SONIC 2 XL / Ranger and Captain Bozo / Genesis
Sonic 2 XL has been posted on some of your major gaming sites like Kotaku and etc. The blurb that usually accompanies it is something like "This is a brilliant ROM hack!" Well ... it's a hilarious concept, and brilliant in that sense, but the actual gameplay is terrible. Nobody seems to really be making this distinction, unfortunately.
The idea here is that the rings are now onion rings, and Sonic gradually gets fatter and fatter as he collects them, until he gets so morbidly obese that when his momentum carries him to a dead stop, he can't get going again and eventually dies. Obviously this is hilarious to watch, and the depth of altering the fundamental gameplay of the ROM is impressive, as well as the various sprite alterations as Sonic goes from mild pot belly to Sonic The Hutt.
The problem is, of course, that the level layouts haven't been altered to accomodate the new mechanic. Only five rings gives Sonic a pretty good gut, and twenty puts him at the morbid level of obesity that kills him if you come to a dead stop. The only way to work off fat is to run for a good unbroken stretch, but that's harder and harder as your increasing flab weighs you down and prevents you from getting momentum, or being able to jump oncoming rings.
So in the end it's something that really works better as a comical Youtube video than as something to actually play. It's at least worth a watch, though.
* Download from SonicRetro
* Gameplay Video