AI is a hot topic in the tech industry, with more and more companies talking about their plans to use LLMs and similar technologies in game development. Nintendo, however, has its own view on the matter.

Nintendo wants to deliver unique games that "cannot be created through technology alone" instead of using GenAI

The Legend of Zelda: Echoes of Wisdom

Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa touched on this topic in a recent Q&A with investors (thanks, TweakTown). He noted that game development and AI-like technology “have always been closely related.”

Traditionally, the term has been used for things like simulating NPC behavior. But it is now increasingly associated with generative AI, which has become a buzzword for investors and executives trying to optimize costs.

Furukawa acknowledged that GenAI could be used creatively, but Nintendo has no plans to use it in its first-party games. The main reason is copyright issues that arise when using models trained on other people’s work.

Generative AI, which has been a hot topic in recent years, can be more creative, but we also recognize that it has issues with intellectual property rights. Our company has decades of know-how in creating optimal gaming experiences for our customers. While we are flexible in responding to technological developments, we hope to continue to deliver value that is unique to us and cannot be created through technology alone.

Shuntaro Furukawa

president of Nintendo

This view is different from other gaming giants. For example, Electronic Arts fully embraces LLMs, with CEO Andrew Wilson thinking that “more than 50% of our development processes will be positively impacted by the advances in generative AI.”

Take-Two also believes that AI will improve its efficiency through better tools. However, Strauss Zelnick assured that hit games will still be created by humans: “Hits are created by Genius, and data sets plus compute, plus large language models do not equal Genius. Genius is in the domain of human beings, and I believe we’ll stay that way.”

Ubisoft has been actively working on its proprietary generative tools for a while now. Earlier this year, the publisher unveiled the NEO NPC project, which allows players to have “real” conversations with in-game characters based on the work of real writers and artists.

Got a story you'd like to share? Reach us at [email protected]