Bot AI - Psychic in specific circumstances, spoils the best moments


#1

Hello TR/Community.

My favourite thing about Evolve, just as it was in AVP2 and even in games like Counterstrike in days older still, is the mindgames it enables us to play. Psychological depth is what I look for in a competitive multiplayer game - be it action or strategy, the key to competitive multiplayer is in the accurate analysis, and timely exploitation of the psychological traits and weaknesses of your opponent.

Evolve is beautiful for this in the simplest ways, not only for the Wraith with her decoy and excellent stealth, but for the careful use of environmental lures, false trails and fake-out mistakes.

The oldest trick is the best trick; hit an objective or cause a distracting noise then hide in the bushes! And the game’s visuals support this wonderfully - you’ve done a great job of enabling camouflage, making it a real thing as not very many games have.

A few days back I simply crouched in a shadow on Distillery and watched the enemy team, who had hounded me for the last fifteen minutes thanks to Abe’s tracking darts (check out those trapper statistics on the latest infographic - everyone knows the bastard’s imbalanced!), walk past me three times, fight a Blitzleopard ten feet from my position, look at me repeatedly then walk away grumbling, obviously confused and disappointed to think I must have somehow gotten past them, and was miles away by now.

Yesterday? GRIFFIN STOOD ON MY HEAD, for a brief moment, after a Reaver destroyed one of his soundspikes right next to me and the whole team came charging back at my skinny, half-armoured Stage 1 Goliath ass. I just sat in the bush and watched them, and the daft bugger used me as a step-up to help him jetpack up the cliff. They left none the wiser.

The fact that can happen, courtesy of a good lighting engine above all that doesn’t mark a difference between the monster’s skin and the surrounding environmental textures, and the weakness of human perceptions against unpredictable situations, is genius.

… and y’know it doesn’t work on bots?

Yeah.

It doesn’t work on bots. They just begin shooting me instantly if I’m well-hidden in the bushes. I’ve had this happen and the team STILL haven’t noticed me until I eventually move away. “It’s just the bot bugging out”, they think, but my cover is still blown due to the risk and the damage.

So… Any chance that could be fixed? The best high-end stealth play is utterly spoiled if a bot has temporarily taken over for a crashed player for even a minute or two, and we could see some great rounds taken away from a clever monster for this.

Bots should represent human players as closely as possible, and while they’re impressive we know they can’t approach the variety and adaptability of a real player. Letting them have this one special sense tips off the real players, and isn’t any fun.

Fixy? <3


#2

Bots are terrible to begin with. Being able to hide in a bush is impossible to code because good hunters can see you.


#3

Some of your points I don’t agree with, one complaint I do however have is when I go cloak or invisible with any support or lazarus the AI monster still follows me and hits me. At first I figured it was just attacking nearby where I was but at one point I was at the power relay and last up so I cloaked and ran AWAY from the relay, didn’t shoot or stop running and the Goliath not only followed me and charged me but rock throwed me to death. Minions seem to have the same thing. Not sure if it is just a one off bug for me and I sincerely hope not.


#4

Irrelevant, Maddcow - it doesn’t counter the argument.

Having a bot should not totally remove concealment and camouflage from the game.


#5

But how do you program that? There is no bush/tree where you are 100% hidden. Some tail, leg, appendage will stick out. So again, how do you program that?


#6

Which parts don’t you agree with, before you go off-topic?

I’m afraid that as a monster primary player, I can see your cloak. I played a lot of AVP2, Planetside, STALKER etc over the years, and the faint ripple of translucent textures tends to get my attention just as much as a normal player, within a certain range. Then there’s your footsteps, splash effects, the fact I’ve probably set you on fire already, and the predictable routes you’ll take according to the position you were in when I saw you cloak.

Subsequently I can’t necessarily argue with the bot being able to track you while cloaked - that is an accurate representation of a human player.

Whereas a bot who can see you at 150ft range in a bush while unarmoured and perfectly still, which I’ve tested and confirmed, surpasses what any player I’ve encountered can do. It’s a matter of expectation - humans see what they expect to see. They expect to see the cloaker at close range, near a body or running for cover, or climbing to high ground, or the opposite direction to other players, etc. A new arrival doesn’t expect the stage 1 to be in a bush not far from the landing zone, as that’s abnormal behaviour.


#7

Cloak isn’t 100% hidden. You can see a silhouette of the character and it’s REALLY obvious if you jetpack. Also, if you attack or are hit you will be revealed briefly.


#8

Ideally, given that I’ve never had a player find me when I’m in a bush, I’d just make a goliath out of ‘combat mode’ in a bush invisible to the bots.

I’d say add a spherical region around bush entities that makes the monster invisible to the bot while within it unless within X metres, but since I’ve had otherwise-competent players physically touch me without noticing me, that seems… Off.


#9

So all you have to do to slip the AI is hide in a bush? That seems like a cheat more than anything else. Just because players don’t notice you doesn’t mean good players won’t.


#10

nod It’s problematic because Turtle Rock value the game’s singleplayer aspect. I can only suggest that in the case of ‘all bots’, they gain an RNG brief spike of ‘supervision’ to simulate one of them luckily spotting a spike, a foot, a glow.


#11

Okay I see thank you for the tip and I will make sure to remember.


#12

Alternately Bots function normally in multiplayer games like they do in a solo game and follow teammates and perform role specific actions that don’t involve interacting with a monster. Until the monster is engaged BY A HUMAN, AI will ignore and will not make any actions on the monster if it is in stealth mode. “But what about team fights, a monster can just stealth and bots will ignore him?” What’s the monster going to do exactly? Sit there and look pretty while he gets chinked by every non-bot in the game?

Fallacy of reversibility by the way. Just because a good player doesn’t notice you hiding doesn’t mean a bot won’t. Just because a good player doesn’t notice you hiding doesn’t mean an average player won’t either. It’s a bad logical basis to stand on.


#13

Umbra, while I do not wish to be unfriendly or discouraging, could you please stop changing the topic on my thread? If you’d make your own threads about your issues I’ll happily respond to them, but I’d like to keep this on-topic =)


#14

While cool in theory it isn’t likely. A lot of the game requires information to make decisions. As the Monster you need to keep track of cooldowns, locations of hunters, where they are in relation as well as what their lineup is and what is currently happening. Having custom skins would favor the Hunters too much. It’s one of the reasons Elite skins are weapons only and not outfits. THe Monster has a LOT of information to process in high level play.


#15

Good point, Perception.

The essence of the issue is that bots must be based upon the ‘average player’, neither the best nor the worst of us. The average player is bloody blind when it comes to monsters sitting still in unexpected locations. This even works beautifully in laser tag xD


#16

AI will still spot you in the bush if you are in a game with other players. It’s leashed to the central mass of players but he’ll still spot you.


#17

You just have better eye sight than me then lol cuz I never notice. But I just figure that if a player has the ability to cloak then surely the monster, let alone an AI monster, should not be able to see me. Also the part about hiding in a bush would only work to players not paying a lot of attention so surely anyone trying to learn via bots would learn a tactic that isn’t normally viable. Also surely if this was a feature it would be abused as if I just ran into a bush and the AI lost me it would be unfair.


#18

Yeah sorry man just excited to let other people hear the idea but I will get rid of it my bad, I understand :slight_smile:


#19

This is the point Jakkar is making. It’s also valid. By preventing bots from making any dialogue/action and treat the monster as though it isn’t there it won’t be capable of trivializing one of the most intense moments in any game of Evolve.

It doesn’t cripple a team in the slightest, as while there’s one less pair of eyes to spot a hiding player, you have a teammate with relatively perfect mechanical movement that is there to serve as a placeholder that isn’t absolutely useless.


#20

I disagree. A bot is horribly crappy for your team. That is handicap enough for being spotted.