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Do you use a dictionary of words that the computer opponent uses to find words to guess? If so, you could simply generate different dictionaries for different difficulty levels.
Yes. As I indicated in my original post, known vocabulary is one of the factors that can be used for a configurable difficulty level. The problem is finding the right balance.
Also, the type of analysis required to solve the problem lends itself well to recursive solutions... perhaps build-in a (configurable) limit to how deep the analysis goes?
I am not sure how to apply this. My current expert solution is not recursive and I am not sure how I could stop it midstream. Did you have an implementation in mind?
If all else fails, or isn't enough, I am partial to my earlier suggestion - make the computer make mistakes! Randomly inject bad data into the algorithm in the form of bad or mis-spelled dictionary entries, randomly delete previously-guessed entries, etc...
As I indicated in my post, mistakes are factors that can be used in the difficulty factor. The problem is an actual implementation that results in a realistic player and not something too easy or too hard.
Cheers - L~R
In reply to Re^2: Challenge: Designing A Computer Opponent