Even as artificial intelligence plays an ever-greater role in computer games, socially intelligent systems have so far been little used. But the new video shows what socially intelligent game characters may be capable of in the future.
By watching one another and communicating, [Mario, Luigi, Yoshi and Toad] are able to learn about their environment. This means that Mario can ask Toad how to collect coins and then try it himself. Another new feature is that the characters work together to achieve common goals. For example, Mario and Toad work out that they can stand on one another’s heads to reach coins which are high up. The game even enables friends to become enemies who crash into one another intentionally, hurting themselves. The computer scientists gave Mario and his friends the basic ability to start a fight with opponents, and to gradually refine this competetive interaction.