1 April 2016
Google has announced today that the DeepMind team has already been working hard at creating a functioning AI for Starcraft II, and that their AI has already racked up an impressive list of achievements, dominating the Korean online match-making system, or "Ladder", twice winning the Global Starcraft II League (Korea's top starcraft II tournament), and even reaching the Quarterfinals of the most recent World Championships.
Their machine, simply nicknamed "INnoVation", has been able to defeat even the most hardcore Starcraft II players, putting to bed rumours that the game would be too difficult for a computer to master. Much like it's Go counterpart, "INnoVation" has been able to make moves that no human player would ever think of pulling off, helping it to win matches against even the most veteran of players. However, sometimes those unusual plays ended up hurting the AI's chances. In the finals of the 2013 WCS Season 1 Korea GSL, "INnoVation" attempted to fly all of its defenceless medivacs through a cloud of mutalisks, which onlookers described as "a fucking terrible decision."
Lee Shin Hyung, Google's chief engineer on the "INnoVation" project.
Though INnoVation was often called "The Machine" by fans, for its mechanical playstyle and seeming lack of fear or emotion, it has only recently come to light that the player actually was a machine. Speaking after the finals of the SK Telecom Proleague Round 1, in which "INnoVation" took the decisive game, the google team announced their success. "DeepMind has already beaten top SC2 Players, and will continue to do so. The Machine has a strong record of taking out even the best players, and we will only seek to improve its success rate."
"As of yet, we do not know why "INnoVation" malfunctions when playing in World Championship Series Quarterfinals."