Intelligent Agents in Computer Games

Michael van Lent, John Laird, Josh Buckman, Joe Hartford, Steve Houchard, Kurt Steinkraus, and Russ Tedrake, University of Michigan

As computer games become more complex and consumers demand more sophisticated computer controlled opponents, game developers are required to place a greater emphasis on the artificial intelligence aspects of their games. Our experience developing intelligent air combat agents for DARPA has suggested a number of areas of AI research that are applicable to computer games. Research in areas such as intelligent agent architectures, knowledge representation, goal-directed behavior and knowledge reusability are all directly relevant to improving the intelligent agents in computer games. The Soar/Games project at the University of Michigan Artificial Intelligence Lab has developed an interface between Soar (Laird, Newell, and Rosenbloom 1987) and the commercial computer games Quake II and Descent 3. Techniques from each of the research areas mentioned above have been used in developing intelligent opponents in these two games.

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