Super Mario 64 has evolved since it was first launched in 1996 as a single player game. Recent mods have helped make it a two-player game. However, a new fan version is in the news now because it allows up to 24 players to jump online together.

Super Mario 64
Image Source: Kaze Emanuar/YouTube (screenshot)

Super Mario 64 Online offers more players, more fun

Kaze Emanuar, Melonspeedruns and Marshivolt were not satisfied with the single- and two-player modes of Super Mario 64. Therefore, they went on to develop the ROM hack Super Mario 64 Online, which enables up to 24 people to play the game online together.

Super Mario 64 Online allows players to select one character from the Mushroom Kingdom and start playing the game the way they want. The new multiplayer version allows players to compete with each other, running around and doing all sorts of things, such as hide and seek, racing, etc., in addition to conventional play like going through the stages, speed runs or even building a giant battle royale. The version, however, remains short on the part where one character needs to interact with the other.

Speed-runners already seem to be excited about the game, as many have been trying the game online and outperforming each other as they collect certain types of stars to pass the stages in the least amount of time time. Collaborators such as Fuzzyness and MelonSpeedruns are also trying the new version, notes Dotesports.

To preserve the essence of the original Super Mario 64 game, the modders gave every character a unique ability and skills that will help while playing with friends or rivals. To play the online game, one needs to be aware of the port forwarding and/or Hamachi, notes Kotaku. There are tutorials available to help with this.

Will Nintendo let it run?

Nintendo titles have been favorites of players who want to add to the existing games and make them even more interesting. For example, Pokémon Uranium took about nine years for the developer to create. Then there was Pokémon Prism, which did not launch, but was leaked by pirates anyway, notes TechTimes.

Nintendo, however, does not encourage fan-made versions of its games, and the game maker has been quick to take down all of them. It would be no surprise if Super Mario 64 Online faces a similar fate if Nintendo sends a notice to the creators to tell them to take down the game.

AI can recreate Super Mario Bros.

In other Super Mario news, a group of researchers is looking to develop a system in which AI will learn how the game works just by seeing someone play it. In a recent paper titled “Game Engine Learning from Video,” the team wrote about an artificial intelligence system that will be able to recreate the game engine of titles like Super Mario Bros just by watching how they are played. The system doesn’t have access to the game codes. The AI team stated that the remakes built by the AI are glitchy but acceptable.

Matthew Guzdial, lead author of the paper, told The Verge, “For each frame of the video we have a parser which goes through and collects the facts. What animation state Mario is in, for example, or what velocities things are moving at.”