Machine Learning and Its Potential Impact on the Gaming Industry

Machine learning is the next step when it comes to the evolution of technology and many, if not all, businesses will benefit from this new way of processing information. The technology is still new and is currently being developed, especially its usage in the video game industry. Machine learning is the ability for computing software to learn by itself without the need for it to be programmed. The technology is viewed as a subset of artificial intelligence, or AI for short.

Machine Learning Gaming

 

A.I. and M.L. – Similar, Yet Slightly Different

To give a summary of how and when AI started to become smarter we need to go back to 1952. During this time, a graduate student from the UK created an AI that could be able to play a perfect game of tic-tac-toe. That was a long time ago and this day, a computer Ai can defeat humans, even professional players at complex games, such as chess.

John McArthy was the person that coined the term “artificial intelligence” in 1956 at Dartmouth Conference, which he organized himself. He is considered the godfather of AI. The term and idea were later promoted by researchers Allen Newell and Herbert Simon and regarded the technology as an instrumental tool capable of benefiting the world. ML is not different from AI. Where AI tends to increase the chances of success when making a decision, M.L. is aiming for accuracy. A.I. is defined as the ability to learn and apply data, while M.L. is defined as the acquisition of skill or knowledge.

A simple example of people can easily understand machine learning is the Facebook News Feed. The algorithm uses different methods to personalize each individual’s news depending on their interests and the posts that they like. The news feed will change alongside the user’s interests accordingly, showing content relevant to the user’s themselves.

 

Machine Learning in Gaming

Machine learning has the potential to address the many issues faced by regular artificial intelligence in games. The right implementation of M.L. will allow for more realistic interaction with non-playable characters in video games, without the need for scripted cutscenes. Enemy AI will be more self-aware creating new and unique challenges for players to overcome and the same can be said for friendly AI. Gaming seems to be the perfect industry where this technology can be applied to create more enjoyable experiences for players. For example, many social and online casino games that already implement some sort of machine learning software can provide players with a more personalized experience and can also help developers in finding out what makes a particular game popular so it can be further developed and polished.

The iGaming industry is already using some form of AI to help better understand the player’s preferences. Data has shown that women are more interested in playing slot games. Men, on the other hand, are drawn to skill-based casino games such as blackjack and poker. In modern video games, machine learning can help to create AI which can respond to a player’s actions more naturally and dynamically. Most gaming experiences today have an AI with heavily scripted behavior patterns so that it may seem as natural as possible. Machine learning strips programmers of that necessity, making it possible to learn and react by itself, creating more naturally occurring moments.

 

What the Future Holds

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning will change the way companies do business and handling data. Many businesses around the world are incorporating machine learning. Microsoft, for example, uses machine learning with Cortana, the Windows virtual assistant. Other popular assistants are Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri, all of them using machine learning, personalizing itself to the user’s interests and preferences.

The future looks promising for these technologies and intense research continues to be done and improve upon it. The process of machine learning revolves around many areas such as data collection and preparation and will become an ever more practical solution for many businesses.

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