Julian Togelius at the IT University of Copenhagen, Denmark and colleague Sergey Karakovskiy have thrown down the gauntlet to developers to write software that can learn to master Mario by playing it over and over, much as generations of gamers have learned to play in bedrooms the world over.
"I'm interested in creating learning or evolving software that can make games more fun, or easier to produce," Julian Togelius says.
Below is a video of an artificial intelligence package playing Mario, developed by PhD student Robin Baumgarten at Imperial College London.
His program plans to make the largest possible forward leap (indicated by the red line) and revises that plan as new obstacles or enemies appear.
Image: SIPA Press/Rex Features