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Artificial Intelligence for Games [Hardcover]

Ian Millington , John Funge
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: CDN$ 85.30 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Book Description

Aug. 6 2009 0123747317 978-0123747310 2
Creating robust artificial intelligence is one of the greatest challenges for game developers, yet the commercial success of a game is often dependent upon the quality of the AI. In this book, Ian Millington brings extensive professional experience to the problem of improving the quality of AI in games. He describes numerous examples from real games and explores the underlying ideas through detailed case studies. He goes further to introduce many techniques little used by developers today. The book's associated web site contains a library of C++ source code and demonstration programs, and a complete commercial source code library of AI algorithms and techniques.

"Artificial Intelligence for Games - 2nd edition" will be highly useful to academics teaching courses on game AI, in that it includes exercises with each chapter. It will also include new and expanded coverage of the following: AI-oriented gameplay; Behavior driven AI; Casual games (puzzle games).

* The first comprehensive, professional tutorial and reference to implement true AI in games written by an engineer with extensive industry experience.
* Walks through the entire development process from beginning to end.
* Includes examples from over 100 real games, 10 in-depth case studies, and web site with sample code.

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Frequently Bought Together

Artificial Intelligence for Games + Programming Game AI By Example + Game Engine Architecture
Price For All Three: CDN$ 196.40

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Review

"Ian Millington crosses the boundary between academic and professional game AI with his book Artificial Intelligence for Games. Most books either lack academic rigor or are rigorous with algorithms that won't work under the CPU constraints imposed by modern games. This book walks a line between the two and does it well. It explains algorithms rigorously while also discussing appropriate implementation details such as scheduling AI over time and using the right data structures. I will be using this book for my Game AI course." -Jessica D. Bayliss, Ph.D., Rochester Institute of Technology

"This is the first serious attempt to create a comprehensive reference for all game AI practices, terminology, and know-how. Works like this are badly needed by the maturing video games industry. Systematic yet accessible, it is a must-have for any student or professional." -Marcin Chady, Ph.D., Radical Entertainment

"This book promises to be the closest I've seen to what is needed in the field. I would highly recommend it for people in the industry." -John Laird, University of Michigan

"Ian Millington's book is a comprehensive reference to the most widely used techniques in game AI today. Any game developer working on AI will learn something from this book, and game producers should make sure their AI programmers have a copy." -Dr. Ian Lane Davis, Mad Doc Software

About the Author

Ian Millington is a partner of IPR Ventures, a consulting company developing next-generation AI technologies for entertainment, modeling, and simulation. Previously he founded Mindlathe Ltd, the largest specialist AI middleware company in computer games, working with on a huge range of game genres and technologies. He has a long background in AI, including PhD research in complexity theory and natural computing. He has published academic and professional papers and articles on topics ranging from paleontology to hypertext.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thorough Oct. 17 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Goes into great detail. I learned a lot just by reading a few introductory chapters. The rest I leave as a reference if and when I need it.
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Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent and approachable Sept. 5 2010
By Rusty - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The vast majority of software development books, whether it be for line-of-business app dev or game development, seem to have little to no information that can be found via a casual internet search.

This book is one of the few exceptions. There is a refreshing breadth and depth of game AI knowledge in this book that has been of tremendous help. Unlike the common "Gems" series of books, this book contains enough information on nearly every topic for the reader to build a 'ground up' implementation of their own.

My only complaints are that the pseudocode seems to be overly simplified and not as easily converted to a concrete implementation as I'd like, and that even for a book on game-specific AI implementations, the authors seem to enjoy a bit more of an academic/idealized approach to the design. That might be less bothersome to a professional game developer, but I'm at the hobbyist/indie level, and sometimes need a quick-and-dirty implementation before I begin to really understand what's going on.

Having said that, I was able to use the book to learn about and implement goal-oriented action planning, fast and flexible A* path finding (with additional info on modified funnel algorithm online), and several other critical components.

I would absolutely recommend this book.
26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't buy the Kindle version March 12 2013
By Captain Zones - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The one-star is for the Kindle version. Don't buy it. "Print Replica" means it's a lousy DRM'd PDF file. There's no resizing of text, and if you like reading in landscape mode, it's pretty ridiculous.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Detailed explanations of AI algorithms, their purpose and usage Aug. 9 2010
By Krzysztof Satola - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Artificial Intelligence for Games by Ian Millington and John Funge covers lots of topics but is mainly designed to help the reader to master one element of game development which is artificial intelligence (AI). The book covers a wide range of techniques for game AI including detailed explanations of AI algorithms, their purpose and usage.

As I have learnt from this book, artificial intelligence is about making computers able to perform some thinking tasks that human and animals are capable of. This includes superhuman abilities in solving many arithmetic, sorting, searching and decision making problems. This book shows how it can be achieved revealing a range of techniques to the reader.

The book is split into five parts: introduction for AI in games, the substance of the AI (movement, pathfinding, decision making, tactical and strategic reasoning, learning), technologies and ways of implementation that enable the AI to do its job and finally designing game AI.

I think this book could be aimed at a wide range of readers but is most suitable for those looking for solid understanding of game AI and comprehensive reference to techniques used in top studios. The book helps to gain a deep and thorough view on modeling complex emotional states, triggers, and behaviors. To get the most from the book, you have to manage some time to read it and to understand its contents. If you need a quick AI solutions repository you should probably find another book related to a particular technology or computer language.

The book is associated with a website that contains a library of C++ source code covering the techniques found in the book. Hopefully the C++ code used in samples is relatively easy to read and includes many comments. There are also demonstration programs compiled as EXE files.

Besides many technical solutions to AI related issues I have also learnt from this book a few high-level things. For instance I have learnt that creating good AI is all about matching the right behaviors to the right algorithms and that often, a very simple technique used well can have better results then implementing complex the AI in the game.

This book is an open minder or a view broadener on many aspects related to the AI in games. It can also serve as a great example of good analysis, desing and prototyping examples of more or less complex algorithms which are about to use in specific projects. This is a very valuable title for any computer science professional dealing with Artificial Intelligence (for games).
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good detail and wide breadth July 16 2011
By Joseph F. Heck - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I've glanced through a number of game AI books, and this one really stood out. After purchasing it and digging in much deeper, I am immensely glad I did.

One of the features that I like the most about this book is the extensive use of good written descriptions and pseudo code, rather than shoving fragments of somewhat understandable c++ code down your throat. They have code associated with the book - it's really too light to be immediately usable, and not all chapters in the book have example snippets, but the descriptive text has generally been more than sufficient to help you develop the algorithms on your own.

The authors also make some reference to games in industry and AI mechanisms, but rather than using it in a name dropping, cataloging sort of frame, they often explain why of the choices, and the benefits and drawbacks associated with the game and AI mechanism choices.

While I'm only focusing on a few chapters right now, I expect this book to be an excellent long term reference work on the field for me.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hernan Feb. 23 2012
By Hernan D. Merlino - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Very Good book, it's a complete review to all alternatives to build an AI Engine for Games.
If you need a robust introduction to AI and Games this book it's a good start point.
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