Regardless tens of hours of training, the recently built air hockey-playing robot, developed by researchers at Chiba University's Namiki Lab, will beat you! The structure of the installment includes a regular air hockey table and a robot, controlled by an external PC. The setup is equipped with two high speed cameras capable of capturing motion at 500 frames per second.  

It’s not about the brute force, but about the strategy the robot is using while playing, leaving no single chance for you to win the game! As for the robot itself, it’s a Barrett Technology product and is programmed to think strategically. There are two strategies the robot uses – one is a short term, follows a simple motion of the puck and makes a decision to do nothing, defend the goal, or hit the puck. 

As for the second strategy, it’s a long term one – the robot is able to detect patterns of player behavior and to determine whether the counter-play is passive and defensive, or more aggressive and offensive. With this said, the robot chooses its playing strategy based on its counterpart’s style, but not the way you expect it - if a player is aggressive, the robot doesn’t focus on defense – it gets aggressive in response, forcing the player to change strategies in order to try and outplay the robot!

Despite the fact that no single player has beaten the robot so far, all of them reported that this type of strategic adaptation made the game more fun. If you still decide to compete with the unbeatable robot, we suggest you to try our AIR HOCKEY for Windows Phone  first. With the Artificial Intelligence that does not cheat, your virtual counterpart will play with the same physical parameters as a human player would do, while using more smart behavior (especially on the 4th level). This will definitely increase the odds of defeating the Air Hockey robot in your favor! 

We have embedded the video of the gameplay below, so check it and do not hesitate to voice up in the comments.