A Novel Approach to Solving Goal-Achieving Problems for Board Games
Keywords:Search And Optimization (SO)
AbstractGoal-achieving problems are puzzles that set up a specific situation with a clear objective. An example that is well-studied is the category of life-and-death (L&D) problems for Go, which helps players hone their skill of identifying region safety. Many previous methods like lambda search try null moves first, then derive so-called relevance zones (RZs), outside of which the opponent does not need to search. This paper first proposes a novel RZ-based approach, called the RZ-Based Search (RZS), to solving L&D problems for Go. RZS tries moves before determining whether they are null moves post-hoc. This means we do not need to rely on null move heuristics, resulting in a more elegant algorithm, so that it can also be seamlessly incorporated into AlphaZero's super-human level play in our solver. To repurpose AlphaZero for solving, we also propose a new training method called Faster to Life (FTL), which modifies AlphaZero to entice it to win more quickly. We use RZS and FTL to solve L&D problems on Go, namely solving 68 among 106 problems from a professional L&D book while a previous state-of-the-art program TSUMEGO-EXPLORER solves 11 only. Finally, we discuss that the approach is generic in the sense that RZS is applicable to solving many other goal-achieving problems for board games.
How to Cite
Shih, C.-C., Wu, T.-R., Wei, T. H., & Wu, I.-C. (2022). A Novel Approach to Solving Goal-Achieving Problems for Board Games. Proceedings of the AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence, 36(9), 10362-10369. https://doi.org/10.1609/aaai.v36i9.21278
AAAI Technical Track on Search and Optimization