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Old Apr 29, 2013, 02:30 AM   #1
IronCrown
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Use submarines against AI = exploit?

I bought Civ V right after release but didn't like it, now last week I tried it again with the expansion installed and finally got a little hooked up by it. In fact it would be great if it had an AI.

Anyway, in my second serious game, on King level, I went for diplomatic victory because that seems to be by far the easiest one and one AI (Gengis Khan) was totally dominant in size, tech and military. He had done a good job of killing everyone on his own continent, so I figured the AI is not so bad after all.

Then he declared on me and I thought I was toast, as his army was five times as big as mine. But I had recently built a few submarines which I deployed on both sides of my continent between his shores and mine.

And then I just sunk most of his army and his ships without losing anything. Submarines shoot from 3 tiles away and are invisible to what he had, so he never made a single counter-attack. Not one of my subs was even damaged. Every sub one-shot any of his embarked units and obsolete ships, two subs sunk any carriers or battleships. It was ridiculous. After 20 turns or so his army was about as small as mine and he hadn't landed a single unit on my shores, and I had not suffered any casualties even though his navy was by no means inferior in size or strength.

While funny, of course it felt like cheating. I guess the AI simply doesn't know how to play against subs so using them is basically an exploit. Really sad because submarines were always useless in Civ now they are finally useful, but way overpowered
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 02:47 AM   #2
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In general, the tactical AI does not remember anything from the previous turn. At the start of every turn, it doesn't see anything in the ocean, and so it sends units in. This can be exploited in several ways: for example, camel archers or keshiks can bomb units that never seem to realize they are being hit, because they see nothing at the start of the turn. Submarines are the most extreme example of this: all you have to do is remember not to leave the sub by an enemy city or destroyer at the end of your turn, and it will never die, because the AI will never see it at the beginning of his.
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 02:52 AM   #3
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Yeah, that's what I figured

I'll never understand why they didn't release everything needed for modding the AI, like they did with Civ IV. The final BetterAI mod for Civ IV is the best AI I've ever seen in a game, and we'd most likely have something like that for Civ V if they had given out the tools for doing it. Unforgivable
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 03:29 AM   #4
Civ4Pengbo
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Wait until you get nuclear subs you can one shot anything just about.
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 05:56 AM   #5
farleybear
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Submarines are one of my favourite units. I've been playing a few games recently as England, my navy of choice is 6 SOTL > Battleships (upgraded to +1 range and logistics), then 6x Submarines (ugraded to +1 range). I've found that this death fleet is plently to deal any runway civ navy.
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 06:09 AM   #6
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Didn't he built destroyers normally destroyers can locate sumbmarines so pretty wierd that ghenghis didn't built them proparly he propably didn't researched combustion instead he went straight to electronics
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 06:22 AM   #7
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Destroyers aren't used properly by the AI to hunt down subs. I am pretty sure that the AI doesn't do any decision-making after moving the unit, so if it happens to ram a submarine it'd only be on accident. If another AI unit supports the destroyer in taking down the sub, it'd be on accident also, due to lucky move order.
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 07:42 AM   #8
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He built a ton of destroyers, but it's very easy to move into range, then kill the destroyers. When it's the AI's turn, he has no unit left that can see the submarine and since the AI has no memory, for them the invisible submarine simply does not exist, and their now destroyed destroyer also never existed...

A good AI programmer would probably give the AI a kind of short-term memory 'opponent has subs and used them recently, build anti-submarine units and send them on patrols near spots where our units were lost to find and kill enemy submarines'.

The BetterAI modders in Civ IV gave the AI long-term planning capabilities for Domination/Conquest and Cultural victory, so it's certainly doable...
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 08:10 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kirbdog View Post
In general, the tactical AI does not remember anything from the previous turn. At the start of every turn, it doesn't see anything in the ocean, and so it sends units in. This can be exploited in several ways: for example, camel archers or keshiks can bomb units that never seem to realize they are being hit, because they see nothing at the start of the turn. Submarines are the most extreme example of this: all you have to do is remember not to leave the sub by an enemy city or destroyer at the end of your turn, and it will never die, because the AI will never see it at the beginning of his.
I suppose I'll try modding sub range to 1 hex to see if it works better (i.e., mine get hit more often).
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 10:25 AM   #10
Fastrada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kirbdog View Post
In general, the tactical AI does not remember anything from the previous turn. At the start of every turn, it doesn't see anything in the ocean, and so it sends units in. This can be exploited in several ways: for example, camel archers or keshiks can bomb units that never seem to realize they are being hit, because they see nothing at the start of the turn. Submarines are the most extreme example of this: all you have to do is remember not to leave the sub by an enemy city or destroyer at the end of your turn, and it will never die, because the AI will never see it at the beginning of his.
hah. hadn even noticed that yet.
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 10:35 AM   #11
amnslkr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kirbdog View Post
In general, the tactical AI does not remember anything from the previous turn. At the start of every turn, it doesn't see anything in the ocean, and so it sends units in. This can be exploited in several ways: for example, camel archers or keshiks can bomb units that never seem to realize they are being hit, because they see nothing at the start of the turn. Submarines are the most extreme example of this: all you have to do is remember not to leave the sub by an enemy city or destroyer at the end of your turn, and it will never die, because the AI will never see it at the beginning of his.
Did not know that. I am going to exploit this like a mf.

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Old Apr 29, 2013, 10:45 AM   #12
Civ4Pengbo
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Yes. and here was me moving the damn things away from the last attack point as far as I could.
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 10:59 AM   #13
szcott
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+1 visabilty

The only time you may run into trouble with your subs is when the AI has some kind of plus 1 to his visability, I think a Destoyer can see a sub out to 2 hexes normaly and with plus 1 vis it can see your sub and destoy it.

I've noticed the AI only using move orders too, It dosen't seem to have the ability to move 1-2 hexes and see a target and then attack it, It will complete its move order and try to attack it next turn.
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Old Apr 29, 2013, 01:28 PM   #14
reddishrecue
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Since you are here saying its an exploit then maybe it is. Some AIs do look really powerful and dropping AI power down big with a smaller power is .
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Old Apr 30, 2013, 01:28 AM   #15
IronCrown
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I've noticed the AI only using move orders too, It dosen't seem to have the ability to move 1-2 hexes and see a target and then attack it, It will complete its move order and try to attack it next turn.
This may even be the biggest part of the problem. A few times a strong AI vessel moved near my submarines during their turn, but never attacked. It would perform a lot better if it moved one tile at a time.

...but of course that would lead to even longer turn-processing times, which are already near-unbearable.
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Old Jun 17, 2014, 10:02 AM   #16
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I've got a project of playing all civs with most of the parameters randomly decided, apart from e.g. Continents (to make most of the Civs able to employ their UA/UUs) (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?t=527525).

And after some games, I must condone the title of this thread. You really don't have to build anything but Subs, i.e. the first ones, to dominate the sea for quite some time. The AI mainly goes for Ironclads, Battleships and Carriers filled with planes at least until the Information Era - or even some UUs from the Renaissance/Industrial Era. In addition, when met with difficult geographical choices (e.g. isthmuses or narrow passages), they usually send some Artillery or Infantry out in a boat, which is picked out with one shot by a Sub. Finally, they often also don't see the Subs, except with their planes, as they usually don't build Destroyers. Subs built with Armory can go for +25 % Attack and +1 Sight or Movement Promotions for instance and control everything.

Clearly a human player exploit possibility.
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Old Jun 17, 2014, 10:10 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by IronCrown View Post
This may even be the biggest part of the problem. A few times a strong AI vessel moved near my submarines during their turn, but never attacked. It would perform a lot better if it moved one tile at a time.

...but of course that would lead to even longer turn-processing times, which are already near-unbearable.
Yea...I survived my first Immortal Science victory by isolating, and staving invasions with submarines. At first it was a fun game of cat and mouse, with my four subs vs entire armies, and navies but once I realize the AI didn't follow up and attack on the same turn the sense of risk went down severely.
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Old Jun 17, 2014, 11:30 AM   #18
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Although everything in this post is true, we have to realize how HARD it is to program an AI with "memory" (anything resembling a remember function). Soren has clarified more than once that they "solved" the dilemma for Civ4 by giving the AI "extra", hidden vision capabilities: while the human player saw the normal LoS range for each unit, the AI units had +2 or +3 LoS in order to compensate for the NP-hard problem of giving an AI memory of its own.

As for BetterAI for BTS, it has been surpassed by the extraordinary K-Mod; I am playing a BTS Emperor game right now, and man it feels like EMPEROR, not like it's Civ5 counterpart. You may give it a try; it makes BetterAI look like, well, Civ5's AI.
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Old Jun 17, 2014, 12:27 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Aristos View Post
Although everything in this post is true, we have to realize how HARD it is to program an AI with "memory" (anything resembling a remember function). Soren has clarified more than once that they "solved" the dilemma for Civ4 by giving the AI "extra", hidden vision capabilities: while the human player saw the normal LoS range for each unit, the AI units had +2 or +3 LoS in order to compensate for the NP-hard problem of giving an AI memory of its own.

As for BetterAI for BTS, it has been surpassed by the extraordinary K-Mod; I am playing a BTS Emperor game right now, and man it feels like EMPEROR, not like it's Civ5 counterpart. You may give it a try; it makes BetterAI look like, well, Civ5's AI.
Hmm... giving the AI a sight bonus, that's actually a very interesting concept; I've never thought of that one before and I really like it. (Personally, I have no problems giving the AI cheats and bonuses, to a degree, as long as it creates a good challenge in the end.)

Ideas I've had for things discussed here is to remove all "move after attack" bonuses since the player can abuse these really bad; with mobile ranged units it's absurd. Yes, subs don't have this. To address them there are other things, like reducing their attack range to 1 and/or reducing the strength of their ranged attack, maybe by just removing the attack bonus promotion.

All ranged units in general are too strong and instead should simply supplement melee units, which should be more of a core part of armies. This way, AI's can trade blows with humans more and can take advantage of their production bonuses to overwhelm better.

Another thing to utilize could be some sort of attrition or weariness mechanic, where ranged units always receive a little damage for each attack, similar to air units. This way, after firing off many attacks you'll need to recover a bit before continuing. Allowing humans to mass ranged units and fire off attacks endlessly without receiving any damage destroys the AI and any advantage it has in numbers, exacerbated by 1UPT.

Just a few of the ideas I remember having jotted down somewhere... I can't wait to delve into units and tactical AI modding to try and improve the combat side of the game.
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Old Jun 18, 2014, 06:50 AM   #20
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Although everything in this post is true, we have to realize how HARD it is to program an AI with "memory" (anything resembling a remember function).
I think it's a very simple thing to programm something like that for this specific issue. Whenever a submarine hits, just make it visible for the AI for the next turn. Should solve the issue quite elegantly...
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