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Mining caps earlier in cap different? - 10/23/2015 2:00:50 PM   
jacozilla

 

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Not that an AI being dumb is new to me, but given how reasonable it is for certain design parameters when those design parameters are easy to code, fixed constants - e..g power requirement = X, reactor produces Y power, therefore AI coding to have auto ship designs use correct number of Y reactors to meet or exceed X power requirement is trivial. And DW does just fine here in terms of AI ship design. I have never seen an AI design massively overproduce reactors to fit power needed, or vice versa.

So question is, how can it be so reasonable in terms of AI coding for power requirements, yet the exact same fixed requirements stump the AI in terms of mining caps? Perhaps the mining caps was at one time massively different than it is now? Any DW vets that followed the game from start to now care to comment?

specific example - in experiment game to see how AI handles 100% self sufficient design, retrofitting, etc while I just directed research - it designed a resupply ship while I had only the first fast mining tech increase with 4 - four!! - gas extractors.

Fast mining gives 26 gas and 4 solid per cycle. But even if the AI didn't know I had that tech yet, default pre-warp is 20 gas and 3 solids per cycle.

With 4 gas extractors on this resupply ship, it gives 4x26 = 104 gas extraction per cycle capacity, whereas afaik from player research that seems quite extensive and documented, that the gas cap is 40?

Why would the AI massively overdesign more than 250% excess capacity vs need in this regard, when for example power to energy needs are so well done? Both are fixed requirements that AI knows about - the total power needed / mining cap in place vs current tech for how much power can be produced / how fast can be mined.

So on one hand, this does not seem to be 'bad' AI ability or inherent flaw in design because clearly it's able to know and design around fixed parameters. Which suggests, was the mining cap at one point a lot higher than it is now, was changed, but the AI design coding not adjusted for that? Because on mining stations, it so far sticks to ~2 gas extractors which suggests it knows the gas cap is 40. But on ships, especially resupply ships it auto designs, it massively over designs exceed ability vs max cap capacity.
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RE: Mining caps earlier in cap different? - 10/23/2015 3:23:25 PM   
Bingeling

 

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The AI fits the needed amount of reactors, life support and habitation modules.

The rest is given as fixed number in the ship design template. So the resupply ship has 4 extractors because the design templates says it should have.

As for the mining output, that is not this game's strongest side. It is rather pointless as you have discovered.




(in reply to jacozilla)
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RE: Mining caps earlier in cap different? - 10/23/2015 4:03:55 PM   
jacozilla

 

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It makes me wish resupply ships had its own separate classification for everything. e.g. advisor prompts for how many ships/bases to build on or off for all but resupply, same setting including resupply.

I generally ignore advisor prompts now but given you can't get auto retrofit to work without advisor prompt enabled, I dislike being told to constantly build more resupply ships when there is no setting far as I can see that governs resupply ships separately or I would tune that to zero. I can set escorts, frigates, etc to 0, but I assume resupply ships are lumped in with another bigger class like capital ships, or has it's own number setting which isn't surfaced in the UI.

Resupply ships are also the only class type ship as far as I can tell, that basically does nothing when automated. It will move back and from from time to time in the same system it was built, moving from planet to spaceport over and over, and refuel when necessary - but that's it. Escorts and frigates go escort, DD and CA go protect stuff or respond to threats, etc. Resupply ships from my aquarium watching thus far just sit there and do nothing.

Even if they went and used their vastly over to cap designed gas extractors to at least plug into some gas giant and at least start being a resupply point, that would be fairly useful. But it seems all they want to do is sit or at most if the system is attacked and it has weapons, will defend itself and/or the area it is in.

I love the role resupply ships play, very important and useful to Fleet operations if used right. But incredibly useless on auto, hard to control, and with the least support for automation vs the other class ships which at least do some basic function when left alone.

If DW-2 ever gets made, it needs to have
a) resupply ships programmed with a class role (preferably to go mine gas somewhere, anywhere, unless manually directed where and when

b) a one-click 'go back to prior deployed point and re-deploy' button so it is easy to re-deploy your resupply ships after a retrofit

c) slightly better support in AI programming for military ships to preferentially use resupply ships as fuel points vs. planets or mining stations - I find on harder levels the fuel situation can get low much faster and often minding stations are just barely able to support the private sector needs much less my fleet that comes up to tank up. Many times when my fleet is equally distant from resupply ship or mining station, a refuel order will make it go to the mining station or worse, a planet that has barely enough fuel stock to keep it's own growth going, and tank up from there - when my resupply ship has like 10x the fleet refuel needs.

You can right click and tell it to go refuel at resupply ship, but it would be nice if preferential AI order for picking closest refuel point was resupply ship, then mining station, then planet/space port.

I find most my use of resupply ships outside of the 1-2 only need to support actual front line fleet operations, is to station in the same system my nodal planets are and simply serve as a military only refuel center so that the in-system gas mines can serve the private sector.

(in reply to Bingeling)
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RE: Mining caps earlier in cap different? - 10/23/2015 5:44:24 PM   
Bingeling

 

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I think preferred refuel point is simply "closest".

The AI is clueless about resupply ships, and it would be hard to write a good AI routine for them. When I see deployed ships of other empires, they are often at the edge of the map or some other useless point.

How do you make the AI realize "we are struggling for fuel in this area, I should deploy a resupply ship here". Or how to make it differ between wars that need a resupply ship and wars where they are of no importance?

I have never noticed what my automated resupply ships would do, since I never automate them...

And the easier retrofit would be there if I could queue a deploy order. Retrofit. Queue next order, deploy here.

(in reply to jacozilla)
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RE: Mining caps earlier in cap different? - 10/24/2015 1:30:27 AM   
jacozilla

 

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Well, there is 'good' resupply AI logic and then there is 'better'.

Good to great is debatable, and maybe the AI coding on that would be quite complex, but better is simply a relative term. And given what resupply do, or lack thereof, right now - it wouldn't take much to be 'better'. Heck, substantially better.

Case in point - take the exact same mining station AI that determines whether a constructor should build a gas mining station at location X. It may very well be the existing AI here isn't great, but I do see it is ok'ish. Gas mines go up when and where my empire seems to need them - maybe not the best choice, but not horrible either.

So simply apply this exact system to resupply ships - or give players a check box that allows enabling it similar to existing checkbox for automate on ship being built. For resupply ships, the option would simply be on build = go be a gas mining station somewhere that the existing mining AI checks. I'm not saying this will be 'good' or even 'great' - but setting up somewhere as a gas mining station somewhere, anywhere, is better than sitting in the system it was built.

I spent a game just playing any colony with resupply ships and they indeed do nothing - or more precise, nothing useful. They move back and forth for some reason between various planet bodies in the system they were built, and if on auto, refuels when needed. That is their life.

Hopefully DW-2 will incorporate either better handling of this

(in reply to Bingeling)
Post #: 5
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