You probably know Conway's Game of Life, the famous cellular automaton invented by mathematician John Conway. Life is a set of rules that, together, allow you to simulate a two-dimensional board of cells. The rules decide which cells on the board live and which ones die. With some imagination, you could say that Life is a zero-player game: a game with the objective to find patterns with interesting behavior, like the famous glider.
A zero-player game... Until today. You are to write a program that plays the Game of Life - and plays it to win, King of the Hill-style. Your opponent (singular) of course tries to do the same. The winner is either the last bot with any live cells, or the player with the most live cells after 10000 generations.
The rules are almost the same as normal (B3/S23) Life:
- A live cell with fewer than two friendly neighbors dies from starvation.
- A live cell with two or three friendly neighbors survives.
- A live cell with more than three friendly neighbors dies from overpopulation.
- A dead cell with exactly three neighbors of the same player comes alive to fight for that player provided there are no enemy neighbors.
...but after each generation, both you and your opponent get the opportunity to intervene. You can awake up to a maximum of 30 cells to fight for you. (Who goes first is decided by the server.)
The board is a (x,y) cells square. All squares are initially dead. The borders do not wrap around (this is not a torus-shaped world) and are permanently dead.
This is is a contest in the spirit of Battlebots and Core Wars. There is a central server that will run bots and it can be found here
The arena server speaks a simple JSON protocol communicated through argv
Where Values is a JSON encoded string
y_size: the maximum y coords of tiles before they vanish
x_size: the maximum x coords of tiles before they vanish
tick_id: the current tick number
board: a dictionary with keys in the form '(y,x)' and values in the form
bot_id: tiles in the board with this id are yours
Telling the server your choice:
- Send the server a list of tiles to turn to your colour.
- Only those that are empty will be changed
- Nested coords list format
[[0,0], [0,1], [100,22]...]
NOTE: Your bot doesn't have to update the tiles at all - the server does the updating itself
- If your implementation fails to follow the protocol, the turn it does will be forfeited; The server will assume no change in state
- You are not allowed to willfully take advantage of a fault in the arena server.
- Have your AI decide on moves in a sane time. Please send your next move as fast as reasonably possible.
- Finally, please be nice to the server. It's there for your enjoyment.
- Not following these rules can lead to disqualification.
- In the event of a tie, both players have 1 win added to their total
Running the controller yourself
The source for the controller can be found here. There are 2 ways of running the controller:
- Competition mode (terminal)
- Setup with
- Run an all v all competition with each bot pitting it against every other.
- Setup with
- Testing mode (GUI)
- If you want to add your own answer to try it before posting, click
File -> Add manual answerand find the file and choose the language it's written in.
- If your language isn't present ping me and I'll try to get it installed on the server I will run it on (installation and running instructions would be nice too!)
- Choose 2 bots to pit against each other
- Watch the game...
- Requires python3
- get_answers requires bs4 and html5lib
- controller requires a way of running .sh files (MinGW on windows)
The bot with the most wins starting from
12/07/2016 (12th July)
14/07/2016 (14th July, couldn't work out how to run a bot) wins.
Help with the controller/gui can be asked in this chat room
This question has been in development since 2014 and was the most upvoted question in the sandbox. Special Thanks goes to Wander Nauta (original author and concept), PPCG Chat (comments and help) and anyone who commented in the sandbox post (more comments).