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A couple of observations about AI behaviour

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A couple of observations about AI behaviour - 7/1/2011 2:29:19 PM   


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Hi guys,

I recently bought CC LSA when I discovered it had been enhanced by Matrix. I am currently playing a grand campaign with the germans and while I am having a blast, there are a couple of things that I find extremely annoying. Keep in mind I am completly new to the game mechanics of this version even if i have played the original intensively back in the days. So feel free to correct me if I am wrong or to provide tips that could improve my game experience.

So let's start with my ranting

In the early days of the GC, german are defending against the allies with a relatively small number of inexperienced units. My tactic was to try to gain time and inflict a maximum of casualties to my opponent (MG 42/34 I love you) while waiting for reinforcements. While doing so, I have ran into the following issues more often than not.

1) Whenever I managed to inflict enough casualties to the AI to prevent further attacks (but not enough to gain a morale victory), I am stuck in an infinite waiting. The AI does nothing and is oblivious to any truce request because it still has a good morale. Considering the small amount of units I have, it would be suicidal to attack. I had to do so a couple of times to be able to continue the GC, getting unwanted casualties as a result. It would be nice if the AI accepted truce in that case provided it has decided that it will not progress further for this battle.

2) I think the AI is over protecting its victory locations if opposition is weak. I know what I am going to face for the next battle so the AI must be aware of its opponent strength as well and commit more troops to anihilate me if I am weak. I am not going to retake victory locations with 6 men facing 100. So no need to protect every single VL with two squads. Maybe this problem is the root cause of point 1.

3) Allow me to set a time limit for battles after the GC is started. At least that would help with the issues I have mentioned. I did not set one and I am regretting it dearly now that my units are shrinking and the problem (idle AI) is more often occuring. I do not want to waste these hours I have spent (well I will probably but am thinking about future games here).

4) Another issue I have found is that sometimes AI units are moving weirdly. For instance, an infantry unit is trying to cross a street from a building to another one. They get out of the building and then go back to their original location when they see a fair amount of dead bodies lying on the ground which is fine with me. Then they repeat the same move again and again getting stuck in an infinite moving loop. It would be fine if they make up their mind. Either, mark this path as a no no and find an alternative route, or go for it. If some cheat is needed to make that move happen (like a temporary morale increase) so be it.

Thank you for reading this and excuse any spelling/grammar mistake as I am not a native speaker. Any feedback is welcomed.

Post #: 1
RE: A couple of observations about AI behaviour - 7/1/2011 7:01:02 PM   


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1) Yes, the Allied AI should accept a truce if it intends no further offensive action.
2) It doesnt improve play balance if you know what youre going to face in the next battle. No peeking at the AIs BG roster.
3) Use berndn's Save Game Editor to change game options (inc. timer) on your GC
4) What you are describing is probably the 'retreat under fire' function. Unfortunately the AI doesnt seek alternative routes.

(in reply to Lanfranc)
Post #: 2
RE: A couple of observations about AI behaviour - 7/1/2011 7:05:00 PM   


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1) waiting can be a problem at times in the game as it usually easier to defend then attack thus the AI waiting for you to attack after you defeated the 1st effort makes sense. Not fun but makes sense. The problem is definitely worse if you have not set a time limit. The chance of a truce was increased in one of the patches if no action happens, have you patched the game to the latest version?

2) giving the AI a bit more info would help it play a better game and really isn't a cheat as the player gets this info. That probably should be changed; no timer visibility and or enemy morale visibility would make the player more cautious

3) use the tool CCReq to edit the saved game time setting ( Note: haven't tried it on LSA myself

4) what you are seeing is the tactical AI and the strategic AI in battle somewhat fighting each other. I don't believe there is any tracking done on things tried or what the player does to make the AI, so a good suggestion.

(in reply to Lanfranc)
Post #: 3
RE: A couple of observations about AI behaviour - 7/2/2011 10:43:16 AM   


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Thanks guys for the quick answers.

I will download the save game editor to add a time limit to my german campaign. Meanwhile I have started an ally campaign and having no issues so far. Been on the offensive side seems to help.

2) I will do that when I will have improved my skills. I was more thinking about the AI seeking my BG to help it take better decisions. Like understanding that if I have two squads totalizing 6 men, it may be a good idea for the AI to hunt me down instead of protecting its VLs. Especially if it still has 15 squads.
4) I was not firing when this happened. It was like they got scared just by seen the bodies lying on the pavement.

1) I m playing with 5.60.51 release. I believe it is the latest one. I agree that it makes sense for the AI to wait for my counter attack. I was just thinking that in that case it should accept truce if i m not willing to attack.
2) Yep, options adding more fog of war would be nice.

Been a software engineer myself, I understand that coding a decent AI is very difficult for a game having so many dynamics. Is there any source code available ? I do not pretend to be able to improve it but I would like to have a look at it if it is possible.

(in reply to Lanfranc)
Post #: 4
RE: A couple of observations about AI behaviour - 8/7/2011 12:07:48 PM   

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I have a comment on strategic movement of the A.I.: I think the A.I. should focus on staying on Bridge maps. For example, I made a big mistake by letting Jungwirth recapture the Grave bridge. However, next turn Jungwirth moved up north and my units retook the hard fought bridge again, without firing a shot. Lucky break. Jungwirth should've stayed on the Grave map, especially because the Ravenstein bridge was out.

(in reply to Lanfranc)
Post #: 5
RE: A couple of observations about AI behaviour - 1/30/2012 12:32:45 PM   


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I won't complain about how AI moves his units (or maybe just a little), but what disappoints me is the initial placement of AI units when AI is defending.
This was a battle in progress, AI had 4 units left, I only saw placements for three of four units, I marked them on the map:

Major fails are:
- AI places the flak gun in between the houses right next to my zone of deployment, resulting in instant destruction of the flak right at the beginning of the game. Guns should be placed at least in such a manner that they have a long line of sight.
- AI places infantry units out in the open, in the middle of the field with absolutely no protection, making them a cannon fodder and completly wasting them.
- When on defense, AI frequently sends his infantry out of defensive positions in the open, when my MG usualy mows it down.

(in reply to kweniston)
Post #: 6
RE: A couple of observations about AI behaviour - 1/30/2012 2:43:14 PM   

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The AI placement of AT Guns is an Issue in WAR as well.

It will place them in Heavily Wooded areas with no LOS or no possible means of being used during Battle.

(in reply to weezaard)
Post #: 7
RE: A couple of observations about AI behaviour - 1/30/2012 10:21:28 PM   

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All valid points. The A.I. has been under par since long time, and not much improvements have been made, except from vehicle pathing maybe. As a human player, you really gotta give the AI a break to have some sort of decent fight. I hope something really structural can be done instead of fixes.

(in reply to Platoon_Michael)
Post #: 8
RE: A couple of observations about AI behaviour - 1/31/2012 2:24:01 AM   


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Have to agree the AI needs help/improvement with initial deployment....

(in reply to kweniston)
Post #: 9
RE: A couple of observations about AI behaviour - 1/31/2012 5:18:14 AM   
Andrew Williams

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From: Australia
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But all values have been recalculated so that now a tree element behaves like a tree element whereas before it used to behave like a tree element.

You will see the same with weapons data that behaves like the weapons data that used to behave like the weapons data.

A huge amount of developer time was put into this.

pathfinding is now different, although infantry seem to leave cover too easily.


(in reply to Tejszd)
Post #: 10
RE: A couple of observations about AI behaviour - 3/25/2012 5:32:49 AM   


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Joined: 8/4/2007
From: Australia
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Unfortunately the AI will never compete with a human opponent. The programming for so many variables is too much. The only way to play a nailbiting,exciting game is via gameranger against a live opponent.


(in reply to Andrew Williams)
Post #: 11
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