Nvidia Research announced Friday that it has produced a new iteration of Pac-Man that was generated entirely by AI. The company built an AI model that was able to create a fully functional, playable version of the seminal 8-bit arcade game without access to the underlying game engine. With no innate understanding of Pac-Man’s gameplay, the AI “trained” by watching sessions of Pac-Man — the official version from Bandai Namco — to learn the game’s rules and mechanics.
The AI model in question is known as Nvidia GameGAN. It relies on generative adversarial networks (GAN), a common system in machine learning that pits two neural networks against each other for applications such as AI-generated images. And GameGAN is the first GAN to be able to reproduce a video game on its own, according to Nvidia.