Product Chat / [STICKY] Latest GameGuru Public Preview - New A.I

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LeeBamber
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 00:42 Edited at: 13th Oct 2018 00:38
You asked for better AI and it took a while to get around to it (what with swapping out the entire graphics engine and such-like), but now the soldiers do much more than stand there and get shot. Find out more in the official announcement of the Public Preview build update which you can read here:

https://www.game-guru.com/news-post/gameguru-public-preview-update-2

As an extra treat, I have also created a very small level that pits the player with 500 health points against 10 uber soldiers. I have armed the player with an AKM from the Enhanced Weapons Pack and your goal is to get to the yellow glowing exit guarded by the monster without losing any lives and taking as little damage as possible. Here are the links to each progressive standalone version:

Standalone V1 - First Stab
Standalone V2 - SmallG Impovements
Standalone V3 - Syncro's Easier Level

What I am seeking is feedback, which you can use this post for, to first tell me your general impression of the AI, any issues you find so we can discuss solutions and options, and of course, whether you made it to the exit without losing a life My thinking is that over the next month if we can refine this small enclosed combat area so that all soldiers exhibit respectably good behavior (does not need to be AAA beating) to the degree that would say in this one scenario, the AI is good, we can then move our sights to additional behaviors relating to the soldier. I think it makes sense to avoid melee AI for now (I have been playing Assassins Creed Origins recently and a AAA combat system could easily take 6 months to become something acceptable to fans of the third person sneak-and-beat-em-up genre). Whereas for projectile combat, we have half a chance of creating some good gameplay and the current asset collections do lend themselves very well to this genre. Of course, before we move onto new combat behaviors, we also need to try different scenarios for these soldiers so they can perform as effectively, say, within an EBE structure, or patrolling a raised gantry, or negotiating a spread of scattered static entities.
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lorddweeb
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 01:27 Edited at: 25th Sep 2018 01:39
Just as a first impression, I could tell almost immediately upon booting up a level on the public preview that overall its massively improved from where it was! Quite exciting.
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Gtox
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 11:33
Haven't tried your demo level, but the enemies in The Big Escape are notably tougher than they were before.
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Earthling45
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 12:48
It is quite an improvement.

What is especially fun is how they stand up to shoot and duck again before i manage to fire a shot.
I have a cheap mouse which is not favorable i think for these kind of games and i'm not good at this so obviously i did not make it.



For me the movement seems to be way too fast, it looks so unnatural.
On another attempt, it seemed as if they were hiding on my side of the wall when i stood near the end of the wall.
Also their sudden change of direction is quite strange, see from 1.37.
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 14:20 Edited at: 25th Sep 2018 14:27
Hello
Thank you - this is an awesome update.
But there are a few problems!
1-The characters fall into the depths of water. Issues #144
2- Issues #376 (sfkylcnky) & (Shahin3d)
Quote: "Try placing any of the characters listed below on the map and save as standalone. Run your game from the .exe you created. After you open your game, save it. Then, exit and re-open it. When you load your game from the main menu the character you have placed will glow unusually."

3- Issues#330
amir

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lorddweeb
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 14:50
After playing around more and playing the test level (not able to beat it without dying at least once so far) I still think this is a massive improvement and even as is would be a huge upgrade from the old AI.

My main critique would be that I agree a bit with Earthlings comment that the rapid fire way the enemies sometimes switch from crouching to standing when they find cover is too rapid for a human enemy. I LOVE that they now have this behavior itself, but if there was some sort of limiter on the rate at which they could change back and forth and/or a slightly longer animation they needed to do to transition from crouch to standing, that would probably be an improvement.

Other than that, my only real critique of the current features is that I occasionally still see some pathfinding wonkiness from them, especially when they are in tight spaces. In the demo level I also got one or two occasions of enemies running to the exact same spot for cover, but I didn't see any of this on levels that are less crowded, like big escape.



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LeeBamber
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 15:23
@SHAHIN3D : If we can focus on the demo level for now, get that sorted, and then we can look at a new scenario (which will contain water and hills) to make sure these few additional behaviors work universally across different scenarios, sound good?
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Teabone
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 15:39
oooh I can't wait to try this out
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Belidos
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 15:46
Quote: "1-The characters fall into the depths of water. Issues #144"


If you don't want them to go in the water then don't let them go in the water, place a floor zone covering the areas they're allowed to go (remember you can shift+click a node to make it as big and in any shape you want) that doesn't cover where the water is, and boom they won't go in the water, it's as simple as that.

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reliquia
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 16:26
Hey all
Thanks for the hard work Lee

Unfortunately the update has broken Sci-Fi drones - reported it on git-hub - Issue #388

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Corno_1
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 16:50
First impression:
* AI looks like it makes sit ups (higher the randomness of the head popup)
* I think it would look better if the AI shoot at the player and moves slowly to cover (suppression fire) OR runs to cover
* The running animation looks a bit fast

I will try the standalone again later today.
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SHAHIN3D
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 20:38
I do not know, is this a matter of AI or not?
Issues #142 :
Quote: "Waypoint in the game does not work.
When I tested the game, I noticed that Waypoint does not work for enemy characters and is useless."

For example, zombie characters are stationary in their place
And when I approached them, they will attack.
And Waypoint does not work for them.
I do not know - Should I add a particular setting?
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Belidos
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 20:46
If i remember right the zombies dont follow waypoints, their built in ai has wandering in it, there used to be a seperate zombie script for waypoint use ..... or was it the ither way around, i forget.

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Pirate Myke
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 21:36
Zombie script to follow way points in smallg script thread I believe.

Zombie were designed to roam based on distance from player.

Soldiers were designed for way point stuff.

Medieval was designed for both.

It is mostly about changing the animating calls in the fpe file and scripts, that will make any character work with any script that is stock.

The animation calls are in the fpe file.
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Belidos
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Posted: 25th Sep 2018 23:17 Edited at: 25th Sep 2018 23:19
Thanks myke, i thought that was the case but i often get thongs mixed up, so wasnt sure.

Edit: erm things, i mean i get things mixed up not thongs! Top prize for most embarrassing typo?

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synchromesh
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Posted: 26th Sep 2018 01:39 Edited at: 26th Sep 2018 02:25
Found Lees map to be just to darn hard ( ye im a wuss )
Anyway I wanted to see how it would perform with the EBE and get a better opinion with something I made ..
The AI is really good !!
I found they even traversed steps and upper level without the aid of floorzones or waypoints ...
Intentional or accidental side effect ?
One thing i did find in a few test was they roll randomly especially into walls ... How hard would it be to add a variable to detect the distance left or right for obstacles before rolling .. or don't roll at all if you cant .. A serious question as this would improve it greatly
Anyway i did a small vid using the EBE to create a small Maze and heres one of my tests ..



The only person ever to get all his work done by "Friday" was Robinson Crusoe..

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Insane6
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Posted: 26th Sep 2018 02:41
Hello Lee,
I just played your standalone test map. I was able to get to the exit without losing a life the second time I tried to play it. My first time through I lost one life.
-Bugs I noticed
1. It seems the first 2-3 bullets the enemy shoot do no damage at all. This includes running straight into an enemy and getting them to fire at point blank range. Once an enemy has shot around 2 or 3 bullets their shots begin to do damage. Its easy to recreate this bug - just play the standalone and at the start run a big circle around the group of enemies and they will all start to shoot and for the first few seconds you will take no damage.
2. If you get an enemy into melee range and they do the kick animation you can get them to repeat it by just walking at them again. So if an enemy charges me and I am low on life or reloading or w/e I can just avoid them damaging me by walking back into their melee range(causing them to kick me again) until I finish reloading and waste them.
3. Enemies will sometimes start spinning around moving in a small circle. Mostly happens when they charge the player.
4. Enemies "know" where I am when they shouldn't. And I think this one is pretty big because it really breaks immersion. For example on the standalone map I was positioned behind the back wall (the one that is directly behind the player when you spawn in). I had three soldiers on the right side of the wall behind sandbags. I decided to flank them so I crouched walked left and walked all the way around down the left wall. To my surprise when I stood up to shoot them in the back of the head they were already looking at me and killed me in a nano second.

My general first impressions was that the AI was much more "fun" to play against. It seems like a good starting foundation. But for me it's the small details that always get me.
Sometimes, the way they would pop up and go back down behind cover was strange. It looked like what I can only describe as a game of whack-a-mole.
It's hard to tell if the AI is looking at you or not since they always have their guns help up in a "ready" position.
Their bodies and weapons don't respond if you are crouching or on top of the sand bags, they always have the pistol pointed straight ahead.
Rarely would they choose a good time to charge at me.
They never flanked my position only got to cover and then would charge or stay or roll into the wall.
Almost impossible to tell if they are taking damage unless you are point blank. Maybe more blood or a more prominent blood effect is needed?
Can't tell if an enemy has been injured. Whether they have 100% life or 2% life they act the same.

That is all I can think of for now. But overall it feels like a huge improvement over the old AI. Fantastic Work.
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LeeBamber
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Posted: 26th Sep 2018 13:29
Thanks all, just want I needed. The more we can pick holes at this one simulation, the fewer issues other users will have once we go live with it. I will compile a list of improvements based on the feedback here and have a new version of the level ready to see if we have made things better (or as is the case in development; worse)
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Zigi
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Posted: 26th Sep 2018 14:49
I'm glad to see finally the important parts getting some love.
However I can't really say I'm impressed.

-AI can't hear, if I fire the gun the AI doesn't care
-if only 1 or 2 AI see me, the others doesn't care just standing there, realistically if one AI can see me it should signal all the others within a radius hey a see something in that position and all the AI within the radius should react as well and move in to position
-it feels like the AI is not moving in to cover but trying to hide because once they moved in to cover they doesn't do anything just waiting for me to show up. The AI doesn't search. Realistically they should try to catch me from behind and search for me if I don't show up. In case of many soldiers I guess we can say it is realistic they are positioning them self around my known location and wait, but in case there is only 1 or 2 soldiers, they should try to get behind me or something. I'm not a solder, never been in gun fire, I guess we can say that it is realistic to stay in cover forever but it is boring. Maybe we should need two different behaviour, one that stay behind cover and one that start moving behind you and stay behind covers, once the AI see you would pick randomly what to do.
-also when the soldier rolling out of the shot, just not realistic they should roll left and right and not toward me and before I shot and not after.
-also, sometime the soldiers do peek over the top of the barricade, which is a bit funny, keep moving up-down-up-down-up-down. I don't know what to think of this, but it is also a limitation of the available animations I guess.




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lorddweeb
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Posted: 26th Sep 2018 17:02
That video is a great demonstration of the strengths and weaknesses of the new Ai synchromesh.

As to some of the complaints about AI 'running away' right now it seems (from playing, not from looking at the code) like the Ai is programmed to try to run to cover the first time that a bullet hits or nearly hits them. I like this behavior but for those that don't I still don't think it should be a big issue. One of the things that excites me about this new Ai is it has enough behaviors to actually have some 'personality.' So I imagine that lua tweakers and coders/modders will be able to use this script as a greatbaseline to make variations for 'cowardly' 'cautious' and 'aggressive' soldiers.
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Landman
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Posted: 26th Sep 2018 19:25
Yup! Agreed with Lorddweeb, this AI definitely has much more "personality".

For once they proved to be a challenge and far more dynamic. The ducking and standing motion was pretty funny. You could synchonise your shots to a rhythm. Duck, stand, shoot, duck, stand, shoot.

Definitely a step in the right direction.
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reyandekcire
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Posted: 26th Sep 2018 20:39
I've made a few trys with some of my own levels and AI behaviour has made a huge huge step forward. Thanks Lee, fighting against AI boot is now much more realistic and challenging.
The only bug I noticed is that when you reload a test level, some animations freeze (for exemple, AI is sliping with no legs animations instead of walking) but maybe this is just an editor issue.
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devlin
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Posted: 26th Sep 2018 20:47 Edited at: 26th Sep 2018 20:58
Tried the demo level very interesting,
AI is more responsive than ever, i did find the AI was moving to fast
and the occasional solider went up in the air, but all in all a massive
improvement , a few tweaks on the speed would improve the AI at this stage,
but surprised at the new AI working as it does, i love the crouch on take cover
works great. definitely a game changer for me.
great work,
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Avenging Eagle
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Posted: 26th Sep 2018 21:32 Edited at: 26th Sep 2018 21:59
The demo level is cool and very difficult (I keep dying really easily but that's just a balancing issue and could be corrected for) but the AI is definitely better. Sadly though, when I load my own pre-existing level and try test game, I get an error message (see attached), followed by statue AI.

EDIT: the enemies in my level are retextures of default soldiers but we 'created' in the model importer (not character creator)

EDIT 2: I think it's because my enemies were running a modified version of ai_soldier.lua called ai_soldier_activated.lua which was a workaround for the previous AI not initialising when enemies were spawned via a trigger. Doesn't seem to be an issue with the new AI script so will revert and re-test.

Minor teething troubles I'm sure...

AE

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AmenMoses
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Posted: 26th Sep 2018 22:01
Replace the function at line 785 with this code:

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reliquia
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Posted: 27th Sep 2018 03:04 Edited at: 27th Sep 2018 09:49
Hi all.

I have noticed that the camera\player movement is not so smooth as before now. We had a similar issue a while back, but can't find the post for it.

Edit: Its bad enough for me to want to revert to the previous Public Preview. I went back to V 1.4 but that appears to be prior to PBR so it seams that accessing the previous PP is not an option.

Edit Update: After reinstalling the current PP the camera\player movement is not quite so bad, but still not as smooth as before.
The drones can be quite comical at times - going around in circles like a puppy chasing its tail,and then darting off into the bushes - lol.

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Avenging Eagle
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Posted: 27th Sep 2018 18:29 Edited at: 27th Sep 2018 18:32
Having now toyed with the new AI, I can confirm it is a vast improvement. Well done Lee! (or whichever one of your minions did it if it wasn't you). I mirror the other comments here that the run animation is a little fast but modifying line 319 to a lower value seems to sort this out. I'm personally not a fan of the duck and roll thing as I don't think it's realistic in most scenarios.

Sadly, the new script has overwritten a slightly modified version of combatcore I wrote to add in a 'cautious movement' animation call. The call basically had the enemy stand and walk with their weapon lowered by default until they see the player, then they raised their weapon when they spot the player. When they lost sight of the player, or wanted to move in closer, they would proceed with weapon raised but then after a few seconds of not seeing the player would go back to weapon lowered. It was literally like 2 lines of code to do it, and this was the result:



It would be cool to see something like this implemented into your new combatcore because currently there is only 1 or 2 calls for 'movement' animations and both are full-on attack mode ones. I think it would add a lot of realism to the script; most soldiers wouldn't stand around or patrol with weapons raised at all times.

Also, a question - any plans to increase the view distance of the AI? Currently it seems limited to 2,000 - 3,000 units.

AE
granada
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Posted: 27th Sep 2018 18:55
Very realistic Avenging Eagle ,shame you still don’t have the code to send to Lee

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reyandekcire
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Posted: 27th Sep 2018 21:35
@ Avenging Eagle and Granada

Hi guys, here is a tip to allow a realistic "patrol move" and an "idle sentry" animation with the new AI script :

1) Add the following as an animation reminder in the first section of the script (the green text at the top) :
-- anim13 : idle sentry
-- anim14 : relaxed move

2) add the following at the end of the "-- populate animation data if entity file does not provide it (except 5 and 6 which are melee)" section :
if GetEntityAnimationFound(e,13) == 0 then SetEntityAnimation(e,13,3430,3697) end
if GetEntityAnimationFound(e,14) == 0 then SetEntityAnimation(e,14,12290,12320) end

3) in function module_combatcore.idle(e,AIObjNo,PlayerDist,CanFire,detectstate) section :
change SetAnimation(0) to SetAnimation(13) it should be located line 209

4) in function module_combatcore.patrol(e,AIObjNo,PlayerDist,MoveType,CanFire,detectstate,stopstate) section :
- change SetAnimation(0) to SetAnimation(13) it should be located line 260
- change SetAnimation(1) to SetAnimation(14) it should be located line 272

And you're done...

Cheers
Erick
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synchromesh
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Posted: 27th Sep 2018 21:59
Any chance of the actual modified script
That would be cool ..
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devlin
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Posted: 28th Sep 2018 10:02
please post the modified scrip to test.
thanks.
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synchromesh
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Posted: 28th Sep 2018 11:31
Ok so i tried it and they stood fine but with waypoints they just slid on the ground with no anims
Perhaps I missed something or this is for the older lua ?
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LeeBamber
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Posted: 28th Sep 2018 12:14
More great feedback, next week I will compile a list of 'revisions' as bullet points and post here, so get your final feedbacks in for this version and we will see what improvements we can bestow on our soldiers. As I mentioned before, I am not looking to embarrass the AAA world with the best AI ever, just something that this community would consider 'complete' for soldier AI in a modern game maker.
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Tarkus1971
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Posted: 28th Sep 2018 13:54 Edited at: 28th Sep 2018 15:04
POSSIBLE ENHANCEMENT

NPC seeming to slip or be a little clumsy while turning or running.

The enemy soldier or NPC would be patrolling on waypoint for example, then if the player is to the side or near, the NPC would turn to face the player quickly and begin to run toward the player. It is on the quick turn or during running that the NPC would kind of appear to slip or lose balance slightly, if possible also if during this "slipping" which would last for maybe a couple of seconds, the player would have opportunity to either shoot the NPC or hide from the NPC, (Switch off player detection of the NPC during this slip too)

It would need a very, very low randomness to this slipping or it will look unrealistic.

The randomness could be assigned a variable or editable in the Properties panel of the Entity.

This could be used as a good start for proper stealth tactics for when the NPC slips of get clumsy, the player could hide behind walls, crates etc.
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reyandekcire
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Posted: 28th Sep 2018 18:34
Hi all

First, I should definitely have attached the full script. Very sorry about that, so here it is.

I advise that you save a copy of the file on your HD because should you check file integrity on Steam, it will be erased by the default one

About the AI slipping issue, I reported it in a previous post. I faced it when I was moving back and forth between Nopepad+ and GG editor, changing the script, testing in GG, exiting test level, modifying the script, testing again and so on. Clossing GG and Notepad are launching GG fixed the issue so I suppose it's mainly a matter of clearing cache memory in the editor

Cheers
Erick

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reyandekcire
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Posted: 28th Sep 2018 19:58 Edited at: 28th Sep 2018 20:23
Here is a small video of the script in action
Please note that AI properties are tuned as follow :
Sight cone = 70
Always active = yes

Do not pay attention to the "Alarm 1" displayed on the top left of the screen, this is related to another custom script

My spec are low/medium compared to the most recent standards so please forgive the bad quality of the video..

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synchromesh
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Posted: 29th Sep 2018 13:41 Edited at: 29th Sep 2018 13:43
AI In Isometric View

@Lee
I wanted to put this together to see what the AI was like from this view and needless to say im impressed and its so much fun !!
However as your working on the AI there is a flaw in isometric mode as it seems the AI can see you at all times and shoot through the walls ( The camera perhaps ) I was able to get around this with view distance settings and spawning along with careful planning but its really tedious and wondered if that fitted into the AI update category ?

Anyway the main purpose was to see the AI in action from above so check it out

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Titantropo
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Posted: 29th Sep 2018 21:53
They seem to know where the player is, and when to shoot at him. They seem not to tremble, and we tremble a lot and miss the shots we fire. And their shots seem to do more damage.
Here, there and everywhere.
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synchromesh
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Posted: 29th Sep 2018 22:26 Edited at: 29th Sep 2018 22:27
They can see me … If you read above I asked Lee about that ..
As for my damage to them the aiming has to be precise but I can tweak that

Enemies Trembling … Don't think I have seen that in any game at least not Isometric or not in a cutscene ?
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LeeBamber
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Posted: 1st Oct 2018 10:50
If you could post this to the issues tracker with a link to this video, I can deal
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synchromesh
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Posted: 1st Oct 2018 11:04 Edited at: 1st Oct 2018 11:05
Quote: "If you could post this to the issues tracker with a link to this video, I can deal "

Thanks Lee already there did that yesterday
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maiacoimbra69
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Posted: 1st Oct 2018 11:39
very nice update
vrg
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Posted: 2nd Oct 2018 09:11
Great update
synchromesh
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Posted: 4th Oct 2018 12:37 Edited at: 4th Oct 2018 12:45
Well the Beta update last night seems to include the AI detection fix by Corno_1 …
So much better now they cannot see you behind walls or shoot .. The AI is getting even smarter as well
This also improves the first person experience greatly IMHO ..
Awsome update Lee

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lorddweeb
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Posted: 5th Oct 2018 04:43
The continued progress is great. One bug or limitation I have recently noticed is that the new AI seems to not notice colliders properly when dealing with multitexture models. Specifically if I place them inside a multi-texture hallway, they will run into the wall and then stay "stuck" endlessly running into it. (And I tested it quite a few times and the behavior seemed consistent) This is with third party (my own) models as as far as I'm aware there isn't a "stock" model that we could test this with. Obviously if there are stock models that use the new multi-texture system correct me and I'll test it with those.
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synchromesh
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Posted: 5th Oct 2018 09:11
Quote: "I have recently noticed is that the new AI seems to not notice colliders properly when dealing with multitexture models. Specifically if I place them inside a multi-texture hallway, they will run into the wall and then stay "stuck" endlessly running into it. (And I tested it quite a few times and the behavior "

Havent noticed but I will give it a try ..
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synchromesh
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Posted: 5th Oct 2018 10:19
Im on the beta with the latest update and to be honest I didn't really notice much difference in single or multitexture corridors but the AI has been improved even more in the current beta build … They performed brilliantly in my EBE maze to the point I was getting jump scares as I turned a corner and there he was unexpectedly.

Rolling is vastly improved without overdoing it but yes perhaps a couple of times in a particular place I saw one get stuck but as I approached from another angle they got out ..


Are you on the beta ?
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lorddweeb
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Posted: 5th Oct 2018 15:13
Hey Synchromesh

I was on the public preview but I just switched to the beta and at least on this particular corridor they still have that issue. It is a fairly narrow corridor, which is perhaps a cause of the issue as well? I had tried to test for that possibility by testing the AI in a stock tunnel that is just as narrow, and they didn't seem to have that issue there. I've attached a screenshot of the behavior.

If you think it would be helpful in diagnosing, I'd be happy to give you (and/or Lee) a store voucher for the models via PM.

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synchromesh
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Posted: 5th Oct 2018 15:56
Has that got the forcesimpleobstacle = 3 command in the fpe ?
Looking at that pic i would say no ?
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DVader
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Posted: 5th Oct 2018 16:09
Quote: "Has that got the forcesimpleobstacle = 3 command in the fpe ?"

I would say that is probably the problem. It could be the collision type, but if you can run inside it then more likely the simple obstacle flag synchromesh suggested.
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