AI Class Done (Game Development Class 2)

Just finished up the second ‘mester of the Game Development certificate program offered by the University of Washington Extension system.

The AI class, taught by Steve Rabin of the AI Game Programming Wisdom series of books, was pretty awesome! We added debug graphics, a real time profiler, a state machine system, flocking, A* pathfinding, coordinated behavior, terrain analysis, and gameplay to our game engines created for the first class. More details about the content after the jump.

The second class had a lot more rigid structure than the first, including assignments due every week. The assignments were due 2 weeks after being assigned, so there was at least one week of class that covered the material before we had to do it. And this semester, we had to give a presentation at the end of the class to show off what we’d done, so there was some pressure there.

Also, I thought the content of this class was a lot more interesting, personally. I’m not much of a graphics person, i’m semi creative at the 10000 ft level, but when it comes to real details and modelling and texturing and such, i have a 0 skill level. The debugging graphics content, like drawing text and lines was super useful for debugging, and would have been tremendously useful in the first semester.

I didn’t get as much done in my engine as i wanted to, and with work heating up again, i’m not sure i’ll get to do all the stuff i want next semester either!

But, at the end of the class, i did have a fully “functional” game, a kind-of “South Park” themed “Pac-Man”, or “South-Pac” if you will. You are chef, and run around eating yellow pellets in the maze. 3 of each of the south park boys chase you about the maze, with a group coordinator only allowing one of the 12 to actively plan a path (read: cheat) at any given time. It also has an intro, title, pause, and credits scenes. Oh, and the “You go to hell and you die!” Mr Garrison sound when you die, so thats cool!

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