Creating Artful Horror in Mario Maker [Video]

Super Mario Maker has empowered players to create some truly awe inspiring levels. From courses that play themselves, to incredible puzzles, to homages to other 8-bit games, Mario Maker seems to have something for everyone.

But perhaps no other course is quite like the one above. Entitled “The Goomba: A Sad Tale of Madness,” the course is uses one of the game’s alternate mushrooms (which, rather than make Mario big, cast him in a different form) and several lesser-used elements to craft a piece of existential horror quite unlike anything else out there. It was created by user Theoryman, and has already begun making the rounds among streamers online:

Levels like this reignite a debate on the artistry in video game design. As extensive as the Mario Maker toolkit is, it’s still creating a game where a character just runs and jumps. Yet when something truly dread-inspiring emerges, how can we call it anything but art?