Programmer Creates AI Algorithms That Can Play NES Games

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News Posted: Mon, Apr 15 2013 11:31 AM
Ah, things used to be so simple. Back in the day, beating the NES version of Super Mario Brothers could almost be done in one's sleep. Wait, what? As it turns out, the game that stumped far too many children in the days of yesteryear is painfully easy to beat. The trick, however, is to not be human. Obviously, humans pay attention to certain things that are happening in games, whereas the ones and zeros within are walking a straighter and far more narrow path.

Tom Murphy, a programmer, has recently created and debuted a function that can effectively beat NES games by attempting to get levels, scores, lives, etc. to level-up. The program is described as a "technique for automating NES games," and while it can take on just about every title ever made for that console, it doesn't always win. Still, it wins a lot, and that's impressive.

Obviously, the mental work required to even understand this is notable, so have a look at the video above for a peek at how it handles Goombas.
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Thomas T. replied on Mon, Apr 15 2013 12:22 PM

That's actually slightly terrifying.

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Johnny3D replied on Mon, Apr 15 2013 9:33 PM

I thought the simplicity of how he developed that is pretty awesome. I also like how the AI figured out how to exploit glitches.

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Clixxer replied on Mon, Apr 15 2013 10:39 PM

That pretty cool. Like Johnny3D said, the fact it will exploit a glitch that the user didn't even know about is awesome.

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Skynet is coming. ;-)

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PPassos replied on Tue, Apr 16 2013 4:13 AM

make it play ninja gaiden

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