Found: Classic NES tunes played in real-time via robotic instruments

By on October 16, 2013, 8:30 AM

NES games featured some of the most iconic (and best, in my opinion) soundtracks of all-time. There’s no shortage of classic game tunes on YouTube but one particular clip we recently stumbled upon is worth sharing for the sheer level of creativity used to produce it.

What you are seeing in the video above is a system that allows Nintendo gameplay audio to be played through an acoustic player piano and robotically-controlled percussion instruments. The instruments interpret the game audio and recreate it live during gameplay, mirroring what you’d otherwise hear from your speakers.

The rig uses solenoids to drive the player mechanisms as well as Raspberry Pis with custom software that translates the audio into instructions for the solenoids. There’s typically a half-second delay in translation which was removed in editing but we are told it’s still very playable as-is.

And if you’re feeling a bit nostalgic after all that Mario theme music, pop on over to FullScreenMario.com to play a fully HTML5 remake of the original Super Mario Bros. right in your browser. You can play the original levels or try your hand at millions of randomly generated maps. You can even create your own using the level editor.

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