Heroes Dev Log #10: Memory, a Promise, and the AI Dungeon you Deserve

Heroes Dev Log #10: Memory, a Promise, and the AI Dungeon you Deserve

November 27, 2023

The Promise of AI

I’ve been thinking a lot about memory and how important it is to really fulfill on the promise of AI Dungeon. One of the things that makes AI Dungeon so fun and powerful is this idea that you can make any choice and those choices actually matter.

In most games, because of limitations, you often only have 2-3 choices for how to solve a problem. And no matter what you do those often end up in the same result anyways (because otherwise the developer might end up with an exponential amount of content they’d have to create).

So you’ve got this illusion that your choices matter, when, in reality they don’t.

But with AI there’s this potential for you to have REAL power with your choices, for the world to actually change based on what you do. That’s a promise that we and I know so many of you have loved.

How the Promise Failed

But in many ways because of the limitations of memory, that’s a promise that we’ve failed to deliver on. Yes, you can make choices and have anything happen. But when those choices fall off the context window after 1024 tokens and are forgotten then do they really matter?

If the characters you emotionally connected with, the relationships you forged on epic adventures are forgotten do they really matter? If the AI forgets why you set out on an epic quest half way through then does completing that quest even matter?

If the AI quickly forgets everything you do then in the long run do any of your actions really matter? I think you could easily argue that they don’t. As I reflect on some of my own most compelling AI Dungeon experiences, the point I lose interest in them is often soon after it starts forgetting the pieces of the story that were meaningful to me.

There are ways users have managed to get around this, by carefully managing world info and memory and editing and doing everything they can to get the AI to remember. And I’m amazed at the work that users go through to do this. But I think you all deserve better.

I’ve been realizing that to build AI Dungeon into the game our players truly deserve we have to solve this problem.

The AI Dungeon You Deserve

Because you all deserve better.

You deserve adventures where you can create deep meaningful relationships with characters you meet, build bonds and go on epic adventures with them.

You deserve adventures where the quests you go on, the places you discover, and the ways you change the world matter and last, not just for 1024 tokens, but for as long as you play the game.

You deserve adventures where you’re not afraid to build deep investment in your character, the characters around you, and the whole world, where you can play for months and months, in a world that just gets richer and richer with each passing hour.

And what’s really exciting is for the first time I know how we’re going to get there. We’re still building the initial version, but the initial Heroes memory system we’re building is the first time I’ve seen how we’ll actually be able to deliver on this.

I’ll dive more into the details of how in another post, but I would love to hear your stories and your experiences. What do you think about why memory matters? When and how have you seen this? What kind of experiences do you imagine in a world where the AI can actually remember all you’ve done?

As always I’m so so grateful for each of you. You’re the reason we’re able to do what we do, to try and build seemingly impossible games that no one ever has before. Whether you’ve supported us with a subscription, shared AI Dungeon with your friends, created content for the community, given your feedback (positive or negative :D), or even just played for a few minutes, you are what makes everything we do possible. You are all, each of you, heroes to me. Thank you so much for everything. ❤️

– Nick

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