CS/IMGD 4100 (C 16)
Homework Assignment #11
Due by Web Turn-In: 11:59pm, Wednesday, February 24
(See general homework instructions for turn-in details.)
Presentations in class on Thursday/Friday, February 25/26
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.
Eight 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 five students (except one team of four). The team will:
There will be a few minutes for questions from the class on each system.
- Download and install the evaluation copy of the software.
- Use the software to build your best approximation (in the time available)
to two AIs: one with the behavior of
the miner from WestWorld and one with the behavior of the goalie from Simple Soccer.
- Prepare and present a five minute recorded demo of the use of the middleware.
- Prepare and present a five minute overview slide presentation.
Everyone on the team should download and install the software as soon as it assigned. The team should also meet with each other early to decide on a plan for how to get all of these elements completed on time.
A suggested way to organize your team might be to assign each member of the team
primary responsibility for one of these tasks:
- Read documentation, do tutorials (be resource for everyone)
- Implement miner
- Implement goalie
- Prepare video (needs to interact with 2 and 3)
- Prepare slides
Overview Slide 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. At least 3 of the 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 eight 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)
Since this complete development tasks for the two characters 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 any one of a number of free tools. (This is a good skill to learn, if you don't already know how to do so, for making game trailers, etc.) 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 (or both!).
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.