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How will AI affect gaming in the future?

By William Davis

|

Dec 11, 2023

Reading time: 3 min

Artificial intelligence is arguably the most important advancement in technology since the transistor. It’s currently upending several industries, and gaming is no exception. Technological progress has always been tied to video games, as new tech is converted to entertainment and competition.

Now, the gaming industry is pushing boundaries once again thanks to AI technology, creating more immersive, engaging, and realistic experiences than ever before. Here’s how AI is changing gaming both for players and developers.

Putting the AI in Artificial Intelligence

If you’ve ever played strategy games, you’ve probably already encountered the term “artificial intelligence” in video games. This kind of AI, however, usually only refers to somewhat-intelligent behavior of NPCs and doesn’t have much to do with modern neural networks. AI in video games has been evolving since the 1980s. It controls every enemy you encounter and every companion that follows you on your quest.

Blog post image

The AI that is now making waves in the media is something entirely different. Modern AI systems use deep learning algorithms to study massive amounts of data, learn patterns, and deliver educated, highly personalized responses. A perfect example of such AI is the free online video editor CapCut, the official video editor of TikTok. Programs like CapCut use AI-powered editing features that help creators save valuable time while keeping up with social media trends.

Modern AI algorithms are now used to power gaming AI as well, creating advanced NPCs with complex behaviors that adapt to the player’s actions. Making the AI harder in games usually means it is “cheating”, as in, it gets more resources and other bonuses to make the game harder. Now, harder AI can mean more intelligence, forcing players to think harder to beat it instead of just improving on existing tactics.

capcut

Creating procedurally generated content with AI

Games like Minecraft or No Man’s Sky make use of procedurally generated content to make their games infinitely replayable since no two playthroughs will ever be the same. This content is made using algorithms that generate maps, levels, and even entire galaxies using special codes called seeds. Modern AI algorithms can be used to further improve procedurally generated content, creating vast and complex worlds filled with lifelike and interesting characters.

These algorithms could potentially generate new structures, missions, landscapes, and even storylines. As players interact with the game, these algorithms could further learn and adapt to the player’s habits, actions, and game style, generating content personalized for each player and making each playthrough a truly unique experience.

How AI is revolutionizing multiplayer

Artificial Intelligence is already used in various matchmaking systems that multiplayer games employ to rank their players. These systems use player data to create balanced matchups, making sure that everyone can play against someone of similar skill. These systems analyze many factors that combine to make up skill level, like experience, gameplay style, match history, and others, making sure multiplayer stays competitive and enjoyable.

Phantom Assassin and Oracle from Dota2

AI can also help catch cheating in multiplayer games. If you’ve ever had a Fortnite or PUBG match ruined by a cheater, you know how frustrating that can be. Artificial intelligence algorithms can monitor game data in real-time to detect anomalies in user behavior that may indicate cheating, either notifying a human admin or taking action autonomously.

Thanks to this, there is less need for human moderators to manually review and analyze footage looking for signs of cheating. AI can do it more accurately and doesn’t get tired, but might sometimes not understand each nuance fully, which is why its decisions typically still have to be confirmed by a human.

The possibilities of AI are limitless. From powering multiplayer experiences to performing advanced photo restoration, leveraging AI technology can make creating and enjoying media easier for everyone.

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