Back in 2012, as part of its annual cavalcade of April Fools' jokes, Google created a version of Google Maps that resembled an 8-bit video game. The 8-bit version of Google Maps is long gone, but you can still visit a blocky, retro-themed version of several major cities by visiting the aptly named 8-Bit Cities.
8-Bit Cities offers maps of 18 major cities from around the world, as reimagined in the style of a 1980s video game. With it, you can wander the virtual streets of cities like San Francisco, New York, Seattle, Amsterdam, Kyoto, and Singapore, to name a few.
Much like Google Maps, you can zoom in and out and pan around the maps; the one catch is that the maps are limited to these cities, and don't really show too much beyond the immediate city. For example, if you started at the San Francisco map, you can't wander across the bay and check out Oakland's street grid.
The site uses map data from various open source mapping systems, such as OpenStreetMap. The 8-bitness does make the maps a little hard to read from a navigation standpoint, but they're a fun diversion if you enjoy studying maps or want to relive a piece of your childhood. Check them out on the 8-Bit Cities site.
Other stuff you might like...
- This lens will give your photos and DSLR that 19th century look
- Stop bashing MS Paint! One 97-year-old uses it to make beautiful digital paintings
- Artist makes portraits from space telescope photos—and they're out of this world
This story, "Video game-themed maps will make you feel like you're living in an 8-bit world" was originally published by TechHive.