NVIDIA Launches Generative AI Engine for Video Game Development. Is This a Level Up for Immersive Gaming?

June 22, 2023

 

Video games come in all shapes and sizes, but they carry a shared foundation. Whether it’s a chill gardening simulator or an intense sprawling medieval fantasy, underneath all the bells and whistles of most modern AAA games lies a critical foundation of story. Storytelling is still one of the strongest tools game developers have for making their video games not only successful and fun to play, but carry a cultural impact as well. Increasingly, game designers are pushing the boundaries of how to tell engaging stories through the tools and mediums available to video game development. NVIDIA, one of the leading companies in next-gen computing solutions, is adding new AI-powered storytelling tools to that toolkit, and it could be a sign that we’re in a new era for video game development.

So what’s the big deal?

Successful storytelling in video games is told through several aspects of the game including things like the gameplay experience itself, the interactions with characters, the social nature of experiencing the game with other players. The right blend of all these disparate aspects is what is making some of today’s most successful video games, from Tears of the Kingdom to Diablo 4, more immersive of a storytelling experience than ever.

What if that immersion could leverage the rising power of generative AI tools to tell old stories better and tell new stories that were previously impossible through video game development? Those are exactly the kind of capabilities that NVIDIA is giving to game designers with its recently announced ACE for Games generative AI platform. The custom AI model foundry service, building on top of NVIDIA’s established Omniverse ACE solutions, brings intelligence to non-playable characters (NPCs) in games through AI-powered natural language interactions. Developers can use ACE for Games to build and deploy customized speech, conversation, and animation AI models in their software and games. This new design and storytelling tool for game designers promises to bring enterprise-level generative AI to indie games and AAA titles alike, something that game devs have already been experimenting with through mods of classic games. Is it as big of a deal as it’s being hyped up to be?

On this episode of The Big Deal, we dig into the implications of the new NVIDIA cloud engine and its impact on video game development with two industry pros:

  • Gary Brubaker, Director of SMU Guildhall, who boasts experience as a video game development director and lead programmer, working with LucasArts Entertainment and Stormfront Studios, among others. He’s worked on renowned titles like “Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers” and “Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire”.
  • Hilary Mason, experienced AI pro and current co-founder & CEO of Hidden Door, which is using a proprietary generative AI platform to build a new kind of story game experience that can adapt any existing work of fiction into an online social roleplaying game. Mason and Co. are already working on games leveraging popular IP like the Wizard of Oz.

Mason and Brubaker explore how ACE for Games (and generative AI more broadly) will shape video game design strategies, video game development, and the ecosystem of game development solutions, whether this solidifies NVIDIA’s role as a foundational solutions provider in the industry, and some innovative ways generative AI should be deployed to elevate the video game experience in the near-term.

The Big Deal turns office small talk into a big deal, giving you the analysis, hot takes, and insights to help you understand the biggest piece of market-shaking, headline-grabbing news for the week. The Big Deal is hosted by Voice of B2B Daniel Litwin and presented by MarketScale, airing every Wednesday at 10 AM CT on MarketScale.com.

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