An Italian group of Golden Axe devotees have released a fanmade prequel to the sidescrolling Sega series called Golden Axe Myth, building it with the OpenBOR engine originally created for Streets of Rage mods.

Golden Axe Myth features new artwork, music, hand-drawn graphics, stages, and more. Here's a synopsis of the beat'em up, which has been in development since 2007:

"The Empire of the Joined Lands has been the real symbol of wealth and power since a long time ago. But now, evil creeped into heart of the Empire, and the Golden Axe was stolen. The council of Defensors was tricked and misguided.

The four best warriors of the whole realm are already on pursuit of the enemy. The council gave them the power of Elemental Magick, since great are the dangers they'll have to face. They know no fear or doubt. In their hearts and minds there's only the sacred quest: to get back the Golden Axe."

You can download Golden Axe Myth, as well as its art book and soundtrack, for free on the fangame's official site. Hopefully this stays up longer than the Streets of Rage remake, which was pulled offline after a few days due to a Sega cease and desist.

[Via Orobi]