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> Home > The Corewar Newsletters > Core Warrior > Issue #1

Issue 45                                                   September 30, 1996
______________________________________________________________________________
Core Warrior is a weekly newsletter promoting the game of corewar.  Emphasis
is placed on the most active hills--currently the '94 draft hill and the
beginner hill.  Coverage will follow where ever the action is.  If you have
no clue what I'm talking about then check out these five-star internet locals
for more information:

FAQs are available by anonymous FTP from rtfm.mit.edu as
pub/usenet/news.answers/games/corewar-faq.Z
FTP site is: ftp.csua.berkeley.edu /pub/corewar
Web pages are at: (Please note new Stormking's address)
http://www.koth.org/                            ;Stormking
http://www.ecst.csuchico.edu/~pizza/koth        ;Pizza
http://pauillac.inria.fr/~doligez/corewar/      ;Planar

Newbies should check the stormking page for the FAQ, language specification,
guides, and tutorials.  Post questions to rec.games.corewar.  All new players
are infinitely welcome!

If ftp.csua.berkeley.edu is unreachable, you can download pMARS at:
Terry's web page--http://www.infi.net/~wtnewton/corewar/
Planar ftp site--ftp://ftp.inria.fr/INRIA/Projects/para/doligez/cw/pmars
Fechter ftp site--ftp://members.aol.com/ofechner/corewar

A collection of Bezzi's hints in the first issues is available at:
ftp://ftp.volftp.vol.it/pub/pc/msdos/games/solutions/bbhints.zip
______________________________________________________________________________
Greetings.

A good week for corewar.  There were over a 100 challenges for the the '94
draft hill, testing and otherwise.  Looks like weekly ages of under 20 are
going to be pretty standard.  It's going to be monumentally difficult to
enter the hall of fame.  Bezzi mentioned last issue that Steven Morrell was
offering to recalculate the HOF by eliminating artificial aging, but we need
to specify exactly how to do this.  Since I haven't seen much discussion on
this in the newsgroup, maybe Morrell should use his best judgement and
present us with the 'new' hall of fame.  There will probably be lots of 
discussion as soon as one of us sees our warrior drop ten places!  Speak now
or forever hold your peace (piece?).

--M R Bremer
______________________________________________________________________________
Current Status of the Internet Pizza Server ICWS '94 Draft Hill:

Hill Specs:
   coresize: 8000
   max. processes: 8000
   duration: after 80,000 cycles, a tie is declared.
   max. entry length: 100
   minimum distance: 100
   rounds fought: 200
   instruction set: ICWS '94 Draft

The current ICWS '94 Draft hill:
 #   %W /  %L /  %T                       Name               Author Score  Age
 1  37.4/ 19.4/ 43.2                    Gigolo   Core Warrior staff 155.5   14
 2  42.6/ 34.1/ 23.2       Damage Incorporated        Anton Marsden 151.1    1
 3  35.5/ 21.1/ 43.4           unrequited love                kafka 149.8   58
 4  40.5/ 31.8/ 27.6                CC Paper 2                Franz 149.2   13
 5  42.1/ 39.6/ 18.3                    Blur 2        Anton Marsden 144.6  137
 6  31.4/ 18.6/ 50.0                   Rosebud                Beppe 144.1  811
 7  40.3/ 38.6/ 21.1                     Probe        Anton Marsden 142.1  138
 8  40.4/ 39.6/ 20.0                 Goldfinch              P.Kline 141.2   79
 9  36.9/ 33.2/ 29.9                     Frogz                Franz 140.5   18
10  26.7/ 14.5/ 58.8      Return Of The Jedimp             John K W 138.8  126
11  25.7/ 12.9/ 61.3                    ompega       Steven Morrell 138.5  253
12  41.7/ 45.8/ 12.5                  Q^2 Miro         Anders Ivner 137.7  188
13  29.2/ 20.7/ 50.2               Impish v0.1          Ian Oversby 137.7   15
14  32.7/ 28.1/ 39.2              Simple v0.4b          Ian Oversby 137.4   89
15  37.6/ 38.5/ 23.9                      Test        Anton Marsden 136.7   48
16  25.0/ 13.4/ 61.7          Implication v0.3          Ian Oversby 136.6    6
17  32.1/ 29.1/ 38.8               Falcon v0.3          Ian Oversby 135.0   43
18  39.6/ 44.9/ 15.5              Taking Names              P.Kline 134.4    3
19  36.7/ 39.8/ 23.6                  mrb-test           m r bremer 133.6   44
20  36.2/ 38.9/ 24.9               Inferno 2.4       Philip Kendall 133.5   16
21  36.5/ 39.7/ 23.8          Instant Wolf 3.4                Edgar 133.2   21
22  34.7/ 36.7/ 28.6                T.N.T. pro    Maurizio Vittuari 132.7  856
23  38.0/ 43.4/ 18.5                 myVamp5.5             Paulsson 132.6   28
24  31.7/ 31.6/ 36.7        Jack in the box II          Beppe Bezzi 131.9  495
25  26.8/ 24.1/ 49.1                Papyrus 13           Justin Kao 129.6    2

Weekly age: 13 ( 15 last issue, 9 the month before ) more than 100 tests
New warriors: 8  Turnover/age rate 53%
Average age:   140 ( 146 last issue, 174 the week before )
Average score: 140 ( 142 last issue, 136 the week before )
The top 25 warriors are represented by 16 authors:  Marsden and Oversby
with 4; Franz and Bezzi with 2; singles for everyone else.

Testing, testing, testing . . . over 100 tests this week.  Unfortunately for
some authors (the gigolos), a test warrior can score a lot higher than the
real warrior.  You have been warned.  Franz was probably the biggest tester 
this week, followed by JKW and Marsden.

Q^2 scans to bomber/imps seem to be the play of the day, but CC Paper 2 is
bucking the trend.  40% wins is pretty good for a replicator.  The power of
the qscan is amazing.

Kline was testing some new warriors on the hill this week:  Harmony III and
a table based switcher--Yogi's replacement most likely.  Neither have climbed
too far up the hill by Paul has a way of chipping at a problem.

Damage Incorporated makes a strong showing, debuting in the second spot.  The
secret to its success?  Qscan -> bomber.  Try it; You'll like it.
______________________________________________________________________________
94 - What's New

 #   %W /  %L /  %T                       Name               Author Score  Age
 2  42.1/ 31.4/ 26.5                CC Paper 2                Franz 152.8    1
14  20.5/ 12.2/ 67.3          Implication v0.3          Ian Oversby 128.9    1
24  37.0/ 48.3/ 14.7              Taking Names              P.Kline 125.8    1
24  25.2/ 24.5/ 50.4                Papyrus 13           Justin Kao 125.9    1
 2  42.6/ 34.1/ 23.2       Damage Incorporated        Anton Marsden 151.1    1
______________________________________________________________________________
94 - What's No More

 #   %W /  %L /  %T                       Name               Author Score  Age
26   1.7/  1.9/  0.4                  CC Paper                Franz   5.6    5
26  35.6/ 45.0/ 19.4          BackFromVacation                Edgar 126.3   19
26   0.3/  0.3/  3.4              Flimsy v0.5c          Ian Oversby   4.3   14
26  31.4/ 40.6/ 28.0                 Yogi Bear              P.Kline 122.3  341
26  35.8/ 47.7/ 16.4           Earthquake v0.2         Bjoern & Ian 123.9   95

With the loss of Yogi Bear this week, and Twister and Armory last week,
average age of the hill is heading down and will probably never recover as
old pre-test warrior are pushed off.
______________________________________________________________________________
94 - What's Old

 #   %W /  %L /  %T                       Name               Author Score  Age
21  36.1/ 39.0/ 24.9                T.N.T. pro    Maurizio Vittuari 133.2  856
 9  31.5/ 19.7/ 48.8                   Rosebud                Beppe 143.2  811
17  33.8/ 30.3/ 35.9        Jack in the box II          Beppe Bezzi 137.2  495
16  25.1/ 12.6/ 62.3                    ompega       Steven Morrell 137.6  253
______________________________________________________________________________
HALL OF FAME
* means the warrior is still active.

Pos    Name                  Author          Age     Strategy
 1  Thermite II            Robert Macrae     2262    Qscan -> bomber
 2  Impfinity v4g1         Planar            1993    Stone/ imp
 3  Jack in the box        Beppe Bezzi       1620    P-warrior
 4  Tornado 3.0            Beppe Bezzi       1567    Bomber
 5  Torch t18              P.Kline           1539    Bomber
 6  Chameleon              Myer R Bremer     1437    P-warrior
 7  Frontwards v2          Steven Morrell    1420    One shot scanner
 8  Evol Cap 6.6           John Wilkinson    1299    Imp / stone
 9  quiz                   Schitzo           1262    Scanner/ bomber
10  T.N.T.                 Maurizio Vittuari 1204    Bomber
11  Grilled Octopus v0.5   David Boeren      1154    P-warrior
12  Hazy Shade II          John Wilkinson    1102    P-warrior
13  Stepping Stone         Kurt Franke       1049    Qscan -> Vampire
14  Iron Gate 1.5          Wayne Sheppard     926    CMP scanner
15  Agony II               Stefan Strack      912    CMP scanner
16  Barrage                Anton Marsden      876    Qscan -> replicator
17  Blue Funk              Steven Morrell     869    Stone/ imp
18  T.N.T. pro             Maurizio Vittuari  856 *  Bomber
19  Flurry                 Anton Marsden      835    Qscan -> pwarrior
21  Rosebud                Beppe Bezzi        811 *  Stone/ imp
20  Thermite 1.0           Robert Macrae      802    Qscan -> bomber
22  Blue Funk 3            Steven Morrell     766    Stone/ imp
23  Night Train            Karl Lewin         755    Replicator
24  Mirage 1.5             Anton Marsden      736    Scanner/ bomber
25  Blizzard               Anton Marsden      713    Qscan -> replicator

Rosebud climbs one rank.
______________________________________________________________________________
Current Status of the Internet Pizza Server Beginner's Hill:

Hill Specs:
   coresize: 8000
  max. processes: 8000
   duration: after 80,000 cycles, a tie is declared.
max. entry length: 100
 minimum distance: 100
    maximum age: At age 100, warriors are retired.
   rounds fought: 200
  instruction set: ICWS '94 Draft

The current Beginner hill:
 #   %W /  %L /  %T                       Name               Author Score  Age
 1  51.2/ 36.5/ 12.3          nSplit Lite v1.2                 shar 165.8   30
 2  50.1/ 38.3/ 11.6                 Throw Rug             J E Long 161.9   66
 3  41.1/ 25.8/ 33.1                  Sapphire       Philip Kendall 156.5    1
 4  45.8/ 37.8/ 16.4          Velveeta Shift-I                 shar 153.8   42
 5  46.9/ 40.7/ 12.4       Violent Micro v0.4d             basehead 153.0   80
 6  39.3/ 26.7/ 34.0                 Gravel 11           Justin Kao 151.9    3
 7  41.5/ 33.5/ 25.0           Versatility 1.6                 Ross 149.4   78
 8  43.5/ 38.5/ 18.0               Heretic 1.0       Philip Kendall 148.5   91
 9  43.8/ 39.2/ 17.0             Flamberge 9.0        Matt Lewinski 148.4    2
10  41.6/ 35.2/ 23.2                Black v0.1           Justin Kao 147.9   81
11  43.6/ 39.6/ 16.8           BloodSucker 1.0       Philip Kendall 147.7   90
12  36.9/ 26.7/ 36.4                Papyrus 13           Justin Kao 147.1    4
13  38.8/ 30.8/ 30.4              FastScan 1.0       Philip Kendall 146.8   22
14  45.4/ 45.0/  9.6                  Hawk 1.0       Philip Kendall 145.8   63
15  42.9/ 40.8/ 16.3                  Eagle.b1       Philip Kendall 144.9    7
16  36.7/ 28.5/ 34.8                 Papyrus 6           Justin Kao 144.9   97
17  44.0/ 43.6/ 12.4   Neverending Brutality 7                Franz 144.3   57
18  43.3/ 44.4/ 12.3               Conquest II           Zul Nadzri 142.1   23
19  39.0/ 37.4/ 23.7               Inferno 2.3       Philip Kendall 140.6   67
20  37.1/ 38.4/ 24.5                  murder.p             harleyQ2 135.9   24
21  35.1/ 34.5/ 30.4           Hammermill v2.4        Matt Lewinski 135.8   38
22  35.0/ 34.4/ 30.6                      Frog                Franz 135.5   44
23  35.6/ 38.5/ 25.8                       RSB             harleyQ2 132.7   51
24  37.5/ 42.3/ 20.2             Vampirism 1.4       Philip Kendall 132.6   84
25  37.6/ 55.7/  6.7                    Rex II                Franz 119.4    6

Top scores plunge from the 170+ the top three warriors had last week.  With
the loss of the successful Tsunami, you would think some warriors would get
big boosts to their scores.  But new programs by Kendall, Kao, and Lewinski
have only made the hill more competitive.
______________________________________________________________________________
The Hint
Qscan bombing engines
by M R Bremer

Q^2 scans are optimized to detect the opposing warrior's footprint as quickly
as possible.  But a quick detect and decode does little if your bombing 
methodology is flawed.  I made that mistake with mrb-test (which will never
have a real name because it doesn't deserve one).  Once the qscan finds the
location, I subtract 100 and bomb through the scan to location+100.  Pretty
dumb, huh?  The highest probability of enemy code should lie close to the 
originally scanned location.  So here are some thoughts on bombing engines
that should be much more successful.

Bomb forward from target-CONSTANT and target:
qbomb   dat     1, -CONSTANT
...
loop    mov.i   qbomb, @1
	mov.i   qbomb, @target        <-- detected location
	add.ab  #x, -1
	djn.b   loop, #10

Everything following the target gets bombed quickly.  However, code 
immediately above will be hit much more slowly.  If your qscan flows forward 
through core in small increments, then this will be less of a problem.
Becuase a smaller increment qscan scanning forward in core should find the
'top' of the enemy's code.  

Bomb forward and backwards from target:
qbomb   dat     -step, step
found   dat     x, x+step

;this one bombs x and x+step then x-step and x+2*step ...
...
loop    mov     qbomb, @found
	mov     qbomb, *found
	add.f   qbomb, found
	djn.b   loop, #10

This code is slower to start up because of the extra add statement needed to
set up the operands of 'found' instruction.

Going faster is possible using a tornado engine, but we'll lose symmetry.
Which may not be too bad since instructions above the target are arguably
worth 'less' than instructions below it.  This code snippet bombs down in
core at .4c and up at .2c.  We could even modify this code for incendiary
bombing forward in core.

bomb    dat x, step
incr    dat -step, 2*step


start   mov bomb, @ptr
	mov bomb, *ptr
ptr     mov -step, @step
	add incr, -1
	djn -5, #10
______________________________________________________________________________
Questions?  Concerns?  Comments?  Complaints?  Mail them to people who care.
authors: Beppe Bezzi <bezzi@nemo.it> or Myer Bremer <bremermr@ecn.purdue.edu>
or Anton Marsden <amarsden@comp.vuw.ac.nz>
2002-2005 corewar.info. Logo C. Schmidt