Game of Drones – Competition at NeurIPS 2019

Region: Global

Registration for the contest has now closed.

Competition: Dec. 14th, 2019
NeurIPS 2019
Vancouver, B.C. Canada

Useful Links

Race Environments & Guidelines (opens in new tab)
*New* S (opens in new tab)ubmission Instructions (opens in new tab)
*New* Leaderboard (opens in new tab)
AirSim (opens in new tab)

Push the boundaries of competitive autonomous systems

Game of Drones is a NeurIPS 2019 competition (opens in new tab) with the goal to push the boundary of building competitive autonomous systems through head-to-head drone races.

Game of Drones animation

The teams will race a quadrotor drone in simulation through a series of gates against an opponent. There will be two drones on the same track at the same time that are allowed to block each other. The goal is to finish the race quicker than the opponent.

The competition uses AirSim (opens in new tab), which is an open-sourced simulation platform for robots. AirSim (opens in new tab) was created to help accelerate research in deep reinforcement / imitation learning, computer vision and robotics for autonomous vehicles.

What’s special about this competition?

Previous drone race challenges, such as the IROS autonomous drone race challenge or the AlphaPilot challenge only need you to race against the clock.  In contrast, here, you’ll have to race against an opponent on the same track. This means you can block your opponent if you are ahead and you have to overtake him when you are behind creating a whole range of interactions that your policy has to handle.

  • To broaden the audience and bring people to drones from all kind of disciplines, all racing will be done in simulation. However, we still require you to solve the challenge of gate tracking from simulated cameras.

    The competition comes in three tiers of different difficulty and level of autonomy.

    • Tier 1: Planning only.
      Given: Ground-truth poses of your and your opponent’s drone.
      Challenge: Finish the track quicker than your opponent, without crashing.
    • Tier 2: Perception only.
      Given: Camera images (RGB from the front camera) and ground-truth pose of your drone.
      Challenge: Finish the track as quick as possible, without crashing.
    • Tier 3: Full autonomy, combined challenge of Tier 1 and 2.
      Given: Camera images (RGB from the front camera) and ground-truth poses of your but not your opponent’s drone.
      Challenge: Finish the track quicker than your opponent, without crashing.

Why should I participate/care about the game of drones?

Besides being fun, this competition provides a fair comparison for the current state of the art.

If your current focus is either more on the planning or perception side, you’ll most probably learn a thing or two. The audience is expected to be large — NeurIPS is the largest AI conference after all, so you can expect to get some attention if your algorithm scores high.

Prizes will also be awarded to the highest performing teams – we will announce them in the following weeks!

Register your team here (opens in new tab). Please make sure that your team’s registration form is complete before submitting. Once submitted via your registration form, accepting any changes to registration details will be at the sole discretion of the organizers.

AirSim environments and detailed guidelines for the competition are available here (opens in new tab).

*New* The submission instructions (opens in new tab) are now available.

*New* The leaderboard (opens in new tab) is now active. (Validation round).

*New* The Qualification Round will start Oct 15.