Mike Mika Plan8 Video Gamer Father Of The Year

Donkey Kong “Girls Can Save The Day Too!” Edition made by father for his little hero princess

Mike Mika Plan8 Video Gamer Father Of The Year

If an award for “Video Gamer Father of the Year” was ever created, Mike Mika would win it hands down. The Creative Director at Making Fun, LLC, Mike Mika is a video game maker by trade. He has made games such as NFL Blitz, Klax, Disney’s Tarzan, and the Gameboy port of the classic Yar’s Revenge. He is one of the original members of the iOS game company NGmoco:) So to say that he enjoys video games is an understatement. But so is just saying how much he enjoys sharing them with his little girl Ellis.

Mike Mika 1998

“My three-year old daughter and I play a lot of old games. Her favorite is Donkey Kong. … she asked me if she could play as the girl and save Mario. She’s played as Peach in Super Mario Bros. 2 and just assumed she could do the same in Donkey Kong. I told her we couldn’t in that particular Mario game, she seemed really bummed out by that. So what else can I do?”

Palette Swapping and Sprite DrawingUsing a ripped game ROM from a 2010 release of Donkey Kong, Mike started doing a midnight hackathon to complete this gift of fatherly love for his daughter. Mike took the pains taking time of redrawing  the 8-bit Mario sprite frames and swapped the palettes in the ROM. And with in less time than it takes to get an Amazon Prime package ordered on a monday Mike had his “Girls Can Save The Day Too!” edition of Donkey Kong.

Below is a video of the fruit from that effort of love for a child. Below this is a small gallery of photos showing Mike’s passion for video games and video game culture and history.


Originally from the Maryland beltway area. Patrick lived in Los Angeles for a couple of years. Now he is based in the Portland area. In the past Patrick has been an IT engineer, technology consultant, software trainer, technology journalist, blogger, and podcaster. Currently he is returning to school for a degree in Computer Science & Engineering.

Patrick Roanhouse – who has written posts on Plan8.

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