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AI - Authentic Idiocy

 
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AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/14/2012 9:40:23 PM   
Bingeling

 

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So, messing with my stale game that I have decided not to play, testing stuff. I am bored and the Sluken south of me (on the ring) start to blockade my southern colonies. We were at war quite early (they declared), and I took their 3 colonies north of the capital, so the capital became the border colony.

I move two fleet with a total 31 cruisers and carriers to blockade their capital, since they did not stop doing silly blockades on me. The odd shooting happens. While this goes on, the Sluken declare war on the Ackdarians at the other side of their empire (A ring galaxy).

So... Your capital is blockaded, and you declare war on someone else?

What happened next was that I killed the LSP and defensive bases. Still no war. Then the smaller of the two fleet (15 vs 16) defected to the sluken... I attacked it... When my troop fleet with invade order finally arrived the Sluken declared war.

When I did my AI AAR way back, I noticed my Atuuk diplomats provoked in two directions at once. It seems the Sluken AI does not know better in Legends either...
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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/14/2012 11:17:09 PM   
Nedrear


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You attacked them without a declaration of war. That hits your reputation and I guess that is why your army defected. The Sluken got cornered. Most likely they were inferior to you. So they decided to take some punches and try to get land back by fighting another "officially". After all you were an asshole provoking border conflicts not a menance. When you landed troops on their homeworld they of course could not ignore that and went to war. Marching through France with the whole British Army is never accepted and totally different from sinking a battleship in a border contest.

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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/15/2012 1:07:58 AM   
Apheirox

 

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Not entirely idiotic. :) The reason it didn't declare on you is because of your military strength. That is taken into account (I think it's one of the most decisive factors, actually) when the AI weighs whether or not to declare on somebody.

If you want to provoke a war, invade a colony. The AI will always declare war the instant you land troops.

But yeah, overall the AI is very mechanical and not strategic-minded at all.

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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/15/2012 1:31:50 AM   
Erik Rutins

 

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I'd be interested in any suggestions to improve the AI's performance, keeping in mind the law of unintended consequences.

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- Erik

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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/15/2012 9:38:11 AM   
Bingeling

 

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The defection was OK, my reputation was not good at that point. I was doing silly things.

I don't mind the AI not wanting to fight a war, even if I blockade their capital. But I think there are a few things here that ought to be possible to catch.

1: If you don't want a war with an empire, it is probably not a good idea to blockade its colonies. The AI did so multiple times, even if no ships showed up and the blockades expired. The blockade system in general is bad, doing so should be very close to a (tidy) undeclared war and require ships to be present.

2: Throwing trade sanctions are OK, but blockades either way should be considered a "crisis" relationship. And the AI ought to avoid having more than one of those at a time.

3: A very powerful AI can of course run multiple wars. It is probably possible to "reserve" military strength for each war, and figure out if it got enough to fight both.

I have not seen this lately so they could be gone, but the AI has used to suggest "raid their bases" or something like that. This should be considered offensive action the same as blockades, things you only do when you want to provoke war. And that provokes a crisis that you usually don't want more than one of at a time. Of course, the ones I saw was really bad as this was the Atuuk AI (in rots), and that one is... special.

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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/15/2012 6:41:02 PM   
Apheirox

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

I'd be interested in any suggestions to improve the AI's performance, keeping in mind the law of unintended consequences.


There are many things I could wish for but the top priority would have to be breaking the game's tendency to be 'static': http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=3180858#


quote:

ORIGINAL: Apheirox


quote:

ORIGINAL: Red_Dwarf

The war appears at a stalemate but I'm not sure how reliable the comparison really is.


Sorry, I'm going to be a real downer here.

The problem is that stalemate will never end. Due to problems with how the current logic of automated fleets work as well as certain aspects of diplomacy the AI is extremely inefficient at waging war. Even if the Gizureans had a considerably larger military it would take ages for them to take over anything more than perhaps a few cruddy systems. Basically, what will happen is the Gizurean fleets will spend so much time refueling/travelling back and forth/attacking insignificant targets (such as sending a full-sized fleet to destroy some remote gas extraction station) that no real progress will ever be made. Couple this inefficiency with the fact that all empires, even the highly aggressive ones, will sue for peace after a relatively short period and you have the receipe for a completely static game where no empire will 'ever' be defeated (maybe one will, eventually, but I've never seen it happen - it will likely take several hundred years of game time).

From a roleplaying perspective you should of course trade the spice. :)


Most of the problems are related to fuel.

Automated fleets - which includes all AI controlled fleets - need to be smarter in what missions they choose to conduct. Some of the errors I notice the automation makes is:

- Misjudging mission fuel requirements - automation sends a fleet or strike force against a target but runs out of fuel half way there which triggers a new refuel mission. The fleet in question thus never actually carries out the order. This one is highly noticeable when conducting pirate base destruction missions suggested by advisors.

- In other instances, triggers refueling mission even if fleet actually has sufficient fuel to stay a while longer. This causes situations such as a fleet having a mission of assaulting an empire's homeworld space port, succesfully wearing down all its shields then suddenly, instead of finishing it off, it heads off to refuel (even if most or even all ships still have 40%+ fuel).

- In all above cases, a subsequent problem is then the automation's decision on where to refuel. Often what will happen is it will pick a distant refueling point that doesn't have enough fuel to refill the fleet in the first place, especially not after said fleet makes the lengthy journey to the refueling point. That means this fleet can end up with less fuel than if it had never moved to begin with. The player can remedy this to a degree with the usage of refueling ships and aggressive construction of nearby gas stations but a simple check to see if the refueling mission is actually 'worthwhile' in the first place would help.

- Sending large fleets to destroy low priority, distant targets and, conversely, sending small fleets to destroy large threats. This could be a 20 ship fleet heading for a remote gas station or a small strike force suiciding against a large space port.

****

I set a game to 'rule in absence' and ran at 4x speed yesterday. My automated empire would bombard the neighbouring human planets but because they would then spend so much time refueling etc afterwards the Humans had time to recolonize afterwards. Basically, the Human empire was colonizing as fast as mine was bombarding. That doesn't make for a balanced system, it was indeed a complete stalemate. Part of the problem here was likewise that it was my large fleets bombarding tiny 30M systems. So, one of these fleets might bombard two planets then fly home for the lenghty refueling - and then come back to bombard the same two recolonized planets.

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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/17/2012 6:29:09 PM   
Haree78


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I've given bucket loads of AI feedback previously.

However one very important fix I never thought to mention. Stop the AI blockading someone they have trade sanctions against when they are at war with someone else. I have seen the AI use it's best fleet to blockade while all it's systems get eaten up while undefended.

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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/17/2012 7:04:02 PM   
Bingeling

 

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Indeed, it was a bit like what prompted my post here.

Don't mess with multiple "enemies" at once. Blockading is messing. Being at war is messing. Getting blockaded is messing. Raiding bases (if the AI still does that) is messing.

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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/17/2012 7:22:25 PM   
Apheirox

 

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I disagree that this 'messing' is a problem - or at least a main problem. If it were, what would happen is ie. the Boskara (messy race #1) should get quickly cast out and once isolated, defeated. That isn't what happens in the game, however: That Boskara empire will survive forever, even at war with three empires at all times. This shows that the real issue is inefficiency in attacks.

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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/17/2012 8:42:19 PM   
Bingeling

 

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The anti messy should not be an absolute rule, of course. And you can't always decide the number of wars you got. The Boskara has cheaper troop maintenance, right? Maybe that makes them build more, and makes them tricky to conquer?

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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/21/2012 4:08:42 AM   
Noble713


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Apheirox

Most of the problems are related to fuel.

Automated fleets - which includes all AI controlled fleets - need to be smarter in what missions they choose to conduct. Some of the errors I notice the automation makes is:


This touches on my perennial gripe about automation: escorting and patrolling. All it does is burn fuel for no reason and make Energy Collectors on ships near-useless. The Patrol order should be replaced with a Defend order, where instead of flying in circles around a planet the ship just sits next to it in the gravity well. Likewise, ships shouldn't be assigned to escort low-priority/low-value targets like freighters. I've seen cruisers and destroyers doing such missions on automation. Freighters should only be assigned escorts and frigates, and even then only assigned one if they are flying to an independent system (where pirate encounters are likely).

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Post #: 11
RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/21/2012 5:55:29 AM   
ehsumrell1


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Noble713

This touches on my perennial gripe about automation: escorting and patrolling. All it does is burn fuel for no reason and make Energy Collectors on ships near-useless. The Patrol order should be replaced with a Defend order, where instead of flying in circles around a planet the ship just sits next to it in the gravity well. Likewise, ships shouldn't be assigned to escort low-priority/low-value targets like freighters. I've seen cruisers and destroyers doing such missions on automation. Freighters should only be assigned escorts and frigates, and even then only assigned one if they are flying to an independent system (where pirate encounters are likely).


Very good point Noble, and I concur. I'm hoping Elliot will implement this in the expansion.
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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/21/2012 9:30:40 AM   
Harrs


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One big problem with the AI ist that you can invade easily planets of friends..

In one of my game I have a free trade pact with the humans.
I send 6 undefended troop ships to 6 planets and invaded them all at once..
But I only got a small warning stop sending military ships in my territory and stop attacking me..
My relationship with the humans went from +30 to -80.. but hey I got 6 nice continental and marshly swamp planets..
And he doesnt declare war on me and did not tried to invade the planets back. The free trade pact was still intact.

One suggestion to AI is to instantly declare war on the enemy of friend if he tries to invade one of your planets!


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RE: AI - Authentic Idiocy - 9/21/2012 10:26:56 AM   
Bingeling

 

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I think that one is only a problem if the human player abuse it. I have seen the AI do this, but I guess those are "accidents" and remnants of previous wars. It could possibly create more wars than intended if the war declaration was always forced on these incidents.

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