Is Super Mario 64 ROM legal and safe to download?
Now, that’s a tricky question!
Mods are often a great way for basement developers and game hackers to provide another dimension to an existing RPG or sandbox game. When done right, it can become a genuine success. However, that success does come with a cost.
Such is the case with Super Mario 64 Online (SM64 Online). Created by Kaze Emanuar, this Super Mario 64 ROM hack allowed up to 24 people to jump around together or duke it out in Battle Mode. The idea of a classic game with multiplayer capabilities was interesting, to say the least, and the downloads shut up.
Unfortunately for Emanuar, Nintendo acted swiftly and decisively. Not long after its September 2017 release, the Japanese video game company took down all videos on or related to SM64 Online. It also shuttered the author’s Patreon account.
Net 64 2.0
Eight months after Nintendo shut down SM64 Online, modders have revived it. A hacker called Tarnadas came up with a client mod called 64 2.0. This version takes the ROM hack. It utilizes the N64 assembly code that Emanuar created for SM64 Online and has added a few nifty features like the characters Sonic and Knuckles.
It’s worth noting that Net 64 2.0 doesn’t have the ROM for Super Mario 64. Reporting on the mod revival, Kotaku explains that “…it’s just a second program that goes over the top of it and makes it so people can play online together within the same game.”
To date, SM64 Online can still be downloaded, which should tell you that Nintendo was just after the source. So it could be okay to explore both SM64 Online and Net 64 2.0. But that’s not to say that the company won’t do something about those who continue to download the mod and play it in the future.
And so download at your own risk! Be vigilant and on the constant lookout for any news or updates regarding these Super Mario 64 mods.