First Article for Muse: AI in Video Games

by Kathryn on June 9, 2015

This was my first writing project after having a baby, and my first for Muse magazine. Odyssey, the magazine that published my first ever article, and the one I’ve been writing for the most for the past seven years, is no longer being published. But it is not gone completely. Odyssey’s spirit lives on in Muse, as many features (and writers, in my case) have migrated to this sister publication. My YourTech column from Odyssey will now show up in Muse instead.

Fun-and-Brains

The theme of the issue was video games — a perfect fit for me. Video games have become a bit of a specialty for me, ever since I wrote an article on pathfinding in games, which led to a book contract for the Economics of a Video Game. This time, I took on the topic of artificial intelligence (AI) in games.

My husband Steve worked on AI in video games for five years, and he still makes games for fun sometimes. Try his Guessipedia game — it’s a quiz game based on Wikipedia entries. Anyway, he has helped put me in touch with excellent sources for each of these projects. He also reads through my drafts for me and makes suggestions and edits.

This time around was no different. Steve got me in touch with Damian Isla, who worked on the AI for the Halo series and other games. His latest project, The Flame in the Flood, will come out soon. I enjoyed speaking with him about the game and AI programming in general. This quote led to the title of the article: “Smart is often not fun and fun is often not smart.”

Soon after I finished writing this article, I got offered a chance to write a book on artificial intelligence (in all different fields, not just games). I’m done with the draft, and I look forward to announcing that project on here once it’s published!

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