[...] IMO a "kaizo" SMB2 hack would be more interesting/fun than one for 1, 3 or SMW.
Well, I'll see what I can do.
Yeah ... I always thought that Super Mario Bros. 2 was the most inventive game in the series gameplay-wise. [....] As for how inventive the game is ... there's so many neat things you can do ... like the Sub-world, go inside pots, play as different characters that all play differently, play a chance game for lives, and use a neat pickup mechanic that is utilized in multiple ways. It feels so fresh!
Yes, I completely agree that this game is a very different take on games in the franchise, which makes it disappointing when you compare the number of SMB2 hacks to the number of SMW hacks.
One additional question: Is FCEUX an accurate enough emulator, or is Nestopia more accurate?
[...] Ironically ... it wasn't originally a Mario game. [...] I don't really buy it [...]
The back-story of it all doesn't matter that much in the hacking world. It's still a fun game to play. Plus, it was enough of a Mario game to be rereleased in Asia as well as on the SNES, GBA (spawning a new series of revamps of old games), Wii/3DS VC, and also was generally well recived. I will say that it still is at least a moderately intriguing story, though; no offense.