I’m pretty sure you’re going to get the same system that they released on console. I just can’t see them going back to the drawing board on this when they’ve already released an AI customization interface on one of their platforms.
If you don’t know, you can customize your defence team AI using 7 sliders that increase or decrease the priority of each of the 7 gem types (6 colours plus skulls). Apparently, these sliders not only affect the priority for gem matching, but also influence spell selection in some unspecified way. I’ll see if I can find the dev post that described this and link it below if I do. It doesn’t do exactly what you’re describing, but it does have a noticeable impact on gameplay.
Here is the post I was thinking of. It is in response to a question of whether changing the gem priority sliders would also affect the choice of gem colour that the Guardians would choose as the 2nd colour when casting their spells. This was an effect that I don’t think any of us had ever thought about before.
@Rickygervais Yep they work, they work too well. If you move a slider all the way the AI will completely ignore that color/Skull, a month ago I tested them quite a bit. SMALL adjustments is all you need.
So i puted green blue flag and both color to the max and skull to the left cause i wanted skullbeard full first then use his magic to refill bone dragon
AI was going for brown or purple first and when skullbeard was full he wasn’t using his spell and was going for skull, for some reason gorghota and skullbeard doesn’t fit well together, so i tried to change gorghota for jonny bonze and the AI was acting totaly differently
So the plan is to increase the game’s difficulty but not the rewards?
I will never understand why people who play casual games want to make them harder and their time investment longer.
If the AI improves dramatically, I will quit. Not out of rage, just the simple fact of finding something better to do with my time than lose frustrating match after frustrating match when I could be playing one of 1,000 other Match-Three games.
Even if the defense rewards became amazing, I would quit. Defense isn’t fun: it’s a background process.
This game is 90% RNG.
The AI on defense is what makes it playable. (And palatable.)
I had assumed they understood that–thus, the game–but if they don’t, the AI will be the first nail in a rapidly closing coffin.
As a former game designer I always thought that a good game would have a win rate of 75%/25% at normal level for a normal person (3/4).
Playing at easy level would have a win rate of up to 90%/10% (9/10).
Playing at harder level would have a win rate of down to 50%/50% (1/2).
This means that the game is always interesting because you always have the chance to lose games and, if you’re skilled, you can can keep a positive percentage of victories even at the most difficult level.
But, of course, I can understand those who want to satisfy themselves with a 100% victory rate playing in “brainless mode” in front of television. Someone who’s playing to collect cards, not for the challenge imposed by the game, for example.
It’s just not me, I’m the competitive type of person who love and want and search the challenge.
So, I would like to be able to completely customize the defensive strategy that must be used by the AI. But, of course, the defense slider is better than nothing.
Although I consider completely abominable the fact that AI prefers skUlls (or gems matching) to skIlls.
Truthfully, GoW has a fairly low skill cap. Upping the AI to make better choices isn’t going to change that. There are a limited number of things you can do at any given point, and fairly easy to see what potential effect they will have to the current board. Making one wrong move can cost you a match, even with the current AI, as can using a gem spawner and lining up a bunch of match 4/5s for them to take, or getting a bad cascade. It is just fairly easy in general to not make such a move, and then you can also skull stall your way out of it occasionally.
There are thee situations where you need to use skulls to stall in general:
You are trying to dig your way out of a hole due to a bad cascade or just made a bad move in general, or they brought empowered board mod and you didn’t and usage of said board mod would give them the mana to run over your entire team
You have a terrible starting board and can’t get the mana to get started before something like Bone Dragon or Khorvash or Famine or Justice fires and puts you in a hole you have to dig out of. As everyone knows, the stronger teams in GoW are mostly predicated around where a single early cast can cost you the match.
You are purposely using a team that isn’t overpowered or needs longer to get going, because you like some variety occasionally
Better AI that makes it so you can’t stall would make comebacks even less likely due to a single early random cascades or bad move. Yes, this makes it “harder”, but only slightly, and occasionally just randomly. Secondly, it accentuates bad boards, making some of them “unsolvable” versus certain teams. Thirdly, it increases the necessity for your team to be “fast” to beat the others to the punch, reducing your viable options instead of increasing them.
This is simply the wrong way you want to increase difficulty. Meaningful difficulty would provoke more thought by giving you more moves or more varied moves where the outcome is predictable but more things need to be considered fully. Counters to consider before the match, different ways to mod the board inside the match. Increase the skill cap, not narrow the field of play.
The only way GoW will ever become more difficult in any meaningful way is introducing powerful board mod spells with difficult to use patterns and then having some kind of challenge where mastery of said board mod must be used to be victorious. The mechanics of the game would have to be completely and totally changed from the ground up, otherwise (no extra turns, instakills, devour, possibly even the way primary gem swaps occur).
I didn’t fully read your post @Mithran, but skull-baiting needs to be a less viable strategy. You are right in that it is a valid comeback strategy, but right now I often don’t even really register what’s on the opposing side. I just bait him with skulls while I fill my team, then start rolling.
That’s no fun.
Either the AI needs to recognize that certain frontline troops make skulls less viable (like a Gorgotha up front) and thus deprioritize skulls vs skills/mana, or something that makes skull-baiting less viable.
As a case in point, one of the most fun games I had last week was where the opponent had a Kerberos and I hadn’t registered it until I left a five match in purple for him and ofcourse he devoured. I managed to scrape a win, with the endgame board being my Dragonmoth (over from Dragonmoth/Krys/TDS/Sylv) vs a Warg (over from his Kerberos) which ofcourse summoned a Dire Wolf on death. He used a Dust Devil to put my Dragonmoth last as first move. Coincidentally it also was the game last week where I came closest to losing.
I must wholeheartedly disagree with this point. It’s mostly true for simple board-control mechanics (swapping gems) and even gem transformers - but even then there’s a chance for a board where you swap gems in one corner to make a long cascade ending with 4+match in another that’s very difficult (or rather tedious and time-consuming) to spot by a human, but fairly easy for an AI (a well-programmed one of course). When you add gem destroying/removal (all gems of a colour and such - to get a deterministic result) you get a board that’s mostly rubbish to human eye, but can be easily analysed by AI. AI that is really good at board-control would make this game rather unfun bordering on unplayable.
Using non-board-control (or non-deterministic) spells is a different matter of course, much more difficult to program efficiently, but there are still many troops that would be available for such improved algorithm.