In a move that’s going to be controversial, Xbox has teamed up with Inworld AI to develop AI tools for the company’s developers. This is going to be a multiyear partnership, with plans for developers to use AI-made scripts, characters, and so much more.
Announced via The Verge, this move by Xbox is being framed as something that can help developers make “extraordinary games,” but with help from AI. One aspect that’s being hyped up more than most is the AI copilot, which will “help” devs out with stories, quests, and other things normal human writers can do.
“This partnership will bring together: Inworld’s expertise in working with generative AI models for character development, Microsoft’s cutting-edge cloud-based AI solutions including Azure OpenAI Service, Microsoft Research’s technical insights into the future of play, and Team Xbox’s strengths in revolutionizing accessible and responsible creator tools for all developers,” explains Haiyan-Zhang, the general manager of Xbox’s gaming AI.
Before anyone starts shaming Xbox for this, the company was quick to point out that this is optional. Developers can still choose to make various games without AI tools, so that’s worth pointing out. Hopefully, they aren’t nudged towards that direction, since AI isn’t known for being an honest program, at least not yet.
Most gamers will still remember the AI debacle with The Finals, a promising multiplayer shooter that ruined its chances when AI voices were confirmed. Despite what the devs have said, this move has made many voice actors scared about their future, as many more companies have considered using AI to replace people.
Obviously, this isn’t just a gaming issue, as this is one of the reasons why Hollywood has been on strike for so long. Both actors and writers don’t want to be replaced by AI, while also wanting better wages for their livelihoods.
Right now, only time will tell if AI tools will be a force for good when it comes to Xbox game development. If any exclusives start to feel more unoriginal than usual, we’ll know what to blame.