Monday, September 28, 2015

AI in Video Games (part 1)

Traditionally, we think of artificial intelligence (AI) in video games as relating to non-player characters (NPC's) that we interact with in the game. In 3rd-person shooters, we say the game has “bad AI” if our opponents don't behave intelligently when fighting—standing out in the open waiting to be shot, failing to react to getting shot, etc. We say a game has “good AI” when our opponents stay behind cover, adjust to our position, and even try to out-flank us. In video games with more social environments such as RPG's, AI's are used to make NPC's seem more realistic through more dynamic comments, daily animated routines, and even responses to dynamic changes in the game that might “threaten” their existence. Yet developers are beginning to design new uses for AI programs, and video games are approaching a vastly different horizon as a result. This week, I'll talk about a few specific game developers and how they are using AI to make video games bigger and better than we've ever seen before.

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