Sadly, on a day of jokes and mindlessly playful gestures, Nintendo has ordered that the HD Super Mario 64 browser game be taken down immediately, claiming copyright infringement. The project has been trending all over every known social media page but clearly it wasn’t meant to last. Mario is a hot property for Nintendo. It makes sense that they would stop an online version of the game from being played freely online despite the joy it brought to the gaming masses.
Upon visiting the page where the game was once located, users will instead be greeted with a less friendly DMCA copyright infringement complaint sent to file’s host CloudFlare stating that the game has been removed. The saddest part is that the game was cut down at such a young age. The project had only recreated the first level of the classic Mario game before seeing its demise. We will reflect on that first level in all its wonderfully free glory with fondness. Or maybe we’ll just play Super Mario 64 on one of the many platforms for which it is legally available.
The first level, Bob-omb Battlefield, was a direct remake of the first level from the original game built using the Unity Engine. Erik Ross, a former Microsoft Games Studio engineer, was the brain behind the project who had made it clear that he had no intentions to monetize the project. Despite trying to please Nintendo by not collecting cash and merely stating the project as hobby, the studio was not pleased with Ross appropriating its copyrighted work and promptly ordered everything gone.
Nintendo has shown their strong disdain towards people using their intellectual properties without their permission in the past. On several occasions they have ordered the takedown of videos from online vloggers sampling their content. It comes as no surprise that they would make the decision to remove the game. Still, Super Mario 64 is deserving of an HD remake available online for pure preservation purposes. If Ross can’t be the one to bring it to the people, why doesn’t Nintendo create one? There’s obviously a demand for it. We’ll be waiting on a response.