The ROM hack scene can be an endlessly entertaining place. Offering up creative, fan-made content, one can never really know what to expect from the community. More often than not, fans will create more challenging levels after completing a game in a quest for additional prestige and for a true test of skills.
Just about two weeks ago, someone finally managed to beat a stage that has been claimed to be the most punishing Super Mario World level anybody's managed to muster up. That person was PangeaPanga, who, as luck would have it, also created the level as the final part of a trilogy of impossible stages called "Item Abuse". As you may have guessed from the name, the levels focus on using items such as shells, Yoshis and keys in ways that no mere mortal could pull off.
Item Abuse 3 took approximately 78,160 tries to fully complete. As if that wasn't enough - and to give you an idea of the depth of the challenge - that was done on a tool-assisted emulator that enabled the user to input commands frame by frame. It also helps that PangeaPanga developed this stage himself and had intimate knowledge of its deepest workings.
Nobody else has managed to complete it yet, but give it time, the internet always finds a way. The link is here, so come and have a go if you think you're hard enough. Of course, we included the video of the run below so you can watch the platforming perfection in all its glory.
It's through seeing videos such as this that we see how much fun the upcoming Mario Maker could be. The level creator and toolset will soon allow anybody to make stages like this if they so please, it'll be interesting to see what new challenges will arise from that. What do you think of this? Do you think he really "beat" the level fairly if he used tools? Sound off in the comments below.