DeepMind’s AI demonstrated last night how its prowess in StarCraft 2 battles against professional human players has grown in recent months.
The live stream of the showdowns was viewed by more than 55,000 people.
“This is, of course, an exciting moment for us,” said David Silver, a researcher at DeepMind. “For the first time, we saw an AI that was able to defeat a professional player.”
DeepMind created five versions of their ‘AlphaStar’ AI. Each AI was trained with historic game footage that StarCraft-developer Blizzard has been releasing on a monthly basis.
In order to further improve their abilities, the five AIs were pitted against each other in a league. The leading AI racked up experience that would equate to a human training for around 200 years.
Perhaps needless to say, AlphaStar wiped the floor with human players Grzegorz Komincz and Dario Wunsch.
You can watch AlphaStar taking on the human players below:
The only hope for humans so far is that AlphaStar was trained for a single map and using just the one alien race type of three available in the game. Removed from its comfort zone, it would not perform as well.
Video games have driven more rudimentary AI developments for decades. The advancement shown by AlphaStar could be used to create more complex ‘bots’ that can pose a challenge and help train even the best human players.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen DeepMind’s AI bots in action – but, in the past, they’ve had a tendency of immediately rushing its opponents with ‘workers’ in a behaviour that Blizzard called “amusing”.
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