We already mentioned, in several discussions, that the impact of AI on game development is revolutionary, as it allows developers to create generic assets nobody pays any attention to—like health potions in a game; we know what they are and don’t care how they look, as long as they work. However, the advent of AI and its use in gaming isn’t without its drawbacks, as pointed out by the World of Warcraft community, who messed around with an online publishing AI, leading it to publish false data.
Reddit users created threads about the arrival of Glorbo (a made-up World of Warcraft character) to the game to trick the AI into generating fake content based on fake news it was fed.
For further context, AI tools aren’t really capable of generating true, original art. Instead, these tools take known pieces of art and content, aggregate them, process them, and output seemingly original works.
It’s technically not plagiarizing, but as Kotaku pointed out, there’s no actual intelligence behind these works, as deliberately proven by the World of Warcraft community, who managed to fabricate enough fake information to trigger AI bots on an aggregate website to pass said fake information as actual news.
Allow us to provide you with contextual data. A World of Warcraft subreddit community realized that a certain blog attached to a website promoting a gaming app has been scraping Reddit threads and feeding the data through an AI, summarizing said threads into “key takeaways.”
The hilarious bit is that the Glorbo is the arch-nemesis of Quackion, the Aspects of Ducks—a parody of the original Dragon Aspects in World of Warcraft.
Thus, they decided to make enough threads about the arrival of Glorbo (a made-up character) to the game to trick the AI into generating fake content based on fake news it was fed—a perfect example of a fruit of the poisonous tree—and their stunt worked.
For anyone unfamiliar with the stunt but familiar with the game’s lore, the hilarious bit is that the Glorbo is the arch-nemesis of Quackion, the Aspects of Ducks—a parody of the original Dragon Aspects in World of Warcraft.
The AI of the blog wrote up a “key takeaway” about Glorbo’s arrival to the game, taking the false information from the Reddit thread, which has been layered with other bogus information for good measure, like Activision Blizzard making the Klaxxi into a neutral playable race in the game—which would be a stuff of nightmare unless you’re an enthusiastic entomologist.
Knowing Activision Blizzard, if this news gains enough traction, the developers will likely add a Glorbo NPC to World of Warcraft, just for kicks.
The blog posting fake World of Warcraft news has since removed the AI-generated content, but not before the artificial intelligence collected enough data to publish yet another piece detailing the community’s reaction to AI-generated content.
Both articles were removed, but the whole event points out several different facts: the author is credited with publishing roughly 83 articles a day—yea, right—the content is clearly AI-generated, and there’s little to no oversight on what the AI is publishing on the publisher’s platform.
Perhaps the most entertaining aspect of this is that it’s nothing more than a prank. Sure, it also raises some ethical questions regarding AI publishing, like Google’s total inability to distinguish between human and AI-generated content—which, by the way, undermines the value of human-generated content—and the fact that we’re drowning in a sea of information thirsty for the truth, or at least factual information.
However, there’s an upside to all this: knowing Activision Blizzard, if this news gains enough traction, the developers will likely add a Glorbo NPC to World of Warcraft, just for kicks.