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Zelda: Remastered Released (Mesen HD Pack)

11 October 2020 9:12AM EST - Update by Aclectico

Other News - RHDN Project Page

A Mesen Resource Pack is now available for the NES game, The Legend of Zelda. Upgrades include, but are not limited to, increased resolution, animated backgrounds, upgraded sound, and various gameplay enhancements. This was a group project and many elements had to come together to make the final product possible.

This is the first Mesen pack to utilize a new “background based” approach to graphic replacement on a large scale. Traditional graphic replacement methods for NES Emulators usually involve replacing individual 8×8 graphic tiles that are part of the native game coding. This often becomes an issue for graphic replacement artists because 8×8 tiles are often repeated many times within games due to the size limitations of NES hardware. Because of this, it is often very easy to fall victim to an HD Pack that looks very repetitive or artificial.

To avoid this pitfall, a programmer known as KYA built upon previous work done by Sour with regard to static background image replacement. Instead of replacing small 8×8 tiles, one large .png file is used in various areas as a “background” to fill the entire screen. Since the Overworld in the Legend of Zelda is made of many static screens that are all tied together, it was a perfect candidate for this type of approach on a large scale. Several memory checks are used to facilitate screen transitions, and the 8×8 tiles are still utilized for interactable blocks. This allowed for maximum creative expression and it allowed for much more interesting graphic upgrades.

Many “quality of life” features are also included courtesy of ShadowOne333. These are implemented via a bundled .ips file which is included in the pack.



Install Tutorial:

Metroid: HD V 1.3 Released

14 April 2019 11:43AM EST - Update by Aclectico

Other News - RHDN Project Page

An update is now available for the Metroid: HD Custom Edition mod for the Mesen emulator (version 1.3).

The first version of this pack was released in August 2018. While the initial release improved upon many aspects, limitations of an NES era game were still very apparent. Most notably, the running and jumping graphics of the pack were considered by some to be choppy and awkward. Thanks to contributions from kya and mkwong98, substantial improvements have now been made in these areas.

For jumping, the graphic problem was rooted in the behavior of the original NES gameplay. The original game shared running graphics with jumping graphics. This proved to be problematic as the HD pack changed the proportions of the player sprite substantially. As a result, creative freedom was limited and finding a pose that was acceptable for both scenarios proved to be very challenging. Fortunately, mkwong98 proposed a solution that separated the linked graphics by using an advanced feature of Mesen called the “spriteNearby” condition. This strategy was very promising. However, the solution did involve writing manual lines of code for every relevant tile address used by the game for jumping. During development, there were fears that this approach may overwhelm Mesen. This was understandable as the proposal did involve over 16,000 lines of additional coding just for jumping.

After the revised package was finished, initial boot time was impacted. However, once the game started, the emulator accommodated the new additions without crashing and at full speed. This is a testament to Mesen’s ability to handle substantial amounts of incoming information coming from custom HD packs.

For running, the pack was initially limited by the small number of movement frames used by the original Metroid. Low frame counts are commonplace with retro games. In fact, some players would even say this characteristic fits well with the low-resolution nature of an 8-bit game. However, once the resolution was increased via the first release of Metroid: HD, players naturally expected enhancements to other areas as well (such as frame count). Improving one aspect without the other resulted in a gameplay experience that some may describe as jarring. Unfortunately, it is much more difficult to customize frame counts with the standard HD Pack creation method.

Kya initially proposed a method to overcome this shortcoming using additional advanced features of Mesen called “frameRange” and “memoryCheckConstant” conditions. However, one problem in implementing the proposal from kya related to the fact that artwork could not extend beyond existing tiles. For an artist, this constraint could be thought of as a canvas that is not only small, but constantly changing shape.

After experimenting with various approaches, an unusual solution to this issue was discovered. Kya froze the running animation entirely by hacking the ROM. Some may consider this strategy to be counterintuitive as the final goal was to add running frames rather than subtract. However, the new hack solved the issue of a constantly changing canvas size. In addition, the frame with the largest number of tiles available to edit was used in the solution. This allowed for maximum creative freedom and all running frames are now inserted and controlled entirely through the HD pack in the updated version using the “frameRange” and “memoryCheckConstant” conditions.

New features of the latest pack include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Enhanced running and jumping graphics
  • The download now includes pre-assembled zip files for alternate graphics (Megatroid, Fusiontroid, and 8BitTroid)
  • The minimap is now an automap
  • A new and secret area is now available in Brinstar

Download the latest version here:

NES Metroid HD Pack Released

11 August 2018 3:22AM EST - Update by Aclectico

Other News - RHDN Project Page

An HD pack is now available for the NES game, Metroid. This pack replaces graphics, sound effects, and music. It is a hack that builds upon many prior hacks and it uses Metroid mOTHER as a base (available at: Credit should go to the original authors for work done on prior hacks.

The pack includes, but it not limited to, some of the features detailed below. Many of these features are carryover from prior hacks that have previously been developed for Metroid. Items denoted with an asterisk are brand new features that have been created exclusively for the Mesen pack.

  • Increased resolution**
  • Scrolling backgrounds**
  • Updated sound effects and music**
  • File resources for alternate sound and graphics**
  • New title and ending screen**
  • Minimap
  • Animated environments
  • Beam stacking
  • Saving
  • Full health on startup

Players must use a new version of the Mesen emulator that was released on August 5, 2018 (version 0.9.6 is available at: Older versions of the Mesen emulator will not work properly.

The README contains details the work performed by each author below that helped make the HD pack possible: Kya, Sour, dACE, snarfblam, Infinity’s End, DemickXII, Psyklax, Maximum Potion, VariaZim, WIP, Exaelart, Riklaionel, elgwen, strugglepoo, Luminist, Jorge Fuentes, and Patricio Herrera.

Forum Discussion:

HD Pack Download:

Ninja Gaiden II: HD Graphics Pack

21 April 2018 10:30PM EST - Update by RichterSnipes

Other News

Ninja Gaiden II: The Dark Sword of Chaos has been graphically enhanced! This graphics pack ports the graphics from Ninja Gaiden Trilogy for use with the NES version of the game and its 8-bit audio. It also goes several steps further than that. Graphical effects removed from Trilogy are kept intact (or “restored”), including lightning in Stage 3-1, ice glow in Stage 5-2, and fades in cutscenes. Various graphical anomalies and errors in Trilogy have also been fixed.

This pack is designed for use with the U.S. release of the game. It also requires Mesen v0.9.5 or later. As with other NES graphics packs, this pack needs to be extracted to Mesen’s “HdPacks” folder. All the files - .png files and hires.txt - need to be included in a subfolder in that directory with the same name as the game ROM being loaded. Make sure that “Use HDNES HD packs” is enabled in video options.


Link to main project thread

Castlevania HD Pack for Mesen NES emulator

06 April 2018 7:50AM EST - Update by kya

Other News

Last year’s Castlevania 30th Anniversary facelift patch was recently updated. It is now available in a form of an HD pack for the Mesen NES emulator.

This HD Pack applies to a NES version of Castlevania (USA non-RevA ROM only) and replaces its graphics with the higher resolution graphics from Castlevania for mobile phones. It also replaces the game’s music tracks with ogg files.

In order to use this pack you have to download the latest Mesen emulator (0.9.5 and up) from

Then you should unzip and run it. Mesen will greet you with a configuration window. Pay attention what folder will be specified there as a “Data Storage Location”.

You need to place the contents of this HDPack zip file into the [Data Storage Location]/HdPacks/[CastlevaniaRomName] folder (e.g “HdPacks/Castlevania (USA)” if you are loading “Castlevania (USA).nes”)

After extracting the HDPack you should enable HDPacks in Mesen. Tick the box at Options-Video-Enable HDNes HD Packs, and then load the ROM into Mesen.

Castlevania 30th anniversary

13 May 2017 1:46AM EST - Update by kya

Other News

According to Wikipedia, the NES release of Castlevania has recently turned 30. On this occasion a facelift patch for the game is released. The graphics are mostly transferred from the game’s mobile phone version. The missing tiles are taken from Vampire Killer, Castlevania Bloodlines, or touched up. Nothing else is changed - the gameplay is left intact. To play the game on Windows, you should load a Castlevania US ROM into a patched Nestopia UE emulator available here:

The Count is still ready for a rematch. Are you?

Another BS Zelda Game Gets an English Dub Restoration

14 October 2016 6:36PM EST - Update by SmashManiac

Other News

A few months after the English dub of the original BS Zelda no Densetsu, another obscure The Legend of Zelda game has been restored with a full English dub!

BS Zelda no Densetsu: Inishie no Sekiban, informally known as BS The Legend of Zelda: Ancient Stone Tablets, was an episodic SNES game exclusively released in Japan through the Satellaview peripheral. The game was a score attack version of A Link to the Past featuring CD-quality music and voices, but needed to be played during a satellite broadcast to achieve that, causing the game to be unplayable otherwise. While the core game code was salvaged from re-writable 8M Memory Paks, the introduction cutscene, indoors data and audio track was lost, with the exception of surviving VCR footage playthroughs from original players. However, during the past 10 years, the BS Zelda HomePage community was able to restore the game to its original glory bit by bit, and the English dub was the final step of this restoration.

The 4-hour English dub is available in both the original music arrangement and a custom orchestral arrangement, features a full voice cast including professional voice actress Kira Buckland (Danganronpa, Disgaia, Skullgirls) as Zelda, and is even playable on real hardware with a sd2snes.

While the audio files are too big to be hosted on RHDN, they are available on the BS Zelda HomePage.

BS Zelda no Densetsu English Dub

14 July 2016 5:17PM EST - Update by FCandChill

Other News

BS Zelda no Densetsu is an interesting curiosity from Nintendo’s Japan-only add-on for the Satellaview. The ability to download games from a satelite was mind blowing for it’s time. While playing the downloaded game, BS Zelda no Densetsu, Japanese gamers experienced broadcasted Japanese commentary from voice actors in real time. This experience was only temporary and only available to Japanese speakers … until now!

Some very dedicated fans managed to fully dub their already existing restoration project of the game (that’s hosted on this site). Now players can get the full experience of being a Japanese gamer back in the 90s! All the files needed to play the game are available on the developers’ website.

Chrono Trigger Envy Hack Twitch Playthrough

04 March 2015 7:42AM EST - Update by topcat

Other News - RHDN Project Page

The author will be doing a playthrough of this hack that he made a couple of years ago. There were mixed reviews with a lot of negative feedback based on difficulty early on. These mostly came from people that were offended by the dialogue so they did not bother to get the Rusty Blade from Melchoir. Oh well. Though it is admitted it does take too much grinding to get the money for it, The author was not able to further edit the project after the final release, and did not want to do it all over again. It’s not a perfect hack, but it is a full one and, in my opinion, one of the better and more in depth available.

The author noticed that, as of this article, there are 1,277 downloads. WOW! The author never thought that so many people would play this game! The author would love to know how many enjoyed it! Any feedback after these 2 years would be awesome.

Anyway, The author will be playing this on Twitch, so any and all aspects can be seen. I’d love for folks to join me. This will show that the increase in difficulty is in fact slight, it just doesn’t allow for speed runs or minimal playthrough. One must actually PLAY Chrono Trigger, as if it were the first time. No playing on auto pilot like so many of us cult fanatics have come to do after almost 2 decades of replay.

A link to the channel is provided in relevant link (under the article) and the project page (somewhere) for those with any interest.

Super Monkey Ball Cracked!

16 June 2014 12:03AM EST - Update by Yoshimaster96

Other News

Super Monkey Ball, the famous puzzle game released for GameCube, has been cracked! User Yoshimaster96 solved this puzzle after weeks of investigation. Cracking games is hard, especially modern ones. But he’s not done yet. The collision has yet to be cracked. It’s encoded very strangely. If he can figure it out, it could mean the beginning of Super Monkey Ball hacking!

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