Super Mario 64 now has a ray tracing mod

If there's one thing the best 3D platformers of all time all need, it's ray tracing, so it's with great excitement that Super Mario 64, the original N64 classic, can now enjoy realistic lighting with its own ray tracing mod. Joining other classic games like Quake 2 and Minecraft, Mario 64's ray tracing mod looks pretty good, especially when you're playing as metal Mario.

Super Mario 64 RT, as the project is known, is a branch of the unofficial PC port of Super Mario 64 and includes custom path traced ray tracing lighting as well as custom lighting on finished levels to make the most of this effect. It's still early in development, so there are some bugs and performance isn't stellar, but it's working and the developers are well on their way to making the entirety of the game support ray traced lighting.

In this Digital Foundry breakdown, we get a look at how the game is improved with ray tracing, and it's apparent right from the main menu. They showcase how their are some original shadows left in alongside the ray traced shadows, so that the functional shadows in the game, that help you make accurate jumps, are still present. Ray tracing only adds to the experience.

There are a lot of settings to tweak to play with the ray tracing and make it work how you like, from adjusting denoising, to changing the intensity of ray tracing in the game to help those on lower end RTX and RX 6000 GPUs.

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