They can be, sorted by advancedness of behaviour:
- STATIC: use only the stuff placed on the map (structures and maybe a few droids) and just wait to be eliminated. This is trivial to implement.
- DEFENSIVE: Produce some droids in their factories, if provided with enough oil from their derricks, but never ever attack an actual player. This is what we currently see; this can be improved by binding all droids to their factories, so that droids didn't travel through the whole map when one of the bases is attacked.
- AGGRESSIVE: Use some of their newly produced droids to attack the nearby player structures. This is currently implemented in the NullBot Scavenger AI mod.
- ULTIMATE: Produce construction droids to build new defensive structures, capture oil derricks, build new factories and power generators. This is currently implemented in the Ultimate Scavenger AI mod and requires updates to the game data.
We may also provide a GUI method to choose scavenger behaviour before the game. Since we need a button to turn them off, i think we are left with choosing from at most two variants out of the four described above. Also, the GUI part is something i cannot code.
When expressing your thoughts on the choices above, please note that we are also discussing map making standards in this thread. For instance, Ultimate Scavenger AI mod is known to be unusable on maps where scavenger counts are significantly above average. Whatever behaviour we choose, people who make maps would need to adapt to it, and gameplay on maps already made will change significantly.