December 3, 2004

Emergent Behaviorists

by Andrew Stern · , 7:44 pm

A recent Gamasutra article reminds me that there’s actually quite a few small, under-the-radar startups or commercial groups out there that you may have never heard of, who are attempting to tackle interactive character and/or story in some form or fashion. Some groups are new, some have been around for a while; some are just one or two people, some have reasonably large teams of people (i.e, more than 2). Some have external funding, some are self-funded, some have no funding, or have already used it up; some are building polished products or freeware, some are building tools and technology. They’re all worth keeping tabs on.

Here’s the ones I know of, in no particular order:

Telltale Games
Ai Research
Virtual Personalities
Interactive Drama, Inc.
Creature Labs
Artificial Life
Neon AI / Emotion AI
Realtime Drama
Erasmatazz (now Procedural Arts, as of July 2005)

A few I know of that have fallen away, or at least their webpages have: Improv Technologies, 3DMe, Protozoa.

There’s also several AI middleware companies offering more general tools.

Ingeeni has a new demo that’s pretty bizarre and kind of cool. Haptek’s stuff is very impressive — definitely try their stuff out. Zoesis has created a fancier Pearl Demon demo they (er, we) showed at last year’s Experimental Games Workshop at GDC, that has yet to be put online.

Anyone know of other little-known groups focused on interactive character/story, who have a least something of a commercial bent?

Updates, from the comments below:
Malibu Artifactual Intelligence Works
Totem Entertainment
Online Alchemy
Multiversal Entertainment
Digital Drama Studios