Introducing Halite: Our Limited Release AI Challenge

Posted on November 2, 2016
Halite banner

Halite is a artificial intelligence programming challenge where players control a bot using the programming language of their choice.

We’re excited to announce the public launch of Halite, a programming game where you build smart bots that battle head to head with the goal of taking over the largest share of a virtual grid. Bots use their strength to gain territory, and their territory to gain strength—outmaneuvering opponents based on the relative sophistication of their code.

The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought

Sun Tzu

Halite is designed for all levels of coding enthusiasts—from high school students to senior engineers. The simplest Halite bot requires only 10 lines of code; you can get as advanced as you’d like from there. And you may find yourself surprised: we’ve learned from thousands of hours of gameplay that it’s not always the most complicated algorithm that wins. Creativity and insight are highly rewarded! So code well—your bot’s fate depends on it.

Halite was developed by two of our summer interns to be played within Two Sigma, but now it’s your turn to join the battle. You’ll be able to see how your bot stacks up against its adversaries on the global leaderboard. Or, keep the competition local using private leaderboards, which allow schools, clubs, groups—perhaps even autonomous robot guilds?—to see how they stack up against their peers. Let the competition begin, and may the best bot win!

To help facilitate the external launch, Two Sigma partnered with Cornell Tech, a leader in graduate tech education known for its innovative, hands-on approach to bridging academia and industry. During the three-month competition, Cornell Tech will handle Halite’s community management and provide ongoing game support.  Halite is free and the code is licensed as open-source.