The information for my lecture, Cover Me! Promoting MMO Player Interaction through Advanced AI, at GDC Austin has been posted.
Here’s the relevant information:
This lecture shows examples of some of the aspects of PvP games that are attractive to players, the AI techniques that can be used to replicate them, and the effect that inclusion of these aspects can have in an MMO environment. The attendee will leave with a variety of concepts that can be included in their own MMO designs.
Historically, PvE AI in MMOs has been a straight-forward affair. While this leads to predictability, it also leads to monotony. In online, team-based PvP games, however, much of the attraction is the dynamic nature of the engagement that necessitates that players read, communicate, and react appropriately to changing, even unexpected actions of their enemies. By leveraging more advanced techniques that are becoming common in FPS, RPG, and RTS games, the AI in MMOs can be designed to provide some of the more attractive and engaging elements of PvP games. This, in turn, can lead to more involved team play, greater replayability, and an increased sense of community in the game.