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A Better AI.

Discussion in 'Civ4 - General Discussions' started by Blake, Nov 4, 2006.

  1. Uncle_Joe

    Uncle_Joe Prince

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    Thanks for the new version!

    Presumably, simply dropping that .dll into an existing Mod folder would cause the AIs to use your AI changes, correct? The very small Mod I'm working on is simply adjusting the HandicapXML file a bit. So if I put your .dll in my mod folder it should all be working as designed, yes?

    Thanks again!
     
  2. Thedrin

    Thedrin Deity

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    Post deleted.
     
  3. Stexe

    Stexe Chieftain

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    Hey, Blake, so now that your amazing work has been included in an actually official patch (which is extremely rare to my knowledge of gaming history), have you gotten a job offer from Firaxis yet? Considering how much work you've put into the AI, I'm suprised that they wouldn't take you on as a full time AI programmer or something. The AI in Civ games has been known to be horrible, I'm sure they could use an AI programmer. Anyways, what exactly is your background and history? I'm curious on how you got into improving the AI and what your current job is.

    P.S. I'm curious because I'm majoring in game design and it is interesting to me how other people get into the industry or get to where they are in life.
     
  4. Stexe

    Stexe Chieftain

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    CivFanatics messed up big time. Read my post above.
     
  5. Arlborn

    Arlborn Legendary Noob

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    I liked a lot the changes of the last version, specially about the cultural pressures. Now tell me, you made the AI build cultural constructions and use bgreat artists in specific cities with specific reasons right? So I dont get, why aim to cultural victory for the AI is "impossible"?? Why cant you make some specific commands to make the AI defend better this 3 cities? With its better defensers for example! And the AI dont even need more than 6 cities for Cultural victory, because build Cathedrals in the Capitol is not really necessary specially if you build a early worder like Stonehage(this one is a heck of a bump in culture) in the capitol, what normally you will do. You could make the AI concetrate in Production in the 3 cultural cities, and at least get 1 Great Artist Farm in other city. And is that hard to make them DONT use the Great Artists right away? I mean, if its before 500AD or so, then its better to use as a superspecialist in a cultural city, but if not they sould wait to use the Great artists only in the end when the cultural bombs will be enough to finish off the victory. Imagine the face of the players when 1 turn they check the victory conditions and the AI still need like 15000 of culture in 1 city and 20000 in other to finish it, and in the other turn the AI suddenly win a cultural victory??? I would LOVE that. And why not make them beeline to Mass Media with some stops to some essencial techs of course? I mean, as I told you before, the best would be the same AI to aim both to Cultural and to Diplomatic victory(Gandhi :D), what is better for that than beeline for Mass Media?? And what about the AI useing the Cultural Slider??
    I really think its possible.
    And hey, about the player problem, that he would try to destroy 1 of the cities, the better solutions would be what I already said I guess, wait to use the great artists and put the best defensers in that cities. Also you could make that specific AI to construct only 6 or 9 cities as a "rule", and DONT countruct cities in some far away tundra..And other thing, when you see an AI almost at Space Race victory, dont you use mass spies and/or WAR?? What is the difference then?

    OK I dont blame you if you dont try, prob itsw a lot of work, but I really would like to see it in some of your later versions :( Or some modder please try it :)
     
  6. Arlborn

    Arlborn Legendary Noob

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    Double Post Sorry.

    Something is weird lol
     
  7. ThERat

    ThERat Deity

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    interesting read. While I didn't patch yet, since I lost interest in CIV for now, I find Blake's work amazing. It makes me wonder why it took a modder to implement such stuff.
    Well, now another thought that seemed not to come up so far. The difficulty scaling. It is always assumed that the AI is pretty dumb and thus higher difficulties are created by merely giving the AI insane bonuses or the human more handicaps.
    A true difficulty scaling should be based on even grounds (no bonus or handicap), but on different AI behaviour. With Blake's improvements and maybe more others to come, it might be possible to implement this instead.
    Sort of like: noble = pre patch AI, then monarch = 2.08 AI and so on.

    Any thoughts?

    I am writing this because the handicaps on humans such as the tech trading handicap make the game a real farce in the long run and only favor a similar pattern on highers levels as experienced players know.
     
  8. Stexe

    Stexe Chieftain

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    CivFanatics messed up big time. Read my post above.
     
  9. voek

    voek Prince

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    I agree with you on this. I have had this discussion with some other experienced players as well. In the end it's all about your own feeling and opinion. Imho the difficulty is more in a *smarter* AI and less about handicaps. Civiliziation is about intelligence for me and not about spamming more units/cheaper teching/etc etc. Blake's improvements are amazing. Well the programming side that is. He is in fact only implementing a general consesus on strategy we (humans) use in the game.

    I think with the newest AI mod and patch it will be become impossible to beat the AI at Deity using NORMAL settings on a normal map. I dare the best players to prove me wrong...

    Anyway, I would like to be the higher difficulty level the more challenging, but at least it should be done. It's only logical the bonuses the AI receives are now somewhat out of balance since Firaxes balanced it with the old AI. The AI has become much stronger, but bonuses are still te same. Yes you can play at a lower level, but now the highest difficulty levels have become out of reach imo. More important, strategies are becoming out of balance. You need to be even more aggressive, since it's becoming the only weak point of the AI. That's a shame imo.

    I think Blake has claimed he wants to something like linking dificulties with AI behavior. I think that's great. Either way, Blake isn't to be *blamed* at all ofcourse. He just makes a great mod and if you don;t like it, you don't play it.
    I think Firaxis should hire him.

    For now I only dream of a AI not starting with 3 archers 2 settlers , 2 workers, 2 scouts and outproducing/outteching me from the start, but a AI with a few bonuses able to use viable strategies based on AI personalities (random or not).
     
  10. mice

    mice Moose

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    I'm glad someone asked, and it's probably none of our business, but I'm really interested to know what deal is made when something like this happens.If you make a major change to the most successful PC game in the world,there should be some reward other than kudos.

    I love this game so I dont want to complain but.. isnt it weird that Blake put out an update that stopped the AI settling on resources, effectively making this feature a bug ? Why did firaxis release a patch that was bugged when Blake must have been days away from a fix?


    Again I dont want to complain. Your work is clearly brilliant Blake and thanks.
     
  11. Arlborn

    Arlborn Legendary Noob

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    The point is, the AI in noble DONT get advantages(ok, maybe somethings like agiant barbarians, but its default I think), so to play without any bonus for you or AI, just play Noble. And if it is still hard with all the improviments, so play warlords difficult or lower, becase I personally prefer to play with a FULL intelligence AI and with some bonus(I mean if noble is too hard) than to play with a less smart AI than it could be(dumb). I would feel really bad, much more than if I had bonuses like more science or so. So I think that difficulty level should stay the same.
    ANd about Deity, haha, if nobody can bet it now, GREAT!!!!!!! It only menas that we have to work hard and improove ourselves even more! Thhe fun of a game(most of the times) is about challange and try to get to the top. What is the fun if a big part of the players can bet easily all the difficult levels? It would mean suicide for Firaxis ort any game company.

    Hope you got my point, sorry for the english.
     
  12. Wlauzon

    Wlauzon Prince

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    One of the problems in CIV4 has always been that at higher difficulty levels, Warmonger more and more becomes the ONLY viable choice.

    And as I have said before a few times, the scoring has always been incredibly stupid - when I can start a 2 civ deity game, run my warrior over to the other civ and take his size one city and get a score of 35,000, yet winning a cultural victory against 6 other civs in 2040 only gets me 2500, that is just silly.

    Blakes patches have made considerable improvements in the AI, but of course the problem now is that Prince+ is no longer nearly as easy (in fact I have had to drop back to Noble for now). The AI now seems MUCH better at late game war - in the non-Blake-patched version, the AI does really stupid things, like build 30 frigates that sit in some city forever. I don't see that much anymore.
     
  13. mice

    mice Moose

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    Where do we put that updated 07 file? does it go in the Warlords Custom Assets folder as is? Do we need the previous one too , copy over it or anything?
     
  14. voek

    voek Prince

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    Yes I get your point and prob. a lot of players agree with you on this. That's what I stated in the first place. I respect your point of view and I hope you do the same with mine (and others).

    Personally I like games were you can beat the AI if you truly mastered the game (and maybe with some luck). I get pleasure from playing against a strong AI BUT I also get pleasure from getting better and being able to beat the AI on a higher difficulty level, prooving the progress for myself. Not for others, it's a single player game (for me). My ultimate goal is to beat civ. at Deity using normal settings. After that I throw it in the bin (just kidding).

    We might disagree on this point but forgetting about what should be done, don't you agree to me that when the AI behavior is improved and the bonuses are not the difficulty level of for example Deity, has become more tougher. Ad don't you agree when Firaxis designed the game they tried to balance the game in a way Deity would be only doable for a few very good players. And then don't you agree at this moment even those players (prob.) aren't able to beat the AI at Deity anymore? So from that point of view it has become more unbalanced. Remember I am not asking you to agree with me on the point this should be changed (e.i. the bonuses should be lowered).

    Anyway I don't think players who share your point of view wouldn't care if the bonuses were adjusted right? Since you want to play against a *smart* AI and you don't care about wich level you play at all, right?

    Summarized players like me not only care for the fun in playing with realistic resistence, but also care for progress and the pay off in rising in difficulty level.
     
  15. Mergle

    Mergle Prince

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    Superb work Blake.

    Just a thought on cultural victory. It's true that it's easy enough to stop one AI player from achieving it, but it does cost a commitment in resources (and initiating a war you may not want to get into). This could mean that you do indeed stop that AI getting the cultural victory, but at the cost of your own gameplan - and so a different AI takes the win. So I think AI going for cultural victory could be viable in the long run. This is especially so if the human player is on more of a knife-edge because of the other improvements to the AI - he may not be able to spare that task force. I'm not saying cultural would often be the sensible strat for the AI - but it might be worth it trying it sometimes.
     
  16. DrJambo

    DrJambo Crash-test dummy

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    The only immediate change that I would make would be to lessen the likelihood of the AI trading their tech with each other compared to how they trade tech with the human.

    The problem I have now in Monarch level (at Epic speed) is that the game moves too quickly through the medieval and industrial periods - the AI is getting rifles in the medieval time period! :/
     
  17. Arlborn

    Arlborn Legendary Noob

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    Actually a "big" slice of players could beat Deity before the patch right? So what was the fun to play ofr them anymore? And who likes to go a level up and improove themselves, now will have a heck of a chance to do that, specially the ones that could beat Deity before, dont you see? If you like to always improove, leave it the way it is will be way better for you, because now its harder(!) to beat the highest levels and then you have to improove even more, isnt it what you want?
    But ah well, I respect you opnion surely, but I just think that it would benefit most of the players ^^


    @Mergle:
    Welcome to CFC Forum![party]
    I completely agree with your point! Thanks to point it out :goodjob:
    See Blake? I see no reason why its impossible to the AI go to cultural victory :)
    Imagine then this scenario: You are in the Space Race with other CIV, any of you 2 have a real chance of winning! But then suddenly an other AI popup a Great Artist and bomb that city that was still too behind in culture to let him win. Then you check the victory conditions and see that he is probaly going to win a cultural victory before any of you 2 could finish the Space Race. What you do? If you go to War with the other CIV you will prob lose the Space Race, but if you dont go you will lose anyway for Cultural. What a way cool situation for CIV an? I would LOVE :)
     
  18. V. Soma

    V. Soma long time civ fan

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    Could not the one civ going for cultural victory try to become a vassal of a strong power civ? ;)
     
  19. voek

    voek Prince

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    I have to disagree a big slice of players can beat Deity. A lot of players can beat Deity at tweaked settings. But I can't think of a game with all standards settings (play now) using default amount of AI, standard size continent map (most played), with barbs on, all vics enabled, no pacts enabled, etc etc You get it, "normal settings". Maybe a few players have done it and I would love to see a write up.

    But anyway this is another discussion about the definition when one has beaten AI Deity....

    So both point of views have been discussed, so yes prob. the only thing matters which point has the most 'supporters'. To do that there prob. will come a poll. But being a research consultant I think polls are the devils instruments itself... :lol: So I just keep my fingers crossed and see what Blake will do.
     
  20. Arlborn

    Arlborn Legendary Noob

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    What about the suggestion I did put already some pages ago in this thead? Just make more levels of difficult then and leave the old ones as it is or almost :p
    I think it would please both of the point of views :)
     

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