Are you looking for an AI challenge? Do you want to work on a relevant problem that'll get the attention of the games industry? Better still, are you motivated to push the boundaries of what's frequently done in Game AI? Or are you keen to finally get your hands on the first public release of The AI Sandbox™?
If this sounds great to you, then you're in the right place! That's exactly the reason we designed the Capture The Flag competition.
If you're looking for excuses to justify the late nights to your family or forlorn pets, here are three excellent reasons to enter the competition:
- Entertaining — Writing strategic AI for Capture The Flag is one of the most fun things you can do a enthusiast Game AI Programmer! It's even fun to just watch the sample commanders ;-)
- Relevant — Building on AiGameDev.com's experience working with game studios worldwide, for this competition we've teamed up with Guerrilla Games to make sure the game and rules address key challenges from industry.
- Challenging — By design, the mechanics of the game and variety of levels make it difficult to use traditional "scripted" techniques. Can your commander remain competitive with the other submissions?
The competition will take place over the months of November 2012 to February 2013. Here's the exact outline for those few weeks:
- Competition Start — 11:59 AM UTC Wednesday, November 7th, 2012.
- Game Update A — approx. Wednesday, November 14th, 2012.
- Game Update B — approx. November 21th, 2012.
- Game Update C — approx. Wednesday, November 28th, 2012.
- Deadline Phase #1 — 11:59 AM UTC Monday, December 10th, 2012.
- Results Phase #1 — 11:59 AM UTC Friday, December 15th, 2012.
- Game Update D — approx. Wednesday, December 21st, 2012.
- Deadline Phase #2 — 11:59 AM UTC Monday, January 7th, 2013.
- Results Phase #2 — 11:59 AM UTC Tuesday, January 15thth, 2013.
- Deadline Phase #3 — 11:59 AM UTC Monday, February 11thth, 2013.
- Results Phase #3 — 11:59 AM UTC Friday, February 15thth, 2013.
IMPORTANT: The mechanics of the combat, the behavior of the individual bots, the level size or layout, and the underlying game implementation will change over the course of the competition. It's by design to encourage you to write robust AI that can handle such changes which are common in the games industry.
UPDATE: There will be no major changes to the gameplay during Phase 3. The Phase 3 tournament will however use some additional maps that won't be released before the tournament.
NOTE: The dates for the game updates are approximations. Updates and fixes will happen on a regular basis and made available for manual downloading and automatic updating.
The prizes for the game are provided by Guerrilla Games and AiGameDev.com KG. You can win copies of games as well as PREMIUM and ULTIMATE memberships.
- The top three submissions win a copy of KILLZONE 3, signed by Guerrilla Games' AI team!
- The top five submissions win an AiGameDev.com PREMIUM membership (respectively 12, 6, 6, 3, 3 months).
- The top eight submissions win a free ticket to the Game/AI Conference 2013, held in Vienna/Austria.
Of course, you'll earn recognition for ranking highly in the competition afterwards! Guerrilla Games is hiring AI Programmers, so you'd be in a great position ;-)
- Windows 7 is officially the main platform for the competition, though Vista and Windows 8 are also supported. (Windows Download)
- Linux support is now available! Based on popular demand we've released a 64-bit version, and 32-bit will follow. (Linux Download)
- Mac OSX support is currently being investigated; if you're keen on this let us know and spread the word!
- Python is the official language of the competition, and is highly recommended for anyone.
- The C++ and Java language packs have been developed in-house here at AiGamedev and can be downloaded directly from the download page.
- Other popular languages such as Go or Lua are being provided by the community. Want to write your own kit?
We encourage you to visit the Game AI Forums over on AiGameDev.com to discuss the different starter kits and programming languages. We can't guarantee support for all languages, but we'll try our best to do so if you're willing to do some hard work!
5. The Rules
Competition and tournament regulations:
- Submitted AI commanders will play the game of Capture the flag against other AI commanders.
- The games played will have a wide variety of different configurations of bot numbers, level sizes and layouts.
- The implementation of the game, the mechanics of the combat, and individual behavior of the bots will change incrementally during the competition.
- Commanders must be submitted as source code, and the license will be considered as GPL. The source code of all commanders will be released after the competition.
- Final rankings are determined by a tournament between commander submitted up to the deadline, similar to the online ladder.
- The official decision is made by AiGameDev.com KG, and is final. Intermediate rankings are not official.
- AiGameDev.com KG reserves the right to exclude anyone from the competition without opportunity for appeal.
- AiGameDev.com KG reserves the right to change the competition rules at any time without notice.
Commander implementation rules and guidelines:
- Commanders with actively obfuscated source code will be disqualified.
- Preventing others commanders from functioning in any way is prohibited.
- Cheating, such as or gathering additional data outside of the game interface, is prohibited.
- Colluding with other commanders — including losing on purpose — is prohibited.
- Commanders are not allowed to spawn additional threads and processes.
- Commanders are not allowed to write information to the file system.
- Commanders may be shipped with data files that are considered read-only.
- Multiple developers may collaborate on a commander.
- Only one commander can be submitted per team.
6. Register Now!
If you're intending to participate in the competition, then you must register using the form below. You'll be kept up-to-date with competition news, and your account will allow you to submit your commander for evaluation.
If you already have an account on AiGameDev.com, visit this page and use your usual username and password.