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AI is cheating??? - 4/6/2009 4:59:24 PM   
denty12

 

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Hello, I am enjoying COG : EE

I think AI is cheating about economy.

In normal difficulty(advaced economy),

the resources of AI was increased very fast.



In my game, as FRANCE 1796,

Prussia earned +200~300 money every turn!(Other resources also increased highly)

When I played as Prussia, I earns +60~70 money per turn at best.

Britain, Austria, Spain ... every nation earned much money and resources...per turn.



I played COG.

I think I understand economy of COG well.








AI is cheating?

Is it normal?

< Message edited by denty12 -- 4/6/2009 5:05:16 PM >
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RE: AI is cheating??? - 4/6/2009 8:20:07 PM   
morganbj


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The AI makes pretty good decisions when it comes to the economy.  The only countries that have a difficult time with money are Russia and Turkey, from my experience.  Perhaps Spain, too.  If you try to build your economy too fast by buying developments as Russia, for example, you can really have a hard time accumulating money.

Also, the economy is a little different than it was under COG, but cash is usually a little easier to come by as France and Britain.  Prussia and Austria also don't have too much problem, but they tend to lose wars a lot which sets them back every couple of years.

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 4/7/2009 12:29:38 AM   
Mus

 

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Actually I am seeing weird things as well, with even the smaller powers like Prussia and Sweden having thousands in money stockpiled after a year or so of play but it doesnt seem to effect their ability to develop their provinces, produce bigger armies and maintain them.

It seems to be in an amount that would exceed "making good decisions" and I would request that it be looked at.

I think something isnt working correctly. 

PS It could just be that the small amount of help the AI gets at normal is enough over the course of 10 or more turns to add up to significant amounts. More insight as to what help the AI gets in what areas at what difficulty level might help.

< Message edited by Mus -- 4/7/2009 12:40:30 AM >

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 4/7/2009 3:09:37 AM   
denty12

 

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Mus, that's the point.

All AI nations increase resources at enormous speed.

After serveral turns, small country like Sweden stockpiles much resources than human France.

I think it is unreasonable rate.


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RE: AI is cheating??? - 4/7/2009 3:58:17 AM   
Mus

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: denty12

Mus, that's the point.

All AI nations increase resources at enormous speed.

After serveral turns, small country like Sweden stockpiles much resources than human France.

I think it is unreasonable rate.




Yeah I agree. Im seeing massive amounts of surplus of all resources in even the smallest nations. I think something isnt working right.


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RE: AI is cheating??? - 4/7/2009 2:51:49 PM   
ericbabe


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The AI receives an economic material bonus according to difficulty.  It is fairly standard practice to tie economic bonuses for the AI to game difficulty level -- the Civilization games use this method more pronouncedly than we do, for instance (and they have more full-time programmers on staff than we have part-time staffer).

If you don't want the AI to receive any material bonuses, play on the easiest couple levels.


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RE: AI is cheating??? - 4/7/2009 3:43:55 PM   
denty12

 

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OK,

It was programmed...like Paradox games.

I will do my best at normal difficulty.^^

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 4/8/2009 1:39:12 AM   
Mus

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: ericbabe

The AI receives an economic material bonus according to difficulty.  It is fairly standard practice to tie economic bonuses for the AI to game difficulty level -- the Civilization games use this method more pronouncedly than we do, for instance (and they have more full-time programmers on staff than we have part-time staffer).

If you don't want the AI to receive any material bonuses, play on the easiest couple levels.



OK Thanks. I didnt realize that was the case even at normal.

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 4/8/2009 2:00:47 AM   
Anthropoid


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You can never trust a game dev . . . erm, I mean "AI," they _always_ cheat. Its like its compulsive . . . And whatever you do, DON'T give them a right of passage!

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 4/8/2009 4:55:28 PM   
morganbj


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After thinking about this for a while, perhaps what you're seeing is that the AI generally doesn't develop their economy the way that humans do, thereby allowing accumulations of most resources (assuming that you're not playing at a higher difficulty).  In fact, I'm not sure exactly what the AI development management process is.  When I take over a province, I usually find that Guns and Walls are in good shape, and maybe Docks, but everything else languishes.  Or, maybe that's just a faulty perception.  What do others see?

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 4/9/2009 7:31:54 AM   
Mus

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: bjmorgan

After thinking about this for a while, perhaps what you're seeing is that the AI generally doesn't develop their economy the way that humans do, thereby allowing accumulations of most resources (assuming that you're not playing at a higher difficulty).


That could be true. It seems like human players build more farms and banks in a methodical way and also more containers, in an effort to create and sustain (through more food and money) larger armies.

Are the material advantages the AI receives at any given difficulty level listed anywhere?

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Post #: 11
RE: AI is cheating??? - 4/11/2009 10:19:50 PM   
barbarossa2

 

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Just curious, can one possibly allow players to set the attrition rate and the economic "cheat" level for the AI nations separately? :)

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Post #: 12
RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/8/2009 6:07:33 PM   
jscott991


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quote:

ORIGINAL: ericbabe

The AI receives an economic material bonus according to difficulty.  It is fairly standard practice to tie economic bonuses for the AI to game difficulty level -- the Civilization games use this method more pronouncedly than we do, for instance (and they have more full-time programmers on staff than we have part-time staffer).

If you don't want the AI to receive any material bonuses, play on the easiest couple levels.



This is hogwash.

The bonuses in CoG:EE are far out of line with standard strategy game practice. And what's more, they are occuring at the normal difficulty level. Giving the AI a slight boost here and there would be subtle and unnoticeable. These bonuses are enormous and throw the entire world economy out of whack.

I wish I had seen this before I purchased the game. I feel like a complete and total dupe. This kind of cutting corners makes its pretty clear that CoG:EE is a PBEM game exclusively and the AI is tacked on to sell it as though there is a single player component.

Since I'm stuck with this thing, what other effects are there to playing on a low difficulty? Is the AI "dumber"? What is the first difficulty that can be played without the AI cheating like this?

< Message edited by jscott991 -- 5/8/2009 6:17:45 PM >


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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/8/2009 7:44:56 PM   
Anthropoid


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I find the AI challenging. Maybe you're just too brilliant for such pathetic excuses for game Jscott?

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Post #: 14
RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/8/2009 8:01:31 PM   
jscott991


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The AI IS challenging.  It's cheating.

You've mischaracterized my position entirely. The AI isn't too easy. I'm angry I can't duplicate it's economic performance because it is cheating.

I don't want a challenge at the expense of everything. I want a fair game.

< Message edited by jscott991 -- 5/8/2009 8:07:23 PM >


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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/8/2009 8:09:34 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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jscott,

Try it on the easiest level and see what you think about its performance. If you don't want it getting any bonuses, the lowest levels are where it does not. The normal level gives it some bonuses to make the game more challenging, but it is not brain dead without those bonuses. It plays a pretty good strategic and tactical game, superior to most wargames I've played.

Regards,

- Erik

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/8/2009 8:24:56 PM   
Anthropoid


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jscott991

The AI IS challenging.  It's cheating.

You've mischaracterized my position entirely. The AI isn't too easy. I'm angry I can't duplicate it's economic performance because it is cheating.

I don't want a challenge at the expense of everything. I want a fair game.


Oh! Sorry JScott, I misunderstood what you were getting at.

Yeah, if it is too hard, play it on easier difficulties. Also could give yourself power boosts etc.

I remember I played Civ3 _FOR YEARS!_ on one notch below parity with the AI, and had a helluva lot of fun! No shame in that. Figuring out how these things 'tick' can take time, and after all, it is supposed to be 'fun' not 'work' or 'traumatizing'

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The x-ray is her siren song. My ship cannot resist her long. Nearer to my deadly goal. Until the black hole. Gains control...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkIIlkyZ328&feature=autoplay&list=AL94UKMTqg-9CocLGbd6tpbuQRxyF4FGNr&playnext=3

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/8/2009 9:33:46 PM   
ericbabe


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jscott991
This is hogwash.


I do not normally make a habit of responding to forum posters who are overtly rude to me, however I do not want people to form the wrong impression about our AI based upon the personal insults you have leveled against me.

I've studied strategic AI systems in many, many games, and it is simply not true that the material bonuses in COG:EE are out of line with those in many of the systems at which I have looked. Other systems may do a better job of hiding those bonuses from the player perhaps.

As it is now, even on the simplest levels, the AI is quite comparable to other strategic AI systems.


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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/8/2009 9:34:50 PM   
jscott991


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

jscott,

Try it on the easiest level and see what you think about its performance. If you don't want it getting any bonuses, the lowest levels are where it does not. The normal level gives it some bonuses to make the game more challenging, but it is not brain dead without those bonuses. It plays a pretty good strategic and tactical game, superior to most wargames I've played.

Regards,

- Erik


This is the key issue.

Is the difficulty increase only related to AI cheats (the bonuses)? If I play on the lower levels, will the AI perform in the same manner, but simply not have the bonuses?

If so, that is better than having a truncated AI that only plays at its best once it starts receiving cheats.

Players hate cheats, by the way. This is a major issue with any strategy game. When Paradox announced the shortcuts it had to implement for EU3, they were vilified (so much so, I think most have been taken out). I refuse to believe that my criticisms are so shocking. And, as I've pointed out in every post, the problems is the cheats are occuring on the NORMAL difficulty level, when everything except one obscure post by the designer in an older thread say they occur ABOVE NORMAL.

That is what irritates me. I would not have bought the game if I had known that the cheats occured at almost all difficulty levels.

quote:

ORIGINAL: ericbabe


quote:

ORIGINAL: jscott991
This is hogwash.


I do not normally make a habit of responding to forum posters who are overtly rude to me, however I do not want people to form the wrong impression about our AI based upon the personal insults you have leveled against me.

I've studied strategic AI systems in many, many games, and it is simply not true that the material bonuses in COG:EE are out of line with those in many of the systems at which I have looked. Other systems may do a better job of hiding those bonuses from the player perhaps.

As it is now, even on the simplest levels, the AI is quite comparable to other strategic AI systems.



There are no personal insults in anything I've written. I maintain, and will continue to maintain, that the bonuses CoG:EE is granting on the normal difficulty levels are out of line with any strategy game of its type that I've played. There is nothing comparable in any Paradox strategy game that I own (Victoria, the EU series, Crusader Kings) to just massive resource dumps that are so obvious they show up on the basic information screen. Stardock strategy games, especially the Gal Civ series, maintain vehemently that they employ no cheats whatsoever. If you choose to compare CoG to pseudo-historical strategy games like Total War and Civilization, then you produce an inaccurate picture. CoG sells itself as something quite different from those more abstract strategy games.

What's more, these bonuses are not explained ACCURATELY anywhere in the game's documentation. They are hidden and it is even stated that occur only ABOVE NORMAL.

If you made it clear the extent to which the AI requires bonuses to compete, I believe fewer single player gamers would buy the game.


< Message edited by jscott991 -- 5/8/2009 9:39:51 PM >

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/8/2009 10:29:13 PM   
Erik Rutins

 

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The fact remains there is a level (the lowest one) where the AI gets no resource bonuses and it is otherwise no different. If the bonuses really bother you and you wish to judge the AI without those bonuses, please play at the lowest level and then get back to us with your opinion. The AI itself is frankly, in my experience, much smarter with or without bonuses than most strategic/tactical AIs I've played against.

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/9/2009 1:58:12 AM   
Mus

 

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No real man can be satisfied playing on easiest Erik.



Semi-seriously, as a marketing decision, maybe the difficulty should start at normal and a couple other generals should be inserted in the marshall/general levels to make up the slack for the wimpy sounding difficulty levels.



< Message edited by Mus -- 5/9/2009 2:03:32 AM >

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/9/2009 4:56:21 PM   
jscott991


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins

The fact remains there is a level (the lowest one) where the AI gets no resource bonuses and it is otherwise no different. If the bonuses really bother you and you wish to judge the AI without those bonuses, please play at the lowest level and then get back to us with your opinion. The AI itself is frankly, in my experience, much smarter with or without bonuses than most strategic/tactical AIs I've played against.


On the easier and easiest difficulty levels, the AI might not be receiving a bonus, but I am. And on normal, the AI starts cheating.

So the designers built a game where there is no possible way to play by the same rules as the AI. Is that correct? If so, its mind-boggling. What is the point of having almost a dozen difficulty levels if on not one is the game balanced?

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/9/2009 5:01:33 PM   
Hard Sarge


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maybe, because you are going to be smarter then the AI is ?




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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/9/2009 7:18:34 PM   
Russian Guard


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I have never, ever, played a computer game where the "AI" doesn't "cheat" in some fashion. It's so standard that for me, this discussion is silly, no offense intended to anyone. A truly "level" playing field, as it were, would, no surprise, prove very little challenge to most human players.

In point of fact, I've played my fair share of ftf board games where some of the human players cheat


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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/9/2009 7:25:49 PM   
jscott991


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I see.  So its acceptable to have difficulty levels where the AI cheats, because that provides a player with an adequate challenge.

And it must be acceptable to have difficulty levels where the human cheats, because CoG has two of those.

But it's just ridiculous to imagine a difficulty level where no one cheats.  That's just silly and absurd.

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/9/2009 10:06:46 PM   
TheOx

 

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Tampax. Aisle 8.

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/10/2009 12:45:43 AM   
Russian Guard


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quote:

ORIGINAL: jscott991

I see.  So its acceptable to have difficulty levels where the AI cheats, because that provides a player with an adequate challenge.

And it must be acceptable to have difficulty levels where the human cheats, because CoG has two of those.

But it's just ridiculous to imagine a difficulty level where no one cheats.  That's just silly and absurd.


1) Yes, to compensate for the fact that most human players are a lot smarter than any game AI - standard in the gaming world

2) Easiest levels in many games often provide advantages ("cheats") to a human player, to help them learn the game without becoming discouraged - again, standard fare

3) Not ridiculous, just probably not very challenging for many players, thus the (again) standard game design practice of giving the AI "advantages" (cheats)





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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/10/2009 12:57:58 AM   
jscott991


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But the difficulties where the human is receiving bonuses must not be very challenging either, right?  But CoG still has those.

Why is it too much to ask for a level where there is no cheating at all?

This idea that the AI cheats in every strategy game is also a bit far-fetched.  Whether it cheats in every Matrix or WCS game is beyond my pale of knowledge.  It certainly doesn't cheat in Stardock's games, unless Brad Wardell is one of the biggest liars in the industry.  Paradox has been known to design shortcuts for the AI when it can't handle individual concepts (inflation in the EU games for a brief period, supply in several games), but that's not quite the same as what CoG is doing, dumping huge amounts of resources to someone in a very blatant manner on every difficulty level. 

But whether cheating is standard or not is almost beside the point.  I can't believe that no one thinks it weird (the softest word I can use) that WCS offers difficulty modes where the human player cheats, a huge number where the AI cheats, but not one single option for a game where neither side is cheating.

I also love that my being astounded and upset by this is some great shock to everyone, even though both threads that I bumped on this topic also included a number of players surprised, plus several posts by forum moderators that claimed that cheating wasn't going on -- instead pointing out that AI uses their money differently than players, something completely contradicted by ericbabe's infamous and brief post.  I'm a pilgrim in a strange land here, but the crux of the issue is that I've thrown my money away on a game built mostly for a different kind of player (conquer-the-world types and PBEM players rather than people interested in a historical experience -- you can't have a historical experience when economic balance is impossible).

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/10/2009 1:21:25 AM   
TheOx

 

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He's right. I'm never playing again after this infamous revelation. Their money coffers are killing my immersion.  

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RE: AI is cheating??? - 5/10/2009 4:25:28 AM   
Anthropoid


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*Hands Ox a tissue* There, there now. Its gonna be alright . . .

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