OGDC 07 - AISeek and Smarter NPCs in Dynamic Worlds
No matter which MMO you play, computer controlled characters (NPCs / mobs) simply aren't convincing. It turns out that many of the moronic behaviors we associate with mobs aren't the product of inept or uncaring devs, but a significant hardware limitation. To prevent easy cheating, the artificial intelligence (AI) for these mobs is calculated on the server, so specialized server hardware may help to smarten up our enemies. Gil Asherie of AISeek tells us how new advances may help to fuel significant advances in mob / NPC AI in the very near future.
"To provide scripts for the mob to more intelligently handle the above scenarios is certainly possible, but given that AI is almost always handled server-side (to prevent hacks and cheats client-side), such a complex routine running for the tens of thousands of NPCs and mobs thousands of players are interacting with in a dynamic environment would probably (easily) melt the server. This technological limitation, friends, and not inept designers and programmers, is why your NPCs and mobs are fairly moronic and your game world is mostly static.
That is, until now. Gil Asherie and the folks at AISeek are out to remove these complex barriers to greater immersion and dynamic environments through their specialized server-side hardware solution and development kit, slated for release this summer."