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Age of Empires III Heaven » Forums » General Discussions » ActionTrip review - technical issues and major pathfinding problems?
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Topic Subject:ActionTrip review - technical issues and major pathfinding problems?
Feudal1
Skirmisher
posted 10-18-05 10:41 AM EDT (US)         
I have a question for the developers, or for the folks that already have the game. From the ActionTrip review:

Quote:

I may be too harsh, but I don't think I am when I say that without installing the 1.01 pre-release patch, I wouldn't even advise you to play this game, as you'll get so frustrated you'll likely quit. The path finding isn't good - units have collision detection and this will create complete confusion when they're supposed to navigate the many objects in the environment *and* their comrades. Some of the units will rush blindly into the fray and often, enemy stray units won't even react to the fact that you are killing them. Shoddy AI - the enemy will simply continue merrily on their way. Furthermore, the units are very unresponsive; they often won't attack the targets you've ordered them to attack. Consequently, they will create a tactical nightmare for any serious RTS player as they'll focus on the rather insignificant Native American dart shooters while letting the enemy artillery (which can be quite deadly) pound on them from its position. This would happen even though I have frantically ordered them a dozen times to attack the freaking enemy cannon.

And:

Quote:

The list of technical and design blunders goes on and on. When near caves or similar such environments, the units will switch to what can only be described as "bullet time" mode. The unit lag becomes horrific and it's almost impossible to move them across the map. Villagers can't repair buildings?!
The 1.01 patch fixes some of these issues, but certainly not all of them. It seems to me like this was simply an emergency patch to take care of some of the most glaring issues. I have installed it and played the patched version and *still* the path finding is bad. What's more, when you turn on anti-aliasing in any form (low or high), even in the patched game, the frame rate drops incredibly low and the unit lag gets far worse (I couldn't even run the game with high anti-aliasing on).

Of course, anyone who has played even a little of the demo knows you click the "hammer" button on a building to repair it, so this "reviewer" was obviously not thorough with his review of the game play mechanics. The part I am concerned (and disappointed) with is the PATHFINDING and unit AI. Have folks with the full retail game seen these issues? Is this reviewer exagerating? And if this is a big issue, are the developers planning to fix the pathing in a patch?

FYI, I'm still buying the game the day it comes out (I have it preordered), and I loved the demo. Still, I'm disappointed if the pathfinding and AI do have the problems described in the review.

BTW, the review link:

http://www.actiontrip.com/reviews/ageofempires3.phtml

Thanks.

-Feudal1


Currently Playing: Rise of Legends, Age of Empires III, Battle for Middle Earth II, Battlefield 2, Rise of Nations, Rollercoaster Tycoon 3, Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War
AuthorReplies:
AoMPlayer000
Banned
posted 10-18-05 11:03 AM EDT (US)     1 / 14       
Although I'm not sure about all the other negative reviews (which I haven't read yet), I'm sure this one is plainly bad. The reviewer apparently has never played an Age game before... He expects units to automatically fight the strongest units on the battlefield and wonders why they won't move when tasked on that object. This probably was just caused because they were engaged in a battle and couldn't go through their current opponent(s), like in any Age game...
About the enemy attack troops not responding to an attack: I know this existed in earlier Age games, too, but is it really that disturbing that you can call the AI or even the pathfinding bad?? It could be strategy that the attack groups move on (or withdraw), and BTW in the demo I did notice that the groups sometimes fight back.
And yes, units automatically attack anything in their range... Wow. He obviously expected them to intelligently decide whether they'd prefer staying were they are, run away or attacking... Maybe choosing the right weapon also?

And who'd have known that framerates drop with AA? What a surprise.

I don't see any reason to be disturbed .

fluffy_ferret_
Skirmisher
posted 10-18-05 11:03 AM EDT (US)     2 / 14       
His words are very true.
AoMPlayer000
Banned
posted 10-18-05 11:04 AM EDT (US)     3 / 14       
Whose? I hope you don't mean the reviewer's?
fluffy_ferret_
Skirmisher
posted 10-18-05 11:19 AM EDT (US)     4 / 14       
The reviewer's.
Naked_Infidel
Skirmisher
posted 10-18-05 11:23 AM EDT (US)     5 / 14       
Say it with me...

the game is good... the game is good... the game is good

superknijn
Skirmisher
posted 10-18-05 11:48 AM EDT (US)     6 / 14       
I have a Pentium 4 2.8 Ghz and a Radeon 9600 (not too brand-new things, the pc itself dates from 2001, the only upgraded thing is the radeon), and the demo runs absolutely smooth, with everything '2 da max' , wich I can't (and shan't) say of C&C Generals ZH, wich sometimes lacks horribly.
They should have let someone with a decent pc (and decent brains) test this game.

(\__/)
(O.o )
(> < ) Corn for the Corn God!

[This message has been edited by superknijn (edited 10-18-2005 @ 11:49 AM).]

ZhaZ
Skirmisher
posted 10-18-05 12:21 PM EDT (US)     7 / 14       
Anyone rememember actiontrips review of AoM? I was one of the alpha testers of the game. At that point myth units had been considered too weak and useless (with the exception of the anubite and some others). Ok thats what the playtesters think. Lots of people with great rts experience. Then comes Actiontrips superb reviewer, clearly stating that mythology units are overpowered.

Actiontrip is not a serious site from my pov. They assume they know more than they do. Also I'm quite surprised people here who will play mp actually listen to reviewers that focuse on sp?

Having said that, yes, pathfinding isn't perfect. But compared to aom its 10 times better. I don't remember having the actiontrip reviewer complaining back then? That units target enemies with high hp and low attack is not really a mp problem.


[img]http://www.mastersgames.de/esostats/NoX,qaghan,0,5.png[/img]
fluffy_ferret_
Skirmisher
posted 10-18-05 12:41 PM EDT (US)     8 / 14       
Pathfinding is ok, really. What's worse is unit behavior (AI) and some bugs. Too often, units don't do what you want, and act on their own. Or they act stupid because of some bug (like attack move). Moving with a combined force doesn't work too well either since some unit will want to walk through the trees while your cavalry/siege can't.

Sometimes units simply refuse to obey your orders. Units aggression area is too big so you have to babysit your units. There is no such thing as stand ground either. Defend doesn't work like i want it to. Units are too often stupid. Like when you're fighting en enemy and there are buildings around, half of your army might start to burn down buildings while the other half gets slaughtered.

Retreating/raiding isn't too fun either since the smallest bit of damage to one unit in a group will slow the entire group down. Too often this means an attitude of 'attack and forget' which isn't fun.

Mokon
Skirmisher
posted 10-18-05 01:36 PM EDT (US)     9 / 14       

Quote:

Pathfinding is ok, really. What's worse is unit behavior (AI) and some bugs. Too often, units don't do what you want, and act on their own. Or they act stupid because of some bug (like attack move). Moving with a combined force doesn't work too well either since some unit will want to walk through the trees while your cavalry/siege can't.

Um.... its called micro.... units should do very little on their own... its part of the Age Series...

Mokon | | | AoE3 Rate 2200~ | | |
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  • Tarkhan15
    Skirmisher
    posted 10-18-05 01:39 PM EDT (US)     10 / 14       
    I give this reviewer two thumbs down, as I watch my computer ask me for Disc 2.
    fluffy_ferret_
    Skirmisher
    posted 10-18-05 02:43 PM EDT (US)     11 / 14       
    Mokon, dude, don't tell me what's part o the Age series and what's not part of the Age series.
    Episthene
    Skirmisher
    posted 10-18-05 09:45 PM EDT (US)     12 / 14       
    Mmm, that is quite disappointing.

    Pathfinding OK? AOE2 had one of the best pathfinding in any game I saw since then. This is why I still play it.

    The AI was also excellent. Units behaved properly, always, with no exception.

    No stand ground? Well, that is not possible for me. I don't know why game companies are starting to take out this option. It is the second sequel that I know to take out the stand ground option. Why?

    I guess I will need to try the demo, before buying this game, after all. I thought they would improve on AOE2, not regress.

    Mokon
    Skirmisher
    posted 10-18-05 09:55 PM EDT (US)     13 / 14       
    Episthene, defintly an improvement, try the demo u will love it

    Mokon | | | AoE3 Rate 2200~ | | |
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  • Insane Sheep
    Skirmisher
    posted 10-18-05 10:10 PM EDT (US)     14 / 14       
    I do find the pathfinding hindering because they avoid things too well, instead of small corrections, it takes a significantly larger detour, and remakes the formation; it really annoys me becasue it slows them down, when you're charging their cannons and your units are literally running around in circles, it really isn't very effective.

    The cannon AI also really ticks me off, because they feel so inclined to act as normal units and chase after enemies. I've lost a good number of cannons because they wondered into the fray to catch that villager they missed. I don't mind if there's no standground for my other units, it's just cannons; especially deployed cannons.

    Oh yah, and no lockable gates.

    Those are my only complaints, and they may even be addressed in the full version.


    "I found no one ripe for many of my thoughts; the case of 'Zarathustra' proves that one can speak with the
    utmost clearness, and yet not be heard by any one." - Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche
    "The fearless are merely fearless. People who act in spite of their fear are truly brave."
    Oprichniks are the best units in AoE3. Why? It's elementary, they're Horse-riding Russian Pirates, nothing beats Horse-riding Russian Pirates.
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