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Ariander

If you could enhance the Doom AI in anyway, what would it be?

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Personally, I would make some monsters be able to strafe attacks, probably revenants, demons, archviles, maybe lost souls too, because they pretty fast.

Well. There so much I could think of but what would you guys do?

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From my small experience in programming indie games, I would say the Doom AI is actually extremely simple, but the fact that there are tons of enemies makes up for it.

What I'm trying to say is, I would rather have massive piles of enemies like Doom has now, then few, smarter enemies. Also, I still have troubles killing Archviles.

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I would want the ai to get smarter when moving if you notice archviles they run in circles and dont do there job that often which is resurrecting monsters. Also i think the revant's tracking missles could do with a bit of work.

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Thorgrim103 said:

I would want the ai to get smarter when moving if you notice archviles they run in circles and dont do there job that often which is resurrecting monsters. Also i think the revant's tracking missles could do with a bit of work.


You're trying to kill me aren't you?

The only thing I would change personally would be to stop Cacodemons from flying away when hit with a powerful weapon (Most of the time the SSG).

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Exploiting the limits of the AI is part of the fun. If they were smarter, it would make tactics where you lure monsters into doing something harmful to them (triggering infighting, wandering under a crusher, getting a bit too close to a barrel, etc.) much more difficult to pull off.

So, the area for improvement would be in the way they wander on large maps. If you have something like this:

                D
================= ========================
                 P
D is a demon, P is a player, the equal signs form a wall with a passageway. Demon wants to eat puréed player, but misses the doorway for some reason and decided to run all the length of the wall instead, in one direction then the other.

So, it would be their navigation skills that could be improved. For the rest of AI niceties (avoiding danger, getting cover, teamwork, etc.), those would turn the run & gun nature of Doom and transform it into some boring SWAT team shooter.

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Tatics wouldn't fit Doom at all. Neither would strafing on the fast demons. All doom really needed was better pathfinding. The simpilist of creatures here can usually be smart enough to use doorways (without a door though :P), avoid walls, whatever.

Also, shots should not cancel lost soul charges.

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Gez said:

So, it would be their navigation skills that could be improved. For the rest of AI niceties (avoiding danger, getting cover, teamwork, etc.), those would turn the run & gun nature of Doom and transform it into some boring SWAT team shooter.


This is the only suggestion that makes sense to me so far. I have always thought it is stupid for monsters to get stuck half way into a doorway. Admittedly I do exploit this when playing, but it does exemplify one of the most notable AI weaknesses in classic Doom.

Revenants and archviles are hard enough already. Those tracking missiles are a real pain to avoid when fighting revenants in numbers. Archviles move so damn fast that I have trouble hitting them, except with the plasma rifle.

Monster infighting and crushers are great fun. Making the monsters smart enough to avoid them completely would greatly diminish the Doom experience IMHO. Strategic exploitation of enemy stupidity is part of warfare after all.

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Sometimes a good offence is the best defence. Doom's bad guys could be considered very good at that.

I think Doom's AI is pretty much perfect for the game.

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If you gave the monsters in DOOM any intelligence at all, you'd basically be playing Call of Duty with demons. If you want difficulty, just throw in a billion monsters and give us a rocket launcher. AI is for n00bs who can't take the heat.

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I would just update one little glitch. With vanilla doom (not doom2) cyberdemons have this very annoying glitch where if cyberA shoots a barrel and the blast dammage hits cyberB. Even though cyberB doesn't take any dammage, it still triggers the code:

if ( (!target->threshold || target->type == MT_VILE)
&& source && source != target
&& source->type != MT_VILE)
{
// if not intent on another player,
// chase after this one
target->target = source;
target->threshold = BASETHRESHOLD;
if (target->state == &states[target->info->spawnstate]
&& target->info->seestate != S_NULL)
P_SetMobjState (target, target->info->seestate);
}

Where sorce is cyberA and target is cyberB.

This causes cyberB to attack cyberA and continue attacking untill cyberA dies. This is very annoying with some pwads because it effectivly creates a spot where cyberA is trying to kill me, and I can't get close because of cyberB's rockets.

Sorry if this didn't make any sence, but im one of those guys who understands the doom sorce code.

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What I would do? I'd fix some parts of the AI that make the Doom monsters too lame. I'd get rid of the stuck-on-doortracks, stuck-on-ledges glitches; they'll be allowed to shoot whenever they see the player, regardless of being stuck -> no more twitching monsters on cramped spaces. And I'd give them better pathfinding so as to be better in mazes, and drastically lower the number of their idle growls. That's too much of a stupid giveaway for them. It is a reason why Doom fails to be scary.

Depending on the plot, they may get AI points too, such as shooting the barrels next to their targets, moving pushables out of their ways (like how I saw in Doom 3), consuming items for their benefit (is there any action game with monsters picking up items?), issuing each others commands (similar to how in MBF/Eternity friends call each other for backup).

Allied monsters would really need AI enhancements though, and to balance it out, so would enemies, because otherwise allies would be unnecessary.

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Chrome Bolt said:

Personally, I would make some monsters be able to strafe attacks, probably revenants, demons, archviles, maybe lost souls too, because they pretty fast.


Decorate is your friend:

ACTOR Revenant2 : Revenant replaces Revenant
{
States:
      {
        See:
        SKEL AABBCCDDEEFF 2 A_FastChase
        Loop
      }
}

Ninjalah said:

The only thing I would change personally would be to stop Cacodemons from flying away when hit with a powerful weapon (Most of the time the SSG).


Decorate is also your friend:

ACTOR Cacodemon2 : Cacodemon replaces Cacodemon
{
    Mass 9999
}

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honestly, if there was anything wrong with the AI, I probably wouldn't like it as much as I do.

But because I want to contribute to this thread, I'd make lost souls not stop when crossing powerups (I think that's why they manage to stop in midair sometimes) and make them not be able to climb stairs while attacking.

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Chrome Bolt said:

Personally, I would make some monsters be able to strafe attacks, probably revenants, demons, archviles, maybe lost souls too, because they pretty fast.

Well. There so much I could think of but what would you guys do?



the monster animations are not made for this kind of movement. strafing monsters would look unnatural and ruin immersion.

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I wouldn't change a damn thing. The monster AI in Doom 1/2 is miles ahead of Doom 3's, despite the fact that Doom 3 is over a decade newer. Most of the enemies in Doom 3 are heavily scripted and probably couldn't do a damn thing otherwise. So, for that, the monster AI in the classic Doom games is a godsend.

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Torr Samaho said:

the monster animations are not made for this kind of movement. strafing monsters would look unnatural and ruin immersion.


Its not true for flying monsters though, but even then, try it using decorate and it feels so exagerated and unneeded. An actual dodge on reaction might fit. But only on the flying monsters.

AgentSpork said:

I wouldn't change a damn thing. The monster AI in Doom 1/2 is miles ahead of Doom 3's, despite the fact that Doom 3 is over a decade newer. Most of the enemies in Doom 3 are heavily scripted and probably couldn't do a damn thing otherwise. So, for that, the monster AI in the classic Doom games is a godsend.


What? Doom 3's AI is scripted? Yes, well, some sequences are scripted, until they start attacking you, at which point they are more basic and more boring than even Doom 1/2.

The way they wander around makes the AI pretty nice. The fact they can't find their way is an annoyance sometimes, though. I wish you could design some kind of path nodes which they would follow when they don't have you in sight, or something.

The only other thing I'd want is a leading ability. I hate the fact that only Legacy got that option. By that I mean they shoot where they think you will be, and not where you are - making it harder to dodge. ZDoom doesn't even have that ability, and I wonder why.

Anyway, I like beating up smarter enemies and all, but its a different style, and unfitting for Doom.

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Don't mess with an perfect formula :p I would probably like it less if things were changed. Sure the AI is pretty dumb, but who was complaining about that when doom was released. I sure wasn't.

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Ragnor said:

Didnt Lost Souls originally dive out of the way of rockets?

They would probably be more dangerous if they dove into the way of rockets.

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i dont know if this counts as AI, but i thought the lost souls would havwe worked better as kinda "smart missiles", where they act like a monster but when they attack you successfully they explode dealing some splash damage.

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I would never change the monster AI except for the retarded glitches as Printz pointed out. It seems to me that each monsters attack makes up for their "low" AI. When used in the right combination certain monsters tend to compliment each other -nothing like Lost Souls and Revenants, one gets in your way then the other proceeds to beat you to death. I've always thought that each DOOM monster was perfect for certain situations -except for Barons of Hell, they're just annoying. Plus, who doesn't love infighting?

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Most of the glitchy weaknesses are fixed by ports, notably MBF (PrBoom, Eternity). ZDoom less so.

Ultraboy94 said:

i dont know if this counts as AI, but i thought the lost souls would havwe worked better as kinda "smart missiles", where they act like a monster but when they attack you successfully they explode dealing some splash damage.

The terror saves you. [bottom]

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The doom monsters can only walk in 8 directions. I reckon making it possible for them to walk in directions of all angles might improve things perhaps.

Tho it is somewhat fun to exploit this and have monsters come at you in zigzag paths.

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I would like to have the monster navigation code improved, so that monsters can navigate levels more efficiently, possibly even planning out routes to ambush the player, species group together in large mobs, purposefully waiting behind doorways or in dark corners etc.

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Graf Zahl said:

Doom's AI is perfect for the type of game it is.


it's interesting what simple means were used to alter monster behavior in a way that would require complex AI models today. for example, those pesky pain elementals say often shielded by a mob of monsters because they're slow, not because they're smart enough to take cover behind the cannon fodder and spam lost souls. mancubi shoot first to the player's right probably based on the observation that most players would dodge first to the right, running straight into the shot. that simple AI was the only feasible with doom's monster hordes, especially considering the hardware it was designed to run on. and tbh, enemy AI hasn't progressed that much during the past 15 years. anyway compared to the changes in the graphics department.

Jake250 said:

Its not true for flying monsters though, but even then, try it using decorate and it feels so exagerated and unneeded. An actual dodge on reaction might fit. But only on the flying monsters.


ok, flying monsters are the exception, since you don't see them moving completely differently than their legs do. other players in a coop match stand out anyway because of their speed when they're just sliding around, but imagine barons skating like that.

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Torr Samaho said:

AI hasn't progressed that much during the past 15 years. anyway compared to the changes in the graphics department.


If anything they are much dumber. I'm watching my brother play Halo right now, and the enemies appear to kinda stand around firing, occasionally moving into a random direction covering their heads to simulate fear. Only occasionally the grunts will fire their plasma pistols at a target. The rest run around in random directions colliding into walls flailing their arms around. Many of the enemies are simply ammo eaters than actually dangerous targets. And since the game is heavily reliant on 'waiting' to recharge your shield, the intelligent thing to do would be to chase the player and corner hiim, however all the enemies simply stand around in the areas they were spawned in the map, and only fire when the player is in sight.

The truth is, enemy AI in modern games really do suck compared to doom, but it's made up for by interesting animations that make the bugs and faults in the enemy behavior look like it was done on purpose. If the enemies were replaced with blank square sprites, you could see that the AI is extremely primitive.

I don't mean to be continually bashing on Halo, as it's the only example I've really analyzed yet, but in a game like Halo, it should be necessary that the enemy AI is more intelligent. The enemies are an alien race of intelligent and wise monsters with arguably impressive grammar for being from a distant galaxy, while the monsters from doom are ruthless primitive animal-like beasts. And the only remotely human-like are the zombies, which are demonically possessed and brainnumbed, which can account for their slow movement and poor aim. Their storyline background mimics their behavior.

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