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AI Difficulty options - 8/11/2015 1:31:18 PM   
WarInTheMist


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Does anyone know what is hiding behind the AI Difficuly options? What are the advantages a human player get when he chooses 'easy'?
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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/11/2015 1:34:28 PM   
Sardaukar


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I think with Easy you get extra supply and combat modifiers (not sure about latter)

Hard = extra supply for AI
Very Hard = extra supply and combat modifiers

I always play with Normal setting, since if AI gets extra supplies, it makes some real-life tactics like starving bases almost impossible.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/11/2015 2:09:01 PM   
Numdydar

 

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Even if you play at Normal for a good game against the AI you need to run at Very Hard for several turns every few weeks. This will allow supplies/replacements to show up in places where the AI ignores or has trouble sending ships to. Not because of any enemy action but just because the AI sucks

I play on Hard against the AI as even with extra supplies, it is pretty easy to do very well. YMMV

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/11/2015 3:06:21 PM   
jmalter

 

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I agree w/ Numdydar - the AI has no notion of protecting the flanks of its LCUs & securing their supply-lines. It needs the supply-advantages of the Hard setting to put up any kind of resistance, otherwise it's just stomping baby seals.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/11/2015 4:45:34 PM   
WarInTheMist


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Ok, normally then, if I anderstood you pefectly ,I should see big adult elephant seals (armed) coming!

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/11/2015 4:48:50 PM   
Sardaukar


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Against AI one should anyway refrain from using "gamey" strategies that will break AI. Play somewhat historically and AI does quite well.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/12/2015 10:37:12 PM   
PaxMondo


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Andy, who wrote the AI, long ago stated that in the base scenarios against the AI you should run not lower than HARD for a fair game. At normal the AI is handicapped. As noted above, the supply AI is simply not strong enough on its own to keep units in supply.

As I read the history, shortly before release a significant design change was made with respect to supply. You can search the threads and read yourself. The forum broke into two camps and it has taken many years for the division to heal. The decision impacted how the AI scripts were written and meant that at normal, the AI side would be short of supply. In the Ironman series, that has been addressed, and playing at normal is the baseline.

All my interpretation. I wasn't involved in the discussions, I have only read them. At least the public ones. I hear that the developer side was just as "enthusiastic",

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/12/2015 11:14:54 PM   
DD696

 

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What Andy did for Ironman was to add more resource centers,oil facilities, refining capability, light industry centers and heavy industry centers in order to produce more fuel and supply itself as well as increasing the starting pools significantly. Some of the out lying bases also had their light industry and resource centers either increased of added in order to generate supply at that location. A simple comparison of the location information in the editor or by using Tracker will easily reveal this.

Don't read further if you don't want to how the difficultly settings affect a game against the Japanese AI.




What it does is simply add points to the Japanese HI, supply, fuel and resource storage pools each turn that is played on higher difficulty settings. I found this out years ago when I was not able to get the numbers to add up when I thought I was playing on a normal setting but had instead changed it over to hard and forgot. The AI does a very poor job of transporting fuel, oil and resources back to Japan. Playing against the AI as the Allied player and using Tracker for both sides has always revealed to me that the vast majority of Japanese shipping simply sits in ports doing nothing. That is why additional centers were created to provide these needed points without having to use the difficulty settings.

All easily seen and revealed by using Tracker in case you have any doubts about my word.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/12/2015 11:26:27 PM   
PaxMondo


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quote:

ORIGINAL: DD696

What it does is simply add points to the Japanese HI, supply, fuel and resource storage pools each turn that is played on higher difficulty settings. I found this out years ago when I was not able to get the numbers to add up when I thought I was playing on a normal setting but had instead changed it over to hard and forgot. The AI does a very poor job of transporting fuel, oil and resources back to Japan. Playing against the AI as the Allied player and using Tracker for both sides has always revealed to me that the vast majority of Japanese shipping simply sits in ports doing nothing. That is why additional centers were created to provide these needed points without having to use the difficulty settings.

All easily seen and revealed by using Tracker in case you have any doubts about my word.

Exactly as I understand it as well.

So, base scenarios you need to play at HARD or higher for the AI opponent to work. Literally, it will not work at normal.

Ironman scenarios fixes all of this and you can play at normal. (In fact Andy advises normal). If you play the Nasty, Nasty Ironman ... normal is pretty tough.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/13/2015 9:24:02 AM   
WarInTheMist


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Wow! What an instructing thread! AI in that game is at light years from Singularity!

Then, 'Easy' diffilculty has no real interests for base scenarios, but for ironman?

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/13/2015 10:14:31 AM   
DD696

 

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I never researched what happens when playing at easy level as I have never played that level.

When I was found this out and was banging my head against the keyboard trying to figure out why the numbers were didn't add up I started a thread in the Tech Support section. At that time many thought that I was trying to lift up the Queen's skirts because I was detailing the information that I was finding. A couple of people, at the least - Pax Mondo I am pretty sure you were one of them - green-buttoned me for trying to pursue and understand this matter. AndyMac was ticked off because I was revealing top secret material in the eyes of the design team.

But now that some years have passed and the game has been out for many years I really feel that all should be aware of what actually happens. I never play at on anything except normal as I modify the scenarios I play in order to produce these extra needed points as is done in Ironman. I still keep track of the AI by using Tracker to monitor the Japanese economy, and should Japan be getting critically low on oil, fuel, supply, resources or HI, then I can switch to hard for a turn or two to boost the pools.

The AI seems to want to carry things away from Japan but does not like to carry materials to Japan and seems to have a real tendency to want to empty the pools and has no "sense of conservation". It appears to do a better job at getting fuel there than anything else, but many ships are carrying just a small portion of what they could carry and are therefore quite inefficient. That is why in the latter stages of game I have quit worrying about why I never spot very much Japanese shipping - because most of them spend the war sitting docked in ports. Now's the time to get your Pearl Harbor revenge urges satisfied.

This can be understood by all the comments you will find about how computer controlled task forces set up to automatically supply bases you want supplied does not work very well. It works even less well for the AI. Mull that over for a moment and you will clearly see the problem.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/14/2015 3:53:15 AM   
PaxMondo


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To follow on to what DD696 has said:

Stock scenarios I play HARD and then every 10 days I go to VERY HARD for 2-3 days, then back to hard.

Ironman scenarios I play normal and go to HARD only when I feel the AI getting a little weak, which isn't often. I'm playing Andy's Nasty Nasty Ironman, I at 8/42 now and I have only gone to HARD for 2(3?) days total. AI is giving a great game so far ...

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/21/2015 5:37:56 PM   
Alpha77

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: DD696

I never researched what happens when playing at easy level as I have never played that level.

When I was found this out and was banging my head against the keyboard trying to figure out why the numbers were didn't add up I started a thread in the Tech Support section. At that time many thought that I was trying to lift up the Queen's skirts because I was detailing the information that I was finding. A couple of people, at the least - Pax Mondo I am pretty sure you were one of them - green-buttoned me for trying to pursue and understand this matter. AndyMac was ticked off because I was revealing top secret material in the eyes of the design team.

But now that some years have passed and the game has been out for many years I really feel that all should be aware of what actually happens. I never play at on anything except normal as I modify the scenarios I play in order to produce these extra needed points as is done in Ironman. I still keep track of the AI by using Tracker to monitor the Japanese economy, and should Japan be getting critically low on oil, fuel, supply, resources or HI, then I can switch to hard for a turn or two to boost the pools.

The AI seems to want to carry things away from Japan but does not like to carry materials to Japan and seems to have a real tendency to want to empty the pools and has no "sense of conservation". It appears to do a better job at getting fuel there than anything else, but many ships are carrying just a small portion of what they could carry and are therefore quite inefficient. That is why in the latter stages of game I have quit worrying about why I never spot very much Japanese shipping - because most of them spend the war sitting docked in ports. Now's the time to get your Pearl Harbor revenge urges satisfied.

This can be understood by all the comments you will find about how computer controlled task forces set up to automatically supply bases you want supplied does not work very well. It works even less well for the AI. Mull that over for a moment and you will clearly see the problem.



This is kind of contradicted by the game I played years ago as Allies vs. Japan.Played "historical" but I guess I also took it some times to "hard". Do not remember. However I remember the Japan islands weren´t short of anything they had masses of planes and stuff and units. I do not thin out of supply. I landed at Hokaido then jumped over to mainland... in early 44 or so. I noted that most city hexes were so full of stuff, that I just gave up the game as the further conquest would mean a boring and terrible battle of attrition. Just ship any div I can find over but I believe that still would not be enough. However I won this game as most Japan territory outside their mainislands was gone....ofc I note that this terrible battle of attrition I describe above would be the reality if history would different (without eg. firebombing and a-bombs)...

In this game vs. Japan the AI also seems to have no supply problems I find it takes ages that they run out. So I supected they get a bonus already on "historical". Fleets also get a bonus ie. they do not take damage if over their range. They practically have unlimted range (even if then on vlow speed perhaps)...this is helpfulfor the AI I am sure it would have troube handling correct task groups with different ranges.

< Message edited by Alpha77 -- 8/21/2015 6:40:08 PM >

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/21/2015 9:40:25 PM   
bomccarthy


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Alpha77

quote:

ORIGINAL: DD696

I never researched what happens when playing at easy level as I have never played that level.

When I was found this out and was banging my head against the keyboard trying to figure out why the numbers were didn't add up I started a thread in the Tech Support section. At that time many thought that I was trying to lift up the Queen's skirts because I was detailing the information that I was finding. A couple of people, at the least - Pax Mondo I am pretty sure you were one of them - green-buttoned me for trying to pursue and understand this matter. AndyMac was ticked off because I was revealing top secret material in the eyes of the design team.

But now that some years have passed and the game has been out for many years I really feel that all should be aware of what actually happens. I never play at on anything except normal as I modify the scenarios I play in order to produce these extra needed points as is done in Ironman. I still keep track of the AI by using Tracker to monitor the Japanese economy, and should Japan be getting critically low on oil, fuel, supply, resources or HI, then I can switch to hard for a turn or two to boost the pools.

The AI seems to want to carry things away from Japan but does not like to carry materials to Japan and seems to have a real tendency to want to empty the pools and has no "sense of conservation". It appears to do a better job at getting fuel there than anything else, but many ships are carrying just a small portion of what they could carry and are therefore quite inefficient. That is why in the latter stages of game I have quit worrying about why I never spot very much Japanese shipping - because most of them spend the war sitting docked in ports. Now's the time to get your Pearl Harbor revenge urges satisfied.

This can be understood by all the comments you will find about how computer controlled task forces set up to automatically supply bases you want supplied does not work very well. It works even less well for the AI. Mull that over for a moment and you will clearly see the problem.



This is kind of contradicted by the game I played years ago as Allies vs. Japan.Played "historical" but I guess I also took it some times to "hard". Do not remember. However I remember the Japan islands weren´t short of anything they had masses of planes and stuff and units. I do not thin out of supply. I landed at Hokaido then jumped over to mainland... in early 44 or so. I noted that most city hexes were so full of stuff, that I just gave up the game as the further conquest would mean a boring and terrible battle of attrition. Just ship any div I can find over but I believe that still would not be enough. However I won this game as most Japan territory outside their mainislands was gone....ofc I note that this terrible battle of attrition I describe above would be the reality if history would different (without eg. firebombing and a-bombs)...

In this game vs. Japan the AI also seems to have no supply problems I find it takes ages that they run out. So I supected they get a bonus already on "historical". Fleets also get a bonus ie. they do not take damage if over their range. They practically have unlimted range (even if then on vlow speed perhaps)...this is helpfulfor the AI I am sure it would have troube handling correct task groups with different ranges.



My experience with stock scenario 6 (Dec 8 start) against the Japanese AI is similar to Alpha77's. Per suggestions from the forum, I played on Hard, until I found that I was capturing some large caches of supply in New Guinea, then I switched to Historical in mid-44, so I could effectively bypass and isolate island bases. I have been very conservative, since it is my first GC, and I suspended the sub campaign for much of '44 because of sub losses to the uber-E boats. I started bombing the HI from the Marianas in Jan '45, but scaled that back after major losses. Luckily, the AI is not great at the ground campaign, so I was able to implement an air/surface blockade on a line from Cam Ranh Bay to New Guinea in late '44.

It is now early Jan '46 and the HI have not received any convoys from the DEI in more than a year. I also control all of Manchuko and the entire Chinese coast (except Canton, Hong Kong, and Shanghai are blockaded). I've controlled all of Kyushu except for Nagasaki for the last month.

I just peaked at the Japanese side and found that Tokyo has more than 8M supply points. I restarted the B-29 campaign from China, with the 8th AF and Bomber Command pitching in from Korea, but I had to undertake 3 months of massive fighter sweeps from Okinawa and Korea and sustain heavy P-51H and P-47N losses before I was able to whittle down the HI fighter defenses.

I don't use Tracker, but from peaking at the Japanese side, the AI seems to run a pretty good economy.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/22/2015 1:24:17 AM   
PaxMondo


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It isn't the economy. Read DD696 post again. It is that the AI does not MOVE supply well. Outlying bases starve. All the supply pools in Tokyo. As someone above notes 8M supply in Tokyo. So taking all the islands is quite easy to do; recapturing DEI, PI etc. easy.

Now play Ironman and as DD696 points out, Andy has added internal supply generation all over the place to take account for the lack of supply movement. You can play normal and it is fine. Play the Nasty or Nasty Nasty versions of Ironman and there Andy has also beefed up the unit production so that the AI can afford to lose several large battles and still be a potent opponent.

Example by what I mean for losses. My current game is coming on to 9/42.
                        AI         Me
Air losses            12000      3000
ships                   375       150

A real slugfest all the time.




< Message edited by PaxMondo -- 8/22/2015 2:25:58 AM >


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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/22/2015 9:28:17 PM   
bomccarthy


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Okay - I took his statement "The AI seems to want to carry things away from Japan but does not like to carry materials to Japan and seems to have a real tendency to want to empty the pools and has no "sense of conservation"" as an indication that the economy was failing without intervention.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/22/2015 10:28:35 PM   
PaxMondo


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quote:

ORIGINAL: bomccarthy

Okay - I took his statement "The AI seems to want to carry things away from Japan but does not like to carry materials to Japan and seems to have a real tendency to want to empty the pools and has no "sense of conservation"" as an indication that the economy was failing without intervention.

It will take units away per scripts, but it struggles to create fuel or supply convoys to keep depots supplied. So, Truk for example slowly just dies.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/23/2015 12:10:17 PM   
Alpha77

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: PaxMondo


quote:

ORIGINAL: bomccarthy

Okay - I took his statement "The AI seems to want to carry things away from Japan but does not like to carry materials to Japan and seems to have a real tendency to want to empty the pools and has no "sense of conservation"" as an indication that the economy was failing without intervention.

It will take units away per scripts, but it struggles to create fuel or supply convoys to keep depots supplied. So, Truk for example slowly just dies.


AFAIR I was quite astonished and also suprised, that Betty and co. would still fly from bases isolated for long while. In early and mid game that was quite a hassle ( I am not complaining btw. war isn´t easy right?). Only after Allies get all the carriers that they also can give proper air umbrella to convois this threat from "isolated" bases vanished. I believe most or some of the bases have a huge starting stock of suplies or the AI troops and planes need less supply or the Japanese Ai used real world tactics and transported stuff with subs and/or small fast runs with DDs etc. However after playing Japan for a while I found they only get a few transport subs. Not enough definatly. Also later in war ofc the Allied interdiction,recon and search is just to good that much of these fast sneak convois would get through.

One major feature of AI is they make raids deep into your territory. Sometimes threatening and suprising but often also just deadly (for them). Just got 2 raids from them the one just happening seems to be British with 1-2 CVLs or CVEs. The surprise here was that I consider this area already as behind the lines. So I have not much to react their at the moment. If they chose to go further ofc this would change quite rapidly. The hit and run tactic is ok by the AI (eg. with cruiser forces) but not somuch the "deep" raid (hit and do not run)..

Another feature is small transport convois without proper escort also coming to near to "your area" or also go right through an area which one would consider as "my" territory. I realize that on sea that is not so true however - so the behaviour might be ok. At least both sides have a lot of cargo ships only IJN can run out in middle war the allies not so much (depending on players skills and or PBM or AI of course).

< Message edited by Alpha77 -- 8/23/2015 1:14:14 PM >

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/23/2015 12:20:29 PM   
Alpha77

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: bomccarthy
I don't use Tracker, but from peaking at the Japanese side, the AI seems to run a pretty good economy.



Whow that was a shock iirc when I peaked at the Japanese side in my Allies game. I really had caused a lot of losses to them but they still had lots of stuff. It also seems that the AI isn´t bad at research I believe some planes appeared earlier. I know for fact Tojo II, I remember whan playing Allies I always was fine with encountering Oscars or even Zeros later on when you get Spitfire and P47, Hellcat etc. But the Tojos really were a harder nut to crack and they had quite a lot of them.

Also another shock where you could find ships from them you never suspected them to be lol

< Message edited by Alpha77 -- 8/23/2015 1:21:37 PM >

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/23/2015 8:52:59 PM   
bomccarthy


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Alpha77

quote:

ORIGINAL: bomccarthy
I don't use Tracker, but from peaking at the Japanese side, the AI seems to run a pretty good economy.



Whow that was a shock iirc when I peaked at the Japanese side in my Allies game. I really had caused a lot of losses to them but they still had lots of stuff. It also seems that the AI isn´t bad at research I believe some planes appeared earlier. I know for fact Tojo II, I remember whan playing Allies I always was fine with encountering Oscars or even Zeros later on when you get Spitfire and P47, Hellcat etc. But the Tojos really were a harder nut to crack and they had quite a lot of them.

Also another shock where you could find ships from them you never suspected them to be lol


The AI is definitely good at accelerating research -- I recently took a look at the Editor for Scenario 6 and found, for instance, that the Shinden is scheduled to arrive in December 45. However, I began battling them in July (one month before the real life prototype flew). It was a similar story for the Ki-43-IV, Ki-84r, Ki-94-II, and Kikka, none of whose real life prototypes even flew.

I do like the late-war surprises -- I had to find a way to confront a June 45 CVL raid on San Francisco. I saw it coming (maintaining overlapping search arcs from Midway and Adak Islands), but I thought it was going to sail around Pearl, hunting in my shipping lanes. I had to use all of my training units in the Bay Area, 4-5 CVEs, and the arriving Bennington (IIRC), to fight them. I confirmed that my B-29Bs could find task forces at 30 hexes, if I focused the entire squadron on a 20 degree search quadrant. And one of my training squadron B-17Es scored a single hit on one of the CVLs from 1,000 ft.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 8/28/2015 4:17:26 PM   
Alpha77

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: bomccarthy


I do like the late-war surprises -- I had to find a way to confront a June 45 CVL raid on San Francisco. I saw it coming (maintaining overlapping search arcs from Midway and Adak Islands), but I thought it was going to sail around Pearl, hunting in my shipping lanes. I had to use all of my training units in the Bay Area, 4-5 CVEs, and the arriving Bennington (IIRC), to fight them. I confirmed that my B-29Bs could find task forces at 30 hexes, if I focused the entire squadron on a 20 degree search quadrant. And one of my training squadron B-17Es scored a single hit on one of the CVLs from 1,000 ft.


The AI often does such raids in this game I play now too. They send 3-4 CVs right through my "Hinterland"

And as the Allied the Japanese AI sent a Carrier raid right down under Sidney. It was the time I was quite panicked because you had not much to counter it there and at that timeframe (mid 42 I believe). Just send everything to flee and try the P40s etc. to defend the port(s)....more you cannot do except if you are lucky a sub hit.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 12/15/2019 3:52:31 PM   
joliverlay

 

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I'm wanting to get into late war against the AI. Don't mind the Iron Man's, been playing them on Hard, but now I'm seeing that VERY HARD is needed 20% of the time even with the nasty scenarios in recent posts. I don't really want to keep changing the setting and was thinking of scenario 21 (or 22?) the new tier 1 Nasty or scenario 40 on very hard, but I have no idea about the combat modifiers in very hard.

So I ask, how to get a reasonable game into 1945 against the AI without changing settings? Nasty on very hard, or maybe some other slight enhanced Japanese AI on Very Hard. Any Ideas?

Don't say PBM, I'm doing 2-3 turns per day but I want to do something in my free time over the holidays and I've always wanted to get past 1942 into later game, and the AI can do that if I can find something that will keep going.

Thanks for your ideas.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 12/16/2019 2:43:58 AM   
PaxMondo


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1. The AI needs Very Hard for at least 5 - 8 days per month. It can't move supply around as well as it needs, even in the Ironman scenarios. So you can either play the entire game at VH, or change to VH periodically.
2. To get to '45 against the AI, you will likely find that you have to take charge of the AI about 1/quarter or so for at least 5 days in a row. The issue is that it can get 'stuck' on a script and kill itself. By taking control, you can shift things around and get it to forget that script.
3. The AI struggles with upgrading units. It can, but it doesn't always do that good a job. I intervene and help with that to keep it competitive.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 12/17/2019 10:33:29 AM   
LeeChard

 

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I find one of the biggest failings of the AI is it"s inability to adjust to mistakes. For instance I'm playing Japan in late '44 and the AI sent an invasion force to Shortlands and discovered a BB TF there. All it's ships were lost. A few turns later it did it again. I know it will continue to do this so I back the BB's off and let them land. I know it sounds silly but now the game is on again.

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RE: AI Difficulty options - 12/17/2019 11:51:50 PM   
PaxMondo


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quote:

ORIGINAL: LeeChard

I find one of the biggest failings of the AI is it"s inability to adjust to mistakes. For instance I'm playing Japan in late '44 and the AI sent an invasion force to Shortlands and discovered a BB TF there. All it's ships were lost. A few turns later it did it again. I know it will continue to do this so I back the BB's off and let them land. I know it sounds silly but now the game is on again.

reference my note 2 above.

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