How will AI development affect video game industry?

February 24, 2024  12:17

What genres of video games are popular today? Which ones will be popular tomorrow? Can economic crises affect people's interest in games? How might the development of AI and other technologies affect this industry? Tech talked about all this with Denis Lopantsev, general director of Sperasoft Armenia and senior director of Sperasoft, which develops popular franchises like Halo, Assassin’s Creed, Battlefield and Rainbow 6.

What genres of video games are popular today?

At the moment, the most popular genre in the world is shooters. Modern shooters, according to Denis Lopantsev, attract gamers with interesting scenarios and beautiful graphics.

In addition, today people have little free time, and therefore they prefer games that they can play during short breaks from work or other activities. Shooters are an excellent option for such people, because, unlike, for example, RPGs, you usually don’t need to understand the plot, communicate for a long time with the characters, delve into their stories, and so on. In 10 minutes or, say, half an hour, a person can complete a small mission and return to his business.

All this makes shooters such a popular genre in most countries of the world. Some countries, however, may have their own favorites (for example, in Armenia, FIFA, a series of computer games in the football simulator genre, is extremely popular).

But it’s hard to say how long shooters will stay at the top. Here the trends, according to Lopantsev, largely depend on new products that will enter the market. In any genre, some very high-quality game can appear that will attract a lot of attention, even from those who have never been interested in this genre before.

A similar thing, Denis Lopantsev recalled, happened at one time with the game Fortnite. The game offers three different modes, and while they were all commercial successes, Fortnite: Battle Royale (a competitive battle royale mode that pits 100 players against each other, only one of whom will survive at the end) has become extremely popular, becoming into a unique cultural phenomenon. As of May 2020, the number of registered users was 350 million.

Does the video game industry have a future?

According to Denis Lopantsev, video games definitely have a future. And this area will most likely continue to develop, even despite economic crises and other problems.

“When people ask me about the prospects for the gaming industry, I think about what is relevant for people around the world today and will not lose relevance tomorrow. First of all, this is, of course, nutrition and medicine – for obvious, objective reasons. Clothing production is also very important, of course. And the entertainment industry too. I still believe that people have always tried and will try to find time and means to enjoy this life, and therefore interest in technological areas of entertainment such as the video game industry is unlikely to fade,” he noted.

True, video games of the future will not be the same as today’s: this area, according to the expert, will develop very actively along with the development of artificial intelligence and virtual and augmented reality technologies.

“Games will certainly change and will not remain in the form we are used to seeing them now. We expect them to become more and more interesting, more and more immersive. It seems to me that in the future games will become even more a part of people's everyday lives, they will become part of the interactive component of people's lives. Now there is an active formation of such concepts as the metaverse, digitalization, and it seems to me that games will harmoniously integrate into this process and in the future will begin to play a big role in the life of every individual.”

How will AI development change video game industry?

The development of artificial intelligence can have a certain impact on both the video game development process and the final product. In the first case, AI can significantly speed up and optimize the development process. The good news is that it is too early for game designers, scriptwriters, artists and other specialists working on game creation to worry: AI will not be able to replace them yet. But it can become a good assistant for them.

Today's AI models can generate a lot of different content that can be used in video game development, from text and code to images and video. Thus, AI can relieve programmers, screenwriters, artists and other specialists from various routine work. But people still have to give tasks to AI models, check and correct their work.

“AI creativity today is artificial, predetermined,” noted Denis Lopantsev. “At some point, the amount of data and variation will grow to such an extent that its creativity will become almost undefined, but for now it is limited by the set of data that a particular AI model works with. Everything that AI generates must be reviewed by humans. They will adopt something, abandon something, combine something with something else. If all the work is transferred to the shoulders of AI, it is impossible to obtain a high-quality product. Such experiments have already been done, and nothing good came of it.”

According to Lopantsev, the spread of AI should not be allowed to lead to social problems and unemployment. But such a convenient tool cannot be ignored, so in the future many professions will be transformed: most likely, AI will continue to optimize many types of work and increase people’s productivity. Thanks to it, programmers, screenwriters and many other specialists will be able to handle more work in a shorter period of time. This can both increase the income of such specialists and reduce the time required to create various products, including video games.

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