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Old 10-14-2017, 12:23 PM   #1
shantke
 
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Default Moving Stacks?

I see that there is a way to combine fire from multiple units. Is there a way to combine a stack to move them all together as one instead of having to move all the stacked units individually? Especially if all the units in the stack are the same, it would be easier to move them all at once.
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Old 10-14-2017, 01:07 PM   #2
Steve Jackson
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Default Re: Moving Stacks?

This is on the wish list, for sure. Will work best for stacks of like units, of course.
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Old 10-14-2017, 01:40 PM   #3
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Default Re: Moving Stacks?

Yes, itís definitely needed, but not trivial to code. Different units through terrain with different rules will get interesting. However, the majority of the time in practice would be moving stacks of the same units around.
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Old 10-14-2017, 04:54 PM   #4
Tim Kauffman
 
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Default Re: Moving Stacks?

The ability to only move similar unit types in a stack even if it also contains other unit types and you would then have to go back to pick up and move those individually would be such a big improvement in the game play experience. After that update is implemented, then finish it with a final update by being able to move entire mixed stacks.

Maybe you could have this as a two option feature.
1)Move all similar units as one stack.
2)Move the entire stack of remaining mixed units.

This may prove to be a nice option by having two choices that would allow more intuitive gameplay.
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Old 10-14-2017, 05:54 PM   #5
offsides
 
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Default Re: Moving Stacks?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Kauffman View Post
The ability to only move similar unit types in a stack even if it also contains other unit types and you would then have to go back to pick up and move those individually would be such a big improvement in the game play experience.
This. Even if you could only move stacks of identical units with identical movement remaining, (i.e., they all started in the same hex, or otherwise were stacked with the same move remaining) it would make things much easier to move groups of units at the start of a game. Moving stacks of like units with different move remaining, or even different units, while certainly nice isn't a showstopper for me.
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Old 10-14-2017, 05:56 PM   #6
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Default Re: Moving Stacks?

Kids nowadays! Why, in my day, we had to carefully sort through stacks of small chits on a flimsy paper map ... God help you if you sneezed ...

Overall, I am enjoying the heck out of this game. I've being doing a lot of the Skirmish games just to play and have fun, while getting fully used to the software interface. Is it just me, or did the AI get a bit smarter recently?
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Old 10-14-2017, 06:25 PM   #7
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Default Re: Moving Stacks?

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Originally Posted by Mack_JB View Post
Kids nowadays! Why, in my day, we had to carefully sort through stacks of small chits on a flimsy paper map ... God help you if you sneezed ...

Overall, I am enjoying the heck out of this game. I've being doing a lot of the Skirmish games just to play and have fun, while getting fully used to the software interface. Is it just me, or did the AI get a bit smarter recently?
I'd like to think they have been taking our suggestions and applying them to the engine. For those of you that come through the campaign later, don't hate me :-)
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Old 10-14-2017, 07:31 PM   #8
Steve Jackson
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Default Re: Moving Stacks?

And eventually we may get to an AI with difficulty levels, but that's not the immediate goal. Chess programs have actual degrees of difficulty built into AI opponents, but as far as I know most digital games just apply a handicap in terms of resource gathering, unit numbers, hit points, whatever. Can anyone with wide knowledge of the field comment?
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Old 10-15-2017, 07:19 AM   #9
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Default Re: Moving Stacks?

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Originally Posted by Steve Jackson View Post
And eventually we may get to an AI with difficulty levels, but that's not the immediate goal. Chess programs have actual degrees of difficulty built into AI opponents, but as far as I know most digital games just apply a handicap in terms of resource gathering, unit numbers, hit points, whatever. Can anyone with wide knowledge of the field comment?
In games like chess you can limit the AI by limiting how far ahead it looks. An AI that looks ten moves ahead will out preform one that only looks seven moves ahead. Want an easier opponent? Configure it to look five moves ahead.

Tuning the AI depends on the nature of the problem and the AI's approach to solving it. The solution has to be "good enough" without being unbeatable.

If the AI can find a large number of acceptable solutions and has a way to compare them, then then instead of always using the best solution it can randomly choose one from the top one percent. To make it easier choose one from the top five percent, etc.

If the AI is heuristic (rule based), then you can loosen some of the constraints baked in to the rules. Throw in a random wiggle instead of always taking an optimal route. Resources can be allocated less efficiently. Don't always squeeze out a 2:1 attack from a sea of 1:1s, leave a few 3:2s in there as wasted attack points.

It depends on AI's approach, but there are usually ways to adjust how well it does.
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Old 10-16-2017, 12:33 AM   #10
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Default How to get a better AI

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Jackson View Post
Chess programs have actual degrees of difficulty built into AI opponents, but as far as I know most digital games just apply a handicap in terms of resource gathering, unit numbers, hit points, whatever. Can anyone with wide knowledge of the field comment?
Hi! I am experienced in chess and backgammon AI programming and have been playing OGRE since the very first edition.

There are two aspects to consider; lookahead and evaluation. I am going to talk about evaluation first, and cover lookahead in a followup post.

Evaluation is simply looking at your present situation, looking at all things that you can do, and evaluating which is best. With dice-based games such as backgammon or Ogre, the AI has to do that calculation for each possible opposition dice roll and pick the action keeping the odds in mind.

For example, an Ogre trying to escape at the bottom can decide to move toward the goal, or decide to back up a space or two, temporarily sacrificing the main goal to wipe out some attackers who are threatening to take out enough treads to slow it down. It can decide to engage a GEV when it is six treads away from losing a movement point, but might decide to avoid that GEV if it is one tread away from losing a movement point. Another example: moving to hex A would result in a 3:1 attack but hex B would result in a 4:1 attack.

Normally this is done by giving each goal a numerical weight and choosing the move that gives the highest number (or on of the higher numbers -- not having the Ogre do the same thing every time is an advantage so the human cannot memorize a pattern and post it on the Internet)

This is all bog-standard game AI, and Ogre clearly has some sort of evaluation function, which the coders are no doubt trying to improve as we speak. There are two ways to do this. First, think up new things to consider. If the current AI doesn't give hexes near the edge a lower or higher score, add that. If an OGRE with lots of AP isn't more attracted to infantry compared to an Ogre with none, add that.

Second, tweak the weight that different goals have. Will the OGRE win more if it is attracted to the bottom a bit more or a bit less? How much is killing a superheavy worth compared to killing multiple GEVs?

There is an interesting method to setting the weight for each goal. Set up a network of computers and have them play AI against AI with each AI having slightly different weight on the evaluation goals. Eliminate the ones that lose a lot and replace them with new ones. Let the ones that win a lot "breed" by creating slightly different offspring. Throw in a few Steve-Jackson-designed ones and see how they do. See https://stockfishchess.org/get-involved/ for an example of how one might do this.

Last edited by GuyMacon; 10-16-2017 at 12:39 AM.
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