Influence maps For Facilitating Tactical Engagement Decisions In Real-Time Strategy Games

Jacquelyne Forgette, Renata Wachowiak-Smolíková, Mark P. Wachowiak


This paper presents a unique application of influence maps to the individual unit based engagement decision in real-time strategy games. Such a decision is necessary when AI strategic planning is interrupted by the opponent. As influence mapping applications are still relatively underrepresented in the literature, this paper attempts to motivate their importance and possible use in advanced game technology. A 2D real-time strategy game was built to demonstrate influence mapping in a particular tactical engagement decision. The decision is based not only on strength, but also on previous events, such as casualties. Rather than relying solely on the spatial distribution of power in decision making, influence maps add a temporal dimension to the process. Consequently, the engagement decision appears to be more realistic. This influence map approach has the potential to improve existing methods in other types of game AI systems.

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