Mechanic miner: Reflection-driven game mechanic discovery and level design

Michael Cook, Simon Colton, Azalea Raad, Jeremy Gow

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperResearchpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


We introduce Mechanic Miner, an evolutionary system for discovering simple two-state game mechanics for puzzle platform games. We demonstrate how a reflection-driven generation technique can use a simulation of gameplay to select good mechanics, and how the simulation-driven process can be inverted to produce challenging levels specific to a generated mechanic. We give examples of levels and mechanics generated by the system, summarise a small pilot study conducted with example levels and mechanics, and point to further applications of the technique, including applications to automated game design.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationApplications of Evolutionary Computation - 16th European Conference, EvoApplications 2013, Proceedings
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 5 Apr 2013
Event16th European Conference on Applications of Evolutionary Computation, EvoApplications 2013 - Vienna, Austria
Duration: 3 Apr 20135 Apr 2013

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume7835 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Conference16th European Conference on Applications of Evolutionary Computation, EvoApplications 2013


  • automated game design
  • game mechanics
  • platform games

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