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Maximum Entropy Heterogeneous-Agent Reinforcement Learning

Jiarong Liu · Yifan Zhong · Siyi Hu · Haobo Fu · QIANG FU · Xiaojun Chang · Yaodong Yang

Halle B #343
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Wed 8 May 1:45 a.m. PDT — 3:45 a.m. PDT


Multi-agent reinforcement learning (MARL) has been shown effective for cooperative games in recent years. However, existing state-of-the-art methods face challenges related to sample complexity, training instability, and the risk of converging to a suboptimal Nash Equilibrium. In this paper, we propose a unified framework for learning \emph{stochastic} policies to resolve these issues. We embed cooperative MARL problems into probabilistic graphical models, from which we derive the maximum entropy (MaxEnt) objective for MARL. Based on the MaxEnt framework, we propose Heterogeneous-Agent Soft Actor-Critic (HASAC) algorithm. Theoretically, we prove the monotonic improvement and convergence to quantal response equilibrium (QRE) properties of HASAC. Furthermore, we generalize a unified template for MaxEnt algorithmic design named Maximum Entropy Heterogeneous-Agent Mirror Learning (MEHAML), which provides any induced method with the same guarantees as HASAC. We evaluate HASAC on six benchmarks: Bi-DexHands, Multi-Agent MuJoCo, StarCraft Multi-Agent Challenge, Google Research Football, Multi-Agent Particle Environment, and Light Aircraft Game. Results show that HASAC consistently outperforms strong baselines, exhibiting better sample efficiency, robustness, and sufficient exploration.

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