Super Mario 64 is easily one of the most famous games of all-time. While the title was not the first 3D platformer, the game did set a new standard for the genre, recreating the Mario formula in a way that truly revolutionized the franchise for decades to come. Nintendo is reportedly working on a Nintendo Switch version of that particular game, but Super Mario 64 has already been patched to fix a 24-year-old mistake in the game. Romhacking.net user zoinknoise discovered that the texture for smoke in the game has been incorrectly displayed since 1996. It's a strange find, but it apparently existed in the game's code this entire time!
In Super Mario 64, when Mario accidentally touches lava, he ends up hopping into the air, with a strange, ashy dust billowing behind him. At the time, many gamers could be forgiven for assuming this effect was intentional on Nintendo's part, and a direct result of graphic limitations. However, zoinknoise discovered that the texture was simply displaying incorrectly. With an easy fix, the texture now appears as transparent smoke, rather than the strange, ashy cloud.
At the end of the day, it's impossible to know why Nintendo didn't make the change before Super Mario 64's release. On one hand, it's entirely possible that the company simply missed the mistake. However, on the other hand, Nintendo could have simply preferred the effect as is, and made the choice to keep it in its "incorrect" form.
Haha, what the heck. Thanks to the Super Mario 64 code disassembly it's been discovered that the smoke Mario emits when he's touched fire has been bugged for 20 years. On the left: how it looks in the final game. On the right: after a one-line code fix. https://t.co/JenizzKeFh pic.twitter.com/Jb2Ryg2lwx— Ryan Bloom (@BlazeHedgehog) April 6, 2020
It will be interesting to see if Nintendo chooses to make that change on their own, should the rumored Nintendo Switch port of Super Mario 64 see release. This could be the perfect opportunity for the company to make the fix. After 24 years, it's possible that Nintendo will leave it as is, for the sake of nostalgia, but it seems likely that Mario fans will just be happy to get the game on Switch at all.
What do you think of the Super Mario 64 smoke patch? Which of the two versions do you like best? Let us know in the comments or share your thoughts directly on Twitter at @Marcdachamp to talk all things gaming!