Combinatorial Game Design: Combinatorial games are the most fundamental, minimizing elements to produce astonishing, and ideally, effectively infinite variation. Combinatorial methods can be employed to create new games and to strengthen any type of existing game with minimum expenditure of resources. Economic games are a specialty, but we consult on all types of engagement-based media. Combinatorial design is especially useful in construction of narratives and sims. We consult pro-bono on open-source and socially beneficial games and projects.
Adaptive Artificial Intelligence: We strive to architect not just strong, but satisfying AI, with emphasis on quality of experience for the human participant. This involves adapting AI strength to player skill, and providing variation in replay. Max AI strength is non-optimal from a mass engagement standpoint, where the value of the game to the casual user is fun. Our team is currently focused on general, “respectably weak” AI with minimal data and trivial processing requirements, which constitute a form of cellular automata applied in a low-resource, partisan context.
Applied Semiotics: Application of metaphors to logical constructs in a mathematical context is fundamental to game design, as games are representations. In the same manner, mathematics and logic form the framework for aesthetic structures. This is most easily understood in music, but is equally applicable in literary, visual, and interactive mediums. Combinatorics are naturally applied to concepts and symbols to generate insight, but high value insights require breadth of knowledge and depth of understanding. Our team has the the interdisciplinary background to apply these techniques in an array of creative, procedural contexts.