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Go, Polygons: Virtua Fighter from 1993 is smoothed by AI

Go, Polygons: Virtua Fighter from 1993 is smoothed by AI
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Enlarge / “Sarah” off Virtua Fighter gets an AI overhaul thanks to Stable Diffusion and a fan named Colin Williamson.

1993 Sega Virtual Fighter Arcade game broke new ground with fully polygonal 3D graphics, a first for a fighting game. Thanks a Twitter thread by an artist named Colin Williamson, we can see what these original boxy characters might look like with their angles smoothed out.

To create the images, Williamson used vintage Virtua Fighter Game graphics and fed them through an “img2img” mode of Stable diffusion Image synthesis model that takes an input image as a prompt, combines it with a written description, and synthesizes an output image. (In particular, Williamson used the Release “AUTOMATIC1111”.which comes with a nice web-based user interface.)

Stable Diffusion doesn’t work magically, so it may take some trial and error and a keen eye to figure out the prompt to get worthwhile results. Still, Williamson enjoyed the process. “Just describe the character and img2img will do its best,” Williamson told Ars. “Although the hardest part was figuring out how to describe the characters’ attire.”

“Once I found a good prompt, I would make a batch of about fifty and pick the funniest ones,” adds Williamson. “I’ve tried this thing called ‘negative prompting’, where you tell the AI ​​stuff like ‘please don’t draw messy looking hands,’ which does an excellent job in that your characters now only have six fingers seven.”

Last month we reported on a fan of MS-DOS games used a similar technique to “upgrade” EGA graphics to more detailed representations. In both cases, we’ve found that the artists making these AI overhauls are still fans of the original graphics, and the remakes are all fun – no attempt to replace or overwrite the story. At least you can see them Virtua Fighter Characters look “smoothed”. later games.

“I’m happy to be on the backs of giants and using millions of dollars worth of AI research to take some silly pictures that make people laugh,” says Williamson. “I’ll have to boot up the Sega Saturn and see what else I can find.”

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