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I am trying to implement NEAT for the snake game. My game logic is ready, which is working properly and NEAT configured. But even after 100 generations with 200 genomes per generation, the snakes perform very poorly. It barely ever eats more than 2 food. Below is the snip of the eval_genome function:

def eval_genome(genomes, config):
    clock = pygame.time.Clock()
    win = pygame.display.set_mode((WIN_WIDTH, WIN_HEIGHT))
    for genome_id, g in genomes:
        net = neat.nn.FeedForwardNetwork.create(g, config)
        g.fitness = 0
        snake = Snake()
        food = Food(snake.body)
        run = True
        UP = DOWN = RIGHT = LEFT = MOVE_SNAKE = False
        moveToFood = 0
        score = 0
        moveCount = 0
        while run:
            pygame.time.delay(50)
            clock.tick_busy_loop(10)
            for event in pygame.event.get():
                if event.type == pygame.QUIT:
                    run = False
            snakeHeadX = snake.body[0]['x']
            snakeHeadY = snake.body[0]['y']
            snakeTailX = snake.body[len(snake.body)-1]['x']
            snakeTailY = snake.body[len(snake.body)-1]['y']
            snakeLength = len(snake.body)
            snakeHeadBottomDist = WIN_HEIGHT - snakeHeadY - STEP
            snakeHeadRightDist = WIN_WIDTH - snakeHeadX - STEP
            foodBottomDist = WIN_HEIGHT - food.y - STEP
            foodRightDist = WIN_WIDTH - food.x - STEP
            snakeFoodDistEuclidean = math.sqrt((snakeHeadX - food.x)**2 + (snakeHeadY - food.y)**2)
            snakeFoodDistManhattan = abs(snakeHeadX - food.x) + abs(snakeHeadY - food.y)
            viewDirections = snake.checkDirections(food, UP, DOWN, LEFT, RIGHT)
            deltaFoodDist = snakeFoodDistEuclidean

            outputs = net.activate((snakeHeadX, snakeHeadY, snakeHeadBottomDist, snakeHeadRightDist, snakeTailX, snakeTailY, snakeLength, moveCount, moveToFood, food.x, food.y, foodBottomDist, foodRightDist, snakeFoodDistEuclidean, snakeFoodDistManhattan, viewDirections[0], viewDirections[1], viewDirections[2], viewDirections[3], viewDirections[4], viewDirections[5], viewDirections[6], viewDirections[7], deltaFoodDist))

            if (outputs[0] == max(outputs) and not DOWN):
                snake.setDir(0,-1)
                UP = True
                LEFT = False
                RIGHT = False
                MOVE_SNAKE = True
            elif (outputs[1] == max(outputs) and not UP):
                snake.setDir(0,1)
                DOWN = True
                LEFT = False
                RIGHT = False
                MOVE_SNAKE = True
            elif (outputs[2] == max(outputs) and not RIGHT):
                snake.setDir(-1,0)
                LEFT = True
                UP = False
                DOWN = False
                MOVE_SNAKE = True
            elif (outputs[3] == max(outputs) and not LEFT):
                snake.setDir(1,0)
                RIGHT = True
                UP = False
                DOWN = False
                MOVE_SNAKE = True
            elif (not MOVE_SNAKE):
                if (outputs[0] == max(outputs)):
                    snake.setDir(0,-1)
                    UP = True
                    MOVE_SNAKE = True
                elif (outputs[1] == max(outputs)):
                    snake.setDir(0,1)
                    DOWN = True
                    MOVE_SNAKE = True
                elif (outputs[2] == max(outputs)):
                    snake.setDir(-1,0)
                    LEFT = True
                    MOVE_SNAKE = True
                elif (outputs[3] == max(outputs)):
                    snake.setDir(1,0)
                    RIGHT = True
                    MOVE_SNAKE = True  

            win.fill((0, 0, 0))
            food.showFood(win)
            if(MOVE_SNAKE):
                snake.update()
                newSnakeHeadX = snake.body[0]['x']
                newSnakeHeadY = snake.body[0]['y']
                newFoodDist = math.sqrt((newSnakeHeadX - food.x)**2 + (newSnakeHeadY - food.y)**2)
                deltaFoodDist = newFoodDist - snakeFoodDistEuclidean
                moveCount += 1
                if (newFoodDist <= snakeFoodDistEuclidean):
                    g.fitness += 1
                else:
                    g.fitness -= 10
            snake.show(win)
            if(snake.collision()):
                if score != 0:
                    print('FINAL SCORE IS: '+ str(score))
                g.fitness -= 50
                break

            if(snake.eat(food,win)):
                g.fitness += 15
                score += 1
                if score == 1 :
                    moveToFood = moveCount
                    # foodEatenMove = pygame.time.get_ticks()/1000
                else:
                    moveToFood = moveCount - moveToFood
                food.foodLocation(snake.body)
                food.showFood(win)

Additionally, I am putting the definition of the checkDirections function. What it does is returns an array of size 8 corresponding to 8 directions where each value can be either 0 (not food or body), 1(food found but no body), 3(body found but no food), or 4(both body and food found).

def checkDirections(self, food, up, down, left, right):
        '''
        x+STEP, y-STEP
        x+STEP, y+STEP
        x-STEP, y-STEP
        x-STEP, y+STEP
        x+STEP, y
        x, y-STEP
        x, y+STEP
        x-STEP, y
        '''
        view = []
        x = self.xdir
        y = self.ydir

        view.append(self.check(x, y, STEP, -STEP, food.x, food.y))
        view.append(self.check(x, y, STEP, STEP, food.x, food.y))
        view.append(self.check(x, y, -STEP, -STEP, food.x, food.y))
        view.append(self.check(x, y, -STEP, STEP, food.x, food.y))
        view.append(self.check(x, y, STEP, 0, food.x, food.y))
        view.append(self.check(x, y, 0, -STEP, food.x, food.y))
        view.append(self.check(x, y, 0, STEP, food.x, food.y))
        view.append(self.check(x, y, -STEP, 0, food.x, food.y))

        if up == True:
            view[6] = -999
        elif down == True:
            view[5] = -999
        elif left == True:
            view[4] == -999
        elif right == True:
            view[7] == -999        
        return view

    def check(self, x, y, xIncrement, yIncrement, foodX, foodY):
        value = 0
        foodFound = False
        bodyFound = False
        while (x >= 0 and x <= WIN_WIDTH and y >= 0 and y <= WIN_HEIGHT):
            x += xIncrement
            y += yIncrement
            if (not foodFound):
                if (foodX == x and foodY == y):
                    foodFound = True
            if (not bodyFound):
                for i in range(1, len(self.body)):
                    if ((x == self.body[i]['x']) and (y == self.body[i]['y'])):
                        bodyFound = True
            if (not bodyFound and not foodFound):
                value = 0
            elif (not bodyFound and foodFound):
                value = 1
            elif (bodyFound and not foodFound):
                value = 2
            else:
                value = 3
        return value

I am using sigmoid as the activation function. Although I have tried with tanh and relu as well with no luck. Below is the NEAT config file that I am using:

[NEAT]
fitness_criterion     = max
fitness_threshold     = 10000
pop_size              = 200
reset_on_extinction   = False

[DefaultGenome]
# node activation options
activation_default      = sigmoid
activation_mutate_rate  = 0.0
activation_options      = sigmoid

# node aggregation options
aggregation_default     = sum
aggregation_mutate_rate = 0.0
aggregation_options     = sum

# node bias options
bias_init_mean          = 0.0
bias_init_stdev         = 1.0
# was 30 max and -30 for min bias
bias_max_value          = 100.0
bias_min_value          = -100.0
bias_mutate_power       = 0.5
bias_mutate_rate        = 0.7
bias_replace_rate       = 0.3

# genome compatibility options
compatibility_disjoint_coefficient = 1.0
compatibility_weight_coefficient   = 0.5

# connection add/remove rates
conn_add_prob           = 0.8
conn_delete_prob        = 0.56

# connection enable options
enabled_default         = True
# below was 0.01
enabled_mutate_rate     = 0.3

feed_forward            = True
initial_connection      = full

# node add/remove rates
node_add_prob           = 0.7
node_delete_prob        = 0.4

# network parameters
num_hidden              = 0
num_inputs              = 24
num_outputs             = 4

# node response options
response_init_mean      = 1.0
response_init_stdev     = 0.0
response_max_value      = 30.0
response_min_value      = -30.0
response_mutate_power   = 0.0
response_mutate_rate    = 0.0
response_replace_rate   = 0.0

# connection weight options
weight_init_mean        = 0.0
weight_init_stdev       = 1.0
weight_max_value        = 30
weight_min_value        = -30
weight_mutate_power     = 0.5
weight_mutate_rate      = 0.8
weight_replace_rate     = 0.1

[DefaultSpeciesSet]
compatibility_threshold = 3.0

[DefaultStagnation]
species_fitness_func = max
max_stagnation       = 20
species_elitism      = 2

[DefaultReproduction]
elitism            = 2
survival_threshold = 0.2

If anyone has any insights or thoughts that could help improve the performance of the snake AI, please let me know.

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As I can see, at each frame, you're giving 1 fitness if the snake gets closer to the food, and you remove 10 fitness if it gets away from the food. Am I right? Also, you're removing 50 fitness when a snake dies, and giving 15 fitness when it eats a food?

Try to remove the -10 fitness at each frame where the snake gets away from food, it's not necessary. Not getting fitness is also a penalty, you don't need to exaggerate the penalty as it's making your -50 fitness being negligible. Because of that, dying quickly is better than surviving for 6 frames without getting closer to the food. So the first strategy your AIs are going to find is spinning around to die quickly (because surviving is bad for them). This is not what you want.

But these are only assumptions, try it, and tell me if it works!

| improve this answer | |
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  • $\begingroup$ Thank you.. i will try this and get back to you... $\endgroup$ – Ayan Chowdhury Apr 4 at 8:29

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