Odette

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Esty
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Re: Odette

Post by Esty »

Thank you Arpheus for this complete feedback ! It's gonna be really helpful for the next updates. I assume you are testing Odette in the Definitive edition, which is pretty interesting for me because i use AOC to script and test odette. It's probably a bad habit : i never know how well odette performs in DE.
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Felipe_EL_Guapo
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Re: Odette

Post by Felipe_EL_Guapo »

Arpheus wrote:
Sun Jun 13, 2021 12:43 am

If I remember well Promi mentioned in an interview that the only cheating the DE AI does is knowing the amounts of Military units from the enemy - how many cav, archers and so on the enemy has - that way it makes counter units without having seen the enemy army composition
Hi hi. Great to see improvements in your AI Esty. I haven't played in a while so not giving feedback, but planning to do it. Just wanted to clarify what @Arpheus said about the AI cheating. Promi only said the AI gets informed about the number of military units the enemy army has, but not its composition. It is on a video from Spirit of the Law when interviewing Promi.

Have fun.

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Re: Odette

Post by Arpheus »

Felipe_EL_Guapo wrote:
Mon Jun 14, 2021 9:55 am
...
Just wanted to clarify what @Arpheus said about the AI cheating. Promi only said the AI gets informed about the number of military units the enemy army has, but not its composition. It is on a video from Spirit of the Law when interviewing Promi.
...
Thank you for clarification Felipe - I was not 100% sure about that.

@Esty It's great to see that you work on the AI. There are not many AIs which have the potential to become really good and are also worked on. Your AIs have the potential. Tribal Warrior was the only AI which was able to beat the DE Barbarian AI in some cases from my testing but that was mostly thanks to the offensive tower with stone walls around it which won a lot of time for Tribal Warrior because all AI's waste time and units to destroy the Tower and also some of the walls with skirms and later Ram / Knights.

One thing that no AI really does well is moving around towers to go into the eco - they often move into the radius of towers continuously to then retreat after they get shot and then again move into the tower radius which is a bad loop of wasted momentum. Sometimes they also just stay there and get killed by the tower - this happens especially if the AI thinks it has the numbers to destroy a tower with brute force.

I think I saw one AI moving around towers a few times but not sure which one it was.
The barbarian is still best at moving around towers since it sometimes moves past it to a wood line which is behind the enemy base to attack there. Such abilites make it very strong. But even the barbarian AI is stupid enough to suicide full archer/skirm armies into a well placed castle in front of the enemy base making a win in such cases feel like "cheesed".

IF you manage to get rid of this behaviour of suiciding units into towers and castles and walking around them this will instantly make your AI one of the best AIs for humans to play against since this is besides of very early pressure in my opinion the single thing that makes it so easy to beat almost all the AIs that are around.

If it is not possible to get rid of that bad behaviour it would even be better if the AI didn't suicide their army into the castle and did a massive ram push in castle age (at the very least 6 rams) or waited until imp and made a strong push with a few trebs to take down that castle.

Here some other ideas which would make AIs so much more powerful (not sure if all of these apply to Odette since I play most against barbarian and Promis):
  • create different attacking angles. This could be achieved by building some production buildings left and right of the other player base and also attack from there. Maybe that should not be added on easier difficulites
  • when players do stone walls or other strong walling create a gap where there is no castle behind and use it to enter the enemy base/economy. Breaking even stonewalls can be done with 3 petards (how awesome would that be!) or rams/bbc/trebs
  • players can just harvest neutral gold/stone uncontested in castle age and sometimes up to 40 or even more ingame minutes in imperial age without the need to defend the neutral ressources and won't be stopped from doing so which makes the game super easy since the AI won't have these neutral resources later in the game. So send out a few military units from time to time which run around the map and check for contested neutral resources and kill the vills there
  • not sure if this is only a problem against teutons because of crenellations but I have seen so many AIs staying at around 10-12 range with a full army of archers and/or chu ko nu's for minutes getting decimated by a castle - even worse if that castle is filled with Hand cannoneers for huge damage output which shreds masses of archers
I will gladly test new Versions in DE to give some feedback. With the 8x speed mod and the DE Barbarian Version it makes testing possible without too much effort. In case that you have the DE version it would be worth to test there too since some game mechanics / techs might be different. I am not sure for example if your AoC version has supplies tech and other stuff that was added.

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Esty
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Re: Odette

Post by Esty »

Version 2.3 ! This update fixes many issues.
I plan to work on its behaviour against towers, regarding the latest comments. Might be the next step...
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lolasik43
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Re: Odette

Post by lolasik43 »

Thank you for update ! :dance

Arpheus
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Re: Odette

Post by Arpheus »

Thanks for the Update to the AI

I did some testing and here some observations and ideas (long wall of text inc):
Played on the new June beta Patch in the Definitive Edition - all games extreme difficulty

The Good
  • Scouting with sheep is great and helps find sheep from time to time
  • Odette often builds a Tower at the front of base on Gold, wood or Stone which is great
  • Creating a few knights the moment Castle Age is reached and before TCs are put down is great and doesn't delay TC too much. It allowed Odette to push back some very early Barbarian attacks with own knights and win some time and momentum instead of loosing the entire skirm army to the few enemy knights. Great change!
  • knights especially kill mangonels and monks - that is great behaviour and helps a lot
Possible improvements
  • Early scouting movement pattern is not too great. The Scout switches sides far too often walking through the fully explored base a few times times while early scouting for sheep and resources. Sometimes he didn't find any sheep. Sometimes he finds all of them but that is a bit random
  • If the AI finds the deer early enough it will push them which is great. But the villagers need to learn to use these deer/ostrich. At the moment they send 1 villager per deer
  • In another game it pushed 3 deer but 2 of them kept rotting - maybe because they were not directly under the TC and the villagers had other sources of food? Not sure why
  • Odette often goes for 20+ Skirms without a single spear allowing Barbarian to reign supreme with scouts or knights. In many games Skirm + scout from barbarian dominated the almost pure skirms from odette. Adding some archers or spears (and keeping the spear slightly behind the skirms until needed - if it runs to the enemy skirms it will die instantly) would be a great change.
  • There was a Scout battle where barbarian's scout attacked it rather early at 7 min or so and Odette tried to micro against barbarians scout which was a bad idea - it took lots of hits while wasting time moving around. It died early while barbarians scout still had like 40-50% hp. Since that battle happened very close to the Odette Towncenter that fight could have been easily stalled by moving to the TC
    DE AI in such a case will just run back to the TC and then continue scouting when the enemy scout is not around any more.
    Perfect would be: If it looks like the scout wins that engagement continue to do so if not retreat to TC
  • Castles are often placed far behind the base instead of in front which is a huge disadvantage. Having a Castle in front of the base or inside the eco facing the enemy is such a HUGE benefit defensively.
    It also can be used as a great way to lure the enemy into the castle fire to take good engagements. It is one of these things which can win the AI a game by snowballing favorable engagements and not having to take bad engagements by retreating into castle range.
    A few monks near the castle could also heal up the wounded troops and the monks are also a great addition to any push. Barbarian does that with great success - converting a few knights is so huge.
    Another option could be herbal medicine but there has to be a good reason to pay the 350g and delay the monk production - like a lot of wounded units.
    Healing up their units in or next to the castle while amassing an army for the next push would be great AI play
  • In one of the games Odette placed the 3rd tc far forward almost at enemy base which was a bad decision - it was lost soon and caused lots of losses
  • In a Spain mirror game vs DE AI it lost tons of skirms to a tower since it kept standing inside the radius there
  • Lots of units died to enemy defensive front castle for no reason. It should never fight under a castle unless it has a very good reason to do so and has a huge lead
  • When building 3 scouts it attacked a bit and then forgot about 2 surviving scouts at the border of the map near enemy town which it could have needed defending at home base or for attacking. Once enemy villagers appeared in their LOS they started moving again
  • Adding more siege to the castle age pushes would make it much stronger - like mangonel / ram. The pushes with knights + skirms mainly attack their units in castle age and always retreat back a bit without accomplishing much since most of the times it seems the other AI's and probably also players will place TC's, towers or a Castle at the front of their base which makes the AI have to go on the defense since a TC filled with vills or a Castle hurt a lot.
    Since Odette rarely (or never?) uses another attack direction around a castle its pushes are completely stalled at least in castle age once there is a defensive castle.
    In contrast Barbarian AI sends a lot of Rams - not instantly upon reaching Castle Age but once it has a bit of army - and it is heading directly for towers and TCs - and when it goes for the TC the Knights and skirms dive under the TC too to protect the ram which is great play
  • sometimes when it attacks it won't attack with all units at the same time. E.g. the skirms are slower than the knights and reach the knights later or 3 skirms in front attack and the others are still on the way. That is bad since these 3 skirms die without accomplishing much.
    If they attacked at the same time (also skirms + knights) that would make the attacks more cost efficient
When making the new tower Logic when Odette tries to take them down make sure to defend rams or mangonels when the enemy tries to take it down and repair it with 1 vil like Barbarian and DE AI often do - that is such a strong move. Of course if it is a battle that cannot be won it's not worth to loose the army while defending the ram.
Also there might be situations where you want to dive under a tower if there is something to be gained like killing vills. Also in feudal age and early castle age there is no murder holes (unless its teutons in castle age) so standing right at the base of a tower could be a viable tactics if there is something to be gained there like vill kills

Also once you see more than 1 scout attacking your base in feudal age instantly create enough pikes to counter that - this is high priority. Maybe at least 1 spear per 2 scouts unless its sicilians - then more spears than scouts since they take out a spear in 1v1. Once the scouts retreat keep the pikes around exposed resources without TC / Tower close. There was a game where the barbarian AI came with 5-7 scouts and it didn't make a single spear for a while - game was lost. Better scouting intel to see enemy stables could have predicted the scouts to make some 3-4 pikes early that would have been a great move.

I think when Odette actually starts using all the pushed deer's food that might cause a positive snowball effect by coming into castle age stronger. That might be a good starting point to see where it then goes.
Also making scouting more reliable by running circles around the base instead of wasting much time by traversing the full already explored base a few times will lead to 8 sheep more reliably instead of 4-6. That will also help it be stronger coming into Castle age.



Overall opinion Odette in current state:

In all games the Barbarian AI was still stronger which was visible especially starting in castle age thanks to great counter unit creation immediately when it scouted or sees enemy units and excellent unit composition. Also Barbarian Castle Age is super strong with Elite skirms + knights + monks + rams + castle in front of it's base.

Also a great thing to learn from barbarian: It seems to scout for areas where it wants to attack and it then comes from other angles to attack a wood line or mill villagers while Odette only tries to find the enemy wood line and then immediately goes back to deer pushing. That way it doesn't know what is happening at the enemy base later on and can't select a good strategy accordingly. Full skirms vs scout rush is horrible.
Barbarian and DE AI keep coming back from time to time to update its scouting information to know what the enemy is doing.


The DE Extreme AI is also very powerful and still beats the Odette in the few games I tried. But with some work and optimisation and especially better unit compositions and counter units it could get up to these AI's strength and who knows - maybe one day surpass them

Thats it for now. Keep up the good work and it's nice to see that you keep updating Odette! E.G. the latest knight before TC addition made it instantly stronger.

Would it be useful to you if I uploaded recorded games?

Arpheus
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Re: Odette

Post by Arpheus »

And another tactics to destroy towers in feudal age would be to attack the tower with a few scouts or men at arms and at the same time dive under the tower with the skirms and place them at the base of the tower where they are inside the minimum attack range of the tower.

If you want to make it perfect move the skirms in front when diving under the tower so that your MAA and Scout don't take the damage from the automatic tower fire.
There is one exception to this: if the enemy built walls around the tower then don't do this and just leave it until castle age

TheNightPanda
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Re: Odette

Post by TheNightPanda »

Good to see that you are still active Esty :)

The Odette flanks have a lot of idle tc time in feudal age. I imagen this is intentional to get extra units out early but currently it seems to work against Odette. A villager pays itself back after 3 min so you basicly have a 3 min window to make the extra army count. Even when killing 3 vills from the enemy flank odette will still be behind in vill count when clicking castle age. In my experience idleing the tc to save food is only worth it if you are getting overrun by enemy units or saving for a super important upgrade or the next age. Or an all in push I gues ;)

aoefan
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Re: Odette

Post by aoefan »

The Ai did cheat for about 4500 3000 4000 F,W after the Promi wiped it

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Esty
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Re: Odette

Post by Esty »

Thx again guys for the feedbacks.
I eventually had a serious look on Odette in DE and noticed many bugs i eventually fixed in this new version :
:o dette 2.31
for exemple, 4 villagers were freezing/bugging in dark age because of the yellow berries not being recognised as "forage-bush" ! The use of "forage-bush-class" fixed it.
The behaviours of the military units being really different between UP and DE regarding the stance (aggressive/defensive/stand-ground/no-attack), my rules related to the enemy towers were broken. Now the behaviour is ok, kinda the same than in the UP version of the game.
Overall, Odette plays its best in UP and is kinda frustrating in DE. But it's not to bad thx to this version.

aoefan, i didn't get what u meant in ur message. Maybe u used difficulty hardest ? This is the difficulty in which Odette will cheat. I suggest you to use Extreme, instead.
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