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I really love this game, I really do.. but what ruins it for me is ---

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by Council 13, Sep 28, 2013.

  1. manarod

    manarod Chieftain

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    what i really dislike are the ai bonus. they are wrong. the problem with that bonus is that the ai is very strong at the beginning but after medieval time it falls behind. ai should have a bonus based on era, lesser prominent in classical e more important in modern, escpecially in science
     
  2. JustinianIV

    JustinianIV Warlord

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    OP, the whole point of the higher difficulties IS so that you will be playing catch-up. Would you expect it to be both more challenging and at the same time allowing you to become top dog just like before?

    Also have to disagree with you on you assessment of the AI. Don't get me wrong, I have seen some stupid AI moves. It's just that I feel they do a good job of replicating a human AI for 95% of their calculations.
     
  3. footslogger

    footslogger Warlord

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    The devs made a rod for their own backs when they introduced 1upt for Civ 5. On top of all the other AI complexities they had to go and make more problems for themselves with 1upt. I still can't believe someone thought that would be a good idea. I dare say the rest of the AI would have been quite a bit better if they hadn't had to spend so much time trying to make the ridiculous combat system workable - which of course it is still very far from being. It's a tribute to the efforts of Ed, Dennis and co that the game has become quite enjoyable since vanilla, in spite of rather than because of 1upt.
     
  4. Xiao Xiong

    Xiao Xiong Prince

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    I can't believe the 1upt tactics haven't been improved yet. Seems like the same approach that makes computers chess champions ought to make the AI the master of tactical play.

    Instead the AI units rush up to your cities and then go for a swim in front of your archers.

    Can the AI not use chess style look ahead to predict what is going to happen at least locally?

    I get that the AI can't do whole game strategy as well as a human player, but it ought to be able to hold its own in a local fight. Looking ahead 6 or 7 moves to see if it is likely to take the city and what not.
     
  5. Aaron90495

    Aaron90495 King

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    No, no it can't. There are, hundreds, if not thousands of times more moves available in just a local situation in Civ, much less across the entire map. People already complain about turn times; unless you want turn times of 10 minutes on a duel map, an AI simply can't look ahead many moves. There are simply too many options, and modern technology just isn't powerful enough to support such an AI.

    You have to remember that AI is basically coded using a giant series of "If/Then" conditions. The fact that the AI is as advanced as it *already* is is frankly amazing. So not only would we need leagues more processing power for a great, human-like AI, but it would take thousands upon thousands of hours of coding. And it STILL wouldn't act like a human in some situations.
     
  6. FrostK

    FrostK Prince

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    You are complaining that u can not rush Rome with Persia? Rome is obviously one of the most powerfull civ in early game. It is like attacking Zulu after they got Impi or trying to kill Azteqs in jungle with archers.

    And for sure you need to change your opening, since having negative smiles and gold with 2 cities is confusing.
     
  7. glider1

    glider1 Deity

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    Hi Txurce yeah that's the time victory condition. On standard speed it can be up to 500 turns. What is great about it is that the AI just plays according to it's personality profile and short term objectives and so it doesn't have to think too deep! :lol:

    The theory is that because the other VC's like science etc are the VC's that sell the game and give people a rush at the end, the developers have to spend most of their time on trying to make the AI competitive at these arbitrary VC's instead of spending their time on writing a better all round general purpose AI that the time VC encourages. But the point is that the AI can never really be made competitive in these VC's because human intelligence always wins by a long margin and hence all the crazy bonuses we see in the game to the AI.....

    If this theory is true, I predict that in the next patch, most of Ed Beach's valuable and talented time will be spent on trying to adjust science, culture, domination VC's and there will be almost nothing done to fix the many simple fixes that could be made to the combat AI.

    Let's see if this theory holds.
     
  8. Ninakoru

    Ninakoru A deity on Emperor

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    Couldn't be more agree, nothing like watching an AI game to see how stupid an AI can be.

    I made a mod to "fix" the free techs and units so the game is no about a catch-up science game for part of the game and you can actually shoot at ancient wonders and develop an strategy from turn 1 and such things.

    http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=180420195

    sadly to have some competition the AI need those production/maintenance/happiness bonuses, as sad as it is.
     
  9. glider1

    glider1 Deity

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    Well done Ninakoru I too have made a mod that does a similar thing. No free techs and the human starts out with the same happiness as the AI. The secret to make it work is to give the AI emperor/immortal level bonuses on the economy and diety level bonuses on combat. It has to be carefully tweaked. The AI's combat ability has to be adjusted so that unit replacement rates and costs are such that the AI can build rounded armies and not just dribs and drabs. I'd be happy to share it because it is just a change to the handicaps file. Then just turn off the VC's the AI can't understand and go play civ.
     
  10. Gori the Grey

    Gori the Grey The Poster

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    I agree with Justinian, or at least the way I have continue to have fun with the "cheating" AI as I move up in levels is to enjoy the challenge that is involved in only reaching parity at later and later eras. OP, you say you are frustrated that Rome has as much as he does "by the classical era." As you move up in levels, just know that that will be the case, and let preparing for that, countering that, overcoming that BE the harder challenge of the higher level. There can be great satisfaction in eventually, gradually, by dint of your careful and focused play, overcoming all of the mere numerical advantages that the AI at higher levels gets.
     
  11. Cedbird

    Cedbird Warlord

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    Many good responses. I agree here also. I am on Emperor for life I think. I will go up for kicks,challenges, and growth maybe but I have to much fun. But I enjoy challenging for Wonders and all parts of the game. Most of the time I win maybe 65 to 70% .But sometimes I get caught off guard by the Ai whether its a backstabb or what. The AI almost never beats me in tech. I find a way to comeback by using military savvy ( human smarts ) or by teching back somehow . I only play Earth map and Continents. Contintents usually give me the biggest challenge for some reason. But its fun for me. That 's all that matters.
     
  12. project_mercy

    project_mercy Chieftain

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    At the end of the day, all "The AI isn't bad" arguments are null and void from one simple thing. The AI never tries to actually win. The AI just clubs seals and occasionally stumbles upon success. It's monkeys and Shakespeare.

    You know in all the previously mentioned boardgames where everyone gangs up on the person winning, and switches based on who's winning? The AI doesn't do that until it's too late (Since it takes it a good 100 years to effect any useful war). At best it used to have the "upset that you're winning the same way they are", but there's rarely a case where it attempts to sabotage the actual winner until the end, and even then it's rare for it to do it against another AI faction because of the fact it can't get someone to hold hands with it, due to all the friendship/denunciation webs the AI weaves upon itself.

    All it does is look at some magical computation it comes up with for "I can beat this person" and goes after them. Even then, it won't do it unless someone else will come and hold it's hand for it while it's at war. It's pathetic, really. Like 8-year-old girls going to the bathroom.

    If the AI didn't cheat, it would never ever ever ever ever win. Ever. Even if you could somehow make the tactical AI not be completely crap, it still would never win without the player just failing at something, because its strategy is extremely basic, and even then half its life is devoted to hating and war.

    The only real challenge in the game that the AI provides (in contrast with failings on the player's part causing undo strife/time), is when the player is at such a high difficulty, the AI's rampant cheating makes all of them functionally hate the player, and turns the game into a tower-defense game instead of a 4X game. It's not so much that the difficulty is hard, it's that CivV is a terrible tower-defense game. As HerrDoktor pointed out, the AI is basically exempt from "the rules" as it receives enough bonuses to every conceivably item, as to make any limitations be moot. It has infinite happiness. It has infinite gold. It has infinite food. It can settle 10 cities in a desert with no resources and be fine. Sort of defeats the purpose?

    So, until such time as the AI can actually prosecute a war successfully without cheating, and it has some semblance of humanity in maybe liking another civ because they were nice( and not just on a sliding scale between "I think I can murder this civ" and "I think this other civ could hurt me so I'm going to pretend to like them"), it's a total failure.

    I think the part that frustrates me the most about it is, really I have never known a 4X game with strategic AI as terrible as this. I'm sure there are some out there, it's just I haven't run across it. I do know that going back and playing Master of Orion/Magic and such, they're not NEARLY as terrible. Again, the strategic AI, not the tactical AI. I know plenty of games with terrible tactical AI.
     
  13. Peng Qi

    Peng Qi Emperor

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    Uh, what? If only you could have any idea how absurdly wrong you are. The AI in this game is absurdly complex; probably the best AI in a strategy game I've ever personally encountered. If the AI were actually even remotely like "monkeys and Shakespeare," it wouldn't even found any cities at all the majority of the time, let alone have any vague idea of what part of the entire map it should have its troops in. You clearly have absolutely no idea how much work goes into AI coding and how AMAZING the AI is in this game compared to any other similar game.
    It used to be much more happy to gang up on winning players, but people screamed and cried and threw a temper tantrum about that and now it doesn't do it at all anymore.
    Name a single game where this is not the case. Even the best chess AIs in the world "cheat" by being fed book line openings. Deep Blue only beat Kasparov because it was hard-coded to use an opening that the coders knew Kasparov was weak against.
    I'll happily sit here waiting until you can provide me a single instance of a competent AI that does not cheat. I won't hold my breath, though.
     
  14. project_mercy

    project_mercy Chieftain

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    I do know. I've been coding for years. That doesn't mean they get a pass for making terrible AI. I'm paying them for progress. If they can't provide any bonus past Civ 1 except a glitchy DX11 port, then I'm not going to pat them on the back and tell them they did a great job.

    I realize, and I think it's stupid.

    I didn't say they were, but again I expect progress. The rampant cheating in this game is far beyond any other game I can think of. Any RTS, any 4X, any of them. As pointed out, on Deity, the AI functionally ignores every rule that exists. It plays a completely different game than you do. To throw your challenge back at you, name a popular game in the past 10 years that cheats MORE than CivV on Deity?

    The question comes down to what you feel the purpose on difficulty is. I would say if you found the average non-gamer person off the street, and asked him what he thought the difficulty meant, he would explain that it was a function of how good the AI plays. But it doesn't. The AI plays exactly the same way no matter what the difficulty is, instead it just adjust how much the AI cheats.

    That's like saying football would be better if one side got more players on the pitch (whichever football is appropriate to what side of the pond you're on). People don't watch sports or play games to see people club seals. It's about the tactics and strategy of it.

    If your comeback is "it's not possible", then my reply is "Then don't do it."

    That said, there's plenty of small things that would make the experience a lot more enjoyable, even with the various levels of cheating. Things like removing the happiness bonuses, and adjusting the tresholds for "your culture/military/gpt/etc is low" that induces AI rage.
     
  15. Xiao Xiong

    Xiao Xiong Prince

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    Having a background in software development I flat out don't believe this. I am not suggesting it read out the whole game, just the tactics within say ten tiles of a city that is being attacked or defended.

    That seems to me to be a well bounded problem with a reasonable search space.

    On any modern computer such a lookahead is extremely fast. Chess programs now check millions of moves in their search for the best one.

    Seriously, even a lookahead of two or three moves would at least prevent it from putting its units in the water within range of your archers, and I can't see why a lookahead of seven is infeasible.

    Even if it only performed advanced tactics when fighting a human player that would make a tremendous difference.

    The main reason I am able to win vs an AI with huge bonuses is that I can defeat an AI military with three times as many units an era ahead. And mostly just because the AI does incredibly stupid things.
     
  16. Peng Qi

    Peng Qi Emperor

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    That depends on what you mean by "cheat." The Deity AI in CiV, for example, whereas it's given a million free things, is still bound by the same hard-coded rules the player is. They can't sit at -30 Happiness and not get the penalties for it, for example, even if they do get an arbitrarily huge happiness boost. There are game AIs, however, who actually don't ever suffer the same consequences for things that human players do. For example, in Super Smash Bros. Brawl the human player can trip and fall on his face for no reason entirely at random, which doesn't ever happen to the difficult AIs. It's actually playing by a different rules set.

    Yeah, it cheats a lot. Yeah, it doesn't actually get more competent at higher difficulty levels. But no, I don't think it's really possible to code an AI for a 4X game that's much better than the CiV AI is with our current technology.
     
  17. sendos

    sendos Immortal

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    This looks like another topic of Fun vs good AI, but it's good to see these kinds of topics. Having played Emperor, I do see some smart aspects to AI:
    - They know how to beeline in tech. I've had 2 cases where dominant cultural AI beelines to internet and then aims for science victory.
    - They know how to use spies as diplomats. I've had 1 case where AI got globalization and used 2 spies as diplomats to get additional votes.
    - They aren't always stubborn when it comes to ideology. I managed to get my ideology first as Portugual, got decent tourism going, chose autocracy and eventually 1 freedom and 1 order civ flipped to autocracy.
    - It knows when to fall back when their assault fails.
    - Their diverse use of air and naval forces adds a decent challenge to the game, although some might say they are too dependent on spamming bombers. That's not a reason for bad AI. We players all do it. Just get some decent fighters and SAM's set up. Or if you lack the tech, then it's the player's fault for not maintaining their science well enough.
    - AI mostly knows how to withdraw air units if they're about to lose a base to an enemy.
    - AI know how to promote their units. I have a screenshot as proof that AI's train their keshiks just like I do: accuracy 3, then double attack. I just missed out getting a screenshot of an AI Mongolian keshik with +1 range as well. However, there's a horrible catch, see the dumb aspects.
    - With general units, AI know how to diversify their units with promotions a bit more. I've seen some AI units containing medic 2, using cover 1 and such.
    - Zulu AI somehow know something we don't (or it's clear evidence of AI cheating, to cover both perspectives here). They know how to get their impis to use their ranged attack consecutively with multiple groups of impis before attacking with melee. For example, 3 impis attack a musketman of mine. Impi #1 throw their javelins, then impi #2 throw their javelins, then impi #3 throw their javelins and then they melee attack.
    - AI never really give you "free" votes for World Leader, even when they're your best friends and you have no bad reputation with them. By "free" I mean, they hold the winning number of votes you need (say 6) and they say there's nothing that could make the deal work. It's really a free vote because even if you give them 10,000 gold and you win, so what about that cash. You've won the game. But AI doesn't seem to fall for it. That or I've done something wrong with this method of winning diplomatic victory.
    - For me, in the later era part of my games, the AI tend to love guarding their capital viciously with any kind of land units. I know this by putting a spy in an AI capital and I see it completely surrounded by their units. This would provide an additional challenge for those seeking domination victories, but then again, true domination victory-seekers would use at least 2 nuclear missiles to wipe out the garrison, let alone the air force in that AI capital, and then seize the capital and wait for AI to sue for peace.

    The dumb aspects:
    - Diplomatic trade + DoF would be the main one. You can get more gold from trades if you sell stuff to friends up front rather than getting more gpt. For some odd reason, AI would prefer spend 240 gold up front than 180 gold over 30 turns (standard speed). DoF allies are thus more vulnerable to frauds, especially when you sell a resource that is about to be pillaged by barbarians for example. Some players might expand on this when it comes to peace negotiations.
    - With air units, they're usually unaware of intercepting units. In my recent victorious game on Immortal as Siam, the Assyrians tried to take out my battleships with bombers even though I had a carrier with 3 experienced intercepting fighters garrisoned on it. Or on land, they'd attack supposedly my weakest units in complete disregard of a neighbouring SAM unit. They lost several bombers, dealing little damage in return.
    - Referring back to the catch, AI doesn't know how to use double attacks! They will use double attack as hit and run 100% of the time. See China AI for stronger proof.
    - For huge maps, it's impossible for AI to aim for domination victories. Don't know about smaller.

    Overall, I see a reasonably decent AI with some room for improvement. Saying that AI cheats is moot, because the game advises you on the tougher levels that the AI is given a handicap for Kind difficulty or higher.
     
  18. katfish

    katfish Warlord

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    And all that topples when ai taunts you and dows you thinking you have no army, while you're 2 eras ahead and have 10000 gold.
    Though i'm not sure if it counts as stupidity or brilliance on ai side: maybe it wants to force you to spend gold on maintenance.:smug:
     
  19. secon

    secon Chieftain

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    all this time i've been hoping and hoping and hoping for some changes to the ai. it's the one really obvious flaw in this game. but still nothing. why will a civ turn down my dof only to offer me on the next turn? why will someone who's been my friend for 2000 years renew the dof, ask me to join in dow'ing someone then denounce me the next turn for no reason? someone will attack me and when i've beaten them to a pulp and they have 1 city left with no troops they send me a peace demand that includes every luxury item i have, every strategic resource, and my biggest city. hell just last night when i was playing isabella sends me a dof then sends me 3 missionarys, i ask her to stop and she agrees. 3 turns later there's a great prophet converting my cities and she denounces me.
     
  20. Greizer85

    Greizer85 Emperor

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    What about a 'learning' combat AI, folks? It would take its cues from competitive multiplayer games; the players' moves and the parameters of the territory within, say, a 5x5 hex area of the acting unit would be recorded and, faced with the single player, the AI would pick the most similar multiplayer case from its vast database and execute the closest resembling response that is possible. Basically it would add a vast amount of complex IF -> THEN chains to the AI at no programming effort (apart from making the code that does the recording ofc). The AI would stumble a lot in the beginning, having little samples to go on; but over the years it would get more and more 'competent' (not really but in this case the appearance of competence is what really counts) with the aid of thousands and thousands of recorded sample situations.

    If 5x5 is too large an area to record, you could go 4x4 or 3x3 even (although with ranged units 3x3 might be pushing it). Tell me, folks who understand programming, is this even remotely plausible? Are the computer resources required too vast or is there some other problem I'm not foreseeing? If this causes the game to 'think' too long, it could be an option that can be toggled off and on -- a 'List Game' box that you tag in multi or even in single player in order to add samples to the database and help the community and yourself in the long run, at the cost of a slower game right now.

    EDIT: searching the database takes time too... The more the larger it is. Can't believe I didn't think of that! :wallbash: So... Idea torpedoed then? :sad:
     

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