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Nintendo cautious with AI use – report

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Nintendo cautious with AI use – report

NINTENDO. Nintendo's game character Super Mario is seen on a screen at the presentation ceremony of Nintendo's game console Switch in Tokyo, Japan on January 13, 2017. File photo by Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters

File photo by Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters

The company will not be joining the AI craze for now, with its president expressing concerns over intellectual property rights

Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa said in a recent shareholder meeting that Nintendo intends to steer clear of generative AI in its first-party games, TweakTown reported and translated. 

Furukawa recognized the use of technology similar to AI long before its current popularity, stating “In the game industry, AI-like technology has long been used to control enemy character movements, so game development and AI technology have always been closely related.” 

Nintendo’s president, nevertheless, believed that generative AI “has issues with intellectual property (IP) rights” even with its potential for creativity.  

The president noted that they remain “flexible in responding to technological developments.” But noting their “decades of know-how” in making games, he said that they “hope to continue to deliver value that is unique to us and cannot be achieved through technology alone.”

Earlier this year, Nvidia revealed their new technology, NEO NPC, at the Game Developers Conference, according to CNET. The technology, created with the help of Ubisoft and InWorld, allows NPCs to answer spoken questions while syncing up the dialogue with the character’s mouth movements. 

NEO NPC is one example illustrating how AI may change how games are made.

Research from US management consulting firm Bain predicts AI to “contribute to more than half of the video game development process” over the next 5 to 10 years. Today, the majority of its influence lies in the pre-production stage, but there are expectations that it will eventually affect the production of characters, environments, and dialogue. 

Despite its potential to impact creativity, issues surrounding IP rights remain a legitimate concern, with companies from other industries suing firms like OpenAI and Hollywood actress Scarlett Johansson accusing Open AI of using her voice.

These cases and incidents between the creative industry and AI companies are expected to reshape how intellectual properties should be protected in the age of AI. – Rav Ayag/

Rav Ayag is a Tech and Features intern at Rappler. He is an incoming senior at the Ateneo de Manila University in the Bachelor of Fine Arts Creative Writing program. 

This story was vetted by a reporter and an editor.

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