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11 Secrets about LEFT 4 DEAD's AI Director and its Procedural Zombie Population
Premium Article October 7th, 2009

11 Secrets about LEFT 4 DEAD's AI Director and its Procedural Zombie ...

As more games strive for replayability and unique experiences, AI becomes increasingly important to help synthesize the gameplay and adapt to what the players are doing. This can help significantly increase the lifespan of single player games or story-based games, even if they are mostly linear like LEFT 4 DEAD. With large open sandbox worlds, technologies like the AI Director become even more important to ...

Building a Scalable Navigation System for Pathfinding and Decision Making
Premium Tutorial September 23rd, 2009

Building a Scalable Navigation System for Pathfinding and Decision ...

Building a pathfinder based on A* is the easy part! What do you need to keep in mind when building the navigation system around it? Which queries should it support and how are they used? How do you make it robust and capable of scaling up to support large numbers of agents, and work well on lower grade hardware?

Goal-Based Action Optimization and the Hybrid Hero AI in DEMIGOD
Premium Review September 9th, 2009

Goal-Based Action Optimization and the Hybrid Hero AI in DEMIGOD

Demigod is an innovative hybrid between RPG and RTS games, challenging the player to control and manage a Hero-like unit to accomplish a variety of missions (e.g. Dominate, Conquest, Fortress) in a set of predefined maps. It's built mostly as a multi-player experience, but includes an offline Skirmish mode for both quick games and tournaments against the AI. Since the implementation is based on a goal-oriented ...

High-Performance AI for Dynamic Large-Scale Open Worlds in [PROTOTYPE]
Premium Interview August 15th, 2009

High-Performance AI for Dynamic Large-Scale Open Worlds in [PROTOTYPE]

In this 1h15 interview, you'll find out about the tricks used to populate streets of New York with hundreds of pedestrians in [PROTOTYPE]'s large-scale city. Discover how the AI was designed and implemented to support open-world three way battles between the Player, the Infected and the Military. You'll also learn about the different components in the game's AI, such as the behavior tree, the pathfinder, the ...

A Practical Introduction to Reinforcement Learning for Games
Premium Tutorial August 3rd, 2009

A Practical Introduction to Reinforcement Learning for Games

Find out why reinforcement learning (RL) is an up-and-coming technology, and the ideal complement for many classical game AI techniques. In this masterclass, you'll learn how RL was applied in commercial games to enhance the gameplay. The second part will also cover how this type of machine learning is well suited for content creation to simplify the authoring of behaviors. Finally, in the last part you'll ...

Learning and Generating Social Behavior from Gameplay
Premium Interview July 8th, 2009

Learning and Generating Social Behavior from Gameplay

Machine learning has made a lot of progress to recognize patterns in gameplay, as well as assist designers in improving the game's experience. But how can it be applied to learning social interactions from human gameplay recordings? In this hour long interview with Jeff Orkin (famous for his work on F.E.A.R.'s AI), find out about his research on The Restaurant Game and his recent white paper that describes how ...

The AI in DARK SECTOR and the Evolution Engine
Premium Interview July 1st, 2009

The AI in DARK SECTOR and the Evolution Engine

In this 1h45 interview, you'll find out how the AI in Dark Sector was designed and implemented — including anecdotes, iterations and tips from the development. In particular, this session will focus on three of the NPCs that Daniel Brewer worked on. You'll learn how all the technology came together with the gameplay to create the Mauler (close combat enemy with a shield), the Chroma (stealthy ...

AI Blueprints for Action & Combat Behavior Trees
Premium Tutorial May 27th, 2009

AI Blueprints for Action & Combat Behavior Trees

This masterclass ties together all the sessions on design patterns to show you how to build a complete behavior tree for enemy NPCs in action / combat games. You'll learn how to assemble a set of relaxed, suspicious and alert behaviors into three subtrees. At each stage, you'll find out what kinds of decisions should be made, how the tree should be structured, and what you need to do to make sure the whole ...

Behavior Tree Design Patterns: Goal-Orientation
Premium Tutorial May 20th, 2009

Behavior Tree Design Patterns: Goal-Orientation

Continuing the series of masterclasses about behavior tree design, learn how to build modular building blocks for plugging into a more complex tree, at what level you should model behaviors, and the important things to consider when building a goal-directed AI using a behavior tree. Find out what's a good granularity to help your designers interact with purposeful behaviors, and where you can start programming ...

A Venture into A-Life and Virtual Ecosystems
Premium Interview May 10th, 2009

A Venture into A-Life and Virtual Ecosystems

In this interview with independent developer Andy Schatz, you'll learn about the A-Life behind his series of games including Venture Africa and Venture Arctic, and the upcoming Venture Dinosauria. Find out how the game's AI was designed, how the creature behaviors were balanced, and how the predator / prey simulation was inspired by the behavior in nature. Andy also talks about opportunities for independent ...