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Author Topic: Make colonists able to plan ahead  (Read 1148 times)

Dr. Z

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Make colonists able to plan ahead
« on: June 01, 2017, 05:36:33 PM »

Although the AI has again been improved with this Alpha, there are still some annoying little issues. The most important of which is that your colonists are still not able to anticipate how long it would take for them to reach a certain destination. I had this today when two miners where on the last hour of there working shift and headed out to a distant mining site. They got there, hit the stone twice, and then returned to the colony.

A similar thing happens when they reach their destination, decide that there are now hungry, go back to the colony, eat, then go back to their work. Usually they take meals in their inventory to prevent this, but for some reason they don't do this when using NPDs. So either give them the ability to take nutrient paste in their inventory (I know it's disgusting but what you're gonna do?) or to plan on how long it will take to reach a destination and react accordingly.
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Hans Lemurson

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Re: Make colonists able to plan ahead
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2017, 07:23:27 PM »

Calculate the outcomes of tasks before making a decision?  That sounds a wee bit computationally expensive.
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KillTyrant

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Re: Make colonists able to plan ahead
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2017, 12:55:08 AM »

It might be somewhat simple(maybe). Instead of what was mentioned, there is a decreasing radius of permitted action dependent on time remaining based on the time table. However, there is some short comings of this idea as is.
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Limdood

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Re: Make colonists able to plan ahead
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2017, 08:45:03 AM »

no. 

The game is currently simple and straightforward in design.  If a pawn is set to work at a given time and he finishes his current task and is not hungry, starving, or joy-deprived, I should be able to KNOW that he's going to go do his highest priority job on the map that there is work for.

I shouldn't be wondering "wtf! why isn't the pawn doing the haul job i set him to do!  there's a superior charge rifle sitting in the rain and he chose to go to sleep instead of getting it because his sleep time starts NEXT hour?!?"

The less straightforward and mathematical you make the game functions, the less transparent they become, and pawn behavior becomes pure guesswork.  A game where you can't predict the outcome of your own management actions doesn't work.
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ReZpawner

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Re: Make colonists able to plan ahead
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2017, 08:49:32 AM »

I suspect that the new and improved AI is to blame for the game lagging insanely when you have visiting traders. Please don't make it even worse.
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AngleWyrm

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Re: Make colonists able to plan ahead
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2017, 09:38:39 AM »

Although the AI has again been improved with this Alpha, there are still some annoying little issues. The most important of which is that your colonists are still not able to anticipate how long it would take for them to...

This alpha's AI model is like a folder tree that the thinker traverses in preparation to do something. At each folder they check to see if conditions are met. If they are then the search can proceed further down toward the bottom (leaf) folder where an action is then set in motion. If those conditions are not met then that search ends and the thinker backs up to check the next tree of situations and conditions.

We can restate the complaint to fit this model like so: There should be some form of time estimate as part of the conditions tree. By the way, that is a moddable feature request.

On optimization of thinker's search time, put the most common and likely reasons to dismiss a task as inappropriate at the highest level in the tree.
« Last Edit: June 02, 2017, 09:43:21 AM by AngleWyrm »
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cultist

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Re: Make colonists able to plan ahead
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2017, 11:39:18 AM »

no. 

The game is currently simple and straightforward in design.  If a pawn is set to work at a given time and he finishes his current task and is not hungry, starving, or joy-deprived, I should be able to KNOW that he's going to go do his highest priority job on the map that there is work for.

I shouldn't be wondering "wtf! why isn't the pawn doing the haul job i set him to do!  there's a superior charge rifle sitting in the rain and he chose to go to sleep instead of getting it because his sleep time starts NEXT hour?!?"

The less straightforward and mathematical you make the game functions, the less transparent they become, and pawn behavior becomes pure guesswork.  A game where you can't predict the outcome of your own management actions doesn't work.

I agree. The most important part is that the player can predict what the AI is likely to do in a certain situation.

I feel like zoning might be the answer here. If you could attach a time schedule to a zone, you could prevent pawns from entering certain areas of the map past a certain time. Like a curfew. Would work well for animals as well, you could let them graze outdoors during the day and come back in during the night.
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Toast

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Re: Make colonists able to plan ahead
« Reply #7 on: June 02, 2017, 12:50:02 PM »

I feel like zoning might be the answer here. If you could attach a time schedule to a zone, you could prevent pawns from entering certain areas of the map past a certain time. Like a curfew. Would work well for animals as well, you could let them graze outdoors during the day and come back in during the night.

I like this idea a lot. It would a solve a lot of problems at once if I could forbid my colonists from leaving the compound at certain times. No more night owls trying to hunt sleeping animals! No more pawns trying to mine a rock or haul that one piece of slag metal in the furthest corner of the map ten minutes before bedtime!
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