Riot Simulator Game Wonders What Cops Feel

March 21, 2014 | Marina Galperina

While the 8-bit “pick your perspective” RIOT game for iOS and Android is still being developed, the updates are getting surreal. What is RIOT about?

As the economical crisis advances, the discontent of an entire population cannot help but outburst in Riots, where the sounds of many voices get heard at once… What is that triggers such a strife? What does a cop feel during the conflict? In “Riot”, the player will experience both sides of a fight in which there is no such thing as “victory” or “defeat”.

Creative Applications discusses one of the more complex details in developing of the game:

Part of the challenge in this game is to control one of the sides in the conflict. While the rioters can be dragged around and instigated to be more peaceful or violent, policemen need to follow specific commands given by the player to execute their actions, depending on the unit type.

We first heard of RIOT last year and since then, its developers successfully funded an IndieGoGo campaign enabling them “to travel, document and experience live riots going on in Italy, Greece, Egypt and possibly many other places around the world (next to developing the game, buying software and hardware for development and testing).” Since then, Ukraine erupted in protests and unrest and chased off their corrupt president, while Putin used the opportunity to invade and annex Ukraine’s Crimea.

But the most interesting aspect is the AI design. In the latest update, the developers are doing some soul searching, that is, psychologically empathizing with protestors and police for their realistic, accurate and nuanced characters.

We focused most of our attention into making a realistic artificial intelligence. Both policemen and rioters have the same psychological skeleton, meaning that anyone can potentially end up doing anything depending on the surrounding circumstances. Of course, rebels are much more “free” to do whatever they want, while policemen are more strainded to their rules and orders. This doesn’t mean though that a policeman can’t decide out of the bloom to pick up a rock and throw it to someone because he’s angry at him or her for some reason.

Oh, and hey guys, if want to talk to someone with first-hand experience in Egypt’s conflict zones, ANIMAL’s Aymann Ismail has done all the things these little journobros are doing, at the same time. (Images: RiotGame.com)