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SOG AI purpose:   Make playing Prairie Fire Campaign (or any other PF mission) fun and immersive for Single Players commanding an AI squad.

Savage Game Design wisely chose not to promote Prairie Fire DLC to the Single Player market because the vanilla ARMA AI deficiencies would be unbearably frustrating for the player.  These are the deficiencies that this mod solves:

  • Vanilla Combat AI moves too slow to break contact when following player or ordered to move somewhere.  This results in them being overwhelmed by the enemy in SOG scenarios.

  • Vanilla Combat AI is too slow boarding helicopters under fire.  Very frustrating for the player.

  • Vanilla Combat AI is too slow and incapable of pushing through enemy contacts quickly.

  • Using bomb craters as defensive positions is common SOG tactic.  Craters in Prairie Fire are implemented as buildings with built-in AI paths and positions.  ARMA AI moves terribly slow on building paths, which endangers the AI while moving on craters.  Plus, its immersion breaking to see them slow walking.

  • In COOP play, one player can revive another player when they are down.  In Single Player mode, AI squad members cannot revive each other.  It’s therefore easy to have your entire AI squad wiped out early.

  • AI are not capable of entering Brier Bush RON sites effectively.  This breaks the Ashtray III mission for AI, and is an immersion killer.

  • Instructing Vanilla AI to place toe-poppers is a chore for the player: Select Unit, press option 6 for Actions, scroll through actions to find Put Toe-popper, etc.  Micro-managing AI is no fun.

  • Instructing Vanilla AI to heal themselves is also a chore for player for same reason.

This SOG AI mod solves all of the above problems.  Playing SP with an AI squad is now fun and immersive.

 

Steam link:  https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=2812560646

Please comment and upvote on steam!  Its my only reward, and this was a hell of a lot of work.  

 

Features:

Spoiler

- Play Prairie Fire campaign missions with AI squad that is an asset and not a liability.
- Choose your team (SOG teams, SEALs, LRRPs, US Army, ANZACs, ROCs, ARVN, etc.) for max replay fun
- Maximize immersion by commanding your AI squad with hand signals only
- AI squad can move quickly under fire (break contact)
- AI squad can leapfrog attack or leapfrog retreat
- AI can revive each other and the player
- AI can enter/exit/defend craters quickly and smartly (i.e., no vanilla AI slow walking on craters!)
- Some VC trackers will have dogs that can sense enemy (i.e., you!) and attack

- Use action to order tailgunner to place toe-poppers
- Grenades can destroy vegetation
- Punji Traps are brutal!
- All fuel barrels on any map are explosive
- More fun surprises

Prairie Fire Campaign Mission tips:

  • Don't use the Spawn Team action until AFTER you gear up, and BEFORE you board the helicopter.  
  • Make sure you are in an open area so you don't spawn your team into near buildings or other objects.
  • Don't play Spindown (it has AI navigation issues)
  • Don't play Black Spear.  Its a scuba UDT mission not suitable for SOG AI.

 

Workshop Missions:

  • If playing a workshop mission, if player has units already assigned to him, then you will not get a Spawn Team action.
  • You will be able to command your team using SOG AI.
  • For example, I have played some of Fubar's Recondo missions using SOG AI on his LRRPs team assigned to player.

 

Editor Missions:

  • Its fun to place multiple VC groups in the editor with waypoints, a tracker modules, and a player unit, and then play. 
  • Run the mission, thenchoose your team to spawn and fight it out at your favorite location.

Credits:

@madrussian for the "blue move" discovery (key to fast moving AI) and feedback. Remember I knew him before he became a famous legend!
@froggyluv for his feedback, knowledge and enthusiasm for all things AI and immersion.
@pierremgi for his slick AI Revive scripts. I started with his scripts, and have since completely re-written them for single-player and to tailor them to Prairie Fire, but he gave me a big head start.
@dreadedentity for his awesome GUI selector template. That saved me some serious time!
@haleks for some fun gore fx.
@veteran29 for some SQF tuning tips on discord

@Grumpy Old Man for getCenterPosition function

@pedeathtrian for pointIsInBox function

 

Known Issues:

  • Don't play these 2 campaign missions:
    • Spindown - AI can't navigate in hill-top base.  You can probably play it if you wait to spawn team until after going down the road toward where you place mines.
    • Black Spear -  This cool UDT mission is not compatible with SOG AI.
  • Doesn't support Team Switch yet.  Switching into other playable units can cause multiple Action issues and other problems.  I plan to fix this.
  • LAMBS Danger by default conflicts with SOG AI.  But you can disable LAMBS Danger for player squad to fix this:
    • Spoiler

      Disable the highlighted options in the LAMBS options:

      lambs-Options.jpg

       

 

Video Playlist of demo videos:

 

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Hey JB, this looks like a fantastic package of features and a reason for me to get back into and enjoy SOG in SP form.

I would have left this community behind a long time ago if it weren’t for a small core of SP scripting swashbuckler’s who make solo play immersive, fun and satisfying.

Kudos to you my friend. 

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J-boy, every new script and mission you release is a wild ride and a real treat.  Fast and fluid own squad AI?  Count me in!  This is the key to single playing these missions.  Your first addon also iirc.  There’s so much quality stuff in here.  The leapfrogging alone is phenomenal!  Dynamic killer tracking dogs?!?  I’m starting to wonder if you’re not actually some kind of crazy scripting machine robot, sending us gifts from the future.  Fellow single players, our man has really broken through some serious engine-AI boundaries here.  Totally worth seeing & trying out for yourselves.

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Hi Folks,

 

WOW - it's a good time to be "in country"...

 

As a SP - I salute you.

 

Thank you!

 

Regards,
Scott

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47 minutes ago, kremator said:

Brilliant.  SOG only I take it ?

Yeah SOG only.  I know I should make a non-SOG version also, but it would take a lot of time, which I don't have much of right now.

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This is fantastic.  Thank you for this and all of the scripting work you've been doing in Arma.

 

4 hours ago, johnnyboy said:

Yeah SOG only.  I know I should make a non-SOG version also, but it would take a lot of time, which I don't have much of right now.

 

Would a simple solution be to allow a mission maker to just create an array of units ("B_solder", "B_solderGL", etc) saved into a file or init that your mod reads?  That way it would spawn whatever the default kit was for that addon/vanilla unit.

 

Or are there too many PF-specific event handlers for that to work?

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3 minutes ago, gatordev said:

Would a simple solution be to allow a mission maker to just create an array of units ("B_solder", "B_solderGL", etc) saved into a file or init that your mod reads?  That way it would spawn whatever the default kit was for that addon/vanilla unit.

There's about 200 functions and thousands of lines of code.  Picking your squad is just one small part.  Revive and Move/Leapfrog commands use many PF context-specific voice files.  Dogs are dependent on PF Tracker module, barrels are looking for PF barrel objects.  That's just off the top of my head.  I could sanitize it all and strip that out, but just don't have the time or motivation right now.  I built most of this over the winter, and now we have good weather so not excited about coding.

 

For now I'll fix bugs in this, and maybe improve it a little around the edges.

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.....enjoy the sunshine buddy!

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Hi Folks,

 

Spent four or five hours playing with this last night and it's simply brilliant. Your SOG AI Squad sure seems to perform far better than vanilla. The simple approach to team management is by far the best. It was a hoot and very immersive. I haven't played any SOG Campaign missions yet as I'm simply messing around in the editor. I've ignored the SOG Campaign in the past because I couldn't figure out how to include an AI Squad and a lone unit is just boring - perhaps it's time to look at this again.

 

In one instance - I had set my squad to the left and right during a firefight - and - they executed a perfect pincer attack without me telling them to move - perhaps it was just luck - LOL. 

 

Question:

Is there any issue using a mix of vanilla commands with SOG AI? It seems once in "Stealth" mode - it proved difficult to get them back to "Aware" to start following me again. Same with "Combat" as they seem to ignore me sometimes - which probably happens in combat.

 

Suggestion: 

It seems your "Red" and "Green" team elements are hard coded to simply divide the squad in half - even when you place your own squad in the Editor. When you assign your own colors - moments later they turn back to the initial "Red" and "Green". You can't control who's in which group. Is there any plan to give the user more flexibility in this area of Team Management? I usually run with a minimum of (3) Elements - as with in real life - I don't want my Medic leading the attack. I keep a core command element - then use two bounding elements in front - sometimes a fourth dragging up the rear a ways back.

 

Thanks again for all the hard work - I look forward to more testing and use.

 

Regards,
Scott

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Hi Folks,

 

One other point of interest on the Single Player "Immersion" aspect with SOG AI.

 

If you use Voice Attack - you can select each command on the wheel via a Mouse Macro - without touching the keyboard or moving the mouse - instantaneously. No visual selection or thought required.

 

You can also run compound commands like: 

Move Green: [Select Team Green, Open SOG AI Command Menu, Select Move There] all in one easy command.

This cuts down on even more separate instructions making each repetitive move even less tedious.

 

I'm a big fan of using voice control and I've created a pretty extensive profile to run with Arma. That said - if you're not a fan of voice control or don't have the hardware - VA lets you assign any functions to keyboard shortcuts or joystick button presses - avoiding the need for a microphone.

 

I've used VA for many years - in all kinds of applications - including 3D Modeling and Graphic Programs. It's BY FAR the best $10.00 I've ever spent on a utility. I'm not affiliated in any way to VA - just a very happy customer.

 

Voice Attack: Link

 

Just food for thought.

 

Regards,
Scott

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Just ...

...

...

WOW!!!

This is perhaps the greatest SP AI fix of all time!!!!!!!!!

Stunned!!!!

Thank you muchly, johhnyboy!

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3 hours ago, scottb613 said:

Spent four or five hours playing with this last night and it's simply brilliant. Your SOG AI Squad sure seems to perform far better than vanilla. The simple approach to team management is by far the best. It was a hoot and very immersive. I haven't played any SOG Campaign missions yet as I'm simply messing around in the editor. I've ignored the SOG Campaign in the past because I couldn't figure out how to include an AI Squad and lone unit is just boring - perhaps it's time to look at this again.

Hi Scott. Thanks for the great detailed feedback.  I've spent more time in the editor staging fights with SOG AI than any way else, and its been really fun.  Do give the campaigns a whirl with it, as they are well made.

3 hours ago, scottb613 said:

In one instance - I had set my squad to the left and right during a firefight - and - they executed a perfect pincer attack without me telling them to move - perhaps it was just luck - LOL. 

Probably luck, I wish I could take credit for it!  lol.  But if you gave a Leapfrog command after they were separated left and right, it might have worked out that way.

3 hours ago, scottb613 said:

Is there any issue using a mix of vanilla commands with SOG AI? It seems once in "Stealth" mode - it proved difficult to get them back to "Aware" to start following me again.

If you use Wheel Menu to put team in Stealth mode, they should always still obey any move or follow commands.  My SOG AI stealth mode works like this:

- Team set to combat mode Stealth and Hold Fire.

- Wheel menu commands by player are now silent, using hand signals only

- If player fires a suppressed shot, then any unit with a suppressor is automatically set to Fire At Will.  This allows for silently taking out a few enemies (rest of team with loud weapons still Hold Fire).  This supports player initiating quiet ambush with a shot.

- If anyone (player or enemy) fires loud, then entire team is set to Fire At Will and will fight.  This also supports player initiating ambush with a shot.

 

I actually haven't extensively tested mixing vanilla commands with SOG AI.  I'm usually able to play entire missions using wheel menu only.  The exception is when there is a stubborn unit staying behind and I will then use Vanilla to select and move him closer individually.

3 hours ago, scottb613 said:

Same with "Combat" as they seem to ignore me sometimes - which probably happens in combat.

I find them mostly responsive, except in combat, one or two units may be slow to respond or fail to respond, so you give them another command.  I hope to improve this.  I think there are two issues here.  One is my logic issue is the previous commanded move code has not quite completed before second command order given.  And then previous commanded move completes and cancels the just given order.  There is a timing and state issue here I may be able to fix.   The other issue is the game engine.  I am fighting default AI and timing when scripts give the move orders, and sometimes they are slow to start moving when they already in combat.  I could set them careless, then they would move immediately, but then immersion is broken because they will stand dumbly with rifle lowered in a fire fight.  So I have to wait until they start moving on their own before I apply my "run to commanded position while ignoring gunfire" logic.

 

But in hairy gunfights, I'm not too disturbed by these flaws, as real combat must be chaotic, and every soldier may not hear every command while shooting, etc., and wouldn't necessarily respond perfectly to every order.

3 hours ago, scottb613 said:

Suggestion: 

It seems your "Red" and "Green" team elements are hard coded to simply divide the squad in half - even when you place your own squad in the Editor. When you assign your own colors - moments later they turn back to the initial "Red" and "Green". You can't control who's in which group. Is there any plan to give the user more flexibility in this area of Team Management? I usually run with a minimum of (3) Elements - as with in real life - I don't want my Medic leading the attack. I keep a core command element - then use two bounding elements in front - sometimes a fourth dragging up the rear a ways back.

Overriding vanilla combat AI is a pretty complicated task, so for my sanity's sake I kept the teams simple, and evenly divide into two groups, red and green.  If half of one team is wiped out, I rebalance the teams the next time  a Leapfrog command is given.  For true SOG missions where avoiding contact and breaking contact were the order of the day, this works fine (and I focused on this working for SOG campaign missions).

 

Maximum flexibility in team assignment for the player would of course be a great feature, but not trivial to implement.  I'll give it some thought but no promises.

 

Thanks for the kind words and detailed feedback.  Please report any other observations you may have.

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14 minutes ago, maqim said:

WOW!!!

This is perhaps the greatest SP AI fix of all time!!!!!!!!!

Stunned!!!!

Thank you muchly, johhnyboy!

Thanks man, much appreciated!  Don't forget to upvote on steam!  I'm amazed that this got 4 stars in 24 hours with ARMA 3 being 10 years old, so I really appreciate everybody's support!

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Hi JB,

 

Thanks for the detailed response as well. It's obvious how much work you put into this.

 

I noted on Steam you mentioned a conflict with the LAMBS Danger Mod - I did have that loaded for all my testing - I'll remove that and play with this some more tonight.

 

Regards,
Scott

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24 minutes ago, scottb613 said:

I noted on Steam you mentioned a conflict with the LAMBS Danger Mod - I did have that loaded for all my testing - I'll remove that and play with this some more tonight.

 

You can do this in the console to disable Lambs Danger for your team, but keep it active for other units:

{
	_x setVariable ["dangerAIEnabled",false];
} forEach units (group player);

 

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Hi JB,

 

Winner winner chicken dinner. I really like this. I don’t know if I can go back to NOT using this with other Arma mods.

 

The included medical negates the need to run any more medical mods - very cool. It works very well.

 

The behavior of the units really seems to work. I think LAMBS Danger did cause my troops to move without orders - hence the pincer I described above. They seem far more stationary now.

 

As it stands - there is no CQB available? You can't clear buildings.

 

As it stands - there is no resupply for your squad - ammo boxes - scavenging the dead?

 

Will your squad utilize missile weapons when carried?

 

I noted in one of your videos - you had colored scroll wheel menus to get in and out of vehicles fast - I don't see them - any trick to make them work? Will they get in and out of land vehicles quickly as well.

 

As mentioned above - I scripted the entire Move GREEN - Move RED - Move SOG - Halt SOG in Voice Attack - - - to (4) voice controlled macros - I then also mapped the functions to a spare four way hat on my joystick. It's so fast and fluid this way. These are the most time critical commands needed in combat - a time when your voice may give you issues if you speak too fast.

  • Up = Move SOG
  • Left = Move RED
  • Right = Move GREEN
  • Down = Halt SOG

 

I hope you continue to work on this as time permits. It's a game changer.

 

Thanks.

 

Regards,
Scott

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On 8/13/2022 at 2:06 AM, johnnyboy said:

 

You can do this in the console to disable Lambs Danger for your team, but keep it active for other units:


{
	_x setVariable ["dangerAIEnabled",false];
} forEach units (group player);

 

Now THIS sounds very interesting! Reckon I'm gonna give it a go. Thanks again, feller!

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On 8/13/2022 at 2:47 PM, scottb613 said:

Winner winner chicken dinner. I really like this. I don’t know if I can go back to NOT using this with other Arma mods.

Thanks!

 

On 8/13/2022 at 2:47 PM, scottb613 said:

As it stands - there is no CQB available? You can't clear buildings.

No.  That's a tough nut some other dude alot smarter than me is gonna crack (maybe soon, I have a feeling)

 

On 8/13/2022 at 2:47 PM, scottb613 said:

As it stands - there is no resupply for your squad - ammo boxes - scavenging the dead?

No.  It would be a cool feature.  I know @pierremgi has built something real cool for this.  I'll consider it.

On 8/13/2022 at 2:47 PM, scottb613 said:

I noted in one of your videos - you had colored scroll wheel menus to get in and out of vehicles fast - I don't see them - any trick to make them work? Will they get in and out of land vehicles quickly as well.

Currently only the campaign Evac heli types (slicks and kingbees) will get this special action option when you look at the heli.  It's hardcoded for each vehicle type to determine door position that unit is forced to run to.  But in general using vanilla command to order units to board choppers should still be faster than vanilla AI, as my AI takes over and makes them ignore incoming fire and move quicker to vehicle.

 

I've never tried voice commanding.  It sounds slick and I'm glad its working well for you.

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Hi Folks,

 

I've been absent from ARMA for a while and new to SOG - just a general comment - they've really stepped up the injury/death animations and vocals - it's enough to give someone flashbacks. Then - the other day I was down and incapacitated - writhing in pain from sustained injuries - when Charlie comes up and while standing over me - starts poking me for a bit - then the MF'r actually picks me up and carries me off into the jungle with the MIA banner coming up. SOG - you got me - my mouth was actually open as I watched this for the first time - WOW... 

 

I do notice the SOG Command Wheel stop functioning from time to time. The wheel always comes up - but clicking on the items is unresponsive - you don't get the click animation. If I wait a few minutes - it comes back. Just an FYI.

 

Regards,
Scott

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3 hours ago, scottb613 said:

I've been absent from ARMA for a while and new to SOG - just a general comment - they've really stepped up the injury/death animations and vocals - it's enough to give someone flashbacks. Then - the other day I was down and incapacitated - writhing in pain from sustained injuries - when Charlie comes up and while standing over me - starts poking me for a bit - then the MF'r actually picks me up and carries me off into the jungle with the MIA banner coming up. SOG - you got me - my mouth was actually open as I watched this for the first time - WOW... 

😎  Love it.  That's some jboy secret sauce right there.

3 hours ago, scottb613 said:

I do notice the SOG Command Wheel stop functioning from time to time. The wheel always comes up - but clicking on the items is unresponsive - you don't get the click animation. If I wait a few minutes - it comes back. Just an FYI.

That's never happened to me.  What mods are you running?  Is your frame rate really low when this happens?  Can you check your error log .rpt file for any errors?

 

Thanks for the feedback, keep it coming!  🙂

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Hi JB,

 

Hah - that was your doing - you've outdone yourself - sir. I actually had a tinge of feeling for the poor guy as I watched him being carried off. Too funny.

 

Yeah - I have two machines - I use my older one most of the time because I only have access to my better one on weekends.

 

I'm using an old heavily taxed Sandy Bridge when I noticed the issue of the Wheel Menu response - I'll test again on my better Kaby Lake over the weekend. It seems it could be a performance issue as it gets pretty laggy on occasion.

 

Regards,
Scott

 

 

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I finally tried SOG AI with Lambs and it was quite fun.  The enemy is definitely trickier. But you need to turn off Lambs Danger for the player squad in order for SOG AI commanding to work.  In Mod Options, disable the highlighted Danger FSM options:

lambs-Options.jpg

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Hi JB,

 

I had tried that - and - it didn't seem as if my squad was following all my directions.

 

Let me mess with this over the weekend as well and I'll touch base next week.

 

Here are the mods I normally run for SOG (I had pulled LAMBS out of the mix):

 

Capture.png

 

Here's a quick editable ALiVE mission setup for "The Bra" that I use for my testbed (intended for newbs or those unfamiliar with setting up ALiVE).

 

I use the mods listed above.

 

No specific goals in mind - just a fully populated map to play with SOG AI.

 

CAS/Transport/Artillery supplied by Simple Support Services via the ACE Menu.

 

SOG Bra Playground

https://mega.nz/file/BhQBzCSY#5ifP0mYnItNLrO9kEj7G0c4YN_RKmpt2LyQ_w8rywMk

 

Regards,
Scott

 

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