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blankseplocked [proposal] Improved Player Drone AI
 
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The Okamik
Gallente
Elitist Jerks
Posted - 2011.01.29 01:58:00 - [1]
 

As a Gallente player, drones are one of my primary forms of DPS. However, drone behavior can be very erratic. A few times drones have aggroed large groups of ships in PVE combat. I'm also not sure what there AI priorities are, but when left to there own devices they tend to spread themselves out among several targets rather than going in an order that seems more suitable, such as targeting heavy DPS or electronic warfare targets. By simple adding a few more options or an ability to 'tweak' the AI priorities to follow a specified order would allow drones to be better customized for the individual user tactics or roles. This extends to Logistics drones as well, such as having them set to repair/heal targets based on % of shields/armor remaining. I would also like to propose another option available to drones like the ability to target incoming missiles/bombs in a defensive capability.

Any constructive thoughts and opinions would be greatly appreciated on this :)

Fly Safe

Arx Eladios
THE PAROXYSM
Dark Solar Empire
Posted - 2011.01.29 03:27:00 - [2]
 

Under control in the escape menu there are two shortcuts you may want to look at.

One control of note is Drone Focus. It toggles whether all drones focus on one target or allowed to spread to several. I guess the spread has only been put in to help people get on more killmails easier: Five drones on five different targets = five free mails. Anyway, this solves the spread part of your post.


Second is the Passive/Active drone setting. Setting it to passive means that drone AI is effectively disabled. Drones will not do anything until you tell them to attack the specified locked target. Once it is dead they come back instead of engaging another. This is near essential for missions since it will ensure that drones will not aggro what they aren't supposed to.

Now you may say that turning off drone AI is not a good idea: You want your drones to act on their own according to your priorities/order/tactics. I will admit that it can get annoying to send them after every damn frigate in the mission as they pop (There is a shortcut for drone engage, which makes it bearable), but I will still not support having extensive drone options.

Reason is simple: Server-side lag.

Lag is not an issue during missions. Now imagine a fleet of 250 jumping into a system with 250 others waiting on the other side. Node is already choking while trying to load the gate grid and this is without having 250 * 5 drone objects sending it messages saying that they now decided to change their target due to some criteria. I want every tick of the server CPU to be dedicated to loading grid, updating the overview and processing guns/movement/warp commands instead of those damn drones. Believe me there are few things in EVE as frustrating as sitting for 40 minutes with a black screen and then loading back in station in a new pod.

Corian Teranos
Caldari
Joint Espionage and Defence Industries
Preatoriani
Posted - 2011.01.29 03:33:00 - [3]
 

Edited by: Corian Teranos on 29/01/2011 03:34:50
on drone settings there is a check box called focus fire when you click this the drones will not spread out as much and all move as a single swarm

but on a side note to fixing drone ai considering the fact that drones have their own targeting systems as well as being able to pick their own targets when left alone there is no reasion why you need to have a lock when you want to designate a target for the drones.

so it isn't just ai the entire drone controll and inteface needs to be redone

The Okamik
Gallente
Elitist Jerks
Posted - 2011.01.29 06:34:00 - [4]
 

Edited by: The Okamik on 29/01/2011 06:34:10
ah, thank you Arx and Corian, i was unaware of those options! :)

Aineko Macx
Posted - 2011.01.29 07:39:00 - [5]
 

I'd be happy already if drones did what I told them to do, i.e. if they didn't change their mind half way through.

Ogogov
Gallente
Test Alliance Please Ignore
Posted - 2011.01.30 04:53:00 - [6]
 

Originally by: Corian Teranos
Edited by: Corian Teranos on 29/01/2011 03:34:50
on drone settings there is a check box called focus fire when you click this the drones will not spread out as much and all move as a single swarm

but on a side note to fixing drone ai considering the fact that drones have their own targeting systems as well as being able to pick their own targets when left alone there is no reasion why you need to have a lock when you want to designate a target for the drones.

so it isn't just ai the entire drone controll and inteface needs to be redone


protip: this checkbox is infamously unreliable and particularly in the case of sentry drones will still result in them going off and deciding to engage whatever they like.

I suppose at least they don't attack friendlies. As detailed here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dnKk2ysyNrA

Goose99
Posted - 2011.01.30 05:29:00 - [7]
 

Give them incursion sansha AI.Laughing


 

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