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AIs and the Art of War

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Caveman 2 Cosmos' started by Arkenor, Apr 10, 2013.

  1. Koshling

    Koshling Vorlon

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    The AI does not take account that OTHER units have bonuses against a unit it is evaluating, when it makes the evaluation. It **does** take account that the unit has bonuses against other units however (so it sees the combat type bonuses on the unit [defensive or aggressive] but doesn't go through other units to see what it might be vulnerable to). As such this is not impacting the choice of TWs currently.
     
  2. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

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    Ok. Well it may not help much for the AI but I'd think it'd still be a good idea to develop a promo chain that gives units (melee and mounted should have access at least) a combat modifier against Civilian Class units.

    Furthermore, or as a more appropriate alternative perhaps, I think that TW's should also have a unique Crime Fighting CC in addition to the primary Civilian CC. This would be a CC that Criminals and other assassin units should be able to gain a set of promotions to help counter a well. Then, additionally, the crime fighting promotions can be nicely grouped onto only the crime fighting units thus enabling us to categorize those prereqs by CC rather than by the individual crime fighting unit.

    Said Crime Fighting CC should ALSO gain a set of promos to help counter Criminal CCs as well.
     
  3. ls612

    ls612 Deity Moderator

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    I think it is a bad thing. I designed the TWs to get less XP to make them inferior on the defense to Archers. As it stands now if you have Mil Advisor specialists as your primary Free XP pool that will reduce that difference quite greatly.
     
  4. Dancing Hoskuld

    Dancing Hoskuld Deity

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    As we have discussed elsewhere - depending on the combat type or unit type - units should only get a maximum exp from Military Instructors just because they aren't military.

    I would say the first 3-6 Military Instructors give full exp to all units. More than that and they only give exp to military units.

    Great Artists would give exp to Story Teller line.
    Great Doctors to healer line.
    Great Engineers to workers.
    Great Priests to inquisitors (and missionaries?)
    Great Spies to espionage units
    Great Merchants to caravans and trade ships (increases the returns from those units)
    Great Statesmen to diplomats

    and so on.
     
  5. strategyonly

    strategyonly C2C Supreme Commander

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    Dang DH were do you come up with this great stuff, nice!;)
     
  6. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

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    I say we should implement the Combatant Unit Combat Definition (I added this a while back) on all Military units (a categorization that is not to be shared on one unit with the Civilian CC) and make the Military Instructors ONLY give their xp bonus to Combatants. This begins the process that paves the way for this kind of effect:
    BTW, with this taking place, I'd suggest we then add a population assignable specialist for the Military Instructor as well. We're about to break the specialist barrier so this should be quite doable. We'd also then want to add a LITTLE exp for each of the non-great corresponding pop-assignable specialist citizens on the above chart. We might even want to decimalize this xp granting capability.

    I'd also add then, the Investigator who gives some anti-crime and xp to Crime Fighting units (continuing to suggest we add the Crime Fighting CC to policing units.)
     
  7. Dancing Hoskuld

    Dancing Hoskuld Deity

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    I haven't actually started the code, thank goodness, I had a brilliant idea last night at 3am - and I wrote it down!
     
  8. Hydromancerx

    Hydromancerx C2C Modder

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    Indeed! Great ideas! :goodjob:
     
  9. Sgtslick

    Sgtslick Emperor

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    You and your late night c2c thoughts :lol:

    This is a sensational idea though. Simple yet brilliant.
     
  10. Arkenor

    Arkenor Warlord

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    I can't help feeling that the Town Watch problem could be addressed far more simply and quickly by reducing their base power and/or their city defense bonus, in order to stop them appearing as the all-purpose best choice to the AI. (Though I do think the great people providing category specific xp is neat!) But anyway, there's a new problem that's probably going to make the AI's crime-related and unit-building decisions much worse.

    Just started a new game.

    The banditry civic (unlocked at scavenging) now auto-places a building in your city that gives all (melee, archer, gunpowder) a promotion that raises crime +5.

    The buildings Banditry enables already raise crime.

    Me, I can look at what's going on and make the decision not to go anywhere near Banditry now, but I am rather more concerned about how the AI is going to handle all its defensive units raising crime in their cities. With all the problems the AI has been having with crime that we've discussed, this seems the very last thing that prehistoric AI need to deal with.

    In fairness, there is a new military civic that's unlocked at the same time, that does not enable bandit camps, or do anything crime related. How well is the AI going to choose between the two?
     
  11. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

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    Yeah, crime is already tough... that's a rough change that I haven't played with yet. Ouch. What's the building name so I can take a look at that next time I've updated?

    I'm also somewhat in agreement about their strength being lowered. But I also feel that archers shouldn't be the only defensive unit for city defense. There should still be an almost comparable melee unit for that role as well and I think, again, if we give the Macemen line (which the AI already seems to like for this role for whatever reason) an equal bonus to city defense as it has for city attack, it could be a very effective city defender. Making Archers, or any other CC for that matter, the primary class for defense of a city is only going to lead to less defensible cities as it becomes fairly easy for an invading force to promote to face those types of units after capping out on the city raider line.

    Macemen also have a decent strength against melee so they become a good 'front line' against melee attackers in the defense of the city. This enhances the value of Archer Bombard to go about it this way as well. Spears and Maces thus entrench at the gates to defend the Archers who take shots at the adjacent invading force, less concerned about maintaining the fortification bonuses they could get by denying themselves the Bombard attack... makes sense to me this way. But Town Watch really doesn't and shouldn't fill the role of a serious soldier class, even if they can put up a modicum of a fight.


    You know... it occurs to me... Specialists don't currently have an XP Change by Combat Class tag do they? That would not be a hard thing for me to do. I'll put it on a high priority list here so we can get that done soon. We've talked about much of this concept before but this new fleshing out of the idea really begs further development immediately.
     
  12. Arkenor

    Arkenor Warlord

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    The building is called Civic (Banditry) 1. It says it autobuilds with the Banditry civic. Though oddly I can't see it in any of the building tabs, so either it didn't actually build, or its invisible. I'll build something and find out..... OK, the promotion doesn't seem to be being applied, so I guess the building is not actually being built. Which is actually a bit of a relief, for the purposes of my current game.

    I've attached pictures of the building, and the promotion it desires to apply.

    There are other defensive units beyond archers. While the City Defense promotion makes for a good all-round defense, I've always preferred a rounded mix of units. I always have a spearman in case of cavalry, and anti-melee melee, such as axemen. Importantly, these units are also useful for counter-attacking and other purposes beyond defending a city, leaving you with more flexibility. Rather than starting any other units with built-in city defending bonuses, merely giving them access to the City Defense promotion line would probably be sufficient. (Assuming the AI understands that sort of thing). That particularly makes sense for spear/pikemen.

    With almost all units having a strong bonus against at least one other unit type, it's not necessary, and possibly counter-productive, to focus on City Defense bonuses.
     

    Attached Files:

  13. JosEPh_II

    JosEPh_II TBS WarLord

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    I totally Disagree. And here is why.

    Is everyone forgetting that crime is also on the cities workable tiles as well as the city itself? That crime diffuses from a tile to surrounding tiles, whether in the City tile or on a tile working tile. That if a for ex. an enemy Rogue (any crime spreading unit) is in your empire the tile it is on has an increase in Crime. The very basics of the TW is that it reduces crime, not only in the City but on Empire tiles. Otherwise the 2nd Crime reducing value of a TW is useless. But it isn't.

    So if you see AI's TW's out of the city there just Might be a logical reason for it. We've made the AI to Build Crime producing units. And it builds them. We wanted a Crime reducing unit line so the TW was adapted to that role. By the way, TW were in the game Before Crime was introduced. So now the AI is trying to use it's resources to keep Crime under a somewhat manageable situation/status.

    But now you want to go and dicker with the balance? When you don't remember, or maybe in Arkenor's case don't know, from past development cycles the full workings of the TW and it's Crime role?

    Seems to me that all this is accomplishing is to cloud the issue.

    JosEPh
     
  14. ls612

    ls612 Deity Moderator

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    I agree with Arkenor, currently the TW/Guard/City Guard line has a strength progression of (5/9/19), perhaps changing it to (4/7/15) would fix the issue. Does anyone object to that?
     
  15. Arkenor

    Arkenor Warlord

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    Might be a bit much of a change for the higher level units. Perhaps safer to make smaller changes and see how it goes. I'm not even sure if City Guard are causing the same problems that Town Watch are.
     
  16. JosEPh_II

    JosEPh_II TBS WarLord

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    I object.

    JosEPh
     
  17. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

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    Yeah, if all units gain that its going to cause so much crime it'd be completely unmanageable I think. However, if it's giving that free promo to Criminal CC units I could understand that.

    I agree with most of what you say. But my suggestion would simply be to add the same degree of innate city defense to the Mace line as they have city attack, which by the way is not as strong as the sword line. I think they have pretty much 10% city attack so that would also mean 10% city defense. Nothing too imbalancing there... just gives the Maces a bit more purpose in the game imo.

    AND, though I may not have said it, the city defense promotion line would be good. However, I'm still a bit fond of the promotion line I asked for some time back, Streetfighter, that was a lesser form of city defense (that also included some minor City Defense capability) for Melee so as to not overwhelm the role of the archer.

    I carry the same observations about axemen and spears too and I don't think this adjustment would threaten the value of their roles just as you put them. If the ai is not trying to cross protect its cities with a variety of units like this it will simply be less defensible all around. But that's really potentially another issue entirely.

    @ls612: If I work up the Streetfighter buttons do you still have the shell of the xml you said you'd done for that set of promotions? (Probably would be needing some updates.) If not, I suppose I could go back and look at all the first pages of your promotions thread to find reference to the stats we agreed on for those.

    I can understand this point. But consider the following:

    Yes, the AI is doing a great job of pumping out Crime Fighter units at this time and as a result they're keeping their crime levels under control. The problem is that these units are expensive - they carry extra costs over other unit types and should for the game balance. As a result, the most effective player will build them ONLY as much as they need them. Otherwise, their expense becomes as much a burden on the economy as the crime itself would've been.

    So the question becomes, once the AI has its crime under control, is it then also building these units (now to an excess) because the unit is also evaluating as the best choice for city defense? The suspicion is that they are doing just that and they need to be told in a simple way that this unit is not BEST for that.

    This is also an issue for realism immersion - I'd like to see a real world nation try to defend its cities with police forces alone when an army comes to invade. Shouldn't be the most effective strategy I think. Policing professions are good fighters... they have to be to do their jobs WHEN their jobs get rough. But unlike soldiers, they aren't equipped with the weapons and training to make killing their absolute profession. Too much of their training regimen involves more complex acts like detective work to have the sole focus on warfare be their ultimate role. Simply put, they should not be as strong as equivalent era soldier classes.
     
  18. Flinx

    Flinx Prince

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    This has been suggested already for the anti-crime units (town watchman, guard, etc.): nerf the base strength and remove the city defender bonus.

    You might keep in mind we're talking a civilian unit, not a military one.:eek:
    It's purpose is to keep crime manageable and not to defend cities against attackers, at least imho.

    Same problem is the healer / doctor / ambulance line.
    I have personally reduced their strength to 1/2/3/4/..., you get the picture.
    They are support units with little to no self defense ability, so this should be considered in their strength.

    Dog units (and feline ones) share the same reason with my setup. They support regular troops and so my dogs start have the strenght 2/4/8/16.... .

    If you want to represent RL-abilities in C2C you might consider the mentioned changes.

    Suggesting this it's time for me to start editing my files for the Town Watchman line as mentioned above.
     
  19. Dancing Hoskuld

    Dancing Hoskuld Deity

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    As far as I have seen the AI produces anti-crime units to get its crime under control then builds better defenders like archers. Ie it appears to be working fine as far as I can see.

    Which I think means that all military units should get a bonus against all civilian units. Not that their strength be reduced as that puts them in harms way with animals, bandits and the like.

    With some ideas I have for World Views/Geneva Conventions we may need to split the civilian units up a bit. I would like, some time in the future, something like
    • Convention on Civilians - can't kill or capture settlers, workers, work boats, missionaries or Great people
    • Convention on Non-Combatants - can capture but not kill merchants, medics, story tellers and the like.
     
  20. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

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    So this furthers the need to implement the combatant unit combat as a subcombat to indicate 'this unit is a military trained unit!' I don't think a touch of reduction as being suggested, however, is all that bad. Most animals still wouldn't have much of a chance and those that do... well... shouldn't they have some representable potential as a threat?

    Still... those last two ideas are right along the lines of what I'm LOVING from your thinking lately. Great stuff. Again, enhances the need to further embrace Sub Combat definitions. Citizens, as opposed to Combatants as an overlying category then splitting those citizens into further subcategories of merchants, medics, missionaires, executives, artists etc... From these categorizations, so much can be done.
     

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