Evolution of Combined Arms Tactics in Heterogeneous Multi-Agent Teams

Robert J. Wilson
David W. King, Air Force Institute of Technology
Gilbert L. Peterson, Air Force Institute of Technology

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. (CC BY 4)


Multi-agent systems research is concerned with the emergence of system-level behaviors from relatively simple agent interactions. Multi-agent systems research to date is primarily concerned with systems of homogeneous agents, with member agents both physically and behaviorally identical. Systems of heterogeneous agents with differing physical or behavioral characteristics may be able to accomplish tasks more efficiently than homogeneous teams, via cooperation between mutually complementary agent types. In this article, we compare the performance of homogeneous and heterogeneous teams in combined arms situations. Combined arms theory proposes that the application of heterogeneous forces, en masse, can generate effects far greater than outcomes achieved by homogeneous forces or the serial use of individual arms. Results from experiments show that combined arms tactics can emerge from simple agent interactions.