Nathan Mar 21, 2014 @ 3:29pm
AI Appreciation day.
Playing again the singleplayer has earned me new respect for the AI, which isn't groundbreaking or anything like that, so if you wish to come here nitpicking or doing the boring old "nothing new, nothing special" tropes, then go ahead, but we've heard it all before. (I apologise for my negative tone in the beginning, just so many negative commenters around as well.)
I'll paint two scenes for you:

I was playing as the marine, in the Colony, where the few marines were still alive for a second. The aliens had just come over the barricades and killed most of the marines off. It was only me and one other left. We were looking in the dark, a few aliens had already come at us, but then things became silent for a while. I could have sworn that for a second my tracker showed something, but then nothing. So I went to investigate. It was a dark part of the large hall, finally my flashlight traced on a corner, and there it was, had been sitting, not seemingly stuck or anything, because in an instant, as it was made (by my light) it leaped upon me. Was kind of scary but not that much. That wasn't the point, it behaved in a stalking way.

Here's my other scenario. I was playing as the predator. I'd reached the ancient combat arena, where the praetorian attacks you. The assaults of the praetorian were brutal, and I barely managed to jump out to safety (as it kept knocking me over with each blow). I leaped up to one of the platforms, and noticed that the praetorian couldn't climb after me. What it did, however, felt very cool; gave the illusion of intelligence, and that it were a creature, alive, and had a goal, to kill me of course. It circled me, patiently, like the queen in the end of Aliens, breathing heavily and looking at me all the time, then it seemed like it grew impatient, started spitting acid on me, and then roared, which attracted more drones.

Little things which are basically tricks, and cheap at times, but still can create a vivid illusion of an animated creature, and you behaving with it. The aliens keep jumping, leaping to cover, or darkness, to flank you, I can get disoriented while not playing as an alien, because keeping track of their movements is hard enough most of the times. I havent played multiplayer, but from what I read in another topic, seems like the AI fights more variedly, tactically, and thoughtfully than many people online. Hell, in a mission with an AI marine buddy on my side, he can fight more cleverly than me - Like leaving me to be bait and taking cover.

Anyway, feel free to share your own experiences with the AI or whatnot.
Last edited by Nathan; Mar 21, 2014 @ 3:30pm
Showing 1-15 of 17 comments
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Inferno Mar 21, 2014 @ 3:57pm 
The AI could never compete with fighting another person in multiplayer, because it will always behave in patterns. Once the pattern is recognized, the AI always loses. Humans are way more resourceful and unpredictable.

The AI actually glitches out a lot; the Alien that leaped on you likely was stuck, because the Aliens are not programmed to behave that way, especially in the C-block segment. Sometimes they don't sort themselves out unless the player prods them in some way.
For example, one time in the refinery I was the Predator, and in the room next to the lift, the group of Aliens that attacks the group of marines waiting there won the fight, but a scripting error caused the Aliens to attack early, before I even got there. I was standing in the lift doorway, and the Aliens positioned themselves on the outside, but wouldn't attack even though I was right beside them, until I jumped in place.

The Praetorian spits acid at you when you're on the pillar because that's the only attack it has that can reach you. Games that came out on the Super Nintendo did that. Praetorians are programmed to call allies when they take a certain amount of damage or enough time has gone by since the last group was killed. And the marines will always take cover when they're in a certain point of the game; there is no ulterior motive such as baiting.

I think it's nice that you immerse yourself as you do, but yeah, more than meets the eye (or less, in this case).
BlackOpzFX Mar 21, 2014 @ 10:25pm 
@Inferno - NOW I'm *REALLY* Impressed!! Those are some VERY simple behaviours that can randomly create some very unique "Looks Like Thinkin' but It Aint'" scenarios. The intelligence (or lack of) comes from the triggers that are allowed to override each other. I'm doing another playthrough of AVP2 (always been my face) as the Alien - I'll comment after I finish on the AI but even this early in the game I'm impressed by the guards.
BROOD-SkorpioN Mar 22, 2014 @ 3:05pm 
I found the AI in this game dumber than the AI in the original AvP, which is funny because they were made by the same developer with 11 years of difference.

In both games they tend to glitch out often, but the behavior and capabilities of the AI in the original game seem to have a lot more depth.
Nathan Mar 22, 2014 @ 4:00pm 
You're kidding, right? The aliens in AVP 1 & 2 run in straight lines at you, they are like zombies in video games, only faster, and once they reach you, they merely stop to claw you until you drop. Try putting godmode on and see how monotonous the AI is in the earlier AVP games versus AVP3. The Praetorian in AVP 2? If you jumped somewhere where it couldn't get to you, it would just keep running into the wall/cliff/box below you constantly, trying to get to you but failing, like a silly robot. If the stuff they put in AVP3 was so simple, boring and monotonous that they could do it back with Super Nintendos, then why on earth did it escape the notice of both previous successors of the AVP genre?
And to anyone saying that I'm being unfair to compare the previous games AI with AVP3, then notice that I am responding to the silly claim made above.
People need to take off their nostalgia-tinted glasses and actually play the ♥♥♥♥ing games.
What's with the hate?
If the story, levels, length of the campaign were better made, then probably everyone would be singing a different tune, but because it is not, then people start seeing everything about the game as bad.

EDIT: I just remembered the marine AI in AVP1, and there I'll grant that I found how they could freak out and run around shooting everywhere to be a cool behavioural feature. But the aliens? They never did anything clever, but they didn't need to, for that old game, with their deadliness and speed, being a brain-dead zombie on steroids was enough to induce a scare factor.
Last edited by Nathan; Mar 22, 2014 @ 4:17pm
Inferno Mar 22, 2014 @ 5:39pm 
Calm down. When I mentioned the SNES, I was demonstrating that changing attack patterns based on player position is nothing new or ground-breaking. This game's AI isn't terrible, but it's extremely basic and glitches out constantly.

That's not hate, merely fact.
Last edited by Inferno; Mar 22, 2014 @ 5:42pm
Nathan Mar 22, 2014 @ 5:43pm 
Apologies for my behaviour. Personally I haven't noticed much glitching with the AI, but if others have then I have to take that into account. I however feel that claims like the one made by brood-scorpion above were hyperbolic at best and expressed by a person with more than just a disdain for this game.
BROOD-SkorpioN Mar 24, 2014 @ 12:11pm 
Originally posted by Nathan:
The aliens in AVP 1 & 2 run in straight lines at you, they are like zombies in video games, only faster, and once they reach you, they merely stop to claw you until you drop.

This is false. The aliens in the first AvP clawed, tailed and bit you once they got near you. If you use the "impossible mission" cheat mode in single player, this becomes most apparent as bites and tail attacks would kill you in 1 hit, while claw attacks would kill you in 4.The aliens in AvP3 have only 2 attacks: light attack and grab. Pretty sure 3 attacks are more than 2 attacks.

As for the aliens running in straight lines, here's a random skirmish video I found on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_4CuNIo4pI
You can clearly see the aliens attempt flanking, make numerous jumps and use the walls around them to get to you. If you check other playthroughs of the single player, you'll even see aliens attack players from the ceiling - something the AvP3 aliens are incapable of doing due to having only claw attack and grab attack at their disposal.

Originally posted by Nathan:
The Praetorian in AVP 2? If you jumped somewhere where it couldn't get to you, it would just keep running into the wall/cliff/box below you constantly, trying to get to you but failing, like a silly robot.

When did I mention AvP2?

Originally posted by Nathan:
If the stuff they put in AVP3 was so simple, boring and monotonous that they could do it back with Super Nintendos, then why on earth did it escape the notice of both previous successors of the AVP genre?

Inferno made the SNES comparison to point out that the Praetorian has a scripted behavioral pattern, similar to your average boss fight. His point was that there's nothing special about scripted behavior, and I completely agree with him on it.

Originally posted by Nathan:
People need to take off their nostalgia-tinted glasses and actually play the ♥♥♥♥ing games.
Nice attempt at making this about me instead of the claims. It just so happens that I have played both games, so your personal attack has no grounds to support it. A few words of wisdom for your next debate: "Once a debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser".
Originally posted by Nathan:
What's with the hate?
Good question. There was no hate on my part. Only yours. I don't hate you, and certainly not the AI. I just find it dumber than the first AvP game. Simple as that.
Originally posted by Nathan:
If the story, levels, length of the campaign were better made, then probably everyone would be singing a different tune, but because it is not, then people start seeing everything about the game as bad.
Again with your false assumptions. It just so happens that I liked the AvP3 campaign the most out of all 3 AvP games. It was short as hell, but it was fun.

Originally posted by Nathan:
EDIT: I just remembered the marine AI in AVP1, and there I'll grant that I found how they could freak out and run around shooting everywhere to be a cool behavioural feature.
That it precisely the point. The AI in the first AvP reacted to you and behaved according to what you did. There was nothing scripted about them. If you were stealthy enough, they would just stand guard. If they detected your presence, they would actively go looking for you. They "saw" your targeting laser if you aimed it at them. They would panic and run in fear if you started killing their team mates or jumped on them out of nowhere. If they used an explosive weapon and you got close to them, they would throw the weapon away and pull out their sidearm.

The AI in AvP3 is mostly scripted. They would appear once you entered the room and do what is expected of them according to the game's plotline; If a friendly marine was supposed to die according to the plotline - he would die. They would also remain completely indifferent if you kill their team mates.

As for the AI aliens in the first AvP - they too would react to your actions. If you were stealthy enough, they would stay asleep and not attack you at all. If you used a flamethrower against them, they would stand back to avoid getting lit up.

Long story short: The AI in AvP3 is not horrible, and the game itself is not horrible. That said, The AI is an obvious step backwards from a reactionary AI to a scripted one.
Last edited by BROOD-SkorpioN; Mar 24, 2014 @ 12:14pm
Nathan Mar 24, 2014 @ 3:04pm 
Let's try not turning this into a pissing contest.
I'll answer briefly.
Yes, aliens use claws, tail and jaws in AVP1, aliens use claws, heavy (the slow, hands raised, mouth open, as it closes in and then the tail strikes, usually then they immediately grab you), grab, and leap/focus attack (especially noticable in survivor mode when they fly by you with one arm extended and hurting you at the same time, a fast attack) in AVP3.
You can clearly see in the first 30s a leap/focus attack in this video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zJQsKEqxik
The aliens in AVP3 usually try to drop from high behind you.
You didn't mention AVP2, I mentioned it as a question regarding something Inferno said, I can't remember how the Praetorians reacted in AVP1 if the player was in a hard-to-get-to spot, so I didn't use it as an example of not using the same scripted approach of switching behaviour as the Praetorian in AVP3. My later comment to Inferno was not clear enough on there being this additional point directed to him in my comment that had the other main point directed at what you wrote.
Your words of wisdom are taken to heart. I merely found your claim baffling, seeing that I too play and enjoy both games in question (or all three, as it were), and didn't find it - your claim - relating to any of my experiences in playing them both.
I'll freely admit, the nostalgia-tinted glasses-reference was a poor excuse at trying to explain psychologically what I was witnessing about comments (in general) made regarding the games in question. You are absolutely right, that does not invalidate the claims made themselves. I urge you to look at the video for example that I linked above, for a more measured and empirical examination of these claims.
It was an assumption made at my behalf that you'd fit the majority who have complained about the campaign in AVP3, so I apologise for lumping you in with the rest of the usual complaints made.
I'll completely agree that I find the human AI in AVP3 to be less fun and reactionary than the human AI in AVP1, mainly because they don't run around scared shooting, but I do find the alien AI in AVP3 to be at least on par with what you showed in that clip of a skirmish game.
Hope that clears things up.

BROOD-SkorpioN Mar 24, 2014 @ 3:46pm 
Originally posted by Nathan:
Let's try not turning this into a pissing contest.
I'll answer briefly.
Yes, aliens use claws, tail and jaws in AVP1, aliens use claws, heavy (the slow, hands raised, mouth open, as it closes in and then the tail strikes, usually then they immediately grab you), grab, and leap/focus attack (especially noticable in survivor mode when they fly by you with one arm extended and hurting you at the same time, a fast attack) in AVP3.
Yeah, I suppose the focus attack can be seen as a separate attack, but then again, the original AvP aliens did it as well. The AvP3 aliens don't have a heavy attack. Their heavy is a grab.

Originally posted by Nathan:
I'll completely agree that I find the human AI in AVP3 to be less fun and reactionary than the human AI in AVP1, mainly because they don't run around scared shooting, but I do find the alien AI in AVP3 to be at least on par with what you showed in that clip of a skirmish game.
Hope that clears things up.
The alien AI is indeed debatable (and as already mentioned, tends to glitch out often - in both games), but I think it is clear that the marine AI in the first AvP is superior. Which is really my original point of the first AvP's AI being overall better than the current one. Like I said, it's kinda sad considering how old the first AvP is (again, not saying the AI is horrible - I have definitely seen worse AI in modern games and the AI in the original AvP was pretty advanced for its time - just disappointed that 11 years of difference between the games couldn't produce a superior AI).
Nathan Mar 25, 2014 @ 6:58pm 
I made a short video only to show the different attacks of the Alien AI in AVP3, it includes claws, jaws (the AI heavy attack), grab, leap and on occasion acid spit.
http://youtu.be/OICOe9ZofiE
Proof. The Aliens in AVP3 do use their jaws and grabbing is a different attack than their heavy, claws and leap.
Inferno Mar 27, 2014 @ 12:35pm 
When BROOD-SkorpioN said the AVP2010 Alien's heavy attack is a grab, I believe he meant that they always initiate a grab via "heavy-biting" the player (which is always consecutive).

I don't believe it's possible to be killed by a raw heavy-attack in single player.
Nathan Mar 27, 2014 @ 1:02pm 
Watch the video, you'll see biting isn't always followed by grabbing, sometimes the AI grabs without even biting (like if they've knocked you down by countering a heavy attack or something - But that I didn't record above).
Ad hoc to start now explaining away what was previously said. I was man enough to apologise and take note of my mistakes, I'm sure Brood-SkorpioN is more of a man, seeing he has already admitted to the leaping attacks being present.
Inferno Mar 27, 2014 @ 1:44pm 
Well he can tell you what he meant, but that's how I interpreted it.
BROOD-SkorpioN Mar 27, 2014 @ 3:29pm 
Originally posted by Inferno:
When BROOD-SkorpioN said the AVP2010 Alien's heavy attack is a grab, I believe he meant that they always initiate a grab via "heavy-biting" the player (which is always consecutive).
This is what I meant, yes.

Originally posted by Nathan:
Watch the video, you'll see biting isn't always followed by grabbing, sometimes the AI grabs without even biting (like if they've knocked you down by countering a heavy attack or something - But that I didn't record above).
The biting was indeed interesting, but I suspect it was more of a result of you using godmode in single player rather than something the AI does. I could be wrong, but since I've never seen them use it on me in single player, I would like to hear if anyone else has ever seen the AI aliens do a bite without the heavy grab in vanilla conditions.

Originally posted by Nathan:
Ad hoc to start now explaining away what was previously said. I was man enough to apologise and take note of my mistakes, I'm sure Brood-SkorpioN is more of a man, seeing he has already admitted to the leaping attacks being present.
I never said the focus attack was not present.

I don't know why we're still taking about the number of attacks the aliens have. I was under the impression that we've moved on to talk about the actual AI, which led me to say: "The alien AI is indeed debatable (and as already mentioned, tends to glitch out often - in both games), but I think it is clear that the marine AI in the first AvP is superior. Which is really my original point of the first AvP's AI being overall better than the current one. Like I said, it's kinda sad considering how old the first AvP is (again, not saying the AI is horrible - I have definitely seen worse AI in modern games and the AI in the original AvP was pretty advanced for its time - just disappointed that 11 years of difference between the games couldn't produce a superior AI)."
Nathan Mar 27, 2014 @ 3:59pm 
This is what I meant, yes.
Doesn't show in what you wrote:
The aliens in AvP3 have only 2 attacks: light attack and grab.
---
[...][T]he AvP3 aliens are incapable of doing due to having only claw attack and grab attack at their disposal.
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The AvP3 aliens don't have a heavy attack. Their heavy is a grab.

This:
I never said the focus attack was not present.
Versus this:
The aliens in AvP3 have only 2 attacks: light attack and grab. Pretty sure 3 attacks are more than 2 attacks.
Combined with this:
Yeah, I suppose the focus attack can be seen as a separate attack, but then again, the original AvP aliens did it as well.
Certainly gives the impression that you did say no other attacks being present other than claw and grab, but I'm willing to concede that you just didn't think of focus when you earlier wrote about the 3 more than 2 attacks quip.

I was under the impression that we've moved on to talk about the actual AI--
I would debate about the AI, but I sadly predict it will devolve into a semantic dispute and hair splitting, and I'd rather just play.
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Date Posted: Mar 21, 2014 @ 3:29pm
Posts: 17