Article: Animal and Genetic AI

Animal and Genetic AI: A Combination to Improve AI in Video Games
Nicholas Schneider [2011]

In this article, the author analyzes how to create challenge in videogames as to make them fun. He says that artificially creating challenge through inflated health bars, unlocable moves and one hit kills don't offer a sense of realism.

A nice attempt to solve this problem was Bethesda's Radiant AI system, in which the NPC's would make choices rather than perform scripted events. Still, Schneider considers that this system still feels scripted.

On the other hand, in FPS games like Halo, enemies act intelligently by trying to flank you, run for cover and sending search parties for the player. This also feels scripted as the player needs to pass through a specific waypoint to trigger certain behaviors.

The author proposes the combination of AI with animal like behaviors, which can be the hunting habits of wolves or the social structure of bees for example. The difference is that no waypoints and scripted events would be needed as the animal like behaviors themselves would kick in the moment they are needed or as each NPC sees fit.

Even now, the AI would feel scripted, so Schneider says that combining those behaviors with Genetic AI would provide a much dynamic and interesting experience. The AI would adapt to the player and adjust it's skills while applying such behaviors like predator skills (force the player into an area where the rest of the enemies can set an ambush) thus making the experience feel more like a real life exercise in survival and less like scripted enemy guidance.

Schneider, Nicolas (2011). Animal and Genetic AI: A Combination To Improve AI in Video Games. Obtained in April 13, 2011 from Gameinformer:

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