Although one of the fundamental goals of AI is to understand and develop intelligent systems that have all the capabilities of humans, there is little active research directly pursuing this goal. We propose that AI for interactive computer games is an emerging application area in which this goal of human-level AI can successfully be pursued. Interactive computer games have increasingly complex and realistic worlds and increasingly complex and intelligent computer-controlled characters. In this article, we further motivate our proposal of using interactive computer games for AI research, review previous research on AI and games, and present the different game genres and the roles that human-level AI could play within these genres. We then describe the research issues and AI techniques that are relevant to each of these roles. Our conclusion is that interactive computer games provide a rich environment for incremental research on human-level AI.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has become one of the most trending buzzwords in gaming industry of today. Almost every game developer now strives to add some flavor of AI in their video games to generate responsive, adaptive and intelligent behaviors that mimic human cognition. AI in video games may sound as a new innovation, but one of the very first attempts to use game AI had been made in 1950s when Arthur Lee Samuel, an American pioneer in the field of computer gaming and AI, built a self-learning Checkers-playing program. AI has come a long way since then, from IBM's Deep Blue that defeated a reigning world chess champion, Garry Kasparov, on 11 May 1997 to Google's AlphaGo AI Go player that defeated the world's best human Go player. However, the future of AI in video games is not just to outsmart humans, but to generate a user experience that is better and more unique.
If you have ever played a video game, no matter what era you played it in, you have interacted with artificial intelligence. Regardless of whether you prefer race-car games like Gran Turismo, strategy games like God Of War, or shooting games like Call Of Duty, you will always find elements controlled by AI. Even things that you don't think would be AI controlled, are! AIs are often behind the characters you typically don't pay much attention to, such as enemy creeps, neutral merchants, or even animals and other background characters. When it comes to video games, artificial intelligence has grown leaps and bounds, allowing us to have some of the most realistic gameplay experiences yet.
Machine learning keeps on revolutionizing almost every industry and sector, from crop planning in agriculture to cancer diagnosis in the healthcare industry. These topics are often more broadly addressed because they have made an impact that is tangible and beneficial for humanity. Machine learning in games, particularly in mobile game design, is also hitting the headlines in the same way. To grasp the scale of the gaming industry, according to Newzoo's Global Games Market Report, the video game industry has reached a global market value of $139 billion by the end of 2018 and is already far more significant than the Film and Music industry put together. Across all platforms combined, the gaming industry now has over 3 billion gamers worldwide.
There are plenty of articles out on the internet talking about how 2017 will be the year of AI and how it will change the way in which we drive our cars, organize our homes with the internet of things (IoT), and live our lives. But much of the progress made in developing AIs could never have been made had it not been for video games spurring developers on. Video game AIs have come a long way from when Nintendo sent Goombas marching at Mario in a set path and are certainly now capable of carrying out complex commands. But AI developers are now trying to create AIs that can actually think, learn and develop their own personalities as opposed to following a script with branching paths. This can not only affect how we interact and play video games, but help create better AI to change how we live our day to day lives.