• Advertisement

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

RTS Common Wisdom

This topic is 6251 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

If you intended to correct an error in the post then please contact us.

Recommended Posts

Think about what you automatically know when you''re in the middle of an RTS battle vs. a human or computer. What do you know to do when fighting a battle, regardless of the real time strategy game? Is there an "Art of War" common wisdom for RTS games? For me, it''s 1) Focus Fire: With a group of units selected, I have them all attack one target first rather than allowing them to pick their own targets. This seems to reduce enemy strength quickly. 2) Kill the Weakest Armored, Best Armed First: This also helps get rid of enemy strength more quickly. Units that have the weakest armor to firepower ratio (like Trebuchets in Age of Empires) are the first to be targeted. 3) Kill Deadly Area Effect Targets ASAP: Siege Tanks, Trebuchets, Protoss Templars, Warcraft''s Human Mages... they''re targets with a high capacity for damage, and so they''ve got to go. Add to the list? (btw, I''m brainstorming design for fleet combat and what AI units, friend or foe, should know to do) -------------------- Just waiting for the mothership...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Advertisement
Well...

- Strategic bottenecks. If there is somewhere which can hold a superior force off with minimal men, then get it asap.

- Use cover and height to your advantage. Ie forests and clifftops offer superior tactical advantage to plains and valleys.

However, we''re talking space here, so:

- As you said, area of effect units or units with cutting abilities (like Homeworld''s Ion Frigates) should be eliminated.

- Nebulas and asteroid belts offer cover and shielding capabilities, and are good tactical choices.

- Repair craft, money generation units, and construction craft are prime targets, in reverse order to listed, ie 3,2 and 1.

Then you have the other things, like positioning of buildings to prevent mass weapons having too much of an effect, decent unit formations to guard against area of effect and allow for flanking.

There was a post by a guy called Dreamweaver on one of the gaming newsgroups. He was an ex-Intelligence Officer and he wrote a huge article on this sort of topic. You might want to look that up too.



"NPCs will be inherited from the basic Entity class. They will be fully independent, and carry out their own lives oblivious to the world around them ... that is, until you set them on fire ..."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I think that your point about killing the unit which posses the highest threat first is important and also concentrating fire, but if this is for the AI then it should also consider some other things. The strength of the opposing force should matter, the computer should decide whether it want''s to participate in the combat at all, if it''s force is weaker then it should perhaps try to avoid the fight. The other main thing it should consider is the strengths and weaknesses of the individual units and send out an appropriate force to counter it. If the enemie''s force consists of units that are weak against a certain weapon then sending out units with that weapon is a tactically sound move. Conversley, the computer doesn''t want to attack a force which is strong against it''s units. Calculating which units should be sent to counter the opposing side is a must have. Constantly sending swathes of troops against tanks is not an example of good AI.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
quote:
Original post by Wavinator

Think about what you automatically know when you''re in the middle of an RTS battle vs. a human or computer.

What do you know to do when fighting a battle, regardless of the real time strategy game?

Is there an "Art of War" common wisdom for RTS games?

For me, it''s

1) Focus Fire: With a group of units selected, I have them all attack one target first rather than allowing them to pick their own targets. This seems to reduce enemy strength quickly.


The above rule makes a big assumption: one that holds true in most RTS games, but not necessarily all. The assumption here is that 2 units on 50% damage are more dangerous than 1 unit on 0% damage. In real life, this often is not true. If your game made a half-destroyed unit only function at half-effectiveness, then there would be little difference between the 2 tactics.

quote:

2) Kill the Weakest Armored, Best Armed First:
...
3) Kill Deadly Area Effect Targets ASAP:


These are really just 1 rule: Concentrate firepower where the ratio of Value to Defence is highest. If you measure the quality of an army by the total cost of all its units, then this strategy allows you to wear down the opposing army''s value most effectively.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Anonymous Poster
Don''t forget to have your ranged attack weapons to use overlapping fields of fire. (i.e. have fixed defenses spaced close enough to be able to cover each other) This works best with a staggered checkerboard type pattern. Each element in the front row covers the neighbor on each side. The back row also covers its left/right neighbors, but can also cover at least one neighbor in the front row.

Also, have your AI use combined arms tactics. For example, in a Warcraft II type game, a raiding party should have melee attackers, ranged attackers, and siege engines. This makes them more difficult to kill. The ranged attackers (archers) can attack the enemy that is currently engaging the melee units. Also, the siege weapons can attack the enemy''s ranged attackers or harass the rear line of the enemy''s engaged melee units.

I would love it if you could have your AI be able to carry out an ambush. Let the lead element go through the choke point and then attack the main body from two sides.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Three words: Hit and Run.

Especially if you know you can hit them faster than they can regenerate/repair.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
AOE2:
Faster meelee units (Knights) are used to take out seige weapons
Archers used to take out monks and other less armoured units (villagers, early infantry)
Slower meelee units (infantry) are used to defend everyone and to take on other infantry (with help from archers)
Seige weapons (area of effect): used mainly for taking out buildings.
Seige weapons (point of effect): used to take out infantry first

But what I really like doing is getting a circular type thing happening. I have my units moving around in circles, with those at the front of the circle attacking and those at the back being healed by monks. In the middle of the circle, I put mangonels and trebuckets (or I would if I had the full version

That tactic works so well, but takes a while before you can do it well.


Another think I like doing is loading all units into a transport unit (boat in AOE2) and then deploying them all at the same time at the area of battle, then focussing the power. This means the meelee units don''t have too far to go before they do some damage.

And also getting attacked then moving back to my base where I have a $#%^#$%load of defense units/buildings waiting =)

Trying is the first step towards failure.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Advertisement