CS/IMGD 4100 (B 14)
Homework Assignment #11
Due by Web Turn-In: Midnight, Wednesday, December 10
(See general homework instructions for turn-in details.)
Presentations in class on Thursday/Friday, December 11/12
The purpose of this assignment is to give you a chance to test your own broad understanding of game AI techniques and also to give you some practice presenting these ideas to a technical audience. Imagine that you are the lead
AI programmer in a game company and you have been asked to consider using the AI middleware system in question for your next big project.
Seven AI middleware systems have been selected to research and evaluate in depth, based on the availability of a free evaluation download. Each review team will consist of two or three students. The team will:
There will be a few minutes for questions from the class on each system. The team should meet with each other early to decide on a plan for how to get all of these elements completed on time.
- Download, install and explore the evaluation copy of the software.
- Prepare and present a five minute overview slide presentation.
- Prepare and present a five minute recorded demo of the use of the middleware.
Overview Presentation (5 min)
Your slides will be turned in ahead of time and already be loaded onto the classroom podium machine. Watch your time! The instructor will warn you when you have 2 minutes, 1 minute and 30 secs. left in your presentation time. All students in the team should talk.
Please prepare a maximum of five slides not including the title slide, which includes the following information:
Your remaining five slides should answer the following questions:
- Your names
- Name and logo (if available) of the middleware system
- Name and location of company that makes the system
- URL for system/company
NB: Don't just parrot back the advertising hype you find on the company web sites. Put things in your own words and try to relate it to the concepts we studied in the course.
- What does the system do?
- What AI technique(s) does it use?
- What is the most impressive thing it does?
- What does the system not do? (AI things, not wash windows :-)
- Which games genres or types is it best suited for, if any?
- What other systems/tools does it interface with (e.g., other tools in a suite, tools by other vendors or open-source)?
- How does it compare to the other systems being reviewed (visit the home pages of all seven systems and look over the basic introductory information)
- How does it compare to just writing your own C code, as in Buckland?
- What platforms does it run on?
- What programming language(s) does it use or require?
- The following information may not be available for all systems:
- System cost
- Size and activity of user community
- Games it has been used for
Technical Evaluation Video (5 min)
In order to facilitate comparisons between tools, all groups should
try to use their tool to build some approximation to the behaviors of
the characters in Chapter 2 of Buckland (the West World
example). Since this complete development task will likely take more
than five minutes, for your class presentation record some of the most
interesting aspects of your experience, e.g., something that was
particularly hard or particularly easy to do.
If you want to spend one of the five minutes showing some other features of the
editor that you did not use in this task, that is also fine.
Screen videos can be easily created using Camtasia (available free to WPI students at \\storage.wpi.edu\software\Camtasia\Windows) or similar tools. The
video can be narrated or you can provide the narration live.
Make sure ahead of time that your video is playable on a public WPI machine (such as in the library), which have the same software configuration as the classroom podium machine.
To show the video in class, either bring the video on a thumb drive or make it accessible through a browser.
What to Turn In
- Zip file containing your overview presentation slides in either PowerPoint or PDF format.
- NB: Late submissions will not be given presentation time.
All members of each team will receive the same grade.
- 8 points - Content (completeness, clarity, evidence of research and thought)
- 2 point - Presentation (legible, error-free slides, clear explanations, professional communication style, etc.)
Please post any questions to the myWPI forum for the course.