Cognitive Multi-Character Systems for Interactive Entertainment

John Funge and Steven Shapiro

Researchers in the field of artificial intelligence (AI) are becoming increasingly interested in computer games as a vehicle for their research. From the researcher’s point of view this makes sense as many interesting and challenging AI problems arise quite naturally in the context of computer games. Of course, the hope is that the relationship is a symbiotic one so that the incorporation of AI techniques will lead to more interesting and enjoyable computer games. One question that arises, however, is how far this process can continue? In particular, what, if any, are the technical roadblocks to applying new AI research to interactive entertainment, and what would be the expected benefits? In this paper, we will therefore take a critical look at some AI techniques on the horizon of our own current research in developing the software infrastructure required to view interactive entertainment applications as cognitive multi-character systems.

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