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Enhanced NPC Behaviour using Goal Oriented Action Planning - page 29 / 110





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The squad manager triggers an update of the entire agent. Just like the F.E.A.R. system, the sensors read in details about the world and store information in the working memory as working memory facts. The target manager reads the working memory, decides what to target and deposits its decision on the blackboard. The AI module updates the GOAP or FSM controller which in turn reads information from the working memory and the blackboard. It is within the GOAP or FSM controllers that the actual AI processes take place. On the back of the information read by the AI module, it makes decisions as to what the agent is going to do and deposits appropriate data on the blackboard or writes to the working memory. The weapon and navigation managers read information from the blackboard and cause effects in the virtual world such as moving around the agent or firing at a target. Finally the agent itself is rendered. The different components of the architecture are explained in detail in the following paragraphs culminating in the description of how the two different AI modules (GOAP and FSM) were designed.

3.3 Managers

The managers within the game control the various subsystems and perform most of the ground work needed for the AI module to carry out its decisions. The sensory manager consists of a number of sensors that record information about the world in working memory for later use. There were five sensors designed in all, two pickup sensors, an enemy sensor, a friendly sensor and a node sensor. The sensors aren’t updated every frame but are offset for different time periods depending on the sensor type. Sensors that are critical to the agent, such as the enemy sensor, are updated more regularly than the pickup sensor for example as more up to date information is required for the target manager to make correct decisions.

The target manager decides what the agent’s current target is at any time. The target manager examines the working memory and gets the Enemy working memory fact with the

highest belief (explained in the next section) and writes to the blackboard what this target is. 21

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