Humans cheat, the AI don't!

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Crymson
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Humans cheat, the AI don't!

Post by Crymson » 17 Jul 2010, 07:46

Is there a good reason why the AI can't pick up oil drums ? This is a obvious cheat for human players, and since the AI isn't that hard, it is a built in cheat for human players. :hmm:

I also noticed in a few multiplayer games when player's power jump, it is because those oil drums spawn way too fast. I thought they were cheating at first, but that was not the case, they just sent out patrols looking for those infinite spawning oil drums. You can rack up over 1000 units in no time!

Per
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Re: Humans cheat, the AI don't!

Post by Per » 17 Jul 2010, 16:13

I have no idea why the AI can't pick those up, it has just always been this way. We should probably change it.

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Re: Humans cheat, the AI don't!

Post by Zarel » 17 Jul 2010, 19:32

If we change it, it'd need to be a special case for multiplayer.

We should also look into not dropping oil drums into multiplayer, if they're that much of a balance problem.

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Re: Humans cheat, the AI don't!

Post by KenAlcock » 18 Jul 2010, 11:17

Scouting for oil is part of the game, just like picking up artifacts. An oil drum may be 100 quick power, but it's only available once, and only when the player takes time to pick it up, or has units follow a path near the barrel happenstance. So it is likley that a vehicle picking up oil barrels is likely not performing it's intended function (construction/fighting/repair/sensor), thus the player likely has to give something up in order to gain something. To obtain several oil barrels as described above, a player must spend some of his micromanaging time scouting for oil barrels, instead of spending that time: building his base, producing units, or conducting prudent research.

If oil drums are located on a map in a fair and balanced physical arrangement, then game balance is maintained, since all MP players have the same opportunity to grab barrels of oil. Not all balance needs to be coded into the game.


Edit

If you didn't have oil drums in multiplayer, you would ruin good maps like 8c-AIAssault where the player's chance or survival are largely dependent on obtaining oil barrels. Letting the AI get the barrels is the best solution.
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Re: Humans cheat, the AI don't!

Post by KukY » 18 Jul 2010, 12:55

Maybe because AI cheats more power then you can pick up from oil barrels?
If you look at it that way, like I do, that is pretty balancing.

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Re: Humans cheat, the AI don't!

Post by Per » 18 Jul 2010, 13:02

AI cheating power will soon come to an end, though.

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Re: Humans cheat, the AI don't!

Post by Zarel » 18 Jul 2010, 20:27

KenAlcock wrote:If oil drums are located on a map in a fair and balanced physical arrangement, then game balance is maintained, since all MP players have the same opportunity to grab barrels of oil. Not all balance needs to be coded into the game.
There's the hard part. How do you put oil drums in fair and balanced physical arrangements? Keep in mind not all maps are symmetric.

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Re: Humans cheat, the AI don't!

Post by KenAlcock » 18 Jul 2010, 20:53

It's true, there are many asymmetrical maps. But these maps, by their very geographic design, are not balanced. And so the oil drums on these maps are also not likely balanced. Most likely, this is what the map maker intended. The aforementioned 8c-AIAssault is actually a very symmetric map geographically, but it heavily favors the outer four (AI) bases. The inner four (human) bases are at a distinct disadvantage in defensible power resources close to the main base. This is exactly what the map maker intended, since it is a survival map. Between the outer and inner bases is a middle area with a lot of oil barrels and a few oil wells. But in order to get either of these power sources requires sending at least a couple trucks per player to grab them, which slows down the player in building defenses to protect his main base and power resources against the forthcoming AI assault waves.

In this example the map maker has used the oil barrels as a lure for the humans. If the humans don't grab the oil barrels, they will not have enough power to build adequate defenses, units, and fund research; and, the AI will quickly outpace the humans in research. But by reaching to grab the barrels, some of the human's trucks are occupied, and will likely be lost to enemy patrols.

On the whole, the design of the map is congruent toward its intended purpose--survival. It is supposed to be a bit unbalanced. Now if you let the AIs pick up the barrels, it would make this map even harder.

Another such map is 4c-Rolling Hills, which is a stock map installed with Warzone. It has several oil barrels in the center of the map. It is an important part of the game to rush a truck to the center to try to grab that extra oil.

If you simply eliminated the oil barrels in Multiplayer, then you destroy important strategic elements these maps.
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Re: Humans cheat, the AI don't!

Post by KenAlcock » 18 Jul 2010, 21:01

Zarel, read this map maker's description of his own map, and pay attention to the oil part. link. Oil barrels are part of the creativity map makers have to make their maps interesting. Not dropping oil barrels in multiplayer would ruin a lot of maps.
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Re: Humans cheat, the AI don't!

Post by Zarel » 18 Jul 2010, 22:17

I'm not talking about oil barrels placed by the mapmaker. I'm talking about randomly spawning oil barrels. Not dropping oil barrels won't have any effect on the oil barrels already on the map.

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