AlphaStar, the StarCraft 2 AI, is Joining the European Competitive Ladder

Yolanda Curtis
July 12, 2019

AlphaStar will play as a member of Terran, Zerg, or Protoss races in the game, and will only be tested against StarCraft II players in Europe.

What do you think of AlphaStar and AI in a video game? The initiative has been launched as part of ongoing research by DeepMind that will assess AlphaStar's performance for scientific objective. If players knew they were playing against an AI they would play differently, this way the results will stay unaffected.

AlphaStar will play a "small number of blind trial games" against real people on the normal European StarCraft 2 ladder.


Many StarCraft fans are also anticipating a possible showdown between AlphaStar and a StarCraft II World Global Champion, although DeepMind has not yet disclosed what might come next for its game-playing bot.

In order to opt-in to play against AlphaStar, you can click the "opt-in" button on the in-game pop-up window. "Many took to social media where they brainstormed tricks created to "unmask" the AlphaStar agent: "I'm curious to see what kind of names AlphaStar will use on the ladder" and "...if your opponent doesn't respond to your chat, they might be AlphaStar!" In December, the AI dominated a pair of top-ranked StarCraft players.

"Having AlphaStar play anonymously helps be certain that it's a managed take a look at, so that the experimental versions of the agent experience gameplay as near a standard 1v1 ladder match as doable", Blizzard defined. "You can alter your opt-in selection at any time by using the "DeepMind opt-in" button on the 1v1 Versus menu".


The company has an FAQ with more information about the matches and how to join them.

Earlier this year DeepMind's game-playing agent AlphaStar trounced pro human players in a special series of StarCraft II matches. Some critics believe the AI has unfair advantages when competing against humans, like the ability to digest more raw computer data from the matches, when a person can only rely on what they see from game's graphics. It will also have tighter restrictions imposed on its actions per minute and per second than it did in its January matches.


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