These gorgeous 8-bit keycaps might be the best way to get Mario on PC

Jellykey artisan keycap with 8-bit motif
(Image credit: Jellykey)

We all know you can get Mario on Switch but what about Mario on a key switch? I'll show myself out but before I go. If you're a fan of those two Mario brothers then boy do I have the keycap for you. Jellykey, makers of artisan keycaps of various shapes and sizes, has put together a new range of keycaps which harken back to the early days of gaming.

Cut the cord...

(Image credit: Steelseries)

Best wireless gaming mouse: ideal cable-free rodents
Best wireless gaming keyboard: no wires, no worries
Best wireless gaming headset: top untethered audio

The 8-bit 'Pipeline City' series distils worlds, that almost every gamer over the age of 25 will be familiar with, down into a single keycap—available in 1u (single key), 1.5u (tab), 2u (backspace), 2.25u (US enter/shift), and 6.25u (spacebar) sizing.

While unofficial (these keycaps lack the Nintendo Seal of Approval), each keycap leans heavily on the many worlds of Super Mario Bros. and they're a real nostalgia trip. If you're interested in picking one up for yourself then it's worth checking what key size and stem your keyboard supports as these can vary between region and manufacturer. Most of Jellykey's switches are fit for Cherry MX stems, which is the most prolific across the best mechanical gaming keyboards.

Jellykey sent us over a prototype shift key to take a look at pre-production, and even at first glance it's evident just how much attention to detail has gone into recreating the retro game: from detailed (not)Piranha Plants and a (not)Super Star sitting atop a single floating block, to a (not)Boo waiting for you to turn your back beneath a grassy platform.

As ever, the group buy for Jellykey's switches is on for just a brief moment: you can join up until July 24, 2020. A single keycap will set you back some $46, while a spacebar is a touch more at $69. There are also four designs to choose from, each with an overarching theme: Pastel Outpost, Mad Artisan's Red Keep, Super Indie Underground, and Orion the Ranger—how very nondescript.

If you're keen to see Mario make a PC debut then perhaps this is the next best thing (and the far more realistic goal). After all, there are no other ways to get Mario on PC, not one. Certainly not one with 4K textures. If you don't believe me you can find a full breakdown of Nintendo's copyrights in relation to its intellectual property right here. Jellykey appears to be confident it has skirted the legal issues with its 8-bit lineup, anyways. 

Jacob Ridley
Senior Hardware Editor

Jacob earned his first byline writing for his own tech blog. From there, he graduated to professionally breaking things as hardware writer at PCGamesN, and would later go on to win command of the kit cupboard as hardware editor. Since then he's joined PC Gamer's top team as senior hardware editor, where he spends his days reporting on the latest developments in the technology and gaming industry. He also enjoys making short videos for TikTok and believes everyone reading this should go follow our account immediately.