Tech: Elon Musk's $1 billion AI startup made a surprise appearance at a $24 million video game tournament — and crushed a pro gamer
A bot from Elon Musk's OpenAI beat Dendi in a one-on-one Dota 2 match at The International.
Computers have already beaten the world's best humans at classic games like chess and Go.
Now one has beaten one of the world's best players of the smash-hit video game "Dota 2," live on stage at The International, developer Valve's flagship $24 million tournament, in a surprise unannounced match-up.
In a one-on-one exhibition match, a bot designed by OpenAI, the $1 billion artificial-intelligence research nonprofit cochaired by Tesla Motors CEO Musk and Y Combinator President Sam Altman, defeated Danylo "Dendi" Ishutin, a professional player who's estimated to have earned $735,449.40 in winnings in his career.
"Please, stop bullying me," Dendi said of the bot during the match.
OpenAI's bot beat Dendi in the first match in about ten minutes; Dendi resigned from the second match, and declined to play a third.
Elon Musk himself took to Twitter to praise OpenAI for its achievement, saying this bot was the "first ever to defeat world's best players in competitive eSports."
In a video ahead of the match-up, OpenAI CTO Greg Brockman explained that the company's special bot was trained by playing a "thousand lifetimes" of matches against itself, with "coaching" from the company. Brockman also boasted that the bot had already bested several pro "Dota 2" players.
"Over the past week, our bot was undefeated against many top professionals including SumaiL (top 1v1 player in the world) and Arteezy (top overall player in the world)," wrote Brockman in a blog entry discussing the bot.
With more time, Dendi thinks he might be able to come up with a strategy.
"I don't want to do it, please, I don't want to believe it," said Dendi, appearing on stage ahead of the match. During the match, he quipped that the bot was "scary."
You can watch OpenAI's introductory video here:
Artificial intelligence companies have a history of using video games to test their technology: Google's DeepMind has tackled "StarCraft 2," while a Microsoft AI team recently claimed to attain the high score in Ms. Pac-Man.
OpenAI isn't just walking away after its victory. The OpenAI hopes to have its bot ready to play in a proper five-versus-five match next year, Brockman said. Meanwhile, the organization is releasing the bot so that anyone can play against it. Valve is placing a bounty of in-game currency for the first players who can defeat it.