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Re: [Chicken-users] 3D games in Chicken

From: Shawn Rutledge
Subject: Re: [Chicken-users] 3D games in Chicken
Date: Sun, 12 Feb 2006 00:12:55 -0700

> Right now I'm working for my dad who is a computer science professor and I
> changed Xpilot ( so that you can control your ship using
> scheme (chicken).  So we use that to try out neural networks and genetic
> algorithms and other artificial intelligence ideas.  It's the perfect game
> for it because the controls are so simple (turn, thrust, shoot), yet the
> behavior of the ship must be very advanced to avoid walls, dodge bullets,
> kill the enemy ship, or capture their flag. He's going to use it to teach
> his artificial intelligence class, and we've already gotten a couple of
> papers accepted at conferences using it.
> I think we should make a 3D version of xpilot from the ground up in
> Chicken.  If you want, install xpilot from and take a look
> at it, and imagine a full 3d version.

There is a gentoo ebuild for it so I just tried it.  It looks like an
advanced version of Space War.  :-)  Folklore has it being implemented
at MIT in the 60's using an oscilloscope as the display.  I had a DOS
version and used to play with a friend on my first PC in about 1990 or
so.  Anyway, it still requires some reflexes to play, and I can
imagine a 3D version would be really tough, maybe something like
Descent.  It was best played with a fancy joystick.  But on a 2D map
you can see all your adversaries at once (if they are nearby) whereas
in 3D, you see only forward, and might have to use keys to switch
between alternate views to look behind you etc.  Seems like maybe I
could use the hat on my joystick to pan the view, if I remember right.

Anyway it definitely seems like a good platform for AI development.  I
had an AI class at the university too, and it wasn't nearly that much
fun, but at least I got introduced to Lisp a little.

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