a reskin of the Famicom Disk System game Doki Doki Panic. If you are not familiar with this at all, then I recommend this fabulous video from Guru Larry that explains it all.

Some say that Doki Doki Panic was actually intended to be a Mario game, that later changed into Doki Doki and then finally changed to a Mario game. But this doesn't mean that it's a Mario game. Well it is.. but a way it isn't.. I see it more as a romhack, and official graphics romhack made by Nintendo themselves :) In this interesting article by Arstechnica the Nintendo developers had an early idea for a game engine that could be the upcoming Mario game, and this was even before Miyamoto was joined with the development team. The idea of lifting stuff instead of stomping on Gombas and a long list of other elements of the game that has nothing do with the way a Mario game should look and feel made them scrap the Mario idea, and this probably happened when they started a deal with Fuji corporation to create a game based on the Doki Doki Panic world.

A part I really like from the article is that when they wanted to change Doki Doki to a Mario game  they wanted to implement the grow and shrink feature when Mario eats Mushrooms but they quickly realized that having a small Mario actually broke the game as you could reach parts that you were not intended to reach. So Smb2 as we know it today has a “small” version of all the characters, but it's actually pointless as the hitbox is still the same as being tall. This is why I think its funny too see Smb2 as a graphics romhack of Doki Doki that Nintendo made themselves.

Personally I love Super Mario bros 2, but I wouldn't call this a classic Mario game. If you look at the other side scrolling Mario games for the Nes and Snes it's just too different. So as a kid I always dreamt about playing Doki Doki Panic as it originally was designed. Today that's easy thanks to emulation. But i recently found this great hack by togemet2 called “Super Doki Bros”  That changes everything - well almost everything - of Super Mario Bros 2 back to Doki Doki Panic. Its just a simple graphics hack but I just love the idea of playing Doki Doki on my real Nes thanks to this romhack :)

There are many other fun Romhacks for Super Mario Bros 2 that I will cover here in the Romhacking Spotlight in the future. But if you want to test the Super Doki Bros you can find the romhack here:

Posted by @Thermoptic

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