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Smartest Thing You Have Seen Aliens Ever Do.


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#1 Cpt. JAG

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Posted 29 January 2009 - 04:38 PM

Basically, Im asking what is the seemingly more clever thing you have seen the aliens do to kill your troops. As you know normally the AIs are all individual and dont work together very much, but on occasion it almost seems like they actually execute a well times plan. Obviously this is a fluke......but sometimes.....

My best example would be:

I was attacking a very large ufo with one HWP of some sort (Was awhile ago) and 2 squads, one with 6 flying suits, and one with 6 power suits. The mission started off well, I had my units circle the UFO killing aliens as they went in an attempt to sweep the outside before going inside. At one point I had cleared most of the map except one small section, so I figured Id use a BB launcher to blow a hole in the side of the upper level of the ufo so and have my flying suits infiltrate while my power suits cleared that last patch of map terrain. To prep for this I had all my flying suits group up outside the UFO at the second altitude level. Due to the fact the explosions in X-com are not vertical I was planning on blowing a whole on the side of the third story. to top off everyones TUs I give the aliens a turn. So far so good.

Then all heck breaks loose. An alien from the last undiscovered part of the map comes into view just long enough to see all of my flying suits, he doesnt fire he just turns around and runs back into the black. Then a BB launcher is fired inside the UFO on the second story. It travels down one of the long hallways towards my flying suits.......who are currently outside the ufo, as expected the BB hits the inside of the UFO wall and blows open a hole without killing any of my troops. At this point I am rolling my eyes and thinking "Thanks for opening the door morons, saves me a blaster bomb". But their turn wasnt over yet. A second BB is launched from inside the ufo and travels exactly the same path of the first except........this one goes through the open hole the first one made and promptly atomizes all 6 of my flying suits.

Causing me to OMFG .

#2 stewart

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Posted 30 January 2009 - 09:16 AM

"With a Blaster Launcher even Chamberlain, could look like Einstein." (Churchill, 1940)

Wait many turns for aliens to exit UFO (proxi's and everything). Nada. Throw grenade to clear proxi. Pile a few guys at the door to burst them in next turn. Of course now one alien opens the door shoots everyone.
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#3 NKF

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 01:35 PM

The aliens are at their best when I'm not paying a lot of attention and they somehow end up surrounding my troops or one of them somehow circles around and start shooting at my team from behind. Apocalypse is pretty good at this with its poppers. Argh.

Flukes when the alien just moves enough that it gets out of sight when you peek around a corner, think its safe, move in, then its suddenly there and you can't get away. In UFO/TFTD, this means you are often left in a helpless situation that you just cannot get out of.

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#4 Zombie

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 02:09 PM

Flukes when the alien just moves enough that it gets out of sight when you peek around a corner, think its safe, move in, then its suddenly there and you can't get away. In UFO/TFTD, this means you are often left in a helpless situation that you just cannot get out of.

Nothing is helpless if you save the game and reload if things go South. I used to do that plenty on the Playstation to understand how the AI works. If there is one thing I came away with from those trials is that there is a great deal of randomness involved in the game. If an alien fires off a Blaster Bomb and kills all of your men, reload the game a few times and it might not. But the best way to prevent dead-ends is to save at the start of a turn and try something different each time. Eventually you'll come up with a solution that works. Even though that particular strategy may not always work due to randomness, in the long run it's still the best choice. And once you come up with a sound plan for a situation, you can employ that on later missions (with no reloads) and be confident that the choice you made was correct. =b

My roomate has a piece of paper on our corkboard which has these five words written on it: "All is not yet lost". Applies perfectly to X-COM missions. :P

- Zombie
The Mr. Grognard of X-COM

Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#5 NKF

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 02:19 PM

I was thinking of situations where you haven't got any TUs left to back out of a sudden face-to-face encounter. Used to happen to me a lot when I ran my troops into a UFO. Can't remember how many times in the good old days where I've plugged a large scout entrance (with an alien on either side immediately next to the entrance) and couldn't get out of it. A case of bad time unit management.

But definitely the randomness lets the otherwise simple AI do some pretty remarkable things. However I dread to think how UFO/TFTDs AI would fare in a real-time button masher though!

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Edited by NKF, 31 January 2009 - 07:47 PM.

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#6 Zombie

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Posted 31 January 2009 - 07:00 PM

Mistake #1: Leaving soldiers in front of an exterior UFO door between turns.
Mistake #2: Not using the Motion Scanner to check whether there are aliens behind said door.
Mistake #3: Burning through all of your soldiers TU.

Hope you learned from these. LOL

Real time for EU or TFTD? C'mon, I don't think the AI is good enough for that. TFTD is better than EU, but still. :D

- Zombie
The Mr. Grognard of X-COM

Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#7 elizibar

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Posted 01 February 2009 - 07:24 AM

I once had a sectoid keep staying at the edge of my visual range. Every time I moved forward, he'd fire his plasma weapon and fall back to just outside of my site range.

Turns out he lured me into an ambush with three cyberdiscs D:

#8 Growl

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 02:46 PM

I had just spent about 40 minutes on an alien artefect level on TFTD, you know the ones that just sort of turn up in the sea, and I had 3 guys left. I started seaerching the level from top to bottom, not being able to find this last alien scumbag who was obviously hiding somewhere. It took me literally 99-100 turns to find the fecker, but what I think had happened is the Tentacaulat had just been sort of stalking me just a few steps behind, and when I thought to finally look round he ate me.
There's careful decided planning, meticulously detailed with every eventuality considered,
Then there's Growling.

#9 steve_b

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Posted 28 April 2009 - 03:45 PM

I'm mighty scared of the sectoids and almost didn't go to the terror ship crash sight. But I figured I would risk a bunch of rookies. I did decide to send in one good guy with the rookies (a captain with a Power Suit), just to have a guy who could actually shoot straight.

I move my captain up inside the UFO, see a cyberdisk and start shooting. I use up all my TUs and the thing still isn't dead. Not looking too good for Mr. Captain's next turn. But I play it smart, and send 4 rookie meat shields between Captain and the Cyberdisk, thinking the Cyberdisk would have to shoot one of the 4 rookies.

Next turn a sectoid comes downstairs and shoots a stun bomb, knocking out all 4 rookies and leaving Mr. Captain standing there with no meat shields. 3 seconds later, Mr. Cyberdisk shoots the captain blowing through his Power Suit.

Result: One dead captain and 4 unconcious rookies.

It's like they knew exactly what to do to get my best guy. If the cyberdisk had shot first and THEN the sectoid shot the stun bomb I would have been fine. Would have been one dead rookie, 3 unconcious rookies, and one very much alive Captain!

Damn Sectoids! :)

#10 Zombie

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Posted 28 April 2009 - 07:29 PM

I'm not 100% positive on this but I think this is what happens:

My belief is that the game chooses which aliens to move by their position in unitref.dat. Aliens higher on the list go first while those at the bottom go last. Unitref is populated by the executable and the executable in turn has a set order for aliens on a mission. For the most part, Soldiers come first, followed by Navigators, Medics, Engineers, Leaders, Commanders and finally, terror units. So it comes as no surprise that terror units appear to move last, since they are at the bottom of the list. This is all a theory though. :blush1:

- Zombie

Edited by Zombie, 28 April 2009 - 07:30 PM.

The Mr. Grognard of X-COM

Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#11 Draxo

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 10:38 AM

Heh, while playing TFTD I had sent a team of Able Seamen + one Sergeant to get me the Zrbite from a landed sub. It was 'only Aquatoids' (the last words of many Aquanauts i'm sure) and we were doing pretty well. Two teams of three plus one of four. We were sweeping the map, and I was down to the last Squatoid.

We split into teams of two sweeping, and I imagine my men were getting as frustrated as I was. We noticed some fire from one corner, and I sent a couple of my guys to 'take out the last one'. Easy enough, I thought. We went in to the corner.. nothing. My men spent a couple turns there before moving on, thinking it had gone elsewhere.

Then they began to leave.

Area's secure, moving on. Over.

And began trotting off to the next area. Then, from between two little rocks my men had been stood beside for two turns[/i] Comes a sonic blast, taking poor Sarah's head off, followed by a Sonic Pulser Toshiro's way. Boom.

That little runt had waited quietly behind a tiny set of rocks for two turns and waited for us to leave before attacking our backs.

Edited by Draxo, 04 May 2009 - 10:38 AM.