Have Hope, Humanity: Pro-Gamers Went One for 11 Playing StarCraft II Against Google’s DeepMind AI
It may seem like artificial intelligence is on a path to rule the world, but there’s still a flicker of hope for humans.
In December, Google’s DeepMind AI program called AlphaStar played a series of StarCraft II matches against two human players, though the results weren’t revealed until Thursday. While the AI won ten games, signaling that the robot overlords are still on a quest to take over, one of the professional human players still managed to squeak out a single win in his match-up against the computer.
For the uninitiated, StarCraft II is a video game made by Blizzard Entertainment and is popular on the e-sports circuit, where professional gamers compete to win prizes. While in many traditional games humans take turns, StarCraft II is a bit different, requiring opponents to continually perform actions as the clock runs down.
StarCraft II also averages between “10 to the 26 legal actions at every time-step,” according to DeepMind’s blog, making it different than a game like chess, where a limited number of strategies could lead capturing the opponent’s king.
Demis Hassabis, founder and CEO of DeepMind AI, gave a shout out on Twitter to Grzegorz Komincz, the professional gamer known as MaNa who managed to outwit the computer during a single match.
While the results have interested gamers—and perhaps depressed some humans—Hassabis said the artificial intelligence powering DeepMind could have a way to help people in the real world.
“I’m excited that the techniques behind #AlphaStar could be useful in other problems such as weather prediction & climate modeling, which also involve predictions over very long sequences,” he tweeted.