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21 Sep 2022

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Games Generated By Artificial Intelligence Are Gradually Becoming Mainstream

A new generation of AI-based image generators like Dall-E has produced amazingly real and complex art from simple text commands. Some say they could revolutionize art production workflows in the years to come.

An independent developer has released a short 2D shooting game using only AI-generated art in an interesting example of using AI to create art for a game. The game isn't very remarkable, but it shows the advantages and limitations of using AI for computer-generated art.

Developer "Nao_u" built the title, called Shoon, over three days to see if Mid journey – an  Artificial Intelligence image generator similar to Dall-E – could create art for a game. Nao_u made a single level for a horizontal shoot-'em-up while generating the background, the player's ship, and the enemies with AI.

Even the title came from AI. When the developer asked Mid journey to create a shoot-'em-up logo, it generated letters appearing to spell "Shoon."

Nao_u built ship models by feeding prompts related to Star Wars and Armored Core to Mid journey. The developer likened the process to playing Gacha games because they had to pull the proverbial lever many times to make anything useful. Nevertheless, Nao_u was impressed with how many variations the generator could produce.


The background is a looped city-themed landscape with translucent edges and perspective-adjusted ground texture. This took longer to create than other environments would have.

The main limitation of environment art is that it is a single, static image. Because there are no foregrounds, middle grounds, and backgrounds in 2D games, Nao_u could not create a sense of perspective.

Despite this drawback, Shoon has been a horizontal shooter instead of a vertical one, which requires a top-down view of the environment. Unfortunately, AI generators aren't known for making images with that perspective.

In addition to the fact that static-AI images can't animate, Nao_u created bug-like enemies by obscuring their legs so they couldn't move.

The absence of animation makes it difficult to build games featuring humans with Artificial Generated Arts. However, Nao_u said the rapid advancement of AI generation in the 3D model space brings new possibilities to the gaming industry.

Creating features like models and textures is rated as one of the most difficult aspects of game development. The truth is, AI generation won't replace the entire need for human effort; however, it could make a certain aspect of development easy with time.

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