artificial intelligence in game design
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Artificial Intelligence in Game Design. Probabilistic Finite State Machines. Randomness in Games. Adds to playability Characters less predictable, more “realistic” World itself is less predictable Greater replayability Goal: Randomness should not appear random

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artificial intelligence in game design

Artificial Intelligence in Game Design

Probabilistic Finite State Machines

randomness in games
Randomness in Games
  • Adds to playability
    • Characters less predictable, more “realistic”
    • World itself is less predictable
    • Greater replayability
  • Goal:Randomness should not appear random
    • Part of character “personality”
    • Part of unpredictable world
randomness inside state
Randomness Inside State
  • Randomness in actions taken by NPC
    • Randomness inside update method
    • Can depend on current state
randomness inside state1
Randomness Inside State
  • Randomness in Initial Setup
    • Randomness in enter method
    • Example: choice of weapon in Fight state

60%

35%

5%

randomness in transitions
Randomness in Transitions
  • Same current state + same stimuli = one of several possible next states
    • Possibly including current state
  • Performing different tasks at random

Guard Door andShout for Help

Player visible

60%

Patrol in front of Door

40%

Player visible

Chase

Player

random behavior timeouts
Random Behavior Timeouts
  • Continue strong emotional behavior for random number of steps

Predator seen

Predator seen

Wander

Flee

Predator not seen

10%

Predator not seen

90%

unpredictability of world
Unpredictability of World
  • Small chance of “unexpected” occurrence
    • Adds “newness” to game even after multiple plays
    • Adds to “realism” of world

Target in sights98%

Reload

Aim

Fire

Normal case

Finished reloading

Target in sights2%

Gun Jam

Gun cleared

Unexpected case

randomness in emotional states
Randomness in Emotional States
  • Emotional transitions less predictable
  • Effect of “delayed reaction”

Small hit by player75%

Player HP < 1040%

Player HP < 1060%

Confident

Angry

Small hit by player25%

Heavy hit by player70%

My HP < 1050%

Heavy hit by player30%

My HP < 1050%

Heavy hit by me30%

Frightened

Heavy hit by me70%

probabilities and personality
Probabilities and Personality
  • NPCs with probabilities can give illusion of personalities
  • Differences must be large enough for player to notice in behavior

Small hit by player10%

Player HP < 1080%

Player HP < 1020%

Confident

Angry

Small hit by player90%

Heavy hit by player70%

My HP < 1080%

Heavy hit by player30%

Orc with anger management issues

Heavy hit by me30%

My HP < 1020%

Frightened

Heavy hit by me70%

dynamic probabilities
Dynamic Probabilities
  • Likelihood of transition depends on something else
    • More realistic (but not completely predictable)
    • Can give player clues about state of NPC

% of bullets left

Firing

Reload

Player not firing

1- % of bullets left

Guard Door andShout for Help

1- Energy %

Player visible

Patrol in front of Door

Energy %

Chase

Player

emergent group behavior
Emergent Group Behavior
  • Each NPC in group can choose random behavior
    • Can appear to “cooperate”
    • Half of group fires immediately giving “cover” to rest
    • If player shoots firing players, rest will have time to reach cover

Fire

50 %

Player visible

Patrol

Cover reached

50 %

Take Cover

emergent group behavior1
Emergent Group Behavior
  • Potential problem:Possibility all in group can choose same action
    • All either shoot or take cover
    • No longer looks intelligent
  • Can base probabilities on actions others take

Fire

1 - % of other players firing

Player visible

Patrol

Cover reached

Take Cover

% of other players firing

potential problems
Potential Problems
  • Possibly many parameters to tweak
    • How do we know these are the best probabilities to use?
  • Difficult to thoroughly test
    • Combinations of probabilities may create a bad case (i.e. easy win) which is possible but very unlikely
    • That case will be found by some customer
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