Is the AI still going to be busted?

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#1 Posted by Mirado (2365 posts) -

I really want to love the Total War series. Armchair general pretty much describes me, and to be able to act that out in a game is exactly what I'm looking for. (Hell, I've probably rewatched the battle scenes from the movie Gettysburg at least 30 times, so to have something similar at my fingertips is perfect) But each time I get my hopes up for a Total War game, I'm more or less let down. Rome was the first game I played and I still think the best; sure the AI blobbed units into a big mass of arms and spears, but I kinda imagine that ancient warfare was chaotic like that. Less excusable was the lack of naval invasions, but by the time the AI got far enough for that to be feasible, I would pretty much have the game in my hands anyway.
Medieval 2 was a buggy, busted mess of a game that ran and played like shit. Since then I've got a new computer and I hear they've ironed out the kinks, so I may give it another try. The biggest disappointment of all was Empire; playing that showed me how little the battle AI had advanced since Rome. The AI had a shocking inability to keep troops organized, units would get hung up on walls or fences and with just one guy out of place a whole formation would bog down with the pathfinding's inability to handle a misplaced unit. The collision detection on cannons was a nightmare, especially when it came to narrow paths or groupings above five; sometimes it seemed like the bounding boxes were far too large, and other times they'd just clip right through each other. The enemy AI showed zero advancement when it came to fort sieges, to the point where it would charge all of it's units through one breach and thus you could win with 10-1 odds. Playable naval battles was a nice idea but poorly executed as ships would sometimes competely ignore movement or positioning orders. Because of that headache, I never bothered with Napoleon.
So, now Shogun 2 is almost out and I feel the same excitement I did before. Samurai! Ninja! Fuckin' tiered castles! But should I even bother?
tl;dr Is there any indication that the AI flaws of the past have actually been fixed this time?

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#2 Posted by Turambar (7963 posts) -

You might want to ask that after we've had a chance to play it.  Regardless of whether they said they fixed it or not, we're not going to know until release.

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#3 Posted by Mirado (2365 posts) -

Well, I've seen them mention that they've spent a lot of time on redoing Agents/Generals/adding a "honor" system, but I was just wondering if at any point they've said "Yeah, we know the AI is fucked and we're making it a priority to fix that!" It seems that with every release in the past, they've kinda swept the AI bugs under the rug and then dogpiled new features on us in an attempt to make us forget.
Just wondering if it's still the status quo, that's all.

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#4 Posted by Chris_Ihao (103 posts) -

Imho they fixed a lot of things with Napoleon, which I consider an excellent game indeed. While being somewhat disappointed with Empire due to its potential greatness I have now spent hours upon hours these last days playing Napoleon. I doesnt only look much better but the pathfinding and ai seem to be less completely stupid this time around. This comforts me in light of the upcoming Shogun 2, which I have waited for for almost a decade now. Preordered it the other day, but I do expect some quirks on release. Guess it will be all good after some patching, and judging from the massive attention it has got these last few months they want to do this one right. The Sun Tzu part is interesting as well.

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#5 Posted by Mirado (2365 posts) -
@Chris_Ihao:  I may have to give Napoleon a shot, then.
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#6 Posted by thwak (116 posts) -

Yeah Napoleon has the best AI but you can still boss them around (the AI in every total war game doesn't have any idea how to handle calvary charges). 
But mirando, have you tried out the darth mod yet? I hear it makes the AI competent.

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#7 Posted by sins_of_mosin (1713 posts) -

I'm really hoping that the game is at least enjoyable come tomorrow morning.  Very annoying they don't allow pre-loading.  If its 6-8gigs and it maxes out my line, still going to be like a 2hr wait.

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#8 Posted by Mikemcn (8070 posts) -
I'm really hoping that the game is at least enjoyable come tomorrow morning.  Very annoying they don't allow pre-loading.  If its 6-8gigs and it maxes out my line, still going to be like a 2hr wait.
Im preloading it now on steam.

And yesterday I watched a group of my indian rifleman fire a full volley at point blank range into a group of allied skirmishers, killing about 40 of them and forcing them to retreat. The indians are called irregulars but they shouldnt be that irregular right?

I also got flanked by my AI enemy during a battle and watched them slaughter almost all my men, the AI has its smart moments.
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#9 Posted by sins_of_mosin (1713 posts) -

Ahh I see that now.  16.3gigs....... gawd.  Maxed out it'll take just over 2hrs but it keeps bouncing around and such but I think it will take more like 3-4hrs.  If it does unlock at 9am pst then I should be set to go when it unlocks.

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#10 Posted by Veektarius (5907 posts) -

The AI has seemed competent so far in about 30 turns of gameplay, at least in comparison to Empire at release.  I took an enemy fort with too few troops and they relentlessly battered the few defenders until they took it back.  Later, an enemy army marched through allied territory in hopes, it seemed, of taking me by surprise (though not successfully, as the trade route I opened allowed me to see them coming just in time).  Very early to reach any conclusions, though.

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