MONTREAL--(BUSINESS WIRE)--North Side published a major update to Bot Colony ( www.botcolony.com ) the first videogame relying on sophisticated Natural Language Understanding (NLU) technology as its main gameplay mechanic. With interest in Natural Language Understanding, chatbots and AI peaking, a robot capable of sustaining intelligent conversation throughout a complex investigation is timely.
“Virtual assistants like Siri or Alexa aren’t yet able to conduct the kind of multi-step factual conversations people can have with Jimmy throughout the new investigation mission. This said, we’re not claiming that Jimmy will understand everything a player says and we recognize that there are still many challenges ahead,” says Eugene Joseph, North Side’s CEO.
Players need to discover how a secret prototype chip got into a house, and why this house is empty when the game starts. You investigate by conversing with Jimmy, the domestic robot in the house, using your own words – rather than dialogue trees, the current standard in the game industry. If a player asks relevant questions about what Jimmy observed, she or he is rewarded with videos of the robot’s observations. There are 14 such videos to discover. A player investigates the events that took place over 48 hours, using natural questions like ‘what happened then’, ‘...next’, ‘...before that’, ‘...after that’.
The company recommends that players, who don’t wish to invest the time to train their Microsoft Speech acoustic profile, play through typing. “First, you’ll need to ask LOTS of questions, so you run the risk of getting hoarse if you play through voice for 3 hours. To support the investigation mission, our software needs to understand what you ask about people, places, times and dates. This is difficult enough as is – without having to also deal with the errors introduced by speech-to-text,” says Eugene Joseph, the game designer and author of the Bot Colony science-fiction novel.
The company plans to continue advancing its NLU technology, and a new episode of Bot Colony, Riot, is in the works.
ABOUT NORTH SIDE
North Side ( www.northsideinc.com ) develops Natural Language Understanding software. The company uses the same NLU pipeline for its videogame and in financial applications. The company’s VerbalAccess enables conversational access to financial service APIs, enabling text or voice banking, investment, or insurance. North Side’s technology effectively replaces GUI’s with conversation. All the information required for a query or a transaction is gathered through normal conversation with the user – and then the information is sent to the same backend software that a GUI would send it to. North Side also markets SenseBased, semantic search technology able to find information in financial documents independent of keywords and syntax.