Category: Research

Good Game, Go Next

Last week was The International 2017, the biggest date in the DOTA 2 calendar where the world’s top teams compete in the complex and challenging MOBA for a prize pool totalling over $24m. In between the big matches Valve found time to make exciting new announcements about additions to the game, and some exhibition matches where professional players play for fun. They also gave a private research lab some free publicity, for some reason. Here’s a few words on OpenAI’s big announcement this week, and how we are losing control of the narrative on AI.

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ANGELINA Next

Seven years ago I started this site to write about ANGELINA, software I was making that could design its own videogames. The first games it made were simple arcade games with coloured circles that moved around a white screen, but the real objective of the project wasn’t just to make fun games, but to make a piece of software that people cared about, respected, were inspired by, and recognised as a creative individual. Over the years each new version of ANGELINA has tried to raise those stakes, to give ANGELINA more responsibility, and to take away more of my personal influence. Today I’m excited to tell you about a new version of ANGELINA that I’ve been working on, which takes more steps along that path. There’s still a lot of work to do, but I’d love to hear what you think.

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The First Draft – DOTA 2 & EXAG

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This week is AIIDE, a big academic conference all about AI and games. For the last few years I’ve co-organised a workshop called EXAG along with Alex Zook and Antonios Liapis, and this weekend it’ll be happening again. EXAG is always a very special time of year for me, and the papers I put into EXAG are normally my most favourite out of the whole year, because they can be about all kinds of new and unusual things. This year I wrote one with Adam Summerville about DOTA 2, and I’d like to tell you a little bit about the paper and the game.

Click Here To Read The Paper!

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AI People You Should Know About, Pt. 1

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I saw an article today about the future of AI in games and suchlike and I was tempted to start tweeting about it but that inevitably leads to boring arguments and isn’t very constructive. Instead, what I’m going to do is give you a list (in no particular order) of some researchers who I think are really interesting, who are important to the future of game AI, and who have interesting things to say, and most importantly who I don’t see interviewed or talked about enough. They’d all make great people to talk to for articles, features and interviews, and each one has a research portfolio that paints a cool future for games. Go check them out!

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Would You Look At That!

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I’ve been really excited and interested in level design recently, and reading a lot of work by folks like Robert Yang about lighting, space, and building worlds in 3D. It’s amazing stuff and it links in really well to the research I want to do right now (mostly because it’s influencing the research I want to do right now!) I wanted to write a little update about some work I did recently along these lines – building a level generator that uses in-game cameras to evaluate levels.

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I’ve Got A Good Feeling About This

It’s been a while since I updated you all on what I’ve been working on, and since January is Official Paper Writing Month if you’re in Computational Creativity, I thought I’d write a quick post to tell you about something I’m submitting to the conference that you might find interesting. It’s more technology-related than games-related, but like all of the work I do, I intend to build it into ANGELINA someday soon! The work is all about getting ANGELINA to express opinions that aren’t yours, aren’t mine, and aren’t random. It’s about generating opinions that you could actually argue with.

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Ludum Dare 28

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If you’ve been reading this site for a year or two, you’ll know that I like to post lots of screenshots and video whenever I’m building a new version of ANGELINA, even playable demos. This time I’ve been quieter, and the screenshots on Twitter have been fewer and further between. That’s because next week ANGELINA is going to be entering Ludum Dare – the first game jam entry we’ve attempted. It’s going to be a big debut for the new system, and I’m rather nervous indeed.

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The International Conference on Computational Creativity

The next International Conference on Computational Creativity published its Call for Papers this week, which is normally only interesting to researchers who like receiving emails that start with “Sorry if you receive this more than once”. However, I want to write a little something about it on here, because this year’s conference is going to be bigger than ever, and is branching out to be more inclusive, well-defined and full of potential than ever. If you’re a developer, researcher, coder, hacker or anyone else interested in the field, please read on!

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ANGELINA At Goldsmiths

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Earlier in the year, I helped my supervisor write an application for funding that would let me work on ANGELINA beyond my PhD funding end date (which was this October). We learned a couple of weeks ago that the funding had been approved, which means that ANGELINA and I are secure in our research for another two years, working at Goldsmiths College in London where my supervisor has now moved. What are we going to be doing there? Lots of things! Below is some early details on what I hope to get done.

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