Bug battle discussion (Flash terrain navigation)

stemming off from this post http://www.kirupaforum.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=14901 is the bug battle idea, as proposed by sbeener:

“the objective would be to build a bot (under a given number of kb) that could navigate through some kind of terrain in the quickest time”

Now obviously there needs to be some restrictions etc, but it sounds interesting and discussion on it can begin below.

I think bug design could be part of it as well. Maybe have different categories such as speed, looks, or whatever.

Also for the non programmers a base AI can be established to a) either work from or b) just to use in case all you want to do is design a bug and not worry about the whole navigational programming side of things

sounds like it could be fun though.

so is this bug supposed to be controlled by the user? i’m not sure exactly what you mean…

I would love to join this battle, but the programing part is beyond my skills at this moment. So, if i could do the design only i´m in =)

I’m confused about this as well. Would be we designing the AI of the bug to avoid a randomly provided terrain? Do we make our own terrain and then just set up the bugs to crawl around the obstecles or react to the mouse pointer or something?

thats all something to be discussed

as I see it

  • the terrain would be random,
  • there would be a set framerate
  • a set maximum distance for any one frame which any insect could move
  • possibly rewards for minimizing lines of code, or possibly processor intensity.
  • style counts.
  • maybe a minimum time alotment, if no success within the time allotted, then failure…

and maybe, to keep things fairly interesting (and give some of the less endowed programmers a chance) that the terrain and target could be completely random for each person, so one person might have the target right next to them with no obstacles provided the random gods chose it to be so.

something to talk about.

Well… Everything sounds pretty good…

I’ve got a couple of ideas to throw in the mix… Or questions at times…

The bug… Now… I’m tkaing it that it would be created from the use of a .swf… And the .swf gets loaded in from a main movie?

Why don’t we make it something like battle bots… You make a robot and then using certain stipulations… Or

If we do the terrain idea… Will say… a programmer make the actual random terrain code… And the spot where the bug starts no matter what… And the exit is places no matter what… And then the terrain be the only thing really random… Then… You have to leave that piece of code alone… But you put that inside of your flash movie to use?

Sounds good if that was the case… It would be cool to have 2 bugs set up in a flash movie… Then they race each other…?

This is actually starting to remind me alot of a game I used to play… Have to forgive my failing memory cause I can not recall its name (got it around here some where) but you would build little robot cars. They could have weapons on them to battle or just try and race through set race courses with all of their AI ‘programmed’ through connecting the virtual components with virutal wires… was alot of fun, till I found out my friend I competed against kept making his racers purposely right into my cars in the begining to knock me in circles!!!

Fascinating idea. Count me in for programming, design, whatever!

I like the following ideas:
-preset start and end points that are easily referenced by the bug swf
-random terrain, generated with a settable seed as opposed to something like the current time (so that terrain sets can be repeated or tried by other bugs, simply by repeating the randomization seed)
-restrictions on maximum dimensions of the onscreen bug sprite
-restrictions on max bug “speed”
-restrictions on bug swf filesize
-time limits (so we aren’t waiting forever for a bug to finish)
-the ability to record the progress of a bug so that it can be viewed and reviewed at will (How else are the times going to be officially judged?)
-the ability to view the recorded progress of all bugs at the same time (use little ghosted icons to represent the different bugs, sorta like when they compare different teams in televised rally racing these days)
-hardcore programmers can work with hardcore designers to submit a single entry

I dislike the following ideas:
-people dropping out of the battle as the due date looms

Here are some crazy ideas:
-If this battle goes well, have a bug battle where there is another objective other than speed and pathfinding. Something like who can gather the most virtual tennis balls with their bug (AI controlled of course) in a set time, etc
-do it all in isometric view!
-do it all in 3D, generated on the fly, allowing the viewer to rotate/pan/zoom the view!

Just my CDN$0.02 (that’s about US$300.00 for you Americans).


Hey, was someone going to clue me in to this? I want in.

ahaha, oops, guess I should read my own posts more often.

Have any of you built off of the ideas originally presented? I would be very interested in seeing what you have come up with, and what your experiences have been.

I am even considering making this my independant study for school (I am a mechanical engineering studen). I have done some preliminary studies on maze navigation and path randomization or “wander”.

I have some real cool screenshots if anybody is interested.