Rats named after ‘Doom’ creators are playing ‘Doom’

- Advertisement -

“At this point the rat must be thirsty for something to kill”

- Advertisement -

A neuroscientist has trained lab rats to play a custom version of the classic id Software shooter Apocalypse — and they were named after the three major creators of the original game: John Romero, John Carmack, and Tom Hall.

  • Read more: Hello, goodbye – how one video game changed my view of the whole genre
- Advertisement -

In their original use, writes neuroengineer Victor Toth that he set out to “train the rodents to play”. Doom II with full brain control”. This involved teaching “mice or rats to kill monsters and find exit points by decoding their motor intent and translating them into in-game actions.” Now, a year later, he has succeeded “Training the Rats” Kinda Play Play Apocalypse, (as seen pcgamer,

To do this, Toth built a custom “VR for Mice” rig that placed one of three mice—Romero, Carmack, or Tom—on a large floating trackball in front of a curved monitor, which provided the rat’s field of view. will fill While their body was held in place by a robotic arm, the rat would be free to ‘walk’ across the ball. Movement and action were encouraged by providing rats with sugar water provided by tubes.


Toth used a custom construction of the game that initially presented only rats with simple turns along straight corridors, before introducing more complex routes that included dead ends and random turns, which allowed players to play the game. ‘ ready to navigate. entry road map From Doom II,

As teaching rats to shoot was more complicated, Toth considered a method that would track the bites of rats—since the game’s shotgun position would line up with the rat’s physical orientation, roughly in line with its nose, A bite could be tracked as well. Ultimately however, a rearing proposal was decided upon, which required greater intention on the part of the rats.

Construction will begin by placing the Imps in the path of the rats, requiring them to be shot before being allowed to proceed. “At this stage, Imps cannot move or attack,” Toth writes. When a mouse successfully dispatched its enemy, “the demons will receive additional, juicy rewards after they die.”

Eventually, enemies were introduced on the go, but fear not, because “at this point, the rat must be thirsty for something to kill.”

For anyone concerned that Toth may be training an army of killer rats to take over the world, relax—the research has more benign applications. The electrodes can record the motor intentions of mice, while mapping them to their actions, leading to advances in prosthetics or human-computer interfaces, in turn improving lives for people with physical disabilities.


Toth working on teaching rats to play Apocalypse for a year now, and both original research And this latest developments Fascinating – if technical – to read, and could lead to major developments in the future.

In other news, Sega’s 4X strategy game mankind Already benefiting from an eager modding community, shortly after the release of the dedicated modding tool. Players have already created maps based on their preferences of World Warcraft’s Azeroth and the Elder Scrolls’ Tamriel.

- Advertisement -
Mail Us For  DMCA / Credit  Notice

Recent Articles

Stay on top - Get the daily news in your inbox

Related Stories