Randomness in games

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Joined: 2005.11
Post: #16
One advantage of fuzzy logic is that by adjusting weights based on success/failure criteria, it is relatively simple to implement "machine learning". Unfortunately this has the side effect that as the state machine learns more, it also tends to get more predictable, as the as some decision possibilities get much higher weightings than others.
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Post: #17
ah, yes, 'fuzzy logic'...that was the term I was looking for, thanks Smile
*EDIT* has anyone actually used fuzzy logic in their games, or does it consume too much memory? (or is there some other reason I don't see it used very often?)
-wyrmmage

Worlds at War (Current Project) - http://www.awkward-games.com/forum/
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Vengoropatubus
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Post: #18
I don't see why randomness is included in any strategy games at all. In my favorite strategy game of all time, chess, I can't imagine how thoroughly it would destroy the game to have to make a die roll every time your queen attempted to take a pawn, and as far as real life strategy, I don't think you'll find much happening randomly there either, except in the broad sense of weather shifts(which, of course, cannot be discounted). But weather shifts are a much different thing than your soldier finding himself unable to hit an enemy. That's a problem with training. The only reason that I can see to introduce randommness in a game is to make up for factors that aren't already present.

On the subject of chess, random determination is one of the major issues that allows a person to distinguish a 1400 ELO computer from a 1400 ELO player. at 1400 ELO computer will still make brilliant moves that no 1400 ELO player would ever consider, because the computer computes miles ahead and constructs its weakened play from those results, drastically differentiating it from the case where a 1400 ELO player just plays their natural game. The computer knows what's coming, and therefore still has a chance to avoid it, whereas the 1400 ELO player will fall into the trap until they are able to recognize it.
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Post: #19
Vengoropatubus Wrote:I don't see why randomness is included in any strategy games at all. In my favorite strategy game of all time, chess, I can't imagine how thoroughly it would destroy the game to have to make a die roll every time your queen attempted to take a pawn, and as far as real life strategy, I don't think you'll find much happening randomly there either, except in the broad sense of weather shifts(which, of course, cannot be discounted). But weather shifts are a much different thing than your soldier finding himself unable to hit an enemy. That's a problem with training. The only reason that I can see to introduce randommness in a game is to make up for factors that aren't already present.
I agree mostly with the first point in your argument, but I think I disagree on the second one.

On the first, I think of strategy games like Chess and Axis & Allies and I agree for the most part. Other than certain key points in the gameplay (like deciding on an opening move), very little, if anything, needs to be left to chance as far as the strategy is concerned. Axis and Allies of course relies heavily on determining casualties based on the roll of the dice (see below), but the overall strategy of playing and winning the game from the god's-eye view is pretty-well settled for the expert player.

On the second, with real-life combat situations, human error predominates many situations so much so that it has been given a technical tactical term -- the fog of war. While it is theoretically possible on some far-out imaginative limb that training alone could solve that problem completely, there is simply no known evidence of that phenomenon (the fog of war) being completely removed from a real-life tactical situation in the history of warfare.

So I guess, in the end, I'm saying that in even the most strategic of games there must be at least *some* element of randomness. It does however seem that when looking at grandly refined strategic games like chess, that the more refined (or mature) the game, the less randomness is involved.
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_CSE_
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Post: #20
By the way, there is a french game, called "tempête sur l'échiquier" (storm on the chessboard) which adds random cards to chess that give special "powers" to figures or allow you to influence what your opponent may play.

And this is... real fun!

As a rule, "obvious" and "unfair" randomness is typically fun for short games. If you are unlucky, heck, you just restart. But for long games, it is indeed boring to have to wait for the random number generator to get the good value.

Finally, "non-obvious" randomness is the (only?) way to have a basically dumb computer be not totally predictible for a smart player. You probably do need some randomness, as this is realistic - in real life, a guard will shout alarm if he sees you trying to break in the bank... but he might be just disturbed by a fly around his ears and miss seeing you, once in a while (hence usually you put a couple of guards... :-)
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