Video Game Item Hauls…Using Math!

Pokemon Game Maps from all Pokemon video game locations


While it’s obvious that math is in all video games, between pixel designs and character stats, it’s also used when finding the best way to grab all of those pesky yet useful hidden items around a game map. While reading this link:, the Traveling Salesman Problem algorithm was found to be the best way to help players attain items that are scattered around games such as Pokemon, Legend of Zelda, and the game that was used in the experiment done in the article, Far Cry 3. Through using the algorithm, the best routes can be found, either based on time or distance, while also taking into account cut-scenes, obstacles such as drop-offs and climbing, and more video-game attributes that may get int the way of finding the fastest paths.

I found this to be really interesting, even if I’m not one for going on item hauls when I play video games. There are many people called “speed players” who are dedicated to cutting every corner to find the fastest ways to play their favorite games. Knowing just how rapid-fire the play, going into the minutes-range rather than finishing games in hours, they most likely use this algorithm to perfect their strategy. For anyone who likes to play on their XBox or Nintendo DS, do your math!

One Reply to “Video Game Item Hauls…Using Math!”

  1. This is pretty cool. I personally do not enjoy playing video games, but a lot of my friends do. I just recently learned that a ton of people use these mathematical equations to win games. There are apparently also a ton of people that make videos to show people how to use these tactics. I thought it was pretty cool that people try and help others win games and learn these tactics as well, rather than just keeping the information for themselves. There are tons of kids, teens, and adults that absolutely love playing video games; it would be awesome if while they played they could implement mathematical equations to advance in games. This way they would be learning while doing something they love. I used to look at video games in a totally different light, but it could be a really cool way for teachers to get young students that love gaming but hate math to start using more math and to help them learn more. I am all about advancing education and using every tool possible to get people thinking and learning more (so we can advance society), so I wonder if video games could be used as a learning technique for some students that just do not like their standard learning environment.

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