Author Topic: SMACX AI Growth mod  (Read 44736 times)

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Offline Douglas

Re: SMACX AI Growth mod
« Reply #930 on: December 27, 2019, 08:26:44 PM »
It was only a Fission PB, and most of the line was supply crawlers stretching far to either side of the base. There might have still been an open path to it, I'm not sure of all the details, but if so it required taking a detour far to the side that would take multiple turns of movement. I only needed three actual needlejets to block the blast radius itself, and could have used crawlers for that too if I put them a little farther out.

Offline bvanevery

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Re: SMACX AI Growth mod
« Reply #931 on: December 28, 2019, 12:54:56 AM »
I've seen the AI found a base at sea, just to get a platform to launch a nuke from.  I rage quit a game because of that once.  It wasn't just that the AI did this, it's that my policy of global flooding didn't work.  Anything I'd destroy, the AI would just rebuild.

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Re: SMACX AI Growth mod
« Reply #932 on: January 22, 2020, 09:16:30 AM »
CHANGELOG
Changed from version 1.38 to 1.39:

FACTIONS:

- Cult of Planet: changed 2 errors in Faction description.  Said it got +1 PLANET and +1 SUPPORT.  Both are wrong, and have been wrong for a long time.

WORLD SIZE:

- Giant planet: changed to 126x252.  Playtester ih8regin suggested that allowing a map coordinate to exceed the range of an 8-bit integer, might expose more pathfinding bugs.

CONQUER FOCUS:

- Command Nexus: moved to C3 Adaptive Doctrine.  When it was given by C3 Neural Grafting, the Morganites would typically be the ones to get it, because that tech is partly a Build tech.  This feels inappropriate.  I think a faction doing pure Conquer research should have the best chance of getting it, so I've put it in a pure Conquer part of the tech tree.
- Single-Sided Surfaces: now has C3 Field Modulation as a prereq, instead of C3 Neural Grafting.  The predefined units granted by this tech, only have 1 ability.  Field Modulation is a pure Conquer tech and Neural Grafting isn't, so this gives a pure Conquer faction the best chance to discover the tech first.
- Nonlinear Mathematics: now has C3 Adaptive Doctrine as a prereq, instead of C3 Field Modulation.  This keeps it from having the same prereqs as C3 Single-Sided Surfaces.  Thematically, Field Modulation feeds the defensive techs, and Marines feed the offense techs.
- Doctrine: Initiative: now has E3 Monopole Magnets as a prereq, instead of C3 Adaptive Doctrine.  I had accidentally made this tech and C4 Advanced Military Algorithms have the same prereqs.

EXPLORE FOCUS:

- Doctrine: Loyalty: set growth=0.  A Punishment Sphere is not a practical means to grow in the early game.  It only has value when base sizes are much larger.  This tech is now a pure Build research barrier, in the same way D1 Information Networks is a pure Discover research barrier.  Factions without a Build focus can trade for it, or eventually discover it by popping a supply pod.
- Neural Grafting: set growth=0.  It doesn't give the Neural Amplifier anymore.  It doesn't offer any mindworm, growth, or exploration benefit.
- Bioadaptive Resonance: now has E3 Centauri Genetics as a prereq, instead of C3 Neural Grafting.  This is for Explore research focus continuity.  Having 2 abilities is no longer guaranteed, nor is Non-Lethal Methods.
- Doctrine: Air Power: set growth=1.  Needlejets do not aid substantially in the exploration of Planet by the time they appear in the game.  Nor are Needlejets capable of popping supply pods.  Air Transports are not good at moving Artifacts or Colonists as a base or airbase is required to load them.  Although Needlejet Colonists could settle new territory quickly, the AI doesn't know how to use them.  The Explore research focus should be more directed towards mindworms and not distracted by techs that give little exploration benefit.
- Nanominiaturization: set growth=1.  Fuel air cells speed up Needlejets, at a noticeable additional cost.  They are a tweaky and rarely used feature of the game.  Needlejets do not aid substantially in the exploration of Planet by the time they appear in the game.
- Fusion Power: set growth=1.  The only benefit for exploration is ships move a little faster.  Psi combat does not care about reactor size.
- Orbital Spaceflight: set growth=2.  By the time a Sky Hydroponics Lab is launched, most of Planet's surface is already known anyways.  They do not provide substantial amounts of food until all bases have Aerospace Complexes, which are expensive and take a long time to complete.
- The Will To Power: now has C6 Organic Superlubricant as a prereq, instead of C6 Photon/Wave Mechanics.  The former isn't great lore, but it has Explore focus continuity.  The latter doesn't, and that made it a hard barrier to Explore research.
- Industrial Nanorobotics: set growth=1.  Completing the Space Elevator allows orbital insertions.  They can be useful for popping the last supply pods, but there are almost none left by this stage of the game.
- Graviton Theory: set growth=1.  Although orbital insertions are useful for popping the last supply pods, there are almost none left by this stage of the game.  Gravships cannot pop supply pods.
- Quantum Power: set growth=0.  Ships move a little faster, but exploration is over by now.  Psi combat does not care about reactor size.
- Singularity Mechanics: set growth=0.  Ships move a little faster, but exploration is over by now.  Psi combat does not care about reactor size.

UNIT COSTS:

- Infantry chassis: now costs 2.  Unarmored infantry units with an offensive weapon are no longer a cheap deal.  They now have expense proportional to the cost of the weapon.  This is achieved both by increasing the Infantry chassis cost and raising weapon costs.
- Speeder chassis: now costs 3.  This is to make it incrementally more expensive than Infantry.
- Hovertank chassis: now costs 4.  This is to make it incrementally more expensive than a Speeder.
- Needlejet chassis: now costs 16.  This is calibrated to cost the same as a Hovertank chassis.
- Copter chassis: now costs 16.  This is to match the Needlejet chassis.
- Gravship chassis: now costs 20.  This is calibrated to cost twice as much as an Infantry chassis.

- Particle Impactor: now costs 4.  Same as the original game.  The new policy is that weapons up to the Missile Launcher are Fission Era weapons with low costs.
- Gatling Laser: now costs 5.  Same as the original game.
- Missile Launcher: now costs 6.  Same as the original game.
- Chaos Gun: now costs 13.  The new policy is that weapons up to the Tachyon Bolt require a Fusion Reactor to be affordable.
- Resonance Bolt: now costs 29.
- Plasma Shard: now costs 58.  The new policy is that weapons up to the Graviton Gun require a Quantum Reactor to be affordable.
- Chronoton Gun: now costs 69.
- Graviton Gun: now costs 106.
- Singularity Laser: now costs 213.  The new policy is that weapons up to the Black Hole Gun require a Singularity Reactor to be affordable.
- Black Hole Gun: now costs 255.  This is the maximum cost any weapon can have.  It's only an 8-bit unsigned quantity and rolls over if it's any higher.
- Terraforming Unit package: now costs 3.  Since the Infantry chassis is more expensive, this reduction was needed for land based Formers to stay at the same cost.  It has the effect of making Sea Formers cheaper.  This shall not be regarded as a problem.
- Supply Transport package: now costs 13.  This makes a Fusion Infantry Supply cost 50, same as an Artifact.
- Probe Team package: now costs 3.  Since the Infantry chassis is more expensive, this reduction was needed for land based Probe Teams to stay at the same cost.  It has the effect of making Foil Probe Teams cheaper.  This shall not be regarded as a problem.

- Plasma Steel Armor: now costs 2.  Since the Infantry chassis is more expensive, armors have to be less expensive to match the costs usually expected in the early game.  There isn't room for much gradation of cost.  Plasma is now always better than Synthmetal in every respect.  This was generally true in practice anyways.
- Pulse 3 Armor: now costs 3.
- Resonance 3 Armor: now costs 3.
- Silksteel Armor: now costs 3 and has armor rating 4.  I wanted an armored Garrison unit with only a Gun weapon to cost 40.  However, the integers only allow me to have costs of 30 or 50.  I chose 30 and lowered the protective value of the armor to compensate.
- Photon Wall: now costs 4.
- Psi Defense: now costs 4.  In the original game, it had the same cost as a Photon Wall.
- Probability Sheath: now costs 7.  Requires a Fusion Reactor to be affordable.
- Neutronium Armor: now costs 10.
- Pulse 12 Armor: now costs 11.
- Resonance 12 Armor: now costs 11.
- Antimatter Plate: now costs 24.  Requires a Quantum Reactor to be affordable.
- Inertial Damper: now costs 38.  Requires a Singularity Reactor to be affordable.

PREDEFINED UNITS:

- Scout: set cost=1.  I want to retain 2 kinds of Scouts that only cost 10.  The new cost for No Armor would make it cost 20.
- Trance Scout: set cost=1.
- Clean Scout: set cost=2.  I want it to cost 20.  The new Infantry chassis cost would make it 30.
- Clean Trance Scout: removed.  E4 Bioadaptive Resonance no longer guarantees that 2 abilities are available.  The AI wasn't building it anyways.  Various other units with 2 abilities were already removed in previous revisions because they were too expensive.
- Clean Police: removed.  The new Infantry chassis cost would make it cost 40.  I don't want special cases for most Scout designs.  It was a bit of an exploit that most abilities could be gained with a Scout for free.
- Clean Plasma Police: removed.  C4 Single-Sided Surfaces no longer guarantees that 2 abilites are available.
- 3-Res Police: removed.  E4 Bioadaptive Resonance no longer guarantees that Non-Lethal Methods is available.  The AI wasn't building it anyways.
- Clean Synth Speeder, Clean Synth Police Wagon, Synth Police Wagon: removed.  With the new Infantry and Speeder chassis costs, Synthmetal armor is no longer free on a Speeder.
- Clean Synth Garrision: reinstated and now available with C1 High Energy Chemistry.  This tries to distract the AI from building too many garrison units and running out of SUPPORT.  To give the AI the best possible chance, Synthmetal Armor does not need to be prototyped.
- Transport: removed.  The AI does not need a predefined Transport unit to design and build them.
- Clean Transport: reinstated in the same slot that the Transport used to be in.  The Pirate AI obsesses about building Transports regardless of whether any Transport unit is predefined.  At least it can be made to build Clean ones so as not to run out of SUPPORT.
- Clean Recon Rover: removed.  The AI was building a lot of them for combat.  It should build just plain Recon Rovers.  It's better for the AI to invest in clean armored units for standing defense.
- Clean 3-Pulse Laser Foil: removed.  The AI obsessed about building it in the Fusion era when it was no longer appropriate, and losses were high.
- Clean Colony Pod, Clean Scout: removed bogus 30th ability flag.  These units are base types with specially assigned costs and are available at the beginning of the game.  It would be irrational for the player to design similar units.
- Trance Scout: removed bogus 30th ability flag.  This unit has a specially assigned cost, is only available when Hypnotic Trance is discovered, and is then immediately available without prototyping.  It would be irrational for the player to design a similar unit.
- Formers: put back in the same slot in the predefined unit table as the original game.  When Clean Formers are available, the AI mostly prefers to build those.  It doesn't matter what order they're in.
- Clean Sea Formers: removed.  The Terraforming Unit package is cheaper now, so a plain Sea Formers only costs 20 minerals.  Most factions start on land and do not have a problem running out of SUPPORT from building too many Sea Formers.  The Pirates do not seem to obsess about building Sea Formers, and they have a +1 minerals bonus on ocean shelf squares to compensate for any SUPPORT problems.
- Sea Formers: reinstated in the same slot in the predefined unit table as the original game.  Available with B2 Industrial Base.  The Foil chassis is not guaranteed to be available yet, but this tech is a prereq for E3 Ecololgical Engineering which gives the Aquafarm.  It would be annoying not to have a Sea Former available for that.  This unit is only predefined as a safety valve anyways, to overcome a bug where Sea Formers are sometimes never designed by the AI.  The Pirates are supposed to have this unit available from the start anyways.  If they suffer the bug, at least they are a pure Build faction and B2 Industrial Base is directly on their research path.

Offline bvanevery

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Re: SMACX AI Growth mod
« Reply #933 on: February 07, 2020, 08:20:45 AM »
There's a problem with the University starting the Hunter-Seeker Algorithm way too quickly.  It has consistently occurred in my last several games with them.  I started a test game with them in it, just to be sure.  I got the Believers, and I did fine for being on a small island with the Cyborgs.  We traded techs and kept up.  But the University started the HSA on turn 78.  Previous game was similarly before turn 100, I think also in the 70s.  At least, they got C4 Advanced Military Algorithms then.  They didn't start the HSA because they had 3 other SPs to build.  I changed the weights on MilAlg before this test game, but it didn't solve the problem.

What seems to be happening, is the University climbs rapidly up the Discover tree, as I intended.  It gets to D4 Pre-Sentient Algorithms.  Then it doesn't have the Build prereqs for D4 Applied Relativity.  Rather than learn those, it seems to pathologically beeline up the Conquer part of the tree, completely ignoring Build and Explore.  It's a strange behavior as they're a Passive, pure Discover faction.  I would have thought the distribution between the techs would be more random, but it doesn't seem to be.

They're also very willing to give away C3 Adaptive Doctrine, which gives the Command Nexus.  2 games in a row, they've traded it to me for nothing.  So of course I built it.  Don't know what's up with that.

I could just make the HSA more expensive, but I don't feel that's enough.  I don't want the U. being able to get this so fast.  At times I've not even had probe teams by then, due to bad luck.  Even with a partial Conquer focus.  I can't have the U. completing the HSA before other factions even get a chance to steal from them.

This is a PITA because I'm somewhat lacking flexibility in my tech tree nowadays.  I'm going to have to stare at it really hard to figure out how to reshuffle this.  If I have to make a sacrifice somewhere, I think it would be ok to make the U. less scary fast on tech.  I'm really not sure what's freed up with them in the early tech tree, but they just go gangbusters now.

Maybe I need to take the University's free Biology Labs away and clip their tech wings.  At one point in development, it was definitely needed.  But maybe with the new "Discover beeline" tech tree, they don't need it anymore.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2020, 08:36:34 AM by bvanevery »

Offline bvanevery

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Re: SMACX AI Growth mod
« Reply #934 on: February 11, 2020, 07:53:46 AM »
I made Pre-Sentient Algorithms a Conquer 5 tech and put the Hunter-Seeker Algorithm in it.  This delayed the University until turn 115, which is still too early.  They got it before they even got D3 Intellectual Integrity and Knowledge!  I think whenever the University can't research a Discover tech, they pathologically choose a Conquer tech to research next.  You'd think it would be a random selection between Explore, Build, and Conquer, but apparently it is not.  Just goes straight up the Conquer tree.

Because they research so many Conquer techs, I'm tempted to change their personality from Passive to Erratic.  I'll see what further testing yields.

I could put Discover breadcrumbs in the tree, breaking the rigidity of my category separation.

 

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