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AI-Created Video Game Levels and Characters from Text Inputs


A team of researchers at New York University has developed a simple generative AI tool that can create video game maps, character models, and emojis from a single-sentence prompt. The goal of the project was to understand how effective an AI model can be with minimal complexity.

Training Process

The AI model was trained on small databases of 882 game maps, 100 game sprites, and 10,000 emojis. Each entry in the database was labeled with a description of the image or character. Notably, the labels avoided using specific names and focused on descriptions instead. For example, instead of labeling Mario, the label would describe him as “a man with a moustache dressed in red”. The model was also trained using GPT-4, a large language model, through alternative labels.

Model Architecture

The AI model uses a simplistic neural network that excludes modern developments found in current AI systems. Notably, the network does not include any feedback loops, allowing information to flow in one direction from input to output. Despite its simplicity, the model was able to accurately generate depictions based on user text prompts.

Results and Implications

The AI model demonstrated the potential of achieving accurate results with limited computing power. It proved effective in generating video game landscapes such as “a grassy field with some flowers,” “an island of trees in the river,” and “a flooded village.” According to the researchers, this AI tool could have significant implications for the future of video game development, as it can run on home computers and mobile devices.


The AI-created video game levels and characters from text inputs showcase the potential of AI in the gaming industry. With its ability to generate accurate depictions based on simple prompts, this technology could revolutionize game design. Further research and development in this area could lead to more efficient and accessible tools for game developers.

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