GC II Tweaks

This section is for mappers and modifications of Ground Control II.
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GC II Tweaks

Postby stAtrill » 29 Jan 2013 22:55

BACKSTORY: So this one is very simple - I love AI and I am always writing/theorizing on AI in various situations. I would love to code the AI for a RTS game (I personally think I could the ability to code the most versatile and adaptive AI in a RTS yet) and I am always throwing together AI 'proof of concepts' and 'demonstrators', but I can never manage to make it over the hurdle of coding the rest of the RTS game :( (those games take TONS of effort).

So, the next best thing was to grab the mod sdk and see just how good I could make the GC2 in-game AIs. The modified AI is based off of AI:Alexander, since he has out-of-the-gate the best playstyle. I then figure out - the neural net implementation in GC2 in done poorly - the neural net only affects what units the AI choose for dropship loadout, the rest of the gameplay is deterministic based off of variables set before the game (this means the AIs don't know 'how' to play, they just follow rules and the only adaptation is in dropship loadout). Even worse, the neural net is tuned poorly - it overcorrects leading to negative feedback cycles (i.e. it keeps overcorrecting to fix its overcorrections and I don't have the tools to fix it). Not to mention the AI is undocumented, but fortunately I knew what I was looking for and what to expect. Unfortunately, the only things I can tune are AI priorities on different game events and dropship loadout choices (to a degree).

So, making the best of a bad situation, I tinkered around until I was satisfied. AI:Alexander is now the toughest AI to kill, and can consistently kill all other AIs (about 80% of the time). Since the only things I can control are dropship load and priorities, he is tuned for high-AP matches where the game focus is on getting as many useful units to the battlefield at once, taking the landing zones as fast as possible, and mopping up the enemy.

Some notes: He is very aggressive, but he will appear to 'choke out' a short while into a game. Typically, he takes and controls most of the battlefield, then tacks on 3 or 4 dropship upgrades at once (during which the enemy regroups and cleans him out). He only does this once, and if he stays alive through this 'upgrade session', he has strong performance all the way to match end.

Some things he does now:
He can upgrade to level 5 on engines and cargo (AI's were previously capped at level 4)
He will upgrade his sensors to match his gun range if he upgrades his gun
He will upgrade his armor now (makes him more resistant to losing his dropship for whatever stupid reason)
He hunts landing zones. He almost ignores victory locations.
He is better prepared to cope with large roving masses of helidynes (or large roving masses of anything)
He actually attempts to break enemy tank hoarding if the enemy is preparing for a tank rush
Although he still does stupid AI stuff, he is statistically much better than the other AIs at keeping his shit alive
He will choke out by overextending himself on low AP matches (not tuned for these)

Other tweaks:
-Bullets from the NSA scout vehicle are 50% faster, as is the NSA antitank turret bullet
-All gun turrets now have shooting ranges extending outside their view ranges (save for the SAMs, which already did)

If anyone has a copy of GC2 and is interested in reviewing the Alexander AI for me, please do! ^^ Thanks!

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