Premium Features

A-Life and NPC AI Behind S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Clear Sky
Premium Interview December 13th, 2008

A-Life and NPC AI Behind S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Clear Sky

In this interview, Dmitriy Iassenev talks about the A-Life and the NPC AI behind the Clear Sky prequel to the original S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Dmitriy discusses how they managed to deal with many more Stalker NPCs in the world, how the level-of-detail system works, ways for the designers to control the outcome of the A-Life simulation, and insights into the tuning process. On the individual AI level, Dmitriy discusses ...

Low-Level Animation Technology
Premium Tutorial December 8th, 2008

Low-Level Animation Technology

In this 2h masterclass, Alex Champandard talks about the implementation details of animation systems that are commonly used in the games industry. In particular, you'll learn about the representation of motion data as animated tracks of quaternion rotations, how skeletons are represented and how they relate to point clouds. Also, this session goes into details about how blend-trees are implemented and how they ...

Production & Methodology
Premium Report December 2nd, 2008

Production & Methodology

This full report looks into the topics of production and methodology, specifically focusing on how the the AI can be improved in the process. You'll learn about finding the balance between design documents and prototypes, finding a balance between production goals and making the AI fun, how to structure the production phase and what to expect in the process, what to pay attention to best set-up a tools pipeline ...

Automated Unit and Functional Testing
Premium Tutorial November 29th, 2008

Automated Unit and Functional Testing

In this 2h masterclass, Alex Champandard talks about automated testing with both unit and functional tests. You'll learn about the motivations behind using automated tests, and hear about experiences of using them in practice. The presentation covers all the details from creating a test framework yourself to wrapping or modifying an existing one, how to write both kinds of tests and what workflow to use. ...

Building a Near-Perfect Animation System using Parametric Motions
Premium Masterclass November 24th, 2008

Building a Near-Perfect Animation System using Parametric Motions

In this 2h masterclass, Lucas Kovar and Alex Champandard discuss the process of creating a next-generation animation system that's flexible and extensible. The underlying representation is a graph of parametric motions, which are typically created using blending-based approaches, and built using robust tools under the supervision of animators and programmers. The runtime playback section of the talk covers ...

Testing & Debugging Experiences in Practice, from WORMS to BIOSHOCK
Premium Masterclass November 18th, 2008

Testing & Debugging Experiences in Practice, from WORMS to BIOSHOCK

In this 2h audio panel, John Abercrombie (Lead AI on Bioshock), resident expert Phil Carlisle and Alex Champandard go through the whole production pipeline step by step and identify opportunities for improving the quality and reliability of the AI. In particular, the participants discuss design documents and requirements, asserts and logging, automated testing, runtime controls and visualizations that help ...

Automatically Computing Motion Transitions with Posture Alignment
Premium Tutorial November 11th, 2008

Automatically Computing Motion Transitions with Posture Alignment

This article looks into the process of automating the process of annotating the animations with appropriate transition points, and working out which postures are suitable for blending. This is done based on the work of Mike Gleicher and Lucas Kovar on Motion Graphs. By calculating similarity between postures using the techniques described here, many aspects of manual animation editing can be automated and the ...

(Almost) Everything You Wanted to Know about Game AI [Bonus, Part 1]
Premium QA November 10th, 2008

(Almost) Everything You Wanted to Know about Game AI [Bonus, Part 1]

In this 2h30 bonus session, Alex J. Champandard talks about a variety of topics ranging from AI / Animation interface, designing a layered goal-oriented architecture and the format of the orders, building systems to deal with these orders, how to integrate scripts with AI, general and AI middleware, how to build a behavior tree for group communication, implementing sports AI based on the concept of plays ...

Model View Controller Pattern for Game Architectures
Premium Tutorial November 3rd, 2008

Model View Controller Pattern for Game Architectures

In this masterclass, you'll learn about the MVC pattern as applied to game engine architectures. Topics covered include the design of an API for the model that supports both push/pull paradigms and when to use them, creating an efficient underlying world model and abstracting it out, how to organize different controllers like physics and AI, what role the rendering plays and how to deal with interpolation and ...

Goal-Oriented Action Planning
Premium Report October 31st, 2008

Goal-Oriented Action Planning

This full report looks into the process of applying goal-oriented action planning (a.k.a. GOAP) to real-time games. This report covers many aspects of the technology, including production decisions, how to approach prototypes, dealing with designers and level scripting, low-level animation integration, and more. From the implementation point of view, you'll learn about optimization, implementation tips and ...