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[AI Suggestion] Create a open API for dota AI players

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  • [AI Suggestion] Create a open API for dota AI players

    Game AI will forever be a challenging thing. As strategies evolve, AI players must evolve with them. I strongly support Valve's efforts in developing AI players, and this forum is testament to Valve's dedication to the topic, but I believe that a second approach can also help.

    Valve has adopted a community development aspect to Dota, where the game continues development with input from the community. But the AI has not adopted this same approach, even though it can, and, as I argue below, it SHOULD. I believe that by inviting the community of AI researchers to use DOTA as a test bed for AI research, Valve will get higher quality bots, the gaming community will get a higher quality gaming experience, and the research community will get research done. And it's a nice way to put together some free publicity for Valve for being forward thinking.

    There is a large community of AI researchers in academia that use games to develop the science of Artificial Intelligence. These research efforts have create numerous AI players for many games, most notably Chess (deep blue) but very recently, also starcraft. (See the Berkeley Overmind, http://overmind.cs.berkeley.edu/) Such AI players are quite sophisticated. Deep Blue is well known for crushing then chess champion Gary Kasparov, but what is less known is that the Berkeley Overmind is able to challenge pro-level Starcraft players (http://tinyurl.com/7qgweyx).

    In the case of Starcraft (and trivially, in the case of chess) AI researchers had to hack the games to enable the integration of AI players. There was no commercial support for AI players for Starcraft. That is a huge barrier to entry for AI researchers, who are not a bunch of hackers. These people work in a publish or perish industry, and they dont have the time to be messing around with the memory of a game to try to get their stuff working. They'd rather work on an older game like Starcraft.

    This is a huge opportunity that is being overlooked by Valve. Rather than turning these people away, Valve should code a programming interface for AI players that would allow third party AI software to control bots. It is true that this takes effort to support. I won't deny that. But being a professor of computer science myself (though not an AI researcher) I also know that it is something that you can do once and never have to touch again. And once it is done, you will have opened the door for scientists to develop AI bots with literally cutting edge research AI.

    With a minor investment, this is a win-win, and also an opportunity to create buzz. In addition to human leagues, there could be AI leagues that AI researchers compete in. The same community of researchers could be tapped for future Valve games. From every perspective, business, marketing, and gaming, this would be a great move.

    Thus, I strongly endorse it, and would be glad to offer specific suggestions if contacted.

  • #2
    i'm all for anything that makes better bots. The best bots possible would make the "leaver replacement" feature with bots all the more appealing.

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    • #3
      Valve has such open minded ppl..? i doubt.. thing is even if they want to have something like this they will probably do some financial analysis and come up with a loss scenario and bin this idea..
      †André†

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      • #4
        and i do think PBMN's bot is tougher. all up for making better bots!

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        • #5
          I like this idea a lot. As a Computer Science graduate myself I can see the huge value of such an investment. I actually know a PhD student who has been designing a form of reinforcement learning for RTS games (with Starcraft as the ultimate goal). I have told him about DotA before and he was very interested, but unfortunately coding AI for the original DotA requires a knowledge of how the game code works, and seeing as it's all obfuscated, the costs outweigh the benefits. If an API was made available in DotA 2 however I can imagine him and others like him would love to get their hands on it.

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          • #6
            Bump.

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            • #7
              wow, what an amazing idea. +1 from me..

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Andre View Post
                Valve has such open minded ppl..? i doubt.. thing is even if they want to have something like this they will probably do some financial analysis and come up with a loss scenario and bin this idea..
                You know very, very little about Valve, son.

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                • #9
                  I think it will come out after dota 2 comes out

                  other Valve's games have SDK (Like HL2 CS TF2 Portal2 L4D)

                  btw i want more bots , there are just few bots right now

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                  • #10
                    This would be really cool. A lot of work, but it's definitely the kind of thing we're open to (and have talked about a little bit internally). It's also definitely not a short-term thing. Once we get our bot code in-hand, we can start to think about what kind of API we might be interested in exposing to external developers.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Andre View Post
                      Valve has such open minded ppl..? i doubt.. thing is even if they want to have something like this they will probably do some financial analysis and come up with a loss scenario and bin this idea..
                      I'm really curious where you got the idea from that Valve isn't open minded, they're one of the most open minded company's out there, a dozen times better than many of the other big gaming company's at least.

                      Thanks for the SC article also, amazing read for someone studying towards that exact direction like myself.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ChrisC View Post
                        This would be really cool. A lot of work, but it's definitely the kind of thing we're open to (and have talked about a little bit internally). It's also definitely not a short-term thing. Once we get our bot code in-hand, we can start to think about what kind of API we might be interested in exposing to external developers.
                        Hi there, ChrisC

                        Since I know how these kind of things work in software companies, sell the idea to your manager with this: http://arstechnica.com/gaming/news/2...ompetition.ars
                        Free publicity + monetization (for example a higher level framework for programming bots ).

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                        • #13
                          This is quite interesting. I was always a fan of AI and this project seems promising.
                          +1 to OP and Chris supporting it.

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                          • #14
                            Hi, I am Phd student in the AI field and I would love to see this implemented. Certainly there would be a lot of master students willing to work on this.

                            +1

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                            • #15
                              PBME is the best AI. but sometime , his AI buy useless item.

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