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Spaceempires.net :: Known Issues in v1.19 Series :: View topic
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Known Issues in v1.19 Series
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Zwo_Dvoongar
Space Emperor


Joined: Feb 02, 2011

PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CaptainKwok wrote:
I caught a bug today that I can't believe has persisted for at least the last two/three years! Basically when an AI colony was at maximum facilities it was also skipping the check to update facilities. It would only do so when a facility was scrapped to make way for a new one. This fix will make a huge difference.


Sounds like a good deal alright. Got a suggestion if this reaches you in time.

It really speeds up refitting if you construct some - even one - dedicated repair base at the location of the shipyards you use frequently. Bases can fit several repair components, and even large ships are in and out like a drive-thru. I haven't seen the AI do anything along those lines, and I'm pretty sure I don't have the skills to code for it myself.

Modding is hard work, I found out. Don't know how you do it, but I'm not the only one thankful you do.


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CaptainKwok
Balance Guru


Joined: Aug 04, 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 4:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually one of the issues I was having with the AI's improved retrofitting was that fleets were taking too long to repair. So I've been improving the designation of Space Yard & Repair hubs and the design of base space yards to include more repair bays.

Space Empires Depot | SE:V Balance Mod


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NickWest
Space Emperor


Joined: Oct 01, 2008

PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 9:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

LordZsar1 wrote:
Mmh, that fix is not in my latest fileset (14.07.) then. I will not have time to test before saturday evening (GMT+1 ~06.00 pm), so it may be proficient to send the most recent changes available at that time.
... Ideally annotated too, so I know what to keep an eye out for.

@NickWest:
The public fileset is by now woefully outdated I think. Especially, your AI should still suffer from the crippling "Base Shipyard never receives orders" and "-10 Net Income anywhere means full stop for everything useful next turn" bugs.
As far as I recall, the Captain has never published scripts "in progress" but considering that I have some, mayhap you could ask nicely and then, indeed, send logs - always with personal observation of a perceived problem, mind, so he knows what to look for. Even bare from all other entries, those log files are quite a chore to look through.


I didn't realize anyone but Kwok wrote the AI. I find the AI quite good, the only aspect of the AI I've thought could consistently be improved upon is it's logic for figuring out which systems are choke points, to rush colonization there and then WP defenses. I'm not sure how powerful the AI scripting language is, that would be a pretty fun problem to solve in most programming languages, but not sure what there is to work with here.


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Skyburn
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 12, 2008

PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CaptainKwok wrote:
Actually one of the issues I was having with the AI's improved retrofitting was that fleets were taking too long to repair. So I've been improving the designation of Space Yard & Repair hubs and the design of base space yards to include more repair bays.

I always found it odd that BM doesn't have a dedicated repair facility. Repair bases are great and all, but having a repair facility that can be behind planetary shield coverage would be great in many circumstances.


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LordZsar1
Space Emperor


Joined: Feb 07, 2008
Location: Leipzig, Deutschland

PostPosted: Sun Jul 21, 2013 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

NickWest wrote:
I didn't realize anyone but Kwok wrote the AI.
I must have been extra ambiguous that day. But is the context?

It has indeed never anyone taken responsibility on this forum for writing BM AI. Therefore the assumption that Kwok and only Kwok be its creator is sound.

I have done testing work on unpublished versions of several files and these have never been complete Balance Mod packages but always subsets: only player AI, only "real" empires, all but "neutral" empires, etc. .

As all subsets are sets and all elements are files, I have refered to these as "fileset". As no version numbering is available, I have identified those with the date of reception.
So, "fileset (14.07.)" refers to a package of loose files I received on 14.07.2013.

To earn this privilege I have done nothing more fancy than to invest some time to look for weaknesses and outright faults, thence my remark that mayhap you could ask - the Captain - nicely and get to do the same.

... I hope with that all misgivings are vanquished.


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Zwo_Dvoongar
Space Emperor


Joined: Feb 02, 2011

PostPosted: Mon Aug 05, 2013 4:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, I've kind of taken it for granted that ships know to drop all cargo prior to refit. Is this the case? I'm adding new unit types, and they could be aboard sometime. If the AI's only dropping expected stuff, like carriers dropping fighters, this could be a problem.

Come to think of it, I don't suppose there is a "drop all cargo" order available...


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LordZsar1
Space Emperor


Joined: Feb 07, 2008
Location: Leipzig, Deutschland

PostPosted: Wed Aug 07, 2013 6:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

New game with your 24.07. scripts and without FQM to avoid the survey bug... an explorer ship just jumped into an unexplored system with no followup orders and 7/14 movement points left.

- Apparently the survey bug is not the sole culprit here.
Here are saves before and thereafter plus the logfiles; mayhap you can track it down.

The ship in question will be built on Jethanis XI and move into the Radnor system via the warp point at (-1, -10).

addendum:

It happened again the next turn and I think I know why: In the "After[...]" savegame, look at the explorer "Adversary 0002" (it will jump into Qikiltrin the next turn and waste 5 movement points). Its orders are:
  • Move to Warp Point
  • Warp
  • Survey Hadron
Hadron, not Qikiltrin. Both systems neighbor Polaris, but the targeted Warp Point leads to Qikiltrin, not Hadron.
As Hadron already is completely surveyed, "Adversary 0002" aborts its survey order and proceeds with its queue - which is empty.

If this be the root cause, I just demystified a bug in BM older than my forum account here!

... other issues:
  • The super-armoured explorer design persists. Look at the "Adversary I" design: 70 kt of armour! Even in hostile quadrants, 30 kt are entirely sufficient. 2.000 potential units of supply forsaken!
  • Similarly, Missile Ship (S) could do much better with a second missile instead of 55 kt of armour. They are fleet ships anyway - the foe's missiles will hit the Attack Ship (S) and Defense Ship (S) designs, which both have less.
  • Like last time, despite positive net income and 31 (one with ruins) colonisable worlds, after the first great construction wave, planetary queues empty and run idle instead of producing colonisers. Save and logs attached (Coloniser design is "Raptor" - only two are queued)


Regarding the third issue, I have found in the log file that the AI's demand table is phantastic: In the turn I saved, it has 17 colonisation targets out of 31 possible. For those, it wants 5 Colonisers (in truth needs seventeen), has one (but in truth none) and builds four (in truth only two).
... Does it count Population Transports as Colonisers? In any case, the numbers are beyond reality, thence no Colonisers are queued.


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CaptainKwok
Balance Guru


Joined: Aug 04, 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Thu Aug 08, 2013 11:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the report although I wasn't able to load any of the saved games. Can you provide the exact folder name of the GameTypes folder you were using.

Regarding the surveying there are a few things at play.

First, sometimes a ship wouldn't receive a survey order when another ship received a stacked survey order (warp > survey). This would happen because there is a limit in the mod where the number of surveyors is equal to the number of ships with the survey order (surveyor) + systems to survey. When a ship got a stacked order (which is technically a "cheat" in sequential turn mode for the AI) it counted a surveyor but in reality the destination system had not yet been counted as a system to explore. Those systems are compiled at the beginning of script execution whereas the ship orders occurs towards the end. Anyway this would cause the max survey limit. The fix was to not count the stacked survey order as a surveyor for the turn.

Sometimes ships receiving the stacked order were getting a bad system to survey as your reported. This was due to a bad sort of the systems to explore - sometimes the warp point indices got messed up. Fixed now.

Third, even in the latest version of the BM with smaller stars (so far just binary systems that I have seen it happen in) I have encountered instances where the survey order won't stick in certain dead sectors. So the ship gets the survey order each turn but the ship gets stuck. Not sure how to fix it at the moment. Sometimes it resolves itself when another ship passes through the system.

---

Regarding colonizers, there is a limit of 5 wanted per turn (or 10 if all 3 colonization types are researched). It mostly exists for the AI not to overwhelm it's ship demand queue with colonizers in situations like you describe or end up with a ton of extra colonizers if suddenly the availability of colonizable planets drop. I'll see what I can do to make the limit it a bit more dynamic (or account for ships finishing colonization orders in the turn etc).

Not sure what you are saying about the queue numbers. Do you mean "in truth" because of the results in the observed turn... active colonizer consumed in colonization act, two queued constructed and two still queued? I ran several similar games and did not get a discrepancy in the counts.


Space Empires Depot | SE:V Balance Mod


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LordZsar1
Space Emperor


Joined: Feb 07, 2008
Location: Leipzig, Deutschland

PostPosted: Fri Aug 09, 2013 12:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CaptainKwok wrote:
Can you provide the exact folder name of the GameTypes folder you were using.
"Balance Mod". "Space Empires 5\GameTypes\Balance Mod\".

CaptainKwok wrote:
Third, even in the latest version of the BM with smaller stars [...] I have encountered instances where the survey order won't stick in certain dead sectors. So the ship gets the survey order each turn but the ship gets stuck. [..] Sometimes it resolves itself when another ship passes through the system.
Release a test version with no movement blocking objects in any system (so that stars and black holes... those should be all; allow ships to move over them like planets do) - I am very sure in that version the issue would not be reproducible.

What I think what happens: Survey paths are deterministic and time-independent: The same ship in the same system with the same explored and unexplored sectors will always take the same path when given the survey order. Unlike "explicit" pathing like seen in movement orders, survey orders cannot deal with obstacles: In case an obstacle blocked a survey path, the order is cancelled. Thence, in standard FQM the survey bug happens all the time, as the stars start at nine hexes in size and grow from there. In BM it happens not as often as there is always only one hex per star, which would block the route. This hex usually sits dead in the center of a system, where the survey path will never lead through. In multi-star systems, this is no longer true and then a star-occupied hex may come into the way of the survey path - which blocks the surveyor until another source changes the layout of explored and unexplored sectors in the system, which prompts generation of a different survey path - as the largest possible blockade is one consecutive hex wide, it is extremely unlikely that a blocking object blocks again once the survey path has changed.
... Even in standard FQM the survey bug never happens once all star-blocked sectors have been explored. This can be regarded as an invariant; mayhap a move order could be computed in script, which leads to exploration of all blocked hexes before a ship is assigned a survey order in an unsurveyed system?
Another mayhap possible fix would then be to allow movement through stars and the like but make it unattractive. A challenge in this case would be to keep ships from actually moving there.

CaptainKwok wrote:
Not sure what you are saying about the queue numbers.
I have to correct myself. The one coloniser the log reported vanished in the same turn by colonising a planet in movement range to its yard planet. The two additional coloniser constructions the log reported are queued after other ships which are not yet completed and thence do not show up as "under construction" in the build menu.

CaptainKwok wrote:
[...] active colonizer consumed in colonization act, two queued constructed and two still queued?
Exactly. I did not account for the consumed coloniser and relied on the count in the build menu, which itself leaves out orders on backlog. The numbers are technically correct, although practically not.

This sheds light on a different shortcoming: While quick planetary queues are empty, slow station queues carry followup orders, which not only start construction later but also take ~2.5 times as long to be completed. In such a situation, a redistribution of orders would be proper. Alternatively/additionally assignment of orders by speed of completion may be helpful: A planet almost always completes ships faster than a station and if the planet is full (which the script already checks) no other kind of construction is delayed either. Thence it would seem that a planetary queue may be considered "as filled" as a station queue, when the planet in fact has one more unit queued up than the station. A precise ratio may be calculable.

CaptainKwok wrote:
Regarding colonizers, there is a limit of 5 wanted per turn Regarding colonizers, there is a limit of 5 wanted per turn [...]
Would it not be more appropriate to employ a relative limit? Mayhap in two waves as well: First up to five like now, then everything else, if yard capacity is still available then 80% of (colonisable planets - 5).

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Zwo_Dvoongar
Space Emperor


Joined: Feb 02, 2011

PostPosted: Fri Aug 09, 2013 12:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CaptainKwok wrote:

---

Regarding colonizers, there is a limit of 5 wanted per turn (or 10 if all 3 colonization types are researched). It mostly exists for the AI not to overwhelm it's ship demand queue with colonizers in situations like you describe or end up with a ton of extra colonizers if suddenly the availability of colonizable planets drop. I'll see what I can do to make the limit it a bit more dynamic (or account for ships finishing colonization orders in the turn etc).

That limit's a good thing. My first thought was to maybe tie it to gametime, but not all empires grow at the same pace, obviously. Perhaps a limit based on the total number of shipyards would make sense?


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CaptainKwok
Balance Guru


Joined: Aug 04, 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Fri Aug 09, 2013 4:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've made some changes to colonizer demand to account for colonizers being consumed during the turn. The practical effect is that new colonizers are typically queued a turn earlier. I might push it out for two turns consumption.

It might be a little cumbersome to try and manage secondary queue items in base space yards to add to planetary queues but I'll check it out. In terms of script sequence, the check (usually for cost control or invalid items) for currently queued items happens before any new constructions are added. The main problem I see is that while I can identify faster open queues, it's figuring out (efficiently) if there is something else useful could/should be queued there.

Construction sequence:
- Check currently queued items
- Add facilities (facilities can be bypassed in certain circumstances)
- Add ships/units


Space Empires Depot | SE:V Balance Mod


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LordZsar1
Space Emperor


Joined: Feb 07, 2008
Location: Leipzig, Deutschland

PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2013 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It may already help if you account on addition of items that a planetary queue is two to three times at fast as a station yard, so before a station receives its first item a planet would get a second one, before a station receives its second item a planet would get a third.
... That should in fact pretty much eliminate the need for reallocation under normal (no sudden changes of a yard's productivity) circumstances.


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Zwo_Dvoongar
Space Emperor


Joined: Feb 02, 2011

PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 12:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zwo_Dvoongar wrote:
Okay, I've kind of taken it for granted that ships know to drop all cargo prior to refit. Is this the case? I'm adding new unit types, and they could be aboard sometime. If the AI's only dropping expected stuff, like carriers dropping fighters, this could be a problem.

Come to think of it, I don't suppose there is a "drop all cargo" order available...


Okay, I was wrong. A "drop all cargo" order does get issued just prior to retrofitting.

Code:
  // Order our ship to drop its cargo before retrofit
  if Sys_Does_Space_Object_Cargo_Have_Non_Supply_Ordnance_Item(ship_id) then
    if (What_Unit_Type_Is_Our_Main_Cargo(ship_id) <> "") then
      set orders_given := Sys_Give_Space_Object_Order_Drop_All_Cargo(ship_id, CARGO_ITEM_TYPE_UNIT, "", gbl_SY_location)
    else
      set orders_given := Sys_Give_Space_Object_Order_Drop_All_Cargo(ship_id, CARGO_ITEM_TYPE_POPULATION, "", gbl_SY_location)
    endif


This is great news, simplifying things for anyone adding units to a mod.

It also reminds me of another issue, which may or may not be worth the trouble to address. The explanation takes time, and the solution might not be simple to implement.

When a yard is heavily used (typically when advancing into enemy territory) the supplies tend to be depleted. The default retrofit process wastes tons of supply and ordnance. Everything the ship was carrying just disappears, and the newer models will usually have even higher capacity than the old.

In practice, I counter this by issuing orders to drop supply and ordnance prior to retrofit. There is a problem, however: if the planet doesn't have space available, the order gets canc'd, and so does the retrofit. This means it is necessary to check the planet's status and see if the supplies and ordnance will fit.

The practice does make quite a difference. Ships and fleets which would otherwise run out are able to continue operations without withdrawing. Even in systems removed from the front lines, a major fleet retrofit can easily gobble up the supplies of a colony, although ordnance is only ever an issue at the front.

I see two ways to approach the matter: a check of the planet's status right before retrofit, or a flagging/listing function for the AI to keep track of all planets low on supply & ordnance (which might already exist). Any code involving locations is next to incomprehensible to me at this point, so I won't be attempting anything myself anytime soon, to address the issue.


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Zwo_Dvoongar
Space Emperor


Joined: Feb 02, 2011

PostPosted: Sat Sep 14, 2013 5:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I doubt it's doing any harm, but I noticed some discrepancies in minister names.

Code:
  AI_MINISTER_PLANETS_SATELLITE_LAUNCHING:                  string    := "Planets - Satellite Launching"
  AI_MINISTER_PLANETS_MINE_LAUNCHING:                       string    := "Planets - Mine Launching"
  AI_MINISTER_PLANETS_DRONE_LAUNCHING:                      string    := "Planets - Drone Launching"

Is found in Script_AI_GlobalConstants_General.txt.

Everywhere else, the names say "Colonies" instead of "Planets". For example, "Colonies - Satellite Launching" is found in Script_AI_Orders_Planets.txt.


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CaptainKwok
Balance Guru


Joined: Aug 04, 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Sat Sep 14, 2013 11:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Those are SE5 stock script files used for localization. Rather than have to change all string references to game items/settings in the AI scripts when making a non-English version, you'd just have to change the value for the constant. The Balance Mod scripts diverged from the stock scripts long before that was changed by Aaron and I've never bothered to do that.

Space Empires Depot | SE:V Balance Mod


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Damok666
Space Emperor


Joined: Jul 28, 2007

PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 7:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Captainkwok just curious when you might be releasing update J for balance mod

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CaptainKwok
Balance Guru


Joined: Aug 04, 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2013 1:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Still working on it. I'm targeting October 7th since I have that day off to myself. :p

Currently I'm looking to make some more improvements to diplomacy. One element I've added is anger locations for treaty players instead of just war/no treaty players. So if an AI has a treaty with the target but only tenuous relations it will become increasingly upset over ships/colonies in its claimed space. The amount of this anger will vary depending on the AI's disposition and the "friendliness" of the current treaty.


Space Empires Depot | SE:V Balance Mod


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Skyburn
Space Emperor


Joined: Mar 12, 2008

PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The AI offers treaties to human players it doesn't have much contact with in team mode games. Possibly this affects humans the AI gained contact with through a shared comm channels treaty, so the AI player has technically never met the human player in space.

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Damok666
Space Emperor


Joined: Jul 28, 2007

PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2013 7:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thats great to hear ... on a different topic what do you think of modding SE5 using Unity 4

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CaptainKwok
Balance Guru


Joined: Aug 04, 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 10:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Most SE5 modding is text based so I'm not sure what you'd use Unity for outside of some 3d modeling or graphics work.

---

Spent some time working on the v1.19j update today. Added some new functionality to the AI to update re-designate a colony's type based on the facilities present. Currently making some improvements to the AI's facility management as well.


Space Empires Depot | SE:V Balance Mod


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Damok666
Space Emperor


Joined: Jul 28, 2007

PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 2:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh i thought with a unity 4 Game engine you could take the core of the work you have done with se v and build or mod with out using the SEV engine and continue on with out the limitations thats been hampering your efforts in improving on SEV

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Zwo_Dvoongar
Space Emperor


Joined: Feb 02, 2011

PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2013 7:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, got a diplo suggestion:

Ceiling on "friendship" and a floor on "anger" when an empire is a friend of an enemy. Could be fixed amounts, or could vary by individual empires.

I think the merits are self-evident, so I won't list them all. Whether or not it's worth the trouble is another issue.


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CaptainKwok
Balance Guru


Joined: Aug 04, 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada

PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2013 1:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's kind of the way it works now. There is anger added for each "friend of enemy" occurence which will make it more difficult to be good friends. There is also anger additions/reductions for enemy of friend and friend of friend relations.

Tried finishing v1.19j on Friday but couldn't quite get there. With each check I find another littke item that needs a tweak. If you want to try out the scripts send me a pm with your email and I can send them out on Monday/Tuesday.


Space Empires Depot | SE:V Balance Mod


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BlackRain
Space Emperor


Joined: Dec 19, 2006

PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 12:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

New version coming out? Eagerly awaiting it before i start up the game.

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CdrRogdan
Space Emperor


Joined: Nov 15, 2013

PostPosted: Sat Nov 16, 2013 10:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry if this has been already mentioned, but the economics tree provides the incorrect reduction to maintenance. The tooltip lists the benefits as providing 2% per rank, but the actual benefit is 1/4 of that ammount.

To list some numbers I have a ship worth 4675 that has a maintenance of 881 (approximately 24%). The difference between 25 and 24% is 4% The value of my economics rating is currently 8 (or a 16% reduction). The maintenance should be 771.5 according to the tooltip (21% maintenance). The value is also visable as being 1/4 in the racial statistics tab.

I suspect the issue is that the game doesn't handle mathematical functions properly. It sees the 'negative' as a value to divide the total amount by rather than a simple mathematical function. Err.. this makes sense when you think of the way the achievement works. In any case I believe the solution is to put the negative before the formula rather than inside of it. (I'll test it out after I finish up this game.. in a few days.) To clarify: Use -([%Level%] * 2) rather than ([%Level%] * -2)

Rank 10 seems to work correctly though...


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