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Tabletop Game Design for Video Game Designers by Ethan Ham

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Chapter FourteenDesigning Autonomy

Introduction

This chapter delves into designing autonomous behavior in games—what is often called “artificial intelligence.” While the chapter does not shy away from using the term artificial intelligence (and its acronym, “AI”), the more expansive description of creating “autonomous behavior” is probably a better way of viewing the design task.

“Artificial intelligence” can be an apt description for the decisionmaking process of a computer-controlled soldier. Ascribing “intelligence” to how a computer-simulated ant navigates its surroundings is a bit of a stretch, but not entirely unreasonable. Intelligence seems entirely out of place however, when describing how a farming simulation’s seed “decides” whether ...

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