On the use of virtual animals with artificial fear in virtual environments

Carlos Delgado-Mata, Jesus Ibanez Martinez, Simon Bee, Rocio Ruiz-Rodarte, Ruth Aylett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Virtual environments are often static and empty of life. One way of combating this problem is by populating the environment with autonomous agents that behave in a life-like manner. This paper discusses the incorporation of animals into such environments and the definition of appropriate behaviours that enrich the experience. Reynolds' flocking algorithm is extended to incorporate the effects of emotions, in this case fear. Deer are used as an example of flocking mammals and an autonomous agent architecture with an action selection mechanism incorporating the effects of emotion is linked to the extended flocking rules. Olfaction is used to transmit emotion between animals, through pheromones modelled as particles in a free expansion gas. Two experiments are reported that provide some insight into the impact of the various behaviours. The combination of reaction and naturalistic behaviours are concluded to be important in enhancing the virtual environment. © Ohmsha, Ltd. 2007.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)145-169
Number of pages25
JournalNew Generation Computing
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • Artificial animals
  • Emotional architecture
  • Virtual environments


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