Ubisoft has introduced a new AI scriptwriting tool called Ghostwriter, saying it will help game writers develop better dialogue for NPCs.
According to a blog post published by Ubisoft on Tuesday, Ghostwriter, created by Ubisoft’s R&D department, La Forge, “isn’t replacing the video game writer.” Quite the opposite, Ubisoft claims. It is actually saving game writers time coming up with the best lines, or barks, to give NPCs.
Ghostwriter generates first drafts of barks and gives writers room to flesh them out to better fit the game’s narrative. Ben Swanson, an R&D scientist at La Forge Montreal, said he created Ghostwriter to solve the issue of writing barks that would be triggered by certain situations, especially when there’s a crowd full of NPCs.
“Rather than writing first draft versions themselves, Ghostwriter lets scriptwriters select and polish the samples generated,” he said.
Every Ubisoft Game in Development
Swanson demonstrated the use of Ghostwriter at GDC, showing bark trees that show up for an NPC character confronting a certain topic, such as speeding or being hungry. The program generates lines for either situation, then the writer selects the most suitable line and combines it with their own input to better fit it with the game’s narrative design.
The rapid rise of AI
AI tools have gained increased attention as creators grapple with the consequences of tools like ChatGPT. In the games industry, Ubisoft’s Ghostwriter tool is one of many AI tools designed to streamline the often painstaking work that goes into writing basic dialogue or cleaning up environmental assets.
Ubisoft currently has several games in development, including multiple Assassin’s Creed releases, and Ghostwriter will no doubt be used to streamline their development as much as possible.
Cristina Alexander is a freelance writer for IGN. She has contributed her work to various publications, including Digital Trends, TheGamer, Twinfinite, Mega Visions, and The Escapist. To paraphrase Calvin Harris, she wears her love for Sonic the Hedgehog on her sleeve like a big deal. Follow her on Twitter @SonicPrincess15.
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