Unreal Tournament bots judged more human than human

The latest development in the world of artificial intelligence comes from an unusual source: Unreal Tournament 2004. Five years ago, 2K Games sponsored a yearly competition challenging programmers to develop multiplayer bots capable of passing a Turing-style test modeled on a good old deathmatch. This year’s competition was the first in which bots were judged more human than actual human players. In fact, two of the bots met that standard.

Romanian doctoral student Mihai Polceanu created one of the bots that achieved a "humanness rating" of 52%. The other came from the University of Texas at Austin’s UT^2 team, which consisted of Professor Risto Miikkulainen and doctoral students Jacob Schrum and Igor Karpov. The best human score was a measly 40%.

Physorg has more information on the UT^2 bot, which mimics even irrational behaviors like recklessly pursuing an opponent just because it has a grudge against them. The team also used neural networks derived from an evolutionary process:

Some behavior is modeled directly on previously observed human behavior, while the central battle behaviors are developed through a process called neuroevolution, which runs artificially intelligent neural networks through a survival-of-the-fittest gauntlet that is modeled on the biological process of evolution.
Networks that thrive in a given environment are kept, and the less fit are thrown away. The holes in the population are filled by copies of the fit ones and by their "offspring," which are created by randomly modifying (mutating) the survivors. The simulation is run for as many generations as are necessary for networks to emerge that have evolved the desired behavior.

The UT^2 bot is available for download if you have a copy of Unreal Tournament 2004 kicking around and feel some pwnage coming on. I wonder how it would fare at one of Scott’s LAN parties.

Comments closed
    • JohnC
    • 7 years ago

    …ok, they really should’ve made a much more easier way to install/run the whole bot package… Here’s what the “readme” file says:

    “To launch UT^2, you must have access to a UT2004 server with the
    latest patch installed. The server must be running the Botprize
    version of GameBots that is included in the “GameBots2004” directory
    (copy the contents to the “System” directory where UT2004 is
    installed). Once the server is running, you can connect the bot to it
    by running:

    java -jar UT2Bot_2012-1.0-SNAPSHOT.one-jar.jar <IP Address>

    Where <IP Address> is the IP of the server running UT2004. If this
    command is left out, then the bot will connect to whatever address is
    specified in the PogamutPlatformCustom.properties file (default is
    “localhost”)”

    I’ve tried many different things so far and still can’t get this shit to run…

      • phi
      • 7 years ago

      email contact -at- botprize.org … will try to help

        • JohnC
        • 7 years ago

        I can do that, but that’s not the point… why not provide a better installation package (possibly without relying on any form of Java) or at least better installation instructions for each possible case (for example if the user doesn’t currently have JRE/JDK installed or have a non-compatible version or something)???

          • phi
          • 7 years ago

          It’s offered by the competitors as is. Good suggestion though. In the meantime, like I said … will try to help

    • Game_boy
    • 7 years ago

    When a bot beats KT.Flash in a Bo7 we can talk about game AI being good.

    • cjava2
    • 7 years ago

    All they need to do is code a bot that says “fag” a lot and then gets into a 25 minute argument with other players via in-game chat.

      • JohnC
      • 7 years ago

      …also, heavily promote CoD games as being “superior”

      • clone
      • 7 years ago

      lol…. fantastic.

        • yogibbear
        • 7 years ago

        ‘fantastic’ who says that, you fag!

          • bitcat70
          • 7 years ago

          It’s so ridiculous it’s funny. But you still get a minus.

      • TaBoVilla
      • 7 years ago

      calling other people’s mom names also helps scoring higher in the test

    • willyolio
    • 7 years ago

    add teabagging behaviour.

    humanness rating +24%

      • NeelyCam
      • 7 years ago

      This is worthy of an award

    • Squeazle
    • 7 years ago

    Sorry, but this study clearly has poor internal validity if the humans don’t score well. The point is to approximate human behavior in that setting, and they clearly aren’t measuring that well. These results are pointless for that reason, but that doesn’t mean that the bots aren’t awesome. They are. But they need to be measured on an accurate scale.

      • phi
      • 7 years ago

      It’s measuring whether they appear human to another player. The judges are “primed” to be looking for bots, so all the humanness scores tend to be low (human and bot). The test is whether the bots can get equal or better rating compared to the humans.

    • JohnC
    • 7 years ago

    Not sure how exactly they scored the behavior, but the videos don’t really look “impressive” – just an average bots which can most likely be beat by any good human player. I guess “human”-like behavior doesn’t necessarily mean that the bot must be good at actually winning the game, especially since they mention that the bot can mimic “even irrational behaviors”… They probably instantly give a lot of points to a bot that suddenly stops and types “brb, bio” in in-game chat…

      • internetsandman
      • 7 years ago

      Watching a multiplayer game and actually being in it are two different things. What might look unimpressive could actually feel quite genuine and imperceptible from a human.

        • JohnC
        • 7 years ago

        [quote<]Watching a multiplayer game and actually being in it are two different things [/quote<] I've played this game long enough for those things to be the same for me. Also, it seems like you didn't read the rest of my post... Anyway, since the bot file is available, I'll definitely be downloading it and tying it out myself, it's just strange that they chose such "unimpressive" videos to demonstrate such supposedly "impressive" behavior.

      • phi
      • 7 years ago

      Yep – they have to appear human – not the same as playing well. And there’s no in-game chat.

        • travbrad
        • 7 years ago

        Yeah. Playing badly and having no situational awareness whatsoever is probably the best way to appear human, since that’s how the majority of actual people play. I do think it would be nice to see a bot that is good and also acts like a human, but I imagine that is a much more difficult task.

        AI is one of the game elements most in need of improvement, so I welcome any advances we can get in this area. What good are better graphics when bad AI and physics completely remove the immersion? A lot of games haven’t advanced much beyond Pac-Man in the AI department.

          • internetsandman
          • 7 years ago

          If you want bad AI, I point you towards Civilization 5. Granted there are a lot of variables and rules for the computer to understand, but even so, it’s not exactly a strategic genius

    • Zarf
    • 7 years ago

    Quick, somebody tell a major media outlet! They’ll use their Super Misrepresentation Powers and morph it to “Computers now smarter than humans” in a matter of seconds!

      • indeego
      • 7 years ago

      Seven Library Congresses of human brains-worth.

        • internetsandman
        • 7 years ago

        You could probably count the number of politicians who’s brains are actually more powerful (or less error free) than a supercomputer on one hand. That kind of grey matter functions…..differently….than the average human

      • Squeazle
      • 7 years ago

      Already pretty misrepresented…

    • Sam125
    • 7 years ago

    Pretty cool. Now if the bots can evolve past the Darwinian stages of humanity and begin working collaboratively toward a common goal is when I’ll be impressed as that’s much more useful AI from both a gaming and real-world utility aspect.

      • Scrotos
      • 7 years ago

      SkyNET! You’ll be the end of us with your crazy ideas, Sam125!

    • dpaus
    • 7 years ago

    [quote<]bots judged more human than human[/quote<] Some of the guys in my paintball league could be replaced by AI bots and the rest of us would celebrate. EDIT: they'd probably be less embarrassing to go out for a beer with afterwards, too.

    • Meadows
    • 7 years ago

    As much as it could be fun playing against these things, I still dislike AI because I can’t get a rise out of them via communication.

      • Ryu Connor
      • 7 years ago

      I’d never have pegged you for the type.

      Nope.

      Never.

        • sweatshopking
        • 7 years ago

        WHAT ABOUT ME? DID YOU PEG ME AS THAT TYPE?

          • Ryu Connor
          • 7 years ago

          You’re far too unique a snowflake to fully comprehend.

            • moose17145
            • 7 years ago

            Omg that comment had me almost rolling off my chair from laughter. Well played sir!

          • Bensam123
          • 7 years ago

          You’re at least a little bit more forward as to what you’re gunning for then some people on here.

        • Meadows
        • 7 years ago

        Besides, I’m not an Unreal fan anyway, more of a Quake player really. And I’ve only been banned from Quake Live thrice thus far, so I think I’m doing okay.

        • Rageypoo
        • 7 years ago

        All this pegging talk makes me think of porn.

          • BiffStroganoffsky
          • 7 years ago

          Oh, Al…!

    • drfish
    • 7 years ago

    THAT is what I want my high end CPU working on instead of being at ~30% while my GPU is pegged at 100%…

      • sweatshopking
      • 7 years ago

      play civ 5

        • drfish
        • 7 years ago

        I do. Sadly it needs more than just CPU cycles to fix its AI. AI is hard to program but we have the resources. Civ5 doesn’t even bother to use them until the AI’s turn. GalCiv actually plotted while the human player took to take their move, not a lot of TBS games can claim that.

        …but I was talking about AI in general, not just in FPS, seems like a great thing for highly threaded processors, it doesn’t seem like it would have to sync up perfect like other processes do.

    • derFunkenstein
    • 7 years ago

    There is some really cool AI research going on. Ars a couple years ago had a big writeup on an AI for Brood War, which I think is probably as huge if not huger. More huge. Whatever. [url=http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2011/01/skynet-meets-the-swarm-how-the-berkeley-overmind-won-the-2010-starcraft-ai-competition/<]Not recent[/url<], though.

      • dpaus
      • 7 years ago

      We have some pretty cool AI stuff coming out soon, too. The details of which, of course, I can’t tell you anything about. But I guess the most important thing is that while most AI out there is being used to kill people (or exist to be killed by people) – all in games, of course – ours is uniquely created to save people (and their pets, and their property, and their jobs….)

      “Come up to the lab! And see what’s on the slab! I see you shiver – with an – tic – i…..”

        • dpaus
        • 7 years ago

        ….pation!”

          • Squeazle
          • 7 years ago

          WAIT FOR IT.

            • Chrispy_
            • 7 years ago

            Antici….
            ….dary?

            D:

            Someone broke Neil Patrick Harris;
            Quick! Get him a suit and two bimbos…..

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