In case it hasn’t been obvious up to this point, gamers love Mario. That especially includes the classics, like Super Mario Bros. released for the NES back in 1985, and Super Mario 64, which became the first flagship title for the Nintendo 64 in 1996. Both of those titles still see huge support in the speedrun and emulation communities, and it doesn’t look like things will change anytime soon.
While it’s never been difficult to find a playable version of Super Mario 64 either for the official consoles or for use through emulators, there’s never been a truly native port for the PC until now.
This release hit the internet over the weekend, and it’s the kind of download you may want to jump on quick, since the big N has little patience for most fan-made projects of the sort. Chances are, if you love the game enough to play a native port, you probably already own one or two versions of it on other platforms you can’t easily load up. It’s worth noting, though, that Nintendo itself has a remake of the game coming up for the Switch, offering further proof that the company is hellbent on ensuring the console winds up in as many households as possible.
The key thing with this release is that it is “native”, meaning you don’t need a ROM to use it. It also means that it utilizes native APIs of the computer, such as DirectX 12. We can honestly say we never thought “DX12” and “Super Mario 64” would be referenced together, but here we are. This nativeness also allows gamers to take advantage of high resolutions, including ultra-wide aspect ratios.
Because this port acts like a normal PC game, external software tools like Reshade can be used to further enhance it. Here’s a take on the game when ray tracing is introduced:
It really is impressive to look at this 26-year-old game get an instant makeover without heavy modification. As far as we can tell, this port is faithful to the original; all of the added detail is simply due to being able to use higher resolutions for the textures and scene. Naturally, not everything scales so perfectly, like the sprites used for the game’s UI, which pixelate when scaled up to modern resolutions.
Here’s the problem: We don’t actually have a download link to share, nor is there one available at either of the two videos. If you want to get hold of this, we can’t imagine it’d be too difficult to track down, but as always, it’s important to exercise caution when downloading from unknown sources.
Rob founded Techgage in 2005 to be an 'Advocate of the consumer', focusing on fair reviews and keeping people apprised of news in the tech world. Catering to both enthusiasts and businesses alike; from desktop gaming to professional workstations, and all the supporting software.