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On Improving Model-Free Algorithms for Decentralized Multi-Agent Reinforcement Learning

Weichao Mao · Lin Yang · Kaiqing Zhang · Tamer Basar

Hall E #1422

Keywords: [ Reinforcement Learning ] [ T: Reinforcement Learning and Planning ]


Multi-agent reinforcement learning (MARL) algorithms often suffer from an exponential sample complexity dependence on the number of agents, a phenomenon known as \emph{the curse of multiagents}. We address this challenge by investigating sample-efficient model-free algorithms in \emph{decentralized} MARL, and aim to improve existing algorithms along this line. For learning (coarse) correlated equilibria in general-sum Markov games, we propose \emph{stage-based} V-learning algorithms that significantly simplify the algorithmic design and analysis of recent works, and circumvent a rather complicated no-\emph{weighted}-regret bandit subroutine. For learning Nash equilibria in Markov potential games, we propose an independent policy gradient algorithm with a decentralized momentum-based variance reduction technique. All our algorithms are decentralized in that each agent can make decisions based on only its local information. Neither communication nor centralized coordination is required during learning, leading to a natural generalization to a large number of agents. Finally, we provide numerical simulations to corroborate our theoretical findings.

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