Influence maps have been around since the very early days of game AI, tracing their history back to real-time strategy games over a decade ago. Since then, influence maps have become a cornerstone technique for game developers, and are even starting to become prevalent in first-person shooters as well (e.g. KILLZONE 2/3).
In this tutorial, you'll learn about some of the motivation for influence maps and why they are so appealing. You'll also find out when to use influence maps, and what representation fits best with your game. Then, you'll see the algorithm in action as well as its most important parameters that you'll need to tune when using influence maps in your game.