A Zelda fan discovered original dungeon map layouts for the first time found deep inside A Link To The Past‘s game code.
The French digital archivist who discovered these buried assets goes by the name of Dark Linkaël on Twitter and describes herself as a “hacker of video games and more particularly of The Legend of Zelda series.”
Most of the prototype rooms were either changed or completely redone prior to the game’s release. Misery Mire is one of those sections which appears to have been entirely restructured.
Another Zelda fan who dubs himself MrTalida on Twitter created a side by side video of the original map layout vs its prototype version:
“Seeing the proto Misery Mire vs. the final, it’s a reminder that even a masterpiece like ALttP didn’t spring forth from the minds of Nintendo perfect and fully-formed. It took iteration and hard work,” MrTalida encourages.
Other notable findings include a pre-release version of Princess Zelda’s sprite as well as different variations on some of the game’s enemies.
The triforce also appears to have been originally intended as a usable item! This is assumed based on a triforce sprite being included in the section of data reserved exclusively for usable items in the heads-up display (HUD).
If we’re lucky, this might spur a talented game designer to create a modded playable prototype version based on these maps and sprites.
Findings like these beg the question of just how much we still don’t know about gaming history. If I had to guess, I’d probably say a lot.
This article (Zelda Fans Discovered Original Dungeon Maps Buried in A Link To The Past’s Code) originally appeared at Phillip Schneider and may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author credit, and this copyright statement.