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AI Challenge Forums • View topic - While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

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While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

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While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

Postby Memetix » Fri Mar 23, 2012 11:28 am

For all of you who are keen for more AI action, there is a PacMan vs Ghosts AI competition run by Essex University in the UK that has just opened up its submission server in the last couple of days.
You can write code (Java) for either the PacMan (aiming to get the highest score) or for the Ghost team (aiming to keep the PacMan's score as low as possible). The competition deadline is 27th May giving you a couple of months to get something working.



The events runs once or twice a year and you can download reports (and even source code) from last year's entrants from their website, but note that the core game code has been updated this year, so previous entries will need to be ported to use the updated interface class.
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Re: While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

Postby antimatroid » Sun Mar 25, 2012 4:54 am

Any plans to let people write controllers in a language of their choice? I think you would get more interest if people weren't constrained to Java.
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Re: While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

Postby Memetix » Sun Mar 25, 2012 7:30 am

I agree, after competing in ants last year I really liked the fact there was a simple interface that allowed people to code in any language and I did suggest it as an option to the organisers of the PacMan competition. I think they will take it on board as a possibility for the next event but there wasn't time to make changes for this one.
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Re: While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

Postby mleise » Tue Mar 27, 2012 6:32 pm

I'm a bit indecisive on the matter. On the one hand free choice of language is really nice, but on the other hand you have to cater for things like Java using masses of virtual memory, language X compiler being able to run arbitrary shell commands, language Y being available in outdated packages only, language Z being difficult to set up (especially important if participants upload source code and you need a generic build system).
The harsh contrast, a game specific scripting/assembly language, gives you the benefit of running in your own virtual machine with no untrusted executable files running on the contest server. So you don't have to sandbox I/O or other system calls and can count exactly how many instructions a player has executed so far to give each the same, reproducible share of CPU time.
But maybe that is a discussion of the past when RoboCom was popular and we have just reached the point where the free language choice combined with sand-boxing and communication with text protocols via stdin/stdout works well enough. I don't know if I could go back to a scripting language with a dozen predefined instructions and no expressiveness, myself.

That said, Java is not the worst choice - and arguably the best choice for a single supported language. I also like how the PacMan game just keeps running and finals are held at regular intervals. As a late joiner I clearly appreciate that. It could become boring real quick though.
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Re: While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

Postby eiisolver » Wed Mar 28, 2012 8:46 pm

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Re: While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

Postby Memetix » Thu Mar 29, 2012 7:02 am

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Re: While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

Postby karpizin » Sun Apr 01, 2012 6:21 pm

can't download javadoc.

https://s3.amazonaws.com/wcci12/documen ... index.html

This XML file does not appear to have any style information associated with it. The document tree is shown below.
<Error>
<Code>AccessDenied</Code>
<Message>Access Denied</Message>
<RequestId>A5AB947394EB27E8</RequestId>
<HostId>
6j17wOk8FW4DgwBcf86shFOJxCgk88pdaMtZJlEjMRun3shftS1p0k4ClNn2dO2M
</HostId>
</Error>
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Re: While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

Postby Memetix » Mon Apr 02, 2012 8:28 am

Until their own forum is up and running, I suggest bug reports and feedback are sent to their facebook page as I'm not sure if the organisers are monitoring this thread.



EDIT: I reported this via email and the Javadoc issue is now fixed.
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Re: While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

Postby Parasprites » Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:35 pm

Ug, Java. Can't they at least allow other languages to compile to Java bytecode?
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Re: While we are waiting - PacMan vs Ghosts

Postby Memetix » Fri Apr 13, 2012 2:18 pm

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