Borut Pfeifer came to UC Santa Cruz last Wednesday (30th of November) and gave a talk about how to make sure that all the cool AI made for a game is made accessible to the players.
The key factors that Borut identified for making the AI accessible to players are
- the complexity of the input that players can make to the game
- the feedback from the game to the player
- the pacing of the difficulty to play and of the dramatic tension in the game.
Borut used the Sims 3 as an example of good AI accessibility by design: The interface is simple and intuitive, but still results in complex interesting things in the game, and also allows for more complexity to unfold during continued play. He continued to, in the talk, illustrate the three key factors by showing example from his own development work, mainly from creating the AI for the companion NPC Eve in the development of LMNO, (such a pity the project was cancelled), and from the game he is currently working on, Skulls of the Shogun. I can't wait to play Skulls of the Shogun, Borut's plan for how to pace the dramatic buildup by careful design of the core game mechanics made me swoon a little! It's in development, due in the spring sometime.
Description of Borut's talk:
About Skulls of the Shogun: