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AI designing Video Games with AI and all the other stuff

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Posted 19 March 2012 - 01:19 PM

Let's just skip the preface and get right to the point: no, you did not read that title wrong.

...A few years ago, mad scientist Michael Cook began work what (who?) is now known as "Angelina," an artificial intelligence capable of working with a set of predetermined graphical and auditory assets, and assembling them into a fully functional game designed to offer human players a variety of customizable challenges and goals (as well as a terrifying glimpse at their bleak, looming future).

Angelina created the game using an extremely clever technique known as "cooperative co-evolution," which mimics biological evolution and development in organics. First, she designs the game's components or, in keeping with the evolutionary theme, "species." In the case of Space Station Invaders, these species included level designs and layout, enemy behavior (yes, that's artificial intelligence designing artificial intelligence), and a series of power-ups. Once multiple iterations of each species have been created and cataloged, Angelina chooses a representative of each from her database at random, creates a test game, then simulates a human attempting to escape the menacing deathtrap of killer robots that she has manically created to amuse herself.


The Escapist

The article goes into more detail on how Angelina creates the game, so if you're interested, it's worth a read. Plus, you can download the game for your browser to try the game out for yourself.

Now, the scope of Angelina's abilities are incredibly limited. It will be a long, long time before any non-human intelligence starts designing AAA games in an assembly line-like fashion (*insert cheap joke about Activision and the Call of Duty franchise here*). Still, it's an interesting little experiment, and provides a nice little demonstration of where our technology is taking us. Luddites, beware!

This also provides some much appreciation for video game enthusiasts. After all, why would Skynet need to eliminate all of humanity when it could just release that pent up tension through digital means? This could be the key to saving us from the horrors of a robot uprising... too bad it came too late to save us from the horrors of Terminator: Salvation.

So what are your thoughts?
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