Author Topic: Earth Alliance Comments Thread  (Read 4224 times)

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Offline Tanj

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #75 on: January 12, 2021, 06:18:11 AM »
Is there still shock damage in C#? After all those armour hits I'd have thought there'd have been some internal damage mounting up
 

Offline Droll

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #76 on: January 12, 2021, 11:21:10 AM »
How big is you ship and how big is the biggest hit your ship took?
 

Offline TheTalkingMeowth

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #77 on: January 12, 2021, 11:23:32 AM »
Is there still shock damage in C#? After all those armour hits I'd have thought there'd have been some internal damage mounting up
Shock damage odds are scaled down by the size of the ship, so big ships are still fairly hard to shock damage. Also the current tech level is pretty low so there weren't many huge hits.
 
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Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #78 on: January 12, 2021, 06:51:45 PM »
We've now had two alien species that ran their forces piecemeal into the human fleet. In the case of the Abbai, they probably wouldn't have had a chance anyway if they had doomstacked, but that would have been the logical action as the human fleet advanced on their homeworld.

Funny enough, it would have turned into Babylon 5's Battle of the Line... only with less mercy from the aggressors.

I need to take a look at the AI when I have some serious time on hand to avoid that situation in future.

To be honest this is probably a very difficult nut to crack as the main problem with AI is to recognise threat... both to their colonies and fleet in general.

As a human we can split our forces for maximum ability to scout and engage targets of opportunity while joining fleets together for a large strike.

If the AI tend to clump their fleets together too much it is easy to find and attack it and deal a death blow in one strike, if it split up too much their attacks become toothless when you concentrate your force.

This is the same problem that we have in real life during warfare, especially at sea where the areas are vast. If you concentrate force without knowing where the enemy is and how powerful they are you risk loosing your fleets due to bad luck or incompetence (take your pick). If you spread out and try to defend everything you can't really defend anything and become too weak. You need to be able to gather strength at the right moment and know where to direct it or it can backfire quite badly.

The AI need to be better at scouting and using more scouting squadrons that behave differently from offensive fleets. The fleets or main assets need to hang back until good targets have been identified and enemy defences probed. I presume the AI need to have three layers to their fleets... the main strike force, probing forces to protect the scouts and the scouting force which will mainly be lone ships, FAC and/or fighters.

How viable it is to teach the AI this I don't know. But when we as humans just apply a small amount of tactics the AI can usually don't compete even with a significant tech advantage when it comes to scouting, this makes FAC and fighters a bit too powerful against the AI as you can strike from large distances and the AI are none the wiser. On the flip side when I play against myself using the same powerful tactics on every side fighters and FAC are much harder to use effectively.
 

Offline froggiest1982

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #79 on: January 12, 2021, 07:18:42 PM »
We've now had two alien species that ran their forces piecemeal into the human fleet. In the case of the Abbai, they probably wouldn't have had a chance anyway if they had doomstacked, but that would have been the logical action as the human fleet advanced on their homeworld.

Funny enough, it would have turned into Babylon 5's Battle of the Line... only with less mercy from the aggressors.

I need to take a look at the AI when I have some serious time on hand to avoid that situation in future.
The AI need to be better at scouting and using more scouting squadrons that behave differently from offensive fleets.

Yep

I think the AI makes already good decisions as long as they are "informed" decisions.

If you can add a string of code along with a series of ships dedicate to scouting or "spying" then the AI will be already more dangerous and probably unpredictable as it will be its choice to attack en masse, wait, or ambush.

It can already make decisions based on ship intel and system importance, now you just need the last bit.

I am no genius or code geek, but I think that this should be way easier that what you have coded so far for the AI behavior because the framework is already there.

EDIT: various spelling errors
« Last Edit: January 12, 2021, 07:24:30 PM by froggiest1982 »
 

Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #80 on: January 13, 2021, 02:20:38 AM »
In general I think that the AI are relatively smart and does well. It just need to understand concentration of force and scouting better.

It also need how to defend against smaller crafts a bit better as well, this I think is its most major design flaw.
 

Offline Droll

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #81 on: January 13, 2021, 03:54:25 AM »
The problem I find with the AI isn't the decision making, its the templates. The AI gravely needs better (and more varied) designs IMO. It just feels like I'm fighting the same ships with different weapons as opposed to every NPR feeling unique.

The only ships that I find proving the slightest challenge are missile ships but even then it feels like I'm fending off the same size 6 missiles
« Last Edit: January 13, 2021, 03:56:03 AM by Droll »
 

Offline Steve Walmsley (OP)

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #82 on: January 13, 2021, 05:35:04 AM »
The problem I find with the AI isn't the decision making, its the templates. The AI gravely needs better (and more varied) designs IMO. It just feels like I'm fighting the same ships with different weapons as opposed to every NPR feeling unique.

The only ships that I find proving the slightest challenge are missile ships but even then it feels like I'm fending off the same size 6 missiles

It's a lot of work to setup complete NPR templates, including the tech progression, operational groups, etc. but I do agree the game would benefit from more templates. Time is the main issue at the moment.
 
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Offline punchkid

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #83 on: January 13, 2021, 05:49:39 AM »
The problem I find with the AI isn't the decision making, its the templates. The AI gravely needs better (and more varied) designs IMO. It just feels like I'm fighting the same ships with different weapons as opposed to every NPR feeling unique.

The only ships that I find proving the slightest challenge are missile ships but even then it feels like I'm fending off the same size 6 missiles

It's a lot of work to setup complete NPR templates, including the tech progression, operational groups, etc. but I do agree the game would benefit from more templates. Time is the main issue at the moment.

Is there any way the community could help? if you provide a template of the format you would need, then the community could probably help by making designs etc. to save you some time and work maybe?

Edit:
Might also have the added benefit of even surprising you a bit in some of your games, by meeting designs you don't already know well because you made them yourself =)
« Last Edit: January 13, 2021, 05:51:18 AM by punchkid »
 
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Offline Droll

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #84 on: January 13, 2021, 06:01:45 AM »
The problem I find with the AI isn't the decision making, its the templates. The AI gravely needs better (and more varied) designs IMO. It just feels like I'm fighting the same ships with different weapons as opposed to every NPR feeling unique.

The only ships that I find proving the slightest challenge are missile ships but even then it feels like I'm fending off the same size 6 missiles

It's a lot of work to setup complete NPR templates, including the tech progression, operational groups, etc. but I do agree the game would benefit from more templates. Time is the main issue at the moment.

Is there any way the community could help? if you provide a template of the format you would need, then the community could probably help by making designs etc. to save you some time and work maybe?

Edit:
Might also have the added benefit of even surprising you a bit in some of your games, by meeting designs you don't already know well because you made them yourself =)

I know there are many forum veterans who would jump at the opportunity to do this - you already do this with the CSV format for medals.
 

Offline Steve Walmsley (OP)

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #85 on: January 13, 2021, 10:59:15 AM »
The problem I find with the AI isn't the decision making, its the templates. The AI gravely needs better (and more varied) designs IMO. It just feels like I'm fighting the same ships with different weapons as opposed to every NPR feeling unique.

The only ships that I find proving the slightest challenge are missile ships but even then it feels like I'm fending off the same size 6 missiles

It's a lot of work to setup complete NPR templates, including the tech progression, operational groups, etc. but I do agree the game would benefit from more templates. Time is the main issue at the moment.

Is there any way the community could help? if you provide a template of the format you would need, then the community could probably help by making designs etc. to save you some time and work maybe?

Edit:
Might also have the added benefit of even surprising you a bit in some of your games, by meeting designs you don't already know well because you made them yourself =)

I know there are many forum veterans who would jump at the opportunity to do this - you already do this with the CSV format for medals.

When I say a lot of work, I am not kidding :)

It requires some code changes, but the bulk of the work is done by modifying the database unless new AI behaviour is needed. It involves several different complex tables and there is a lot of scope for creating bugs.

You need the following new records:

DIM_AutomatedClassDesign for each new ship design. Unfortunately, it is all done numerically with the program tracking what each number in each field means. There are about seventy different parameters, most with multiple options. New options need new code.
DIM_DesignTheme is overall design theme for the NPR and affects different elements of ship design plus how the Empire is run. The same automated ship design will be different for each design theme, so two NPRs would design the same missile cruiser with different weightings for speed, armour, shields, weapons, fuel, etc. Again, lots of numbers for different options. There are 32 different themes at the moment, although some are more common than others.
DIM_OperationalGroup for the operational groups used by the NPR (battle fleet, patrol, survey scout, etc.). 58 group types so far. Any new group types would need extra AI code.
DIM_OperationalGroupElement: Which automated design combinations go into each operational group.
DIM_OperationalGroupProgression: How the NPRs builds new fleet types. Seven different progressions at the moment.
DIM_DesignThemeTechProgression: Order of tech development for all NPRs, but not every NPR develops everything.
DIM_TechProgressionCategory: Different approaches to tech development, including what techs not to research. Fourteen different progressions at the moment.
DIM_AutomatedGroundTemplateDesign for each new ground force template
DIM_AutomatedGroundTemplateElements for each element of each new ground force template
DIM_DesignThemeGroundForceDeployments for the normal deployments of the ground forces for a specific design theme

Have a look at the tables to see what I mean. If it isn't all setup correctly, it will cause bugs when the program runs.

Even with all of that, it is still just variations on a theme. To add something new, like NPR carriers, or to create different behaviour, such as Swarm or Invaders, requires a lot of new code.
 
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Offline Droll

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #86 on: January 13, 2021, 11:32:56 AM »
The problem I find with the AI isn't the decision making, its the templates. The AI gravely needs better (and more varied) designs IMO. It just feels like I'm fighting the same ships with different weapons as opposed to every NPR feeling unique.

The only ships that I find proving the slightest challenge are missile ships but even then it feels like I'm fending off the same size 6 missiles

It's a lot of work to setup complete NPR templates, including the tech progression, operational groups, etc. but I do agree the game would benefit from more templates. Time is the main issue at the moment.

Is there any way the community could help? if you provide a template of the format you would need, then the community could probably help by making designs etc. to save you some time and work maybe?

Edit:
Might also have the added benefit of even surprising you a bit in some of your games, by meeting designs you don't already know well because you made them yourself =)

I know there are many forum veterans who would jump at the opportunity to do this - you already do this with the CSV format for medals.

When I say a lot of work, I am not kidding :)

It requires some code changes, but the bulk of the work is done by modifying the database unless new AI behaviour is needed. It involves several different complex tables and there is a lot of scope for creating bugs.

You need the following new records:

DIM_AutomatedClassDesign for each new ship design. Unfortunately, it is all done numerically with the program tracking what each number in each field means. There are about seventy different parameters, most with multiple options. New options need new code.
DIM_DesignTheme is overall design theme for the NPR and affects different elements of ship design plus how the Empire is run. The same automated ship design will be different for each design theme, so two NPRs would design the same missile cruiser with different weightings for speed, armour, shields, weapons, fuel, etc. Again, lots of numbers for different options. There are 32 different themes at the moment, although some are more common than others.
DIM_OperationalGroup for the operational groups used by the NPR (battle fleet, patrol, survey scout, etc.). 58 group types so far. Any new group types would need extra AI code.
DIM_OperationalGroupElement: Which automated design combinations go into each operational group.
DIM_OperationalGroupProgression: How the NPRs builds new fleet types. Seven different progressions at the moment.
DIM_DesignThemeTechProgression: Order of tech development for all NPRs, but not every NPR develops everything.
DIM_TechProgressionCategory: Different approaches to tech development, including what techs not to research. Fourteen different progressions at the moment.
DIM_AutomatedGroundTemplateDesign for each new ground force template
DIM_AutomatedGroundTemplateElements for each element of each new ground force template
DIM_DesignThemeGroundForceDeployments for the normal deployments of the ground forces for a specific design theme

Have a look at the tables to see what I mean. If it isn't all setup correctly, it will cause bugs when the program runs.

Even with all of that, it is still just variations on a theme. To add something new, like NPR carriers, or to create different behaviour, such as Swarm or Invaders, requires a lot of new code.

Even this explanation is very helpful, thanks.
 

Offline Migi

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Re: Earth Alliance Comments Thread
« Reply #87 on: January 16, 2021, 11:42:36 AM »
I'm enjoying the write ups, and the explanation of the AI.

I think there is a common assumption that making the AI better is just a matter of adding a few more options or adding a couple of rules for specific situations, while in reality it's a long, grinding, in depth process which won't produce results for months, and risks making things worse rather than better.
 

 

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