For each and every gaming console out there, there's one final swansong which showcases the power behind the dated hardware it sits on. Take Shadow of The Colossus for example, a stunning adventure which pushes the PlayStation 2 to its absolute limits - limits we never knew the system even had. Although older consoles such as the Nintendo NES leave a lot up for discussion in terms of its most demanding game, a bunch of homebrew developers have just muscled in on this discussion by releasing an unofficial prequel to Metroid which puts the 8-bit console under incredible strain.
Simply dubbed Metroid: Rogue Dawn, this ROM hack takes the original 1986 epic and adds a level of depth you wouldn't think would be possible on the Nintendo NES. With incredibly detailed visuals, an all new soundtrack, and fantastic additions such as mini-maps, the three-man team behind this unofficial prequel have been at work for over two years and it shows. While we'd never expect to see the likes of Super Metroid on anything older than the Super Nintendo, Metroid: Rogue dawn comes incredibly close to that 16-bit feel.
Having drawn inspiration from the original game's manual the team have focused on the untold story around a research spaceship that suffered an attack by space pirates. With the thieves in possession of a capsule containing a newly discovered lifeform, Samus finds herself caught up in the deep end and facing up against a human agent trained by the enemy.
Without spoiling anymore, Metroid: Rogue Dawn is without a doubt a contender for ROM Hack of the year despite its early entry. Any fans of the Metroid series or ROM hacking in general should give this game a looking, as the sheer depth of the game and understanding of the power within the Nintendo NES is somewhat unrivaled.
Metroid: Rogue Dawn (Nintendo NES ROM Hack) Gameplay
Full instructions on how to patch the original Metroid ROM can be found within the downloadable patch file.
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