2022-02-07: Mario Maker Glitches and Hacking

I was chatting to a student today about speed-running glitches used for the Any% runs. The students were smashing their first stacks and getting their feet wet for the start of exploitation. We spoke about how cool the glitches were, setting up memory by manipulating koopa troopers in just the right way to set up addresses in memory and trigger buffer overflows to exploit them and beat the game.

A *cute* project for someone might be to take the various glitch techniques for Super Mario Maker and then try and categorize them using more tradition exploitation terminology. Make it explicit what the exploits for the game are doing and how they relate to the underlying programming techniques. I'm sure there is something interesting there. Phasing through walls by getting a subpixel stuck in it is essentially an integer overflow, no? Can we relate the two techniques? Can we link them to help teach hacking via games.

Food for thought.

Super Mario Maker glitches try
To make you jump through a launcher to the sky
Thwomp suc it is real
Take the safety coin if you feel
Like going back to CP0 when you die!