Sample Factory: Egocentric 3D Control from Pixels at 100000 FPS with Asynchronous Reinforcement Learning

Part of Proceedings of the International Conference on Machine Learning 1 pre-proceedings (ICML 2020)

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Authors

Aleksei Petrenko, Zhehui Huang, Tushar Kumar, Gaurav Sukhatme, Vladlen Koltun

Abstract

Increasing the scale of reinforcement learning experiments has allowed researchers to achieve unprecedented results in both training sophisticated agents for video games, and in sim-to-real transfer for robotics. Typically such experiments rely on large distributed systems and require expensive hardware setups, limiting wider access to this exciting area of research. In this work we aim to solve this problem by optimizing the efficiency and resource utilization of reinforcement learning algorithms instead of relying on distributed computation. We present the "Sample Factory", a high-throughput training system optimized for a single-machine setting. Our architecture combines a highly efficient, asynchronous, GPU-based sampler with off-policy correction techniques, allowing us to achieve throughput higher than $10^5$ environment frames/second on non-trivial control problems in 3D without sacrificing sample efficiency. We extend Sample Factory to support self-play and population-based training and apply these techniques to train highly capable agents for a multiplayer first-person shooter game. Github: https://github.com/alex-petrenko/sample-factory