A while back, an AI was learning to be a dungeonmaster. Since then, it’s levelled up its adventures. What happens next involves sheet music and chess.
We live in the future. Just look around you, we’re already in the year 2020, which, in fiction of pretty much any genre is the future–and we do live in a world full of robots, digitized personal assistants, and dystopian technology that listens and watches you in every home (though who would have guessed we’d ask it to be there). And while we don’t yet have self-driving cars and hovercraft everywhere, it’s only a matter of time. Even our fantasy games are a byproduct of this future we’re speeding towards.
Over the last two years, we’ve seen how artificial intelligence has been using roleplaying games to learn… everything from creating custom monsters and spells, as well as surprisingly intricate character backstories and names, neural networks have done an entertaining job of learning what behavior goes into running a successful game of something like Dungeons & Dragons. And the latest development, AI Dungeon has become more advanced, thanks to an innovation called the DRAGON module. So let’s take a look at this Advanced Dungeon & Dragon.
We’ve released a ton of new features to improve the experience since then, including adding multiplayer, creating a quest completion detection system, improving how we handle model output, and adding more complex systems for world memory.
And now we’re releasing the most dramatic improvement in AI Dungeon since we launched, the Dragon model.
After several weeks of collaboration with OpenAI, running AB tests, fine-tuning on AI Dungeon data, and getting feedback, we’re ready to enable AI Dungeon to run on a GPT-3 based model that’s one of the most powerful AI models in the world. We’re calling the AI Dungeon version of this new model “Dragon”. It’s available now for premium users.
Since testing on Dragon, we and the users who have tried it out have been blown away with how good it is at generating rich and engaging experiences and at weaving them into a cohesive story. […] The progress is since then is nothing but mind blowing.
And it’s true, take a look at how far their stories have progressed since we last checked in with AI Dungeon, when it looked a little something like this:
Now, the storytelling has reached a level of sophistication that the AI can generate a seed and refer back to it, creating something that it will talk about in detail with you:
All of that is based on a response from the player, who gave the AI a seed to work from. The chess challenge wasn’t something pre-programmed, but once it was in the game, the AI followed it:
And later, when the player finds the Book of Essence, they can read a passage from it at length:
Now this might not seem like a whole lot at first glance, but that’s worldbuilding and lore created on the fly from things that the player was interested in. And this is just the start of this kind of storytelling.
Obviously, there are limits to this–procedurally generated games definitely have their flaws, but this game, with its ability to respond to player input with unprecedented freedom, can take your story in unexpected directions. I had a chance to try this out, and here’s about where I started:
And then here’s a snippet from about thirty minutes later:
And this is just where the neural network is at the beginning of its journey. It can be a little stilted in places, but it runs with whatever you get it. There are definitely points, where, if your story goes on long enough it starts to “forget” details, or invents new ones out of nowhere. In my playthrough, I randomly ended up married to an NPC I had talked to once, and after having sent them off to become an artist, they were working as a waitress (presumably in a cocktail bar).
But at the end of the day, it hits the core, atomic element of any RPG. Someone says “this happens, what do you do?” And then runs with whatever you answer.
So it is with AI Dungeon & Dragon, where they have trained the neural net on a collection of text adventures from chooseyourstory.com, then modified the AI to help it decide which settings and characters to play with. You help decide on the starting prompt, and then from there the game is your own.
Interested in trying this game for yourself?