Main Event Line-Up (July 8th & 9th)
The Game/AI Conference brings together speakers from the whole of Europe and beyond, both experienced programmers in AAA studios and up-and-coming independent developers. The games covered include strategy games, educational music games, role-playing games, action combat and stealth titles, first and third-person shooters, lifeform simulators...
Specifically, here are the talks that have been confirmed:
- Speaker: Julien Hamaide
- Studio: Fishing Cactus
The Creatures franchise has been a landmark for the field of artificial intelligence, based on its use of neural networks and evolutionary algorithms. It also pioneered new interactive gameplay thanks to its advanced AI. This post-mortem style presentation looks into the AI of Creatures 4, and the adaptation of its trademark systems to the mobile world.
How do you balance AI that behaves autonomously with one that's fun to play with? What are the challenges building a game based on more emergent AI techniques like NNs and EAs? Find out directly from Julien!
- Speakers: Francesco Roccucci and Mario Silva
- Studio: Crytek Frankfurt
Starting with the state of the AI system at the beginning of the production of Crysis 3, this talk will outline the principles Crytek followed during development help to improve the quality and decrease the amount of issues of the AI in the game.
How do large AAA teams coordinate their AI work to deliver on player expectations? How do you effectively move from a successful game iteration to the next one in the franchise? Learn from Francesco and Mario!
EUROPA UNIVERSALIS 4
- Speaker: Martin Anward
- Game: Europa Universalis 4
- Studio: Paradox
In this presentation, Martin Anward will share the development methodology that drives Paradox games and in particular how the artificial intelligence for Europa Universalis was built. You'll learn specifically how iterations are conducted, the importance of Paradox's patching model.
How should you approach testing for the AI for such a complex title? What are great ways to gather metrics from beta testers? Which tools are most helpful to interpret the data? Find out directly from Martin!
KINGDOM COME: DELIVERANCE
- Speaker: Tomáš Plch
- Affiliation: Faculty of Mathematics & Physics, Charles University, Prague
- Game: Kingdom Come: Deliverance
- Studio: Warhorse
This session by Tomáš Plch will dig into the large-scale Ambient AI for the NPCs in Kingdom Come: Deliverance. Over multiple years, the team built a 4-tier emergent system on top of the CryEngine, that simulates the lives of characters in the game and their time-of-day dependent behaviors.
How can game areas be annotated with intelligent areas and intelligent objects to help improve the A-Life? What's an area-based director and how can it help coordinate behavior at a low level? How do top-down requests integrate with the emergent bottom-up behaviors? Learn from Tomáš directly!
REPUBLIQUE (EPISODE 1)
- Speaker: Paulo Lafeta
- Game: République
- Studio: Camouflaj
It's Paulo Lafeta from Camouflaj who will be presenting their episodic crowd-funded game, République. Mobile and specifically tablet games are catching up fast with console experiences, and in this case the device opens up new opportunities for stealth AI.
What are the big challenges to overcome when a game's protagonist is controlled by AI? Which techniques are suitable for using on mobile devices in a low-power form? Does the device interaction itself present new design challenges for the AI? Let Paulo explain it all!
- Speaker: Nicholas Bonardi
- Studio: Ubisoft San Francisco
The latest version of Rocksmith includes a Session Mode that features AI-based musicians that improvise to a set of parameters provided by the user. Nicholas will break down how this was achieved, from the high-level generation of MIDI signals to their transformation at runtime via complex samplers backed by gigabytes of samples for each instrument, as well as the overall orchestra co-ordinator.
What are the challenges in producing audio that's generated dynamically from notes, but at the quality that music fans expect from high-quality samples? How are the large quantities of data combined together at runtime for four different AI musicians? Listen to Nicholas to find out!
RYSE: SON OF ROME
- Speaker: François Fournel
- Game: Ryse: Son Of Rome
- Studio: Crytek Frankfurt
In this session by Crytek's François Fournel, you'll learn about the semi-procedural cameras in the studio's latest third-person XBox One launch title. The game's cinematic feel requires a combination of animated splines as well as runtime control to make the results more dynamic and reduce content-creator workloads.
How is collision handled to prevent cameras from intersecting or bumping into geometry? What algorithms are used to avoid occlusions that would annoy the player, and instead improve cinematic feel of views? How can procedural techniques help improve camera framing? Listen to François in person!
- Speaker: Stéphane Bura
- Studio: StoryBricks
Storybricks is our conference Gold sponsor this year, and is also the company responsible for the AI in Everquest Next. This presentation by its lead designer will dig into some of the principles and systems behind the StoryBricks technology and how it has evolved. (NOTE: This is not a project-specific presentation about EQ:N.)
How do you build AI systems that have emergent properties yet are easy to control by the designers? What are the challenges of creating large-scale evolving behavioral systems? Join Stéphane to hear more!
TOTAL WAR: ROME 2
- Speakers: Tim Gosling and Julian McKinlay
- Studio: Creative Assembly
This joint talk will cover the AI behind Total War: Rome 2, from the version that launched in the game as well as the many iterations of patches shipped to users post-launch. Tim will explain the battlefield commander AI, and Julian the high-level campaign AI.
How can a battlefield AI be built to support thousands of units on the player and enemy side? What are the big performance considerations for such scalability? Both Tim and Julian have the answers for you!
- Speaker: Daniel Brewer
- Game: Warframe
- Studio: Digital Extremes
The presentation by Daniel Brewer from Digital Extremes, will dig into the variety of AI techniques behind their third-person space ninja game. Warframe features has procedural generation of entire spaceships based on individual building blocks, an AI director that controls the action by spawning enemies as appropriate, a variety of enemy behaviors from melee to ranged attacks, etc.
How were all these separate pieces of AI implemented and tied together in a consistent manner with the game design? What benefits did making the game playable (free) to early testers provide for the AI? Which were the biggest challenges porting the game to the PS4? Meet Daniel after his talk!