prominent academic game researchers. The year 2013
also marked the fourth year of the AIIDE StarCraft AI
competition. This competition is designed to foster
AI research applied to real-time strategy games by
evaluating bots competing head to head in a full
game of StarCraft: Brood War.
Workshops were held on the two days prior to the
start of the main conference, giving attendees a
chance to hold in-depth discussions on topics that
complement the themes of the main conference pro-
gram. Short recaps of the workshops were presented
during the first day of the main conference. This year
the workshops included the First Workshop on AI
and Game Aesthetics ( 1 day), the Second Workshop
on AI in the Game Design Process ( 1 day), the Second
International Workshop on Musical Metacreation ( 2
day), the Sixth Workshop on Intelligent Narrative
Technologies ( 2 day). A separate report on these
workshops also appears in this issue of AI Magazine.
In total, 53 papers were presented at the four workshops, with a high percentage of the main conference
attendees opting to attend the workshops. The overall workshop program was very successful due to the
hard work of the chairs and cochairs of all workshops, their respective program committees, and attendees. The organizers of the Workshop on AI and
Game Aesthetics hosted an evening event for the
whole community (DAGGER: Game Dev and Academic Demo Night). The purpose of this social gathering was to give game developers and academic researchers an opportunity to demonstrate their work
and play games together.
The main program started on Wednesday, October
16, 2013, with a fascinating keynote talk by John
Abercrombie (Irrational Games) about his work as
team lead developing the AI character Elizabeth for
Bioshock Infinite. His presentation focused on the
myriad design decisions required to create a non-player character (NPC) sidekick that is both interesting and reliable. Through movement, gesture, and
utterance, the Elizabeth NPC subtly draws the player’s attention to useful clues and helpfully passes
items to the player like a real human team member.
The talk was followed by paper presentations on the
problem of human modeling. Human modeling en-compasses a diverse set of issues ranging from recreating aspects of human behavior within a game AI to
learning models of player activity from game logs.
The afternoon opened with the second invited
talk, which was delivered by Richard Evans (Linden
Labs). Evans spoke about his work as cocreator of the
Versu interactive storytelling system. The social simulation that powers Versu enables the reader to experience the same story from the perspective of different characters. Characters in Versu are able to
reason about social norms and select actions using a
formalization of activity in a novel modal logic. This
talk unveiled some of the knowledge representation
and planning details behind Versu’s reusable social
This invited talk was followed by a series of technical paper presentations on social and affective
computing in games and shorter spotlight talks to
advertise posters. The final event of the day was the
award ceremony for the fourth annual StarCraft AI
competition and competition summary, presented
by David Churchill and Michael Buro (University of
A conference reception was held Wednesday
night. This year the reception included a soundtrack
of computer-generated music that was provided by
the organizers of the Workshop on Musical Metacreation. As is traditional at AIIDE, awards were presented for best paper, best student paper, and best
program committee member. This year, the best paper award went to Santiago Ontañón (Drexel University) for his work on applying combinatorial
multibandit arm techniques to real-time strategy
games. The best student paper was awarded to Anto-
Figure 1. The AIIDE’ 13 Organizing Committee.
From left to right: Gita Sukthankar, Michael Mateas, Michael Buro, Julian Togelius, Gillian Smith, Adam Smith, Kevin Dill, Ian Horswill.
Photo courtesy Vadim Bulitko and Emilie St. Hilaire.