Google Wants to Enable Devs to Create WoW-Sized Games With Small Teams Through Machine Learning

Machine Learning

We’re taking on the risk that developers don’t want to. We’ve been talking externally to developers and asking them, what are the things that you’ve always wanted to do but have not been able to do? What are the things that you’ve had to cut out of your games because you haven’t been able to do them fast enough, or you just haven’t had the processing power?

What if a team of 14 people could make a game the scale of World of Warcraft? That’s an absurd goal, right? The thing about games like WoW is that they rely on a lot of heavy, repetitive content creation. The artists and the writers are doing a lot of essentially duplicate work, that’s where a lot of the investment goes. If you look at the amount of money that is spent making a game like World Warcraft, it’s like 70% content and 30% or less code, even though it’s a tremendous amount of code, it’s way more on the content side.

[…] by playing the game millions of times with reinforcement learning agents that we’ve trained on the rules of the game, that lets us test the balance very, very quickly. So even a small developer who might not have access to hundreds of people to playtest their game could have access to this reinforcement learning tool that will optimise the play of the game. It can learn the game by itself without being scripted and then tell you where the problems are in the balancing. It lets you test your theories of the design against what’s actually happening in real time.

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