University of Malta

Study-Unit Description
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TITLE Foundations of Game AI

LEVEL 02 - Years 2, 3 in Modular Undergraduate Course


DEPARTMENT Artificial Intelligence

DESCRIPTION The Foundations of Game AI (FGAI) unit is aimed at giving students:The use of AI in Games and why it is becoming so important in that industry.

How to move virtual characters through different landscapes in a smart way (Collision avoidance, steering, etc.)

Pathfinding (Dijkstra, A*, Open worlds, etc.)

Decision making (State Machines, Fuzzy Logic, etc.)

Tactical and Strategic AI.The unit will be supplemented with a tutorial on basic game programming using a game engine (Such as Unity 3D, XNA or any other engine). The unit will not only introduce the concepts but it will also expose students to real world situations where they are used and they will be requested to implement such techniques. At the end of the module, students will be capable of creating a game for various platforms.

Study-unit Aims:

The study-unit aims to:
• Introduce the designing of a good game and taking into considerations things such as social interaction etc.;
• Give an overview of the whole process and understand how it works;
• Make use of a real game development tools in order to integrate the Artificial Intelligence techniques covered during the course.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

• Describe how to design a good game;
• Apply such a technology to other application areas;
• Explain the implications and trade-offs of constructing a complex AI System for games;
• Explain how to implement advanced AI techniques in games.

2. Skills:
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

• Transfer the newly acquired knowledge to other situations;
• Give practical examples pf how advanced AI techniques can be used in game development;
• Design a good game which can be implemented on different platforms.


• J Schell, The Art of Game Design: A book of lenses (2008), Morgan Kaufmann, ISBN 0123694965
• R Koster, A Theory of Fun for Game Design (2004), Paraglyph Press, ISBN 1932111972
• A Reed, Learning XNA 4.0: Game Development for the PC, Xbox 360, and Windows Phone 7 (2010), O'Reilly Media, ISBN 1449394620
• P Zirkle and J Hogue, iPhone Game Development: Developing 2D & 3D games in Objective-C (2009), O'Reilly Media, ISBN 0596159854
• V Silva, Pro Android Games (2009), Apress, ISBN 1430226471
• M Buckland, Programming Game AI by Example (2004), Jones & Bartlett Publishers, ISBN 1556220782
• Various online resources


STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture, Laboratory Session and Tutorial

Assessment Component/s Resit Availability Weighting
Project Yes 100%


The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2017/8, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.
Study-unit Registration Forms 2017/8


For Undergraduate (Day) and Postgraduate students.


Faculty of ICT Timetables


ICT Timetables are available from Here.

Health and Safety Regulations for Laboratories Form

The Faculty of ICT Health and Safety Regulations for Laboratories form can be found here


13th Edition of EY’s Annual Attractiveness Event




The 13th Edition of EY’s Annual Attractiveness event will be held on 25th October 2017 at the InterContinental Hotel,

St. Julians. It is titled "Thinking without the box: disruption, technology and FDI".


The  students' invitation and more information can be found here

The conference programme can be found here



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