This question has recently been closed as Needs more focus.

Although I agree that the question is not about an exact single real-world problem that a user is currently facing during the development of a game, it is an interesting theoretical one that is related to game development.

In my humble opinion, it does very well fit within the criteria of "good subjective" that we have here.

Should we reopen it?

(You can vote to reopen it 😉)

A couple of things to note about the close votes:

  • two votes were cast before the edit in its current form so maybe the users who cast them would not have cast them with the question in its current form
  • three mods commented on the question without feeling the urge to unilaterally close it, so it's presumable "border line"

I'm raising this here because I'm starting to be concerned about what this site appears to be becoming: a programming site that is specific to game-development tools, which SO can do (and is doing) very well. This question appears to move us away from the "bad" aspects of the site raised last year (We're slowly becoming a Unity Stack Exchange., It's hard to find high-level questions). This is probably a discussion topic to be posted separately here on meta, but welcoming such questions could help keep the community active and healthy. (Also, just to make it clear, I'm not trying to help a fellow mod get more internet points.)


1 Answer 1


I didn't much care for the original version of the question. Asking for a shopping list of NP hard problem instances isn't particularly deep, i.e. they don't inspire answers that explain "why" and "how". And they may become problematic in terms of maintenance - as new game mechanics (& to a slower extent genres) are invented over time, additional NP hard problems might become 'game dev problems'. As surfaced in the comments, the maintenance aspect is at best a lesser concern.

In contrast, the edited version does inspire "why" and "how" answers. While the question is on the broader side, it has answer that covers pretty much everything I can think of & manages to do so in about a screen's worth of text. I have voted to reopen.

Regarding the concern about GDSE's focus drift - I think that's a valid point. The question in question along with its answer are the sort of thing that will probably still be relevant in spite of the API turn over that's bound to occur over time.

  • \$\begingroup\$ "Asking for a shopping list of NP hard problem instances is problematic" - I somewhat disagree. Asking for dynamic lists is problematic, but the list of NP-Hard problems encountered in game development doesn't change. It gives a great resource to study specific to game development. \$\endgroup\$
    – Evorlor Mod
    Commented Sep 2, 2022 at 16:51
  • \$\begingroup\$ I was thinking in the sense that new game mechanics (& to a slower extent genres) are invented over time which in turn may add new NP hard problems to the list. I may have overstated the concern though; could happen doesn't mean it will happen at a problematic rate. \$\endgroup\$
    – Pikalek
    Commented Sep 2, 2022 at 17:10
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ @Evorlor I edited to reflect my take on your comment. Regarding your point of a list being a good resource - would you be willing to expound on that as a full answer? While I'm admittedly list answer averse, I'd very much appreciate hearing viewpoints that broaden my thoughts &/or make GDSE a better, more inclusive resource. \$\endgroup\$
    – Pikalek
    Commented Sep 3, 2022 at 16:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ I note this answer has 4 upvotes, but the question has received only 1 re-open vote (which has since timed out). If folks upvoting think this is answer is appropriate, please go cast a re-open vote! (Unless all 4 upvotes were from us mods, wary of vetoing the community's close votes?) \$\endgroup\$
    – DMGregory Mod
    Commented Sep 11, 2022 at 0:54

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