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NES Lemmings Improvement: From Terrible To Tolerable

28 April 2023 7:32AM EST - Update by The Tomato Watcher

ROM Hacks News

Lemmings is a 1991 puzzle game originally released for the Amiga. The player does not control the titular Lemmings directly, instead controlling a cursor to assign skills to the Lemmings to help them navigate various levels and reach the exit of each one.

Out of over 30 different versions of Lemmings, the NES version is widely considered one of the worst, featuring dull, muddy color palettes, broken-sounding audio, lots of uninteresting levels, and many bad design decisions. This hack aims to fix the bulk of these.

This hack does not necessarily focus on accuracy to other versions; it simply aims to make this version about as good as it reasonably could have been with just a bit more thought and effort. Changes made to the game include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Brighter, more appealing color palettes for almost every tileset
  • New graphics for the skill bar and the menu font
  • Higher-quality music and more reasonable sound effects
  • Less repetitive music rotation
  • Ability to navigate the skill bar while the game is paused
  • Much less annoying Builder mechanics
  • HUD displays selected Lemming’s state (like almost all other versions)
  • Several updates to the levels

It is now (hopefully) easier to enjoy the few truly unique things this version had to offer.

NOTICE: This hack is only for use with the USA release of the game.