[Seminar] Advancing Video Game AI With Intrinsically Motivated Reinforcement Learning

On Friday 7th December the Game AI Group will host a seminar by Christian Guckelsberger from QMUL.

Title: Advancing Video Game AI With Intrinsically Motivated Reinforcement Learning
Speaker:Christian Guckelsberger
Time: 2pm-3pm (GMT), Dec 6, 2018
Room: BR 3.02, Bancroft Road Teaching Rooms, QMUL Mile End Campus
Modern video games come with increasingly large and complex worlds to satisfy players’ demands for a rich and long-lasting playing experience. This development brings new challenges: designing robust believable characters that players can engage with in an open-ended way, and also with respect to evaluating content, especially when procedurally generated. In this talk, I will motivate the use of intrinsically motivated reinforcement learning to address the challenges of next-generation video games, a technique which currently gains strong momentum in the search for artificial general intelligence. I will give a comprehensive, interdisciplinary introduction to the concept of intrinsic motivation. I will motivate the development of computational models of intrinsic motivation, point out the opportunities they hold for game AI, and discuss the new challenges such models come with. My research on coupled empowerment maximisation for more believable non-player characters will illustrate the potential of such models, and motivate their combination with reinforcement learning. The use of intrinsically motivated reinforcement learning for video game AI is still in its infancy, and I will consequently finish with a set of open questions and interesting research projects.

[Seminar] “Computational Creativity and Videogame Design ” by Prof. Simon Colton

Title: Computational Creativity and Videogame Design 

Speaker: Prof. Simon Colton, Digital Games Technologies (Falmouth) and Computational Creativity (Goldsmiths), EPSRC Leadership Fellow Metamakers Institute, Games Academy, Falmouth University Computational Creativity Group, Goldsmiths, University of London.

Time: 5pm-6pm (GMT), Jan 23, 2018
Room: BR3.02, Bancroft Road, School of Electronic Engineering and Computer Science, QMUL


In Computational Creativity research, we try to hand over creative responsibilities to software in arts and science projects, so that our systems can become trusted co-creators or autonomous creatives. After describing some recent advances and issues in Computational Creativity, I’ll move on to what is a killer application for the field, namely videogame design. I’ll describe recent work I’ve been involved with that aims to use AI techniques to democratise game design, so that anyone and everyone can make digital games as easily as they can write stories or make videos. I’ll also cover projects in procedural content generation and whole game design, and the idea that we can communicate our lives through play. At the end of the talk, I’ll come back to Computational Creativity research in general and look at high-level issues such as software showing intentionality, which we’ve addressed through The Painting Fool project. I’ll then describe what I believe is the biggest issue facing the field, namely authenticity, and I’ll provide some suggestions for how we can start to address this issue.



Simon Colton is a Professor of Digital Games Technology, holding an ERA Chair at Falmouth University, and a part-time Professor of Computational Creativity at Goldsmiths, University of London. He was previously a reader in Computational Creativity at Imperial College, London, and held an EPSRC Leadership Fellowship until mid-2017. An AI researcher for 20 years, he is one of the founding members of the Computational Creativity movement, with nearly 200 publications and national and international awards for his research. At Falmouth, he co-leads the MetaMakers Institute (www.metamakersinstitute.com) applying Computational Creativity techniques to the democratisation of game design and the cultural appreciation of videogames. At Goldsmiths, he co-leads the Computational Creativity group (ccg.doc.gold.ac.uk), addressing issues of creative behaviour in various application domains. He is also involved in the EPSRC IGGI doctoral training centre and the DC Labs Next Step Digital Economy centre. He is best known for his work on software such as the HR mathematical discovery system, The Painting Fool (www.thepaintingfool.com), the What-If Machine (http://ccg.doc.gold.ac.uk/research/whim) and the Wevva iOS game design system (https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/wevva/id1322519841 and www.wevvagame.com). He has recently co-founded up a company called Imaginative AI Ltd., to pursue commercial applications of Computational Creativity.

Useful links: metamakers.falmouth.ac.ukccg.doc.gold.ac.ukmetamakersinstitute.comwevvagame.com