It’s-a Me, but not really. (Picture: Twitter)
A hologram version of Mario built using AI software has been sighted at CES, and it’s going to give Nintendo’s lawyers a field day.
While 2024 has already shown how artificial intelligence is a growing concern among video game voice actors, we now have another reason to fear the future.
At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, an attendee has shared clips of a hologram Mario ‘abomination’ built using AI software, who can respond to questions in an unsettling robotic voice.
The AI Mario is created by Proto Hologram, a tech company who create boxed hologram displays which can be interacted with. For some reason, they chose a stiff-looking Mario (with oddly large fingers) as the vessel to advertise this technology at the show… without asking Nintendo.
‘So Mario was at CES,’ the user wrote in the post. ‘But uh… who approved this abomination?’
In another bizarre twist, the technology initially appeared to have some connection with the AARP, a US advocacy group dedicated to focusing on issues affecting people over the age of 50. The CEO of AARP, Jo Ann Jenkins, was featured in a demonstration of the tech.
In a statement to IGN, Proto confirmed neither Nintendo or the AARP were involved with the hologram.
‘The AI hologram animation briefly seen today is an unfinished proof of concept tested for a client to demonstrate technological capabilities and innovation,” Proto said. ‘It is not intended for commercial release.
‘AARP and Nintendo were not involved in the inadvertent showing today. The fact that so many gamers of the world have taken notice shows that they are the best fans in the world and we salute them.’
GameCentral has reached out to Nintendo for comment.
We don’t know what AARP’s lawyers are like but Nintendo’s are going to make mincemeat of the company, since they must know about it by now.
Nintendo is known for being ruthless when it comes to cracking down on people, and companies, using their IP without permission. Over the years, the company has shut down a number of fan-made projects, including mods, that used its characters.
While AI Mario is undoubtedly an atrocity, Nintendo has showcased new voices for Mario over the past year. Chris Pratt voiced the character in The Super Mario Bros. Movie, while Charles Martinet, the character’s original voice actor, was replaced with Kevin Afghani in Super Mario Bros. Wonder.
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