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I noticed that AI-gunners of vehicle-mounted machine guns (like HMG offroads, static MGs, ...) seem to snipe down everyone with headshots even when using setSkill 0 (for all sub skills). I checked the effective skills with "skill" and "skillFinal", and these values do reflect these settings.

I tested with numerous different skill values from 0, 0.0001 to 1 and these changes seem to have only very little effect on the overall accuracy/deadliness of the gunners. When testing with an Offroad HMG, I noticed, that with skill 1, they hit their target with almost every bullet, where as with skill 0 it's only a few bullets for every burst. But even at the lowest skill, although not every bullet hits the target, they still tend to snipe down everyone with headshots.

With the lowest possible skill, as soon as they dismount they actually behave the way they should and run around like headless chickens. But when mounted, they seem to automatically be overpowered and accurate snipers.

I remember that changing these skills ('aimingAccuracy','aimingShake','aimingSpeed','spotDistance','spotTime','commanding','general'), had significantly more impact on the Marid/offroad/technical gunners just 6 months ago (before the tac-ops dlc).
I am assuming something has changed within the engine/config so that the behaviour is now drastically different.

Is there any other way to affect the gunner accuracy besides "setSkill" or is this to be considered a bug?

Edited by shado
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14 hours ago, shado said:

Is there any other way to affect the gunner accuracy besides "setSkill" or is this to be considered a bug?

 

Who can tell at this point?

Setting a skill to 0 shouldn't be done in any case. Back before the so called "AI refactoring" most folks have worked out AI settings that fit their playstyle/mission style/community.

After this change all went down the drain.

Not to mention that "refactoring" basically means to change code without changing its outcome/behavior.

This was not what the AI refactoring did.

 

This was back on devbranch 1.72.142223, 9 months ago after the "AI refactoring" changes hit the devbranch:

 

Notice how the bullets all go to the center of mass.

Aside from that, changing the AI precision slider in the difficulty menu had zero influence.

This video was made after the recent AI "refactoring" whose sole purpose according to the devs was to make lower precision values not result in bugged AI.

According to the devs this should make AI at lower precision value more precise than with the old setting using the same values.

Changing precision slider from 0.05 to 0.5 to 1.0, resulted in skillFinal always returning 0.75.

 

 

Now here we are, almost a year after the infamous "AI refactoring", precision slider still has no influence.

Notice how AI shoot way above the target and seem to lose line of sight, even with the unconcealed target in broad daylight 90m in front of them.

Yet this problem wasn't there before, as seen in the video above.

 

 

Was this an intended change to appeal more to new players or simply a bug?

Honestly, who can tell at this point?

 

Now as you stated the vehicle gunners are way too precise, here's a little showcase of the Ifrit HMG, AI precision slider in the difficulty menu set to 0.05 :

 

Since @klamacz mentioned using the value of 0.2 as lowest setting, 0.05 is even way beyond that, yet the AI still seems to be way too precise.

There's nothing much left to add, unfortunately.

 

Cheers

 

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@Grumpy Old Man Apparently the precision was fixed at some point because now the difficulty setting definitely has an effect and the skillFinal changes along with it.

If that's still too precise, you can additionally lower unit's personal skills.

Specs: precision slider at 0.05/0.50/1.00, no mods, current dev build, default rifleman, unit skill at the default 0.5, distance about 80m, general skill at 0.5;

 

The same applies to Ifrit HMG for example, but since its gun is inherently more precise you need some distance to see the difference. At 20% unit skill slider, 0.05 difficulty the AI becomes Hollywood accurate.

 

 

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34 minutes ago, Greenfist said:

@Grumpy Old Man Apparently the precision was fixed at some point because now the difficulty setting definitely has an effect and the skillFinal changes with it.

If that's still too precise, you can additionally lower unit's personal skills.

3 tests, no mods, current dev build, default rifleman, precision slider at 0.05/0.50/1.00, unit skill at the default 0.5, distance about 80m, general skill at 0.5;

 

In my post above only the first video was from devbranch back after the "AI refactoring" went on the devbranch,

all other videos in this post were made today on the stable branch.

 

Of course it is too precise when editor placed AI can kill someone within 3 shots and well within 3 seconds at 90m, with a precision setting of 0.00(!).

Back in the days I gladly debunked anyone claiming AI with low skill setting can headshot them through fog at 500m without a scope.

The AI refactoring will give any future arguments a tough time.

 

Thing is, as an average player you can't adjust personal unit skills, all you have is the precision and skill slider in the difficulty menu.

The difference between 0.05, 0.2, 0.5 and 1 is just not big enough and barely noticeable during normal gameplay.

 

Maybe you get a measurable difference having 1000 units shooting 1000 rounds each,

during regular gameplay an editor placed AI is killing its target within the first 3 rounds/seconds, no matter the precision setting in the difficulty menu.

 

The slider position has no effect, no matter if I set it to 0.00, restart the game, make sure it's still at 0.00 and start the mission, the outcome is always the same.

No mods, scripts or whatever running besides the debugging stuff, current stable branch 1.82.144647.

 

Feel free to take a look at it in this small mission:

 

 

Cheers

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7 hours ago, Grumpy Old Man said:

Feel free to take a look at it in this small mission:

 

Thanks for sharing !

I noticed that altering the precision is creating a slight difference but not in the marging we could expect going from 0.05 to 1.

In the other side, altering the skill from 50% to 20% has a real impact. Sometime, the AI needs to fire more than 20 shots to kill the target.

 

I also tested puting the AI in an FIA offroad (HGM): the skill has no impact as most of the time the first burst is a kill.

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AI dispersion can still be adjusted, across the board, for weapon categories or individual weapons. It would also extend the range of the difficulty slider.

Vehicle weapons' AI dispersion is deliberately set to relatively low values. It can be increased, few things to keep in mind though:

  • the weapons themselves have quite some dispersion (few months ago I've talked about those changes in general discussion)
  • the effect is the same for the enemy gunners and your own AI gunner if you're a vehicle commander. So we need some kind of compromise where it looks reasonably from both perspectives.
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Not sure if you understood the problem correctly @oukej

 

The weapon dispersion itself is usually set to realistic levels, and meant to remain as such for players.

While there is aiDisperionCoef parameter, this is only exposed to mods and thus often not an option.

Like if you are a mission designers, doing SP, or a server admin, you need different possibilities to tweak the AI to meaningful levels.

 

Their point is with the AI "refactoring" both the respective difficulty parameters and the relevant scripting influence has been significantly reduced to leave people now out of options.
In addition you dropped the side specific modifiers forcing now the same AI capabilities on all sides, whereas usually you want to tweak each side individually.

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4 hours ago, oukej said:

AI dispersion can still be adjusted, across the board, for weapon categories or individual weapons. It would also extend the range of the difficulty slider.

Vehicle weapons' AI dispersion is deliberately set to relatively low values. It can be increased, few things to keep in mind though:

  • the weapons themselves have quite some dispersion (few months ago I've talked about those changes in general discussion)
  • the effect is the same for the enemy gunners and your own AI gunner if you're a vehicle commander. So we need some kind of compromise where it looks reasonably from both perspectives.

 

Don't really see the connection to my posts above, which displays that the AI precision slider in the difficulty menu has 0 effect on AI precision.

 

Or do you mean that if we want more extreme changes to AI precision we actually have to increase the weapon dispersion 'across the board'?

Seems like a very rough approach, especially since it's outside the scope of most players to write a mod overwriting the dispersion of every single weapon.

I really hope I misunderstood something.

 

Putting the currently useless AI precision skill slider aside, same goes for the AI skill slider in the difficulty menu, same mission as linked above, same results as in the videos testing the precision slider.

AI can kill a player within 3 seconds or 3 rounds at 90m, no matter if AI skill slider is set to 0.00, 0.05, 0.50 or 1.00.

 

The video below showcases this.

This time the AI precision slider stays at 0.5, and the AI skill slider goes from 0.00 to 1.00 with the very same results as seen with the precision slider videos in the post above.

 

 

I really don't know if any of the difficulty settings do anything as of now.

Maybe my (very basic) testing set up is flawed,  if anyone has any further insight, please point me towards the light at the end of the tunnel...

No idea what else besides moving two sliders in the games difficulty menu is there, so average players can adjust a missions difficulty to their own taste,

besides editing the mission (not an option for average players) or making a mod that overrides every AI skill (also not an option for average players).

 

Cheers

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I was able to increase AI firing dispersion by setting suppression to 1. Of course, this prevent the players to have any meaningfull impact by suppressing AI (since it's already at max level) and it has absolutly no effect at all on an offroad gunner.

 

The inability to properly modify the AI accuracy client side and the discrepancy between vehicle and on foot accuracy for the same AI should really be considered as major bugs than need to be fixed.

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On 5/7/2018 at 3:40 PM, Grumpy Old Man said:

Or do you mean that if we want more extreme changes to AI precision we actually have to increase the weapon dispersion 'across the board'?

Just to be sure - I meant the aiDispersionCoef. The bigger the AI coefficient the bigger the base imprecision but also the bigger scaling of the effect between skill 0 and 1.
And it's something we can do on our side of data (and possibly the only thing we can do now). Also mainly because we've just done some adjustments to the coefs on vehicular weapons during the Tanks DLC development along with changes to the actual weapon dispersion.

Like in many other areas the system is a result of two decades of development by various teams, with sometimes different views, with a lot of know-how gained in the process, but also parts of it gradually lost and regained. We stand by what we have but sure we'd sometimes like to have things designed completely differently :)

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16 hours ago, oukej said:

We stand by what we have but sure we'd sometimes like to have things designed completely differently :)

What i don't understand is that directly after the refactoring thing was made public you got the same feedback about the problems with this new approach you get now from multiple people but it was never answered in any way, shape or form. When a new concept doesn't hold up to criticism from outside the "development bubble", why is it pushed through? This is the lesson you should be taking away from this. Also, maybe consider public discussion of concepts before they are actually started - specifically when they are for changing a current system that is supposed to address 'perceived problems' of creators - even more specifically when it's to do with removing control options for them.

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4 minutes ago, x3kj said:

 

When a new concept doesn't hold up to criticism from outside the "development bubble", why is it pushed through? This is the lesson you should be taking away from this. 

 

Being able to react quickly to feedback and engaging with community in a meaningful way are just two of the reasons the community feels a great fondness towards you and the guys, @oukej. Don't throw that away in the rush to expand.

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The sad part is that the "A3 team" (very generalized) either doesnt realize, or doesnt care about the extent of the insights the community has in many areas of their engine and game - way beyond the average developer at BI has or even their experts. Even worse you get the feeling some were too proud to admit that or even to embrace that and make use of that community insight to improve the product instead.

 

Instead it was "we have our vision, we know better and force it upon you".

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Don't want to get all apologetic in here ;) The "refactoring" was primarily triggered by AI behavior bugs for which the refactoring was a solution. Some added clarity of the code or the effect progression was something we saw just as an added benefit. But at the same we were very hesitant about changing something the players have already adapted to and found their ways around. In the end we had to make a call. There wasn't an ideal solution. Still, thanks to you that call was - I believe - a well informed one. Even though there were definitely some new issues coming with it.

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Dropping side specific difficult options for AI was a conscious call, was it not? People argued against it, yet BI took the position the mission designer should have all power to design scenarios as he intended.

As result A3 removed a vital component of making missions more playable to its different audiences.

 

The lack of effect on dispersion by the difficult settings (and even scripting it seems) appears to be a bug to me.

After all it was only introduced with APEX - or it was again a decision from BI to dump down the AI to non frustrating levels for the average player in the jungle setting?

Yet as result another reduction of the abilities of the community even more to tailor the capabilities of AI.

 

And lets state the obvious once more - AI accuracy, next to spotting and reaction skills, are the key elements to make the game with AI either playable, frustrating, boring or challenging.

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5 minutes ago, .kju said:

Instead it was "we have our vision, we know better and force it upon you".

We don't force. But we do know better ;)
We value our community probably beyond any other company out there. It's our pillar and our vision. A lot, if not most, of us have come from the community anyway.
The 'community' is the best advisor we could ever hope for. But it's the developers who can make the (well-informed! :)) decisions and lead the direction. Btw in many other areas of life the ones with the deepest insights are not always the ones who can make the calls.

This is just my own personal opinion.

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9 minutes ago, .kju said:

The sad part is that the "A3 team" (very generalized) either doesnt realize, or doesnt care about the extent of the insights the community has in many areas of their engine and game - way beyond the average developer at BI has or even their experts. Even worse you get the feeling some were too proud to admit that or even to embrace that and make use of that community insight to improve the product instead.

 

Instead it was "we have our vision, we know better and force it upon you".

Apologies for going off topic but this is how I felt about the view distance changes that were implemented before APEX. Making a change that removed the ability of the player to adjust to the performance they personally felt was acceptable by having the ghastly "pop in" for objects over 2 km away...... I always have to play with the "set view distance 2 scripts" or adding it myself. Generally the more control the player easily has about adjusting the game was one of the things I loved about the series......... Having said that I've not stuck with any other game series for 17 years so please don't go changin' BIS ;-)

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3 minutes ago, .kju said:

Dropping side specific difficult options for AI was a conscious call, was it not? People argued against it, yet BI took the position the mission designer should have all power to design scenarios as he intended.

As result A3 removed a vital component of making missions more playable to its different audiences.

Yes, it was. With me personally being responsible for that call. I don't care about egos :P It might not have been the best call. The system wasn't perfect and it ain't perfect now either.
But let's be honest, your position in this is also a very specific one.

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I would love to hear about that design decision. It boggled my mind that side specific values was removed as it removed the option to have good AI on one side playing against bad AI (either spec op vs guerilla OR to have an easier game). Now if my AI are spec op even a rag tag army will be an as good enemy force. The old way still made it possible to have the skill equal on both sides if one wished to.

 

What benefit was there in this new restricted way? Im genuinelly curious and I would love to understand. And I have always liked when BI developers explains more how the thoughts, limitations and design affect the game as it can for me look strange until I understand the picture you guys see. 

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3 hours ago, andersson said:

What benefit was there in this new restricted way? Im genuinelly curious and I would love to understand. And I have always liked when BI developers explains more how the thoughts, limitations and design affect the game as it can for me look strange until I understand the picture you guys see. 

Mission designers 'ease of mind' to not have to test or worry about a linear mission working with all possible difficulty settings. It's a legitimate issue of course. But it doesn't take one thing into account: There are other missions than linear ones.

And the way it was adressed made it better for linear missions ("follow muh plot!") and worse for all dynamic/ non linear missions where user customizability was intended.

And this makes it objectively a bad solution, because there is a better way to adress the linear mission's designers issue without screwing all the rest over. Instead of removing the option entirely they could have made "mission designers values" for the AI sliders per mission, that define which setting the mission has by default. If the player modifies it he gets a warning "blabla not within specifications blabla, may not work as designed". Problem solved. Decision is in hands of the player to "break" the balance or not. Mission designer can give his specifications (or not, in case custom values are supported).

I explained this when it was freshly announced, no answer, no reaction.

 

Edit: With the introduction of modes for missiles the values for AI weaponranges have become slightly confusing... What effect do the min/mid/maxRange values have when they are defined in just the "base weapon", instead of in the modes? example - cfgweapons class missiles_titan_AA -> it inherits the modes from missiles_titan (that have ai ranges defined in them), but also defines a range set for the base weapon ?

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@oukej lets make the basics clear first as your constant specific smiley use indicates you don't abstract the discussion

1. we all value your presence and participation very much - there have been only very few BI people taken the motivation and courage to do so

2. if we talk to "you", its not about you - instead you just stand for the A3 dev team as a proxy. basically none of "us" has any idea who decides what, or what your personal involvement has or has not been in any specific case

 

on the flipside its neither about "any of us" individually here - most people still bother with A3 or Arma overall at this point in these type of discussions or reports represent usually different parts of the community and thus speak for many in the end

 

no one here participating is also against change per se, yet the two core issues are:

1) sadly too often something changed is in a worse state than before - and usually the dev team just moves on to other things leaving the community trying to work around those new problems

2) unlike to before the A3 team/decision makers went the path of reduction of possibilities with their design changes leaving the community with no more options to find solutions on their own

 

to use the specific example here:

its a sound idea to make both the difficulty adjustment for players more straight forward, and the control of mission designer over AI stronger - no one is against such.

however the problem is you restricted and removed options and abilities of the community to adjust "their" mission design or play-style or AI challenge level, nor provided any alternatives.

 

worst yet even now you disregard those interests, the variety of the community and one of core ideas of the series - customization of gameplay.

 

PS: credit where due: the sensor and targeting overhaul for the most part has been a positive example how change can be done

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2 hours ago, .kju said:

no one here participating is also against change per se, yet the two core issues are:

1) sadly too often something changed is in a worse state than before - and usually the dev team just moves on to other things leaving the community trying to work around those new problems

2) unlike to before the A3 team/decision makers went the path of reduction of possibilities with their design changes leaving the community with no more options to find solutions on their own

 

*applause*

 

 

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On 5/11/2018 at 3:15 PM, .kju said:

1) sadly too often something changed is in a worse state than before

Seriously, every time I see a patch for Arma 3 I think "What have they broken this time?" and "Will we be able to play our next coop session?".

 

On 5/11/2018 at 3:15 PM, .kju said:

worst yet even now you disregard those interests, the variety of the community and one of core ideas of the series - customization of gameplay.

Who cares? Life and survival mods are making BIS millions! It's 2018, what kind of dorky loser needs decent milsim AI?

 

On 5/9/2018 at 11:32 PM, oukej said:

We don't force. But we do know better ;)

Ha ha epic lol! No wait, actually this is an insult.

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This has not been a very constructive discussion.

 

Some data:

 

Editor skill slider goes from 0.2 to 1.00

Game options skill and precision slider under each AI level change the overall range that the editor skill slider can change the final AI skill. These ranges are:

 

Game options skill sliders for precision and skill at 0:

Editor unit skill slider at 0.2(minimum)-> Unit final skill is 0.30...

Editor unit skill slider at 0.5(default)-> Unit final skill is 0.31...

Editor unit skill slider at 1(maximum)-> Unit final skill is 0.8

 

 

Game options skill sliders for precision and skill at 1:

Editor unit skill slider at 0.2(minimum)-> Unit final skill is 0.6

Editor unit skill slider at 0.5(default)-> Unit final skill is 0.75...

Editor unit skill slider at 1(maximum)-> Unit final skill is 1

 

So the default final skill value delta is 0.34 when changing game options precision from 0  to 1. And according to GOM that delta does not lead to meaningful enough changes in the AI shooting behavior.

What is problematic is that the skill slider is caped to 0.2 at the minimum, so the AI final skill is always above the 0.3 mark. And it appears that this is not a suitable level for all players and some want to go lower. Easy "fix" would be to allow the editor skill slider go lower than 0.2, that way skills could be made approach zero if the mission maker so chose. This would of course risk the AI looking dumb as it could  break the AIs other functions by lowering all skills to very small levels. This would then have to be fixed by interpolating those important skills which leads to more confusion and brings us closer to the situation before the refactoring. Another would be to add a editor precision skill slider that could go to zero, but that leads to more complexity and is against the refactored design. So its tricky anyway you look at it.

 

With the system being the way it is now, I suggest to the interested scenario designers who want to create a good experience the following procedure:

Set the game options difficulty to expert.

Use https://community.bistudio.com/wiki/setSkill to set each subskill individually. This does not have the 0.2 minimal limit so you can set any skill to even 0 if you want.

See what the actual values are in a mission and how the AI behaves:  https://community.bistudio.com/wiki/skillFinal

Write down some good values for irregular troops/regular troops/veteran troops/Vehicle operators

Use those in each of your missions to represent different skilled troops

 

EXTRA:

There is an interpolation at work for aimingspeed. It is always interpolated to 0.5 -1.0 range:

 

 2018-03-09_00-27-49.png

 

So it behaves differently from the others by always being higher than other final skill values.

 

 

Edited by bumgie
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150 AI in a city.... I will go out on a limb and say that is a waste of resources (although a common one).

 

Unless you want this:

cannae_battle_formation.jpg

 

If the frames are bad and "count allunits" exceeds whatever's reasonable... ESC >> QUIT

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