Konami has announced it’s working on an AI project for its competitive Yu-Gi-Oh! Mobile game Master Duel, but thankfully it’s nothing to do with generating art.
Every time I hear that some game dev is using AI, my eyes start twitching with frustration, so you could understand how I might have felt when I read the words “Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel x AI Project” in a press release this morning. As it turns out, though, unlike other parts of the industry which just seeks to replace its hard working artists, Konami’s Yu-Gi-Oh! AI project is actually what we all used to assume AI in a game was – a computer controlled player. Except, it is the kind of AI that uses machine learning, and its whole purpose is to learn how to play Yu-Gi-Oh!
According to the press release, this AI project aims to “deliver new ways to enjoy Duels in Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel by building a system that allows AI to be installed in the game, enabling Duels in Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel to be played with the AI created by external programs. The AI program grows and learns through continuous Duelling.” The project was announced at an event this week, where attendees “saw the thinking processes of the AI visualised, such as selection patterns of the AI’s actions, quantifying win rates depending on how Duels develop, and predicting which cards would be played.”
One thing that was noted is that it “has not yet been determined if ‘Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel x AI Project’ will be added to the game itself,” so you might want to stay satisfied playing against actual humans for the time being. In a presentation at the event (as translated by YGOrganization), the devs noted that it isn’t a system that they “will just give away for everyone to create their own AI,” but things like rules and terms of service are being set up “so that within this year, positions for AI Duel creators will be posted at the official Master Duel website.”
In the meantime, you could also distract yourself with Yu-Gi-Oh! Wordle, which is exactly what you think it is.