If the world seen through ciciplusplus’ Google Maps 8-bit conversion looks very familiar, it’s because the imagery generated by Google’s mapping service is converted to a 16x16 grid, with the colors in every grid averaged and replaced with a matching pixelated image based on the graphical tiles used in the original NES version of The Legend of Zelda.


The hardware that powers what might be the NES’ most boring game ever is fairly simple and includes a Raspberry Pi, an FX2LP microcontroller, and the guts of an official NES cart that sacrificed its life for the cause. Eventually, all the hardware will be squeezed inside the cartridge’s original housing so that it can be loaded through the console’s game slot, but that’s an upgrade that appears to be on ciciplusplus’ to-do list, including features like searching for specific places. For now, the fun hack works, and with a surprising amount of interactivity using an NES gamepad to scroll the map and zoom in and out, complete with place names that are auto-generated using the NES’ instantly recognizable font. The next time you’re told the princess is in another castle, you’ll finally be able to get directions.