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Destiny 2 art featured in TWAB said to be generated by AI

Destiny 2 art featured in the game developer's This Week at Bungie blog series is said to be AI-generated, sparking a conversation about its place in fanart

Destiny 2 art featured in TWAB said to be generated by AI: An image of Rasputin as an exo in front of an image of Rasputin as an AI.

Destiny 2 art featured as part of an ongoing fanart series in the developer’s This Week at Bungie series was apparently generated by artificial intelligence, Destiny Tracker reports. A user named Hebb appears to have submitted the Destiny 2 artwork in response to a call for community members to post their Destiny 2-themed creations. While Bungie doesn’t appear to have an express rule against fans submitting AI-generated art for the FPS game‘s community creations page, recent conversations about such art have ignited controversy about what it means to create art in the first place.

In response to a comment on the site noting that work was AI-generated, the creator implies they didn’t mean to dupe anyone as to its nature.

“Woah, I just thought the picture was really neat so I posted on the creations page. I’ll take the post down,” Hebb wrote. The work is no longer immediately visible on the Destiny 2 community creations site.

While it can be difficult to distinguish AI-generated art from art created by humans, there are a few signs that something may not have benefited from the specific attention to detail that a human artist can provide. Although AI-generated art can create elaborate renderings, many artists have pointed out that hands are difficult for computer programs to master. With this particular piece, some observers noted the hands looked unusual, which is often a giveaway that a piece of digital art was produced by an AI.

AI art programs generally function by taking artwork that is either pulled from the web or some other database and drawing on algorithms to synthesize those works’ artistic styles. In turn, the AI program can create new work from those algorithms. Users can then specify what they want to see based on prompts. While the result can be something unique and beautiful, it still relies on artwork created by humans, who generally do not receive compensation or acknowledgement of their contributions to the AI-generated work.

While some Guardians felt the art was interesting and distinctive and deserved to be featured regardless of whether it was created by artificial intelligence, the majority shared perspectives regarding the challenges of allowing AI-generated art to be included as community creations. First, there is the simple matter of taking AI-generated art and passing it off as one’s own without any reference to the fact that it was created algorithmically. Further, others suggested allowing such art would incentivise people to submit AI-generated art, detracting focus from the art that die-hard fans spend significant time and energy creating.

Some even went so far as to suggest Bungie could discontinue the fanart feature series, which awards players with a special emblem if their work is featured, due to the difficulty of discerning AI-generated art from human-created art. While such a fanart competition is intended to be a way to encourage and recognise creativity within the community, it could be a difficult process to ensure that all art submitted is from non-AI sources. There are some tools designed to detect AI-generated artwork, but using this technology adds a level of difficulty to a project that was simply intended to acknowledge the hard work of Destiny 2 superfans.

Regardless of its artistic merit, it appears Hebb likely still violated the Bungie Terms of Service by uploading the art and passing it off as their own.

“If you’re sharing something that’s not yours, always credit the creator and link us to the source!” Bungie’s community creations submission link reads. In this case, the person did not clearly disclose that the art was rendered by AI, nor did they appear to provide a link that would have indicated the true source of the work.

With the Destiny 2 Lightfall release date and introduction of the Destiny 2 Strand subclass coming up quickly, Guardians are running out of time to complete Destiny 2 season 19 activities such as the Destiny 2 Revision Zero exotic quest. Players may also want to spend the next few weeks completing activities that may be deprioritised after the Destiny 2 season 20 launch date, such as the Destiny 2 King’s Fall raid and the Destiny 2 Spire of the Watcher dungeon, so be sure to don one of our best Destiny 2 Warlock builds, Titan builds, or Hunter builds to take on the space game‘s challenge to save humanity from The Witness.