On this first Saturday of the new year, there are some really good Smart Links for you, including some multi-media entertainment. Be sure to contact me if you have any news or tips for next week!
Poker-Playing Bots Are Closing In
CBC recently had a radio show about the University of Alberta’s Polaris poker playing agent, including an interview with Dr. Jonathan Schaeffer. Polaris recently lost against two of the best human players in the world, but it’s only a matter of time before they can bluff better too!
Podcast 1: Poker-Academy.com’s extract of the CBC radio show.
Taking Co-Op Games Further with AI
Jim Rossignol over at Computer and Video Games writes an interesting article about the future of cooperative games, and notably how artificial intelligence can help the process of designing co-op games:
“With a second character on hand, often controlled by smart AI during a single player session, there’s an option for player two to drop in and play through a level with their chum. It’s not just a case of adding a model for player two, it’s a matter of making the second character absolutely integral to how the game works. How long, we wonder, before the big shots like Half-Life 2 have a second playable protagonist?”
The Joy of Co-Op, computerandvideogames.com
Don’t forget to view the source!
Eruditio Loginquitas writes about automated testing and interactive verification of game design:
“The game developers just run the game for hundreds of thousands of times and even upwards of 1.5 million times to “teach” the game improved strategies. What they found was intriguing. Those games benefited from playing with people, with human-assisted learning.”
There’s an interesting reference to a white paper at the bottom of the post, which I posted in the forum for a future issue of the Thursday theory column. (Just sign-up and introduce yourself to see the papers.)
Self-Playing Games, ome.ksu.edu
Artificial Stupidity and Level Designers
A podcast over at Rampancy.net triggered an discussion about the use of scripting in level design. In particular, a level in Halo 3 that could have used a little more polish. I wrote about it in an editorial yesterday also.
Podcast 1: Anger, Sadness and Envy Episode 4: The Storm
Be sure to read the comments of OldNick’s blog post.
Anger, Sadness and Envy Episode 4: The Storm, rampancy.net
Artificial Stupidity, and How to Achieve It, rampancy.net
Biologically Inspired AI for Games
I noticed via Daniel Livingstone that the book Biologically Inspired Artificial Intelligence for Computer Games
, which covers game AI from a computational intelligence perspective. The book includes coverage of neural networks, evolutionary algorithms, artificial immune systems, and swarms.
This book has been in the pipeline for a while now; I wrote a tentative foreword about it three years ago! But it’s great to finally see the book (almost) on the shelves. Stay tuned to AiGameDev.com for a review of this book in the near future hopefully!
Daniel Livinstone Introducing the Book, learninggames.wordpress.com
Stay tuned next week for more game AI links from the web!