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Reinforcement learning (RL) is a popular machine learning technique that has many successes in learning how to play classic style games. Applying RL to first person shooter (FPS) games is an interesting area of research as it has the potential to create diverse behaviors without the need to implicitly code them. This paper investigates the tabular Sarsa (λ) RL algorithm applied to a purpose built FPS game. The first part of the research investigates using RL to learn bot controllers for the tasks of navigation, item collection, and combat individually. Results showed that the RL algorithm was able to learn a satisfactory strategy for navigation control, but not to the quality of the industry standard pathfinding algorithm. The combat controller performed well against a rule-based bot, indicating promising preliminary results for using RL in FPS games. The second part of the research used pretrained RL controllers and then combined them by a number of different methods to create a more generalized bot artificial intelligence (AI). The experimental results indicated that RL can be used in a generalized way to control a combination of tasks in FPS bots such as navigation, item collection, and combat.
Computational Intelligence and AI in Games, IEEE Transactions on (Volume:3 , Issue: 1 )
Date of Publication: March 2011