AI in newb games


#1

Hi, only a few days into my first game, wanted to give a bit of early feedback.

In our game, 4 of 8 players went AFK soon after the game start, they probably never logged in. I’m guessing a lot of newb games start with some AFK players.

When the AI takes over, it does not play by the same rules and completely outmatches new players. In particular, it gets research levels that are simply not possible based on the stated science and experimentation levels, which I was monitoring closely.

Of the four remaining players, I think two more are on their way to AFK timeout, probably on account of being swarmed by the AI once it took over.

I started in a position completely isolated from the AI so it wasn’t really an issue for me, but now it looks like this game will end early with me defending against the one remaining player until he is destroyed by the 3 AIs around him, then as the last remaining human player, I will quit - on about day 5.

I’m guessing the AI is tuned to make it more challenging for regular players, but it makes for a really bad first impression seeing the AI “cheating” in newb games, it feels like the few days I have played so far were completely wasted.


#2

Thanks for the feedback Boggers,

They AI do play mostly by the rules* but they always form and alliance and trade with each other. That how the get the research.

I will see if I can find some time to tone this down a little in the new player games sometime this weeekend.

Thanks Again!


#3

Does everyone default to weapons research first? If so there is definitely something else going on apart from just tech trading between AIs.

The four players to simultaneously go AFK all had science 1, one of them got Hyperspace 2 on the same tick as a human player got weapons 2 and he bought science 2 at the very start and must have rolled weapons twice on top of that to get lvl2 so quickly.

Of course, by the next tick every AI had hyperspace 2. The three other human players who all had better science than the AIs for days were still working on their first level 2 tech.

Maybe it was just particularly unlucky, but I don’t see how that exact scenario is even possible without “cheating”


#4

Thanks for the heads up. I’ll have a look at the code and make sure there are no bugs!


#5

Heya, just wanted to follow this up in case you were still thinking of toning down the AI. I’m still playing that first newb game out to the end vs 7 AIs.

After getting to know the rules and gameplay, which only took a couple days once the AI took over for the AFKers, it seems that the AI is very easy to beat, even for a beginner, so if you were to town it down,maybe just that initial rush where they all get tech 2 and immediately spread to every unoccupied planet is the problem. Or, you know, maybe do nothing, it is possible there was some other reason the other 3 quit.

I think there may also be a bit of an exploit, though I didn’t go through with it so not sure, but it seems like it might be possible to crush an enemy AI down to a single garbage planet, buy the -8 faction back to neutral for just $80 total, then continually buy all the tech off them for just $10 per research level, maybe donating a little bit extra if it reaches the point where they can no longer afford to swap tech with the other AIs.


#6

Hi Jay,
So far, all AI will automatically -1 regard the top leaderboard live player.

1 A possible tone down would be to turn it off until after the 3rd or 4th pay cycle.

2 A more subtle tone down would be to somehow select a percentage of AI to not -1 regard the human star count leader. Maybe base it on accumulated Econ as well. For example the human star count leader has 10 Econ, Then only up to 200% that amount of econ held by AI will -1 regard the human player.