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AI 5 - The Helot

Author File Description
File Details
Game Version: TAD
This AI is dedicated to people who wish for fair play.

Thus, play against the AI with a handicap on for yourself & teamates, I suggest 50%, 75%, 85% or 100%.

Hard: Has 1.50x bonus

Expert: Has 2.00x bonus

This AI is a little 'work-in-prgress', but I am increasing it's naval capacity, and it's ability to manufacture Cannon in Imperial Age, etc.

I've also changed some work from the Coward, and I am experimenting with interesting values.

This AI can now train more mercenaries, and more Falconets.

Can build a fishboom up to 15-18 fishing boats, and two starting warships for defense.

Also should scout with two fishing boats to help it defend it's interests on the water.

Builds towers earlier, but focuses a little more on obtaining food, gold, and fish rather than wood income.

I am also interchanging this AI's normal unit preference, by changing up the unit order (Musketeers or Cuirassiers, for instance, having more importance).

This all said, I know that this brave approach will face trials, and that it will cause the questions to come from the community for such a drastic change.

This AI is standalone, and does feature food/wood income with Industrial Age from Factories.

I am also making this one so that people realize that slight variation is possible.

Works well on team chat command; whether to attack or defend

Builds 25, 45, 75, 95, 95 villager count

French and Dutch aimed with a new aim count at 85, 65 villager count

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AuthorComments & Reviews   ( All | Comments Only | Reviews Only )
Panmaster2014 Does this have any interesting improvements?

It garrisons all the settlers into the towncenter when I attack it in age I. Destroy the auto base 0 to fix this ancient bug.

Draugr has some bugs in it's code. There's one involving a bad condition relating to water maps preventing mill rules activating.
File Author
You know, I have the authority to answer you however I please.
Panmaster2014 That post has an unwarranted hostile tone. Do you not wish to exchange knowledge?
Scott E Dawg Murdilator, hope you still check these forums. You're the last and only person still submitting good AI mods, and I'd hate to lose you.

SUGGESTION: You're not including a single word in your mod files instructing people how to install and use your AI mods. This isn't good. AOE 3 is still sold in the Steam store, and people are still buying it today. They try the single player mode and often think it sucks--think the AI is so bad and stupid it must have been stolen from an old Firaxis Civilization game.

I've been using only your AI mods for 3 years or more now. Mostly the N30 "fanpatch" one, though I switched to the "Coward" when it came out and now have been playing the "Helot."

Take a few moments to explain to folks how to install each new AI mod you do. I know it isn't hard, it's mostly just swapping out the same three file types each time: the Header, the Main, and the AI loader standard. But new players don't know this. Your "Helot" AI, for instance, is showing only a few hundred downloads so far. Should be several thousand AT LEAST, given how much better it is than the standard default AI included with the Steam game.

Now, a couple questions from me. I'm a master at changing the game using just the three main text files: protoy, techtreey, and stringtabley. I'm playing a version of AOE3 totally unique to me--no one else in the entire world gets to play AOE3 the way I do (and perhaps they wouldn't want to). But I've never learned how to change the AI files. Don't think I even have the right App to open them with (unless what I see using Notepad is correct).

Even with Helot, I'm still seeing a couple things that bug me. Like enemy Explorers; they die, they stay dead. The enemy never Ransoms them. I know they did before, in N30 I think. But in Helot, they're just leaving them dead.

Also, what makes enemy Gatherers go Idle so much? They do it a lot, at various times. They're always gathering wood, gold, and food on SOME gatherers... but not all. A lot of gatherers in later ages tend to just stand around with their hands on their hips and do nothing. Isn't there a way to keep them busy? Or do they just think they have enough stuff already, no need to use every gatherer possible?

Also, can you do an AI version someday designed to make all AI opponents as aggressive as possible? All rush/boom, while still smart enough to not leave their towns totally undefended (sending an Explorer Dog in solo to wipe out enemy Gatherers who have strayed too far away from their Towns is good for giggles now and then, but gets old fast). I'd love to go up against a whole team of enemies that just rush-boom-bang nonstop. I HATE WHEN THEY TURTLE! Boooring.

I disabled Wall building for all AIs, simply by removing Walls from being enabled in Techtreey. Enemy AIs just can't build good walls, they don't have the brains for it no matter how hard you guys try. What they ARE good at is getting too many of their units "Stuck" due to poorly placed walls. Yep, they have proved very good at doing that! ;)

Thanks Murd, for doing your part to keep AOE3 alive. It's by far my favorite AOE game. Most fanboys like AOE2, but I can't stand the primitive graphics and general feel of the game. AOE 3 is the best. And Steam still sells tens of thousands of new copies each year, the game is still going strong even though it seems like no one is modding oit much any more... (or at least not offering their mods to the public via gamesites).

[Edited on 03/07/17 @ 11:01 PM]

Scott E Dawg
Rating: 4.5

Solid, more aggressive Drauger variant that tries pretty darn hard to always keep you on your toes. Sometimes falls prey to the usual annoying "Turtling" tactic lategame, especially on the part of your Allies. At least one or more Enemies will always keep sending armies your way, but your Allies have a bad post-Imperial habit of saying "Looks like you got it under control, there, buddy. We're just gonna binge-watch every episode of The Walking Dead and let you keep on fighting the good fight! Laters!" /permanent Turtle mode

Additional Comments: Usually works well on Water maps. Some custom maps don't seem to trigger anything but fishing boats... if even that much. Ceylon is hopeless. The oceans are yours. The Ai doesn't seem to have a clue where to go or what to do in Ceylon, though in Amazonia it does very well. Seems to transport enemy armies over to your side quite often, in fact.

[Edited on 03/31/17 @ 10:54 AM]

BloodStainedRose Hello, Scott.

I saw your comment on murdilator's AI4 page, and I would love to post my own AI, but I haven't really made that many changes. Starting with the N30 AI for TAD by murdilator, all I have done thus far is bump up the settler counts, change the behavior to better match the "traditional" personalities set by the game (so less turtling), and I also made it so every Civilization would build walls (excluding Sioux, but you can make them build walls by enabling them in the techtree, but honestly I think it's more proper for them not to have walls). Some people, like Frederick, who usually had a rush and offense rating of 1.0, would not build walls because of some fancy-dancy calculations. I fixed that to my liking. Also, you said you disabled AI wall-building. I only disabled the outer layer, because on most maps with more than 1 member of a team, they would get in the way. And on small maps, like Honshu, even the first wall is annoying. But, beggars cannot be choosers. I also bumped up the number of gates they build as well, because I feel 15 is too little. I understand far less than murdilator, and I would love to learn more. For instance, the AI is set to build its wall type as a "ring," which I assume is supposed to be somewhat circular, and since the "type" is defined as ring, I wonder if there are more options out there, like for instance square. However, in my encounters, the wall layout seems to be more ovular than circular. I find this frustrating, as it usually extends into other towns/colonies/what-have-you. As for the explorer issue, I myself haven't noticed it when using the N30 AI for TAD, but I haven't yet had the opportunity to try murdilator's AI4 and AI5, so the issue may be prevalent there. Thanks for your enthusiasm :).

Scott E Dawg Well James, you know more about the AI than me. i've mastered the big three text files--proto, techtree, stringtable--and have created an AOE using tons of unique cards and units. The Native American tribes have really benefitted under me, I've made all three of them so bad ass they can typically own any of the Europeans one on one (their War Chiefs are one man armies, and I gave each tribe Explorer Dogs as well--not to mention Artillery capabilities for the Sioux and Aztecs via the pair of Factories all three tribes receive in Age 4).

I wish I knew how to change the AI enough to make my AI opponents super aggressive. I think I can open the AImain.xms file with Notepad now, it LOOKS readable. It's just that the text is arranged very oddly, and I don't know what the heck its really saying anyway. I guess those are all the Trigger commands I've heard referenced?

Murdilator could make a hella good super-aggressive AI mod. All of his mods since the Fan Patch have been more aggressive than standard Drauger; he obviously knows how to tell each AI whether to turtle, rush, etc. He seems to be working on perfecting the AI naval combat more, though it seems pretty hopeless on the Ceylon map no matter who tries (original Drauger did the best I've seen in Ceylon, but was at the same time inferior on land maps compared to anything Murdilator has made).

Glad there's at least a few people still tinkering with AOE3. It's a better, funner game than anything I've seen made since, and I've bought a hell of a lot of RTS games...

[Edited on 03/08/17 @ 05:23 PM]

BloodStainedRose I have only learned a little in the past month or so -- murdilator certainly knows more than I do. However, I am sure you have read both of his guides, which are a good starting point. A lot of the coding is plain English. I am unsure of how the AI creates attack plans and the aggressiveness at which they do it, but I think a more aggressive AI would be interesting. There is a trait called "btRushBoom" (there are many other traits, but this one along with "btOffenseDefense" seem to determine economically, building-wise, and card-wise how the AI will be playing) that has values ranging from -1.0 to 1.0. Values greater than 0.0 favor the first word, so "Rush" (like our friend Frederick) while values less than 0.0 favor the second word, so "Boom." This rule applies to all traits. I have tinkered with the personalities a bit, which affects card choice for decks as well as settler count preferences. The main things at the moment I have read over that I don't understand are the way in which cards are chosen & added to the decks, how Vectors (or locations, if I am understanding correctly) are handled for main base construction, and forward base construction (a fort). From this I have analyzed the wall building plan for the main base, as it includes the main base vector in the plan, and I wonder if the same type of plan could be implemented for a forward base? I am unsure, and I hope murdilator can reply soon with what he knows. As a side note, notepad can work fine for a lot of things. Currently for the XS AI files, I have downloaded a text editor called SuperEdi, which seems to have its uses. murdilator, if you read this, I hope you know I am just as enthusiastic as you about the world of AI, I would absolutely love your input about anything-AI. I am fascinated by the AI in a range of games, such as the Civilization Series AI, as well as the AI of MOBAs such as League of Legends. I would also love to know what text editors you use, if any. And Scott, if I do make some changes to the murdilator's AI, and I feel it is significant enough to post (who knows :P), then I just very well may, but I will give much credit to murdilator and the base, the Draugur AI. The main thing I am interested in changing is card choice. Anyways, everyone, have a great day! Age of Empires 3 was my childhood and is now making a comeback in my world of games!! :)

Scott E Dawg Actually James, I haven't read Murd's AI guides yet. Since until recently--when I upgraded to windows 10--my Notepad didn't open all the AI files properly (they used to appear as scrambled gibberish).

In Murdilator's current "Helot" AI mod, the enemy AIs are very good at building forward bases--Forts located a ways away from their town centers, in between your town center and theirs, but nowhere near as far away from their town centers as was common in the original default and early Drauger builds.

Typically they also build Saloons and other military buildings alongside their Forts; it varies from game to game, they don't all act identical in each game.

In Helot, one of my favorite things is the stubborness of the enemy AI--their persistence. I've had times I destroyed all of an AI's town centers, and every unit of theirs I could find. And then they still somehow snuck off and built military buildings far, far away from the original location and wholly rebuilt themselves all over from scratch! Sometimes with a new Town Center, sometimes without one and just Stables, Barracks, Depots etc instead (I think it depended on whether I kept killing their Explorer or not; I think only enemy Explorers rebuilt Town Centers, though I may be wrong, could be Villagers also).

File Author
Here is the link to notepad ++ editor enhanced for all proto and techtree and string files:


And her download:


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