THICC Veteran's opinion on the new AI.

Midcal9

Member
Greetings Venerable companions,

Hereby I shall post my short but very deep thoughts on the new AI in relation to player's combat experience.

Prior to the last 0.7 update the AI used to be aggressive and more careless as you all may have noticed, now it's far more reactive. That's all.

The new AI you my dear Devs have created is not harder to kill but it is far more annoying to deal with, mainly because it takes far more to kill it. It's not more interesting or engaging in anyway nor is it more challenging.

What were you thinking when you turned all NPC's into backpedaling turtles? Do you think annoying equals better or more challenging?

Yes I am very angry and butthurt.

Thank you in advance for your wise replies.

Gregster.
 
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Syllabear3

Member
New combat is slow and dumb. Clothes makes your character look obese.
I am also angry and butthurt.

I used to enjoy to play arena matches time to time, i dont even want to touch the game now.
 

Roryn

Member
I can see where you're coming from. Generally I do think that they still play better than they did, but there's a few problems with their backpedalling, especially with one-handed weapons.

Because one handed weapons have that thing where if you rush forward and swing at the same time, they attack very low, it happens fairly often to both you and the enemy. That's mostly it; I find we need to relearn the combat a bit to make it really cool again. I find I'm relearning rapidly, at least, and I've had some amazing matches with a variety of weapons.

Edit: Yeah they probably move too much backwards and not enough sideways. That makes them seem less human in some ways, because I'm pretty sure that good players don't backpedal very often.
 
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Roryn

Member
New combat is slow and dumb. Clothes makes your character look obese.
I am also angry and butthurt.

I used to enjoy to play arena matches time to time, i dont even want to touch the game now.
If I remember correctly, Sylla, you fight while doing anything to try not to get hit. Stay within the range of the enemy and you'll see that blows are traded much more frequently.

But again, I definitely see where you guys are coming from, and I agree to a degree.
 

Midcal9

Member
I can see where you're coming from. Generally I do think that they still play better than they did, but there's a few problems with their backpedalling, especially with one-handed weapons.

Because one handed weapons have that thing where if you rush forward and swing at the same time, they attack very low, it happens fairly often to both you and the enemy. That's mostly it; I find we need to relearn the combat a bit to make it really cool again. I find I'm relearning rapidly, at least, and I've had some amazing matches with a variety of weapons.

Edit: Yeah they probably move too much backwards and not enough sideways. That makes them seem less human in some ways, because I'm pretty sure that good players don't backpedal very often.
It has little to do with them appearing to behave less human like, the combat however has become a lot more tedious and prolonged. Every time you attack the npc falls back really far from you, which forces the player either to rush them and have them fall back even further or to just wait for them to attack. It's all about waiting now it seems.
 

Roryn

Member
It has little to do with them appearing to behave less human like, the combat however has become a lot more tedious and prolonged. Every time you attack the npc falls back really far from you, which forces the player either to rush them and have them fall back even further or to just wait for them to attack. It's all about waiting now it seems.
I'll play devil's advocate again -- I think that a lot of the tension is ideally supposed to be in the waiting; the clash is supposed to be intense and dangerous enough that the waiting become an interesting part of the combat. I guess that's the intention, and if you play along with that, it kind of works.
 

Jimmini

Member
Madoc said:
The combat AI was in a sorry state previously and improving it was due. Even at the highest skill level, enemies were just constantly face-planting into poorly executed attacks, and were just plain awful at attacking themselves, in a way that was very dangerous for a newbie, but completely trivial to avoid or exploit for a more experienced player.

Good timing, footwork and making use of mechanics such as feints and counters are supposed to be important aspects of the combat. If you liked breezing through master eliminations with your eyes closed (fair enough), I'm sorry, but that really wasn't intended. Personally I found it very boring and disappointing, and I'm thoroughly enjoying fighting the non-idiot AI.

Things may need some rebalancing now though. Our goal is to have NPCs that can distinguish themselves as skillful at combat, and require a player to actualy pay attention when fighting them. With the overall bar for AI being higher, many more common encounters should probably be given a lower skill level, also helping the more skilled AI to stand out. Lower skill level AI handicaps also need more attention.

There are only a handful of changes to actual combat mechanics, listed in the release notes. You might think things have changed simply because you're out of practice, or not yet used to the new pace and timing of combat. AI is also a lot better with the controls in terms of how they execute their attacks, which translates to more damaging blows.

Either way, we'll continue to improve and tweak all things combat, but we do not want simple exploitative tactics to be effective against skilled AI opponents.
 

Midcal9

Member
Seems like they've just tweaked the AI a little, now its kinda ok with the last 7-ouhhh-ouhhh-3 update. Good jobseh.
 

Syllabear3

Member
If I remember correctly, Sylla, you fight while doing anything to try not to get hit. Stay within the range of the enemy and you'll see that blows are traded much more frequently.

But again, I definitely see where you guys are coming from, and I agree to a degree.
Yes, and thats exactly the funniest thing in exanima... now killed.

They got the drunken warrior gameplay again. Like jellyo legs or something like it.
The combat was fine, i cant understand why they touched it again... im so sad right now.
 

Hastur

Member
I think it's pretty good...Before I was kind of disappointed that expert sword fights were finished in seconds, now ncps feel like they're really trying to survive instead of just randomly throwing blows. And I'm also glad that full plate master opponent are now harder to kill...Before I had more trouble in some inept matches than with a full plated master. It's also pleasant to see how your companions are now efficient against the beast, they manage to survive now and even kill the beast. I definitely think the new combat AI is a major improvement, the only thing lacking now is making inept and aspirant fighters less good and it will be perfect
 

Hastur

Member
Well I don't know about that..To me they don't seem to take more time than before the update. And even then pole arms completely wreck shield users if you use them correctly, the new greatsword added to arena is also pretty deadly against them. Although I agree that shield users would gain to be a little less buffed defense wise in order to make them more equal to other fighters
 

Roryn

Member
Lucky you, they allways block even if they have the sword in the face.
Yeah, it is true that sometimes when I'm more tired it's hard to do it properly. That's when they get a bit annoying lol, but I really like they way they stagger now on strong hits.
 

Midcal9

Member
Guys, I'm not talking about the ways you can exploit the AI, i mean its general behavior. They are are far more defensive, that's it. It only takes longer to kill them but they are not better as a whole. Yes, using faster weapons against the ai makes it easier to kill it, or using certain types of attacks but it's not a better AI overall imo.
 

Roryn

Member
Guys, I'm not talking about the ways you can exploit the AI, i mean its general behavior. They are are far more defensive, that's it. It only takes longer to kill them but they are not better as a whole. Yes, using faster weapons against the ai makes it easier to kill it, or using certain types of attacks but it's not a better AI overall imo.
I'm not sure that more defensive is all they are. Their footwork was previously terrible. They used to run into each other constantly, rarely even hitting with the sharp part of swords, let alone axes and maces and similar weapons. Now they know how to distance themselves properly to attack and defend.
 

Midcal9

Member
I'm not sure that more defensive is all they are. Their footwork was previously terrible. They used to run into each other constantly, rarely even hitting with the sharp part of swords, let alone axes and maces and similar weapons. Now they know how to distance themselves properly to attack and defend.
That is partially true, however it is primarily because they are told by the script to stay away from other player models apart from when they attack. And they typically attack only after your initial attack or they do it after a certain period of time has passed on their own.

It's even possible to make them do absolutely nothing if you will stand still at a certain distance from them. It's a very reactive and defensive AI overall and their behavior is not even determined by what weapon they use. The shield cunts are the worst in this regard. It takes way too much time to kill one.
 

Pc Genie

Member
I appear to be the only player who found a massive jump in difficulty (practice arena man with the club actually hits me hard sometimes).

I am finding the AI get hits on me out of nowhere from an emergency parry to a one-inch-punch style whack or slice, they seem more okay to attack into an attack so we get trades of severe injuries (just like some people in HEMA tournaments do), plus more of the parries I perform get struck through.

I also noticed that whether I attack using one or defend against one, thrusts almost always hit someone who doesn't have a shield. I tried this theory in the Novice practice arena and basically always hit anything that wasn't dodged until I myself got stabbed to death by the man with the shiny longsword!
 
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