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Valve Denies Banning AI-Generated Games from Steam

Valve denies banned AI-generated games from Steam

Recently, Valve was said to be turning away games featuring AI-generated assets, prompting fears of a hostile stance against AI-generated content. In an unusual move, Valve has issued a statement to clarify its policy to Banning AI-Generated Games.

The statement, which was posted on the Steamworks Development website, said that it would accept games containing AI-generated assets, but that it would need to review them on a case-by-case basis.

The statement further said that its policy was “evolving” and that applicants should submit a complete version of their game to be reviewed. Valve also noted that it has “significant experience” working with games that contain AI-generated assets and that it is open to “innovations that use AI technology”.

Valve’s decision to make a rare public statement addressing its policy on AI-generated assets is a sign that the company is aware of the potential impact of its decisions on the PC gaming industry.

By making it clear that it is open to reviewing games containing AI-generated assets on a case-by-case basis, Valve has ensured that developers and gamers alike will be able to access the latest titles and technological advances in the industry.

An indie developer posted on a subreddit for game developers working with AI, claiming that Valve was no longer accepting games with AI-generated content. The developer reported that their submission included certain assets which were evidently created by AI, and Valve seemed to object to this.

We are now satisfied that the game is in compliance with our terms and can be approved for shipping. In light of the legal ownership of AI-generated art being uncertain, our initial warning letter communicated that we could not ship your game as it contained these assets unless you could confirm you have the full rights to the IP used in the data set which trained the AI. After further review of [Game Name Here], we are now content that it is in accordance with our terms and can be approved for shipping.

Unfortunately, we are unable to ship your game at this time as the rights to the training data used to create the assets for your game are unclear. We strive to distribute as many titles as possible; however, we must ensure that all rights are acquired before a game is shipped.

This policy essentially prohibits the use of AI-generated assets in video games, as most AI tools cannot guarantee legal rights to all their training data and even if they do, it may not be ethically sound. Despite this, major video game developers, like Ubisoft, have expressed their belief that AI assistance is necessary and beneficial for game design.

Generative AI powered by unpaid artists raises serious concerns about legal liability. If the creators cannot claim copyright over their own work, the potential risk for distributors, handlers, and other involved parties is too great for Valve to make the decision to publish the art. It is still unclear what if any, liability is attached to this type of AI.

Valve responded to Eurogamer regarding their policy on AI, stating that it is based on what is legally required, rather than any particular stance on the technology. They clarified that their goal is not to discourage the use of AI on Steam but rather to work on integrating it into their existing review policies. In short, their review process reflects current copyright law and policies, not their own opinion.

We know it is a constantly evolving tech, and our goal is not to discourage the use of it on Steam; instead, we’re working through how to integrate it into our already-existing review policies. Stated plainly, our review process is a reflection of current copyright law and policies, not an added layer of our opinion. As these laws and policies evolve over time, so will our process.

Valve reponded to Eurogamers

As laws and regulations concerning the use of artificial intelligence progress, our processes will continue to evolve accordingly. In the interim, we will offer a refund of the typically non-refundable application submission fee in cases where our in-progress policy is the deciding factor.

For now, it is uncertain to what extent AI is being used in any significant manner aside from some experimentation or, as in the case of the developer mentioned above, a “blatant cash grab.”

A video that appears to be about his development process claims that it is possible to “get rich quick with AI waifus” and to make $1000 by publishing an AI-generated game on Steam that has gone sexual.

Although this may make us feel like we are missing out, the situation is not as simple as it seems. As more experienced developers start using these tools and the tools themselves become more advanced, the matter becomes more complicated.