Whenever a particularly neat Nintendo-based fan project arrives the dilemma is obvious - creators naturally want plenty of people to check them out, but attention increases the odds of a Nintendo takedown. Unfortunately that's happened to a rather clever voxel-based Legend of Zelda demo.
Over at zelda30tribute.com, Scott Lininger and Mike Magee shared a demo that recreated The Legend of Zelda on NES with voxel-based and 3D visuals, and impressively the demo ran in web browsers. Beyond being rather cool, it was also a notable technical achievement for the duo.
Unfortunately, Nintendo has enforced its copyright to shut it down, though the creators are magnanimous about the outcome.
Nintendo asked us to remove this site for copyright infringement. I guess Zelda30Tribute was a little too pixel perfect! We're sad about that, but we get it. We started this project because we love Nintendo and the joy they have given us throughout the years. From the start of development, we knew this result could potentially happen. Nintendo has every right to protect their IP. No complaints from us, we had a blast working on this tribute and made some friends along the way.
Big thanks to the half million folks who played our game! We learned a bunch and wrote some code that others might learn from, too. We plan to post the project to Github soon, once we've had a chance to remove Nintendo-owned assets.
As we've said in the past, Nintendo is likely entirely in the right from a legal and copyright standpoint, yet it seems like a narrow-minded move. Shutting down a clever, non-profit demo can certainly be interpreted negatively, and also closes off a neat story that had plenty of people talking about the original NES Zelda title and the series as a whole.
In any case, full credit to Lininger and Magee for focusing on the positives - it was a neat project while it lasted.