i’ll start by saying that, it’s not perhaps a priority for others, but it is one somewhat for me.
primarily as a pve maker. and i would like to express huge thanks for putting an entire category of AI soldiers / bots into the soldiers entity tab.
really, really handy instead of having to open the blk each time, paste codes, change other codes, save & restart to do the whole process for each soldiers.
and i love them. primarily because they don’t move in case an objective has been taken, and provides somewhat of a fight as " remnants " or generally, buy time to the Default AIs ( the ones through loadouts / profiles ) time to reorganize and reach another point. while those soldiers stay on on they original position and will die if they have to.
which it’s all great, and allowed to make interesting combinations.
although, what i don’t like, is that i can’t tell those AI to move around, or for example, be able to create some sort of patrol units that will occasionally go inside or around an area of interest. EVEN if it’s not ( or it is ) an objective.
greetings, today i came with another tool suggestion that i would like to see and use to make my PVE mods even greater and have some dynamic aspects to it.
and essentially, give a new feature for all those modders who uses AI inside the Soldier’s entity tab.
these new features, would consist into be able to have more controls over the soldiers placed by modders ( the one in the soldier tab ) and have more controls / way of moving them by making them do precise paths or general random. or even make them patrol. in this concept idea i will cover how would theoretically work.
i understand it’s probably one of the most complex features, and i would like to remind that it doesn’t have to be final. just sharing my wishes for a more dynamic control over those units.
if devs manage to find a better and simple solution, i’m all for it.
i’ll start with the Patrol Feature / node.
this… thing, will be primarily used to tell AIs to move around a specific area and surface, and start wandering around in order to provide some " life " to those soldiers, and create new / interesting firefights with it.
the idea, is to make the soldiers placed by modders be able to cover more areas rather than just the one inside the capzones.
to essentially allow bots to provide more area and offer more actions outside objectives too ( just like in real life )
i will give more in depth examples at the bottom. i would like to cover first all the technical aspects that i personally would need, and think would make things interesting.
of which the modder will assign and / or will be automatically assigned for each segment used in our mods.
where, there are 3 areas.
Group one, it’s one area, group 2, it’s another, and group 3. so on.
defines the area of interest of which bots assigned under the said group, will patrol the area, moving around, and be stationary for a couple of time. and then start moving around to change location and what not.
this way, would make fights interesting and unique, as it would make the AI soldiers move ( only those assigned to Patrolling groups )
but, the group part is going to be essentially and somewhat of an ID to assign specific bots who will patrol and generally move around the box area ( circle, way etc ).
in order to assign it, players will have to name the group, and in order to apply it only to specific Ais, they will have to copy and paste the group name onto the soldier’s PatrollingGroupName parameter/function:
and as a result:
if modders tick this box, AIs within the group selected will go back and forth among Points of interest.
if, on the other hand, this box is unchecked / unticked, Ais will stop at the last waypoint/point of interest.
speaking of points of interest, are kinda an essential part of how the patrolling work and will have their own tab of settings:
Points of interest
Points of interest will be the boxes containing coordinates that bots must cross and will attempt to find the nearest way to reach.
and the number of boxes for pathfind / area of interest will be defined by modders.
once the number has been inserted, the modder must save, and reload.
in doing that, the editor ( just like regroup points for capzones if those has not been set up ) will spawn smaller “boxes” for modders to place around ( instead of spawning these boxes to 0, 0, 0, coordinates, would be better if those would spawn at the center of the group box / circle )
and within this Object / parameter, modders will be able to decide the following:
( whether bots will : )
what bots will do, is that they will start with Coordinate 1, Coordinate 2, up until the last number inserted by player has reached.
what bots will do if this box is ticked, they will essentially move around the various area of interest with randomized pattern.
the game will automatically insert points of interest among the surface of the area and navmeshes to automatically generate each time different areas.
all the modders will have to do, it’s just insert a number of how many points of interested they want / need, and the randomizer will do the rest.
IF BOTS CANNOT REACH A CERTAIN LOCATION, THEY WILL SKIP TO ANOTHER
an additional option that i would think would benefit some mods ( especially mine where the players are being hunted or what not )
if the option is ticked,
what this means, is that, if the AIs will enter contact with enemies, and they are inside that group, they will try to chase and take down the threat. unless, it gets out of field of view for more than, let’s say, 30 seconds. of which those AI will try to chase the players inside the group area. if they don’t find them, they will just ignore the player and continue with the patrol.
players must be inside the group area for AI to initiate a chase. otherwise the Ai will just fire to players from afar instead of swarm. it’s more of a change tactic and prioritize target over patrol.
and last option in this segment;
if checked, AIs will work together and proceed as a group.
for example, if there are 5 soldiers under the group 1, and this box is checked / ticked, the first of the 5 (soldiers ) who will reach the first point of interest, will wait for the others 4 to reach the first point of interest / waypoint. once every soldier under the same group reached the first way point / point of interest, they will move on together onto the other as a group.
on the other hand, if this box is not checked, AI will move independently and more " on their own ". without waiting other soldiers under the same group.
it’s also more for the combat side of the patrol too. acting like a squad.
Group should be chainable with others groups and / or group activators
Stances & Fire Command
stances will be assign to bots, to define their speed, ( walking, running / sprinting ) for bots involved in the group.
very slow speed
moderate and standard speed
faster speed to reach destinations or point of interest faster
additionally, in this paragraph, modders will also be able to set
bots, will stop and start to engage with any enemy threat that they come upon their path. they will only move to another point of interest if the threat has been eliminated, or the bots lost sight for X amount of period.
bots will act like current Default Ais in the normal enlisted. they will travel upon the point of interest, but if fired upon, they will retaliate fire for a few seconds, and then proceed to ignore and reach their destination.
once the destination has been reached, they will stay vigilant and start engage with the enemy if on sight.
this fire command, will tell the AI to only shoot once they have reached a point of interest.
mostly used for make AIs retreat
if cease fire is ticked, bots will only move to point of interest and under no circumstances will open fire or retaliate. even if they get hit. or, even if they reach their destination. they will not fire for any reasons if there are enemies in the range or sight of view.
( primarily used for scenery units moving in the background or retreating. but yeah, for cinematic and more " life " to our mods )
Time & Activators
this last part, is dedicated more on the technical side regarding the timing.
as, to be precise, the time of how much time will the AI stop at a point of interest before proceeding to the next one.
for example, there should be an option in seconds.
and the AI will be stationary for that amount of time before heading to the next one.
and lastly, an important feature;
Activators are an important part yet optional part. allows to be more precise on when and what should happen after a certain point.
more precisely, after a certain point, AIs that will be stationary, once the sector/time activates, they will start heading or start patrolling an area.
and there are two ways to use them,
the activator will happen through sector / s.
to make a concrete examples,
i have a group of patrol set on Activator Sector_2
for the entirety of Sector_1, they will not move.
once Sector_1 has been captured, and Sector_2 activated;
ALL AIS under that group will start patrolling or heading towards the way points.
it will work as a sort of delay with more precision on when it will activate.
actual time. for example, Group X will be activated after in real time has passed by.
another concrete example, if players fails to capture the objective in an amount of time Ex. 5 minutes ( more artificial depending on the modder preferences ) a wave of bots will start making their way to the objective and provide more of a stiff resistance for the players to overcome.
as, if they would capture the objective in time, they will only have to worry about the smaller counter attack that those bots will " provide " opposed to reinforce if the players wouldn’t have capture the objective in those 5 minutes.
not sure i made my self clear, but as a sort of " bonus / malus " situation depending on the progress made by soldiers.
essentially, an artificial modifier to modders to use to slow down or speed up certain parts of their mission if they desire to do so.
this, will allow modders to have even more precision regarding when Ai will go and where.
for example, i want a second wave of bots at group 1 during the first sector, and have an additional wave of AI under group 2 that is placed in the same spot as group one but activate after 5 minutes and essentially act as a second wave or counter attack ( depending once based on the players efficiency )
with two activators,
perfect for AI ambushes, reinforcements coming to defend around the objective while the standard default AI ( the ones that imitates players ) will do their own thing inside the objective. and generally, have units do different type of things rather than just sitting ducks as it is currently.
and last feature for today;
way points somewhat works like patrols, but with the difference that they don’t relay on a box, or a circle.
it’s more or like for covering wider areas through waypoints.
which can be used for " rallies " ( like, go from point A to B following a specific pattern ),
or create a random path for ai to follow.
( ideal for players to intercept them as a search and destroy gamemode. without exactly knowing the position. you would have to cooperate with allies and what not )
and, it’s a bit more dynamic. once again, to cover more areas rather than just one or two.
it will also have these features:
loop ( to make them do the same path or not )
group up ( for ais to either " work " together, or independently )
similar to how patrols works, but this time around, the game will create random way points. to make things unique each time you play, and there will be ( or… should be ) a parameter that lets modders set a range of distance between each waypoint. and a number of how many waypoints.
waypoints paths, are essentially like bidirectional groups of capzones. allows you to each time that you start, have a different established set/group of waypoints. for example, modders could create different paths that ai will have to take, and set for example;
Waypoints Path 1= 0.5
Waypoints Path 2= 0.5
so that, each time it’s gonna be a different path.
it’s different from the randomized waypoints, as you don’t have controls over those outside how many waypoints there are there, and the distance. the waypoints paths are more like sector groups. and modders will have more controls over those if they do not like how random the generations may be )
Battle Areas Must Be Set First. To Prevent Ais Going Outside Battle Areas
and to conclude, let’s get finally to the last part:
now, we get to the practical use.
with these features, players could make endless possibilities and cool uses of AI to their mods.
the primary examples that i could think of, were;
Add a finite Defenders / Attackers wave for each objective as reinforcements.
the difference between using this system, and Default AIs, is that Default Ais will respawn, those, will not.
hence, provide some momentary benefit that could be used as a balancer factor, or reward for one side over the other. an artificial modifier of the normal flow of enlisted
create search and destroy games modes.
for example, set the battle areas, place a randomized way point, assign and dress bots, then place spawn of players, and what will essentially happen, is that players will have to find through cooperation and teamwork, the enemy locations / position ( which will change … or not depending by the modder preferences ) in real time. and the players have an amount before the match will end. so they must find them, and kill/destroy.
the " fun " part and cool part of this, would be that each time someone plays, through the randomizer things will change.
create secondary objectives
for example, in your invasion/conquest/whatever, you could add a commander that wonders around the area and provide an opportunity for players to take him and his bodyguards squad out in exchange for tickets. similar to how baloons works, but it will take you more effort than that.
for example, players will have to reach a certain sector and what not, you ( as a modder ) can artificially slow down and keep players on their toes as there might be some waves of enemy bots coming from the sides or behind to create confusion and incentivize teamwork and communication.
allows you to set group ( or individual ) bots to watch areas around the flanks and move while doing so instead of remaining a sitting target. combined, with other type of ais.
cinematic background soldiers
to make the battlefield feel a bit more alive, modders could use those patrol or waypoints to make soldiers guard a safe area ( typically spawn area unless thrown in the mess ), make retreating soldiers, or use them as shield / make them die from mines machineguns etc for … idk. effect i think.
and many, many more uses.
all depending from modders.
i would have loved this feature onto vehicles and AI tanks, but there are no current ways of doing that.
nor there are really any working vehicles with ais outside bikes, at guns, and airplanes.
so, i’ll just start with the soldiers and we’ll see in the future.
this is probably way too much to ask, but i feel like it’s actually a game changer and would allow modders to make unique and endless possibilities for their mods. and make enlisted different from the same " pattern ".
because once again, there is no way in between of having soldiers that wonders around, and stand still outside an objective.
so that’s all from me. if you fellow modders have any other suggestions or improvements on what can be done ,don’t hesitate and together we’ll see what to change / add.
that’s all from me.