Author Topic: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread  (Read 290674 times)

Offline BTAxis

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1200 on: September 19, 2022, 02:05:23 pm »
There is a small but irritating issue with the soldier sorting dropdown on the soldiers screen. When the screen is first opened, or the list has been sorted via one of the sorting options, opening the dropdown starts you with the list scrolled to the top. However, as soon as you manually sort the soldiers via the arrow buttons, the sorting list will be scrolled all the way to the bottom when you use the dropdown.

This is somewhat annoying because sometimes I will accidentally reorder the soldiers when I hadn't intended to. In such cases I use the sorting menu to reset the list to "original order", but I always have to first scroll the list because that sorting option is right at the top of the list.

I hope this can be adjusted.

Offline psavola

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1201 on: September 20, 2022, 05:57:11 am »
I hope this is the right forum for this. I wonder a bit about alien camping in base defense missions. There was a short thread earlier (https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,4936.msg72150.html#msg72150) but I suppose nothing came out of it.

In vanilla, I don't think I ever saw this behavior, and the aliens would come out and step on your proxy mines (except a couple that would stay at hangars). Though in vanilla I haven't seen too many base defense missions to begin with.

In OXCE and mods (especially TWoTS), I have seen multiple times myself and on videos (also Meridian's LP) the behavior where the aliens, after a couple move out, end up camping in the lift and hangars and stop coming out after you. But looking at the code, I don't think there shouldn't be a difference in OXC/OXCE, and I don't think mods have features that would affect this.

Looking at the code, in base defense missions there doesn't appear to be "turn 20" rule i.e. the AI doesn't get the cheat visibility on your troops. So they don't know where the troops are. So I suppose this camping behavior might be triggered if the aliens don't get a sight on your troops and don't know where you are, and the patrol/attack behavior is not sufficient to find the troops. I also wonder a bit about the code which makes it a priority for the aliens to destroy objects within 9x9 grid of where they are rather than the troops. I don't think I have ever seen this occurring myself. But I wonder if this could be messing up the behavior (for example, if there is a general stores next to the lift) - or ensuring that aliens move out (and camping behavior coming up more frequently if there aren't objects to destroy nearby).

This poses a bit of challenge for base defense tactics as you can't rely on throwing a lot of proximity grenades on the corridors, and this strategy might actually end up hurting you if you need to go after the aliens yourself after all.

I wonder what strategies the others are using to work around this?  I wonder if something should change in the engine (for example, should the patrol/attack behavior in base defense be strengthened to avoid camping)?
« Last Edit: September 20, 2022, 11:31:58 am by psavola »

Offline Meridian

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1202 on: September 20, 2022, 11:34:44 am »
DEV reply:

"turn 20" rule applies to all missions, including base defense... the aliens do get full "cheat visibility" on your units

the "attack base facilities" behavior only applies until any alien spots any xcom soldier... so in openxcom, you will very rarely see it (i.e. only if you are heavily camping too)
in OXCE, they can continue attacking even if they've spotted you, see: https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,6663.0.html

Player reply:

As for the "challenge"... why would the aliens be stupid and not recognize a trap at a choke point? Also, they came through the airlock and the hangars and have all the exits covered... YOU are trapped, not they. They have the upper hand and are using their tactical advantage. Next time don't be a "silly commander" and don't build a so called "defensive base" without any plan B, tactically it's the worst option (or at least should be).

Again a DEV reply:

"Should anything change in the engine?" -- God no, let's not take any remaining options the AI has away from them. Give them at least a tiny fighting chance. They're not cattle going to a slaughterhouse. They're (supposed to be) an alien invasion force. I'm not gonna make it any easier on the player campers and cheesers; not willingly or knowingly at least.

Offline psavola

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1203 on: September 20, 2022, 12:00:57 pm »
DEV reply:

"turn 20" rule applies to all missions, including base defense... the aliens do get full "cheat visibility" on your units

Ok, sorry, I misunderstood src/AIModule.cpp, around the condition "if (_save->getMissionType() != "STR_BASE_DEFENSE")". So in base defense missions the scout mode should always be enabled, not just forced on after turn 20.

But the real question then is what I wondered already: why are the aliens (in some base defense missions) just minimally moving back and forth where they are, compared to the open UFO recovery map and at least eventually coming at you? If it's supposed to work roughly the same way, is there a bug or what's explaining the difference?

Quote
Player reply:

As for the "challenge"... why would the aliens be stupid and not recognize a trap at a choke point? Also, they came through the airlock and the hangars and have all the exits covered... YOU are trapped, not they. They have the upper hand and are using their tactical advantage. Next time don't be a "silly commander" and don't build a so called "defensive base" without any plan B, tactically it's the worst option (or at least should be).

From this perspective, I kind of agree. I would just like to understand how this is supposed to work. If the base defenses are supposed to be alien "hide and seek" and "attack the aliens" missions, fine. The contrast is just very high, when most of the time the aliens appear come at you in a rampage instead. Well, I suppose one could argue that it's good that the player cannot anticipate in advance which behavior the aliens are going to adopt.
 
In the same vein, the current game is "broken" from player perspective by offering way too much cover in your craft in terror/UFO/base attack missions so that staying in the craft is often considered more or less cheesy. Obviously in some mods this may be mitigated slightly (e.g. crafts which only drop you off and don't offer cover), but this needs to be taken to account when balancing the game. In some missions the difficulty is scaled in such a manner that the missions are not really survivable if you immediately exit the craft full-out.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2022, 12:12:45 pm by psavola »

Offline Meridian

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1204 on: September 20, 2022, 01:04:33 pm »
Ok, sorry, I misunderstood src/AIModule.cpp, around the condition "if (_save->getMissionType() != "STR_BASE_DEFENSE")". So in base defense missions the scout mode should always be enabled, not just forced on after turn 20.

But the real question then is what I wondered already: why are the aliens (in some base defense missions) just minimally moving back and forth where they are, compared to the open UFO recovery map and at least eventually coming at you? If it's supposed to work roughly the same way, is there a bug or what's explaining the difference?

"scout mode" and "cheat visibility" are two unrelated things

"scout mode" is always disabled for base defense (as you already found out)
"cheat visibility" is enabled and works the same way as for other missions

they're moving minimally, because of various reasons, there's no single reason... the parameters of the mission and the map just prefer ambush and combat over patrolling; the patrol nodes are not optimized for scouting, forced scouting (a.k.a. "scout mode") does not apply, player actions (or non-actions) result in similar alien reactions, and so on and so on...

AI "intelligence" in (open)xcom is an illusion, see below.

From this perspective, I kind of agree. I would just like to understand how this is supposed to work. If the base defenses are supposed to be alien "hide and seek" and "attack the aliens" missions, fine. The contrast is just very high, when most of the time the aliens appear come at you in a rampage instead. Well, I suppose one could argue that it's good that the player cannot anticipate in advance which behavior the aliens are going to adopt.
 
In the same vein, the current game is "broken" from player perspective by offering way too much cover in your craft in terror/UFO/base attack missions so that staying in the craft is often considered more or less cheesy. Obviously in some mods this may be mitigated slightly (e.g. crafts which only drop you off and don't offer cover), but this needs to be taken to account when balancing the game. In some missions the difficulty is scaled in such a manner that the missions are not really survivable if you immediately exit the craft full-out.

There is (intentionally) no rule or algorithm how it is supposed to work.

If you do some actions, it will turn into a "hide and seek"; if you do other actions it will turn into a "attack the aliens". If you do yet something else, it will turn into "something else".

Xcom AI is extremely stupid, you could even say there is no AI.
It's just a set of a few rules, what to roughly do in response to the general game state (game state being most heavily affected by player's actions) and the RNG.
It's almost purely reactive, the aliens DO NOT have a plan.
Practically everything we could call "intelligence" is a complete illusion in xcom... an "emergent behavior" if you wish.

It's not the aliens who invented let's say camping... it's the player who observed a certain response pattern based on a certain playstyle... and called it "alien camping".
« Last Edit: September 20, 2022, 01:08:47 pm by Meridian »

Offline StarMan

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1205 on: September 20, 2022, 08:55:30 pm »
I noticed that when you sort soldiers they are sorted to the bottom. With the most proficient being last. Ascending order.

Offline psavola

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1206 on: September 21, 2022, 09:40:59 am »
"scout mode" and "cheat visibility" are two unrelated things

"scout mode" is always disabled for base defense (as you already found out)
"cheat visibility" is enabled and works the same way as for other missions

they're moving minimally, because of various reasons, there's no single reason... the parameters of the mission and the map just prefer ambush and combat over patrolling; the patrol nodes are not optimized for scouting, forced scouting (a.k.a. "scout mode") does not apply, player actions (or non-actions) result in similar alien reactions, and so on and so on...

In AIModule::setupPatrol(), the loop "while (_toNode == 0 && triesLeft)" scout boolean is set to true at start, and set to false in some circumstances before the "cheating turn" comes, but never in base defense missions. So isn't the scout boolean, at least in this "_toNode == 0" path, always enabled in base defense missions. Or are you referring to something else with "scout mode" always being disabled in base defense. But nonetheless, the reason why the patrolling doesn't necessarily result in much movement or spotting the X-COM troops may depend on various things. I didn't completely understand all the "logic" built into think() and evaluateAIMode(), but I could suspect the most important one in base defense missions could possibly be the setup of nodes between which the patrolling could occur.

In a recent base defense, I certainly spotted some curious behavior which could easily be seen when the bug hunt mode was enabled around turn 30, such as a drowned terrorist (which is a LeeroyJenkins unit) sitting idle even though there were a couple of X-COM units nearby, and an alien or two not really moving around in a hangar, even though they were not panicking. I suppose I should try to turn on AI debugging sometime to try to understand what they are supposed to be doing.

Offline Meridian

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1207 on: September 21, 2022, 09:20:11 pm »
There is a small but irritating issue with the soldier sorting dropdown on the soldiers screen. When the screen is first opened, or the list has been sorted via one of the sorting options, opening the dropdown starts you with the list scrolled to the top. However, as soon as you manually sort the soldiers via the arrow buttons, the sorting list will be scrolled all the way to the bottom when you use the dropdown.

This is somewhat annoying because sometimes I will accidentally reorder the soldiers when I hadn't intended to. In such cases I use the sorting menu to reset the list to "original order", but I always have to first scroll the list because that sorting option is right at the top of the list.

I hope this can be adjusted.

Done.

Offline Meridian

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1208 on: September 25, 2022, 09:46:51 pm »
New OXCE v7.7.3 is up.

2022-09-25
QoL:
 - Improved soldier renaming in the Inventory: https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,10745.msg149116.html#msg149116

Features:
 - Better handling of "unselected" combobox: https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,6586.msg149222.html#msg149222
 - Don't scare people without TFTD resources (by a false error in the log)
 - Save file more verbose again
 - Clearer error message on `addLine` map script command failure

Modding:
 - Hire scientists/engineers base function gate: https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,10765.0.html
 - Option to display weapon range in pedia shot type, part 2: https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,10711.msg149115.html#msg149115

Scripting:

Bugfixes:
 - Fixed crash at mission start (NPE)
 - Melee attacks from ranged weapons now identifiable in soldier stats (by karadoc): https://github.com/MeridianOXC/OpenXcom/pull/99
 - Avoided some divisions by zero when modders are not careful

Download: https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,5258.0.html

Ruleset validator was updated.
Wiki ruleset reference was updated.
Auto-update is available on Windows.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2022, 09:00:10 pm by Meridian »

Offline BTAxis

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1209 on: September 27, 2022, 05:21:00 pm »
Done.

Thank you Meridian, much appreciated.

I noticed another minor thing with the soldier sorting. By design, if you hold Ctrl while sorting, the soldier list doesn't sort but only shows the values for the sorting criterion you selected. However, if you then open the sort dropdown again and click somewhere outside the list to close the dropdown without selecting a sort criterion, the soldier list is sorted as per the criterion selected (unless again Ctrl is held). I think that closing the dropdown this way should not apply any sort action.

Offline Charly1

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1210 on: September 29, 2022, 03:38:20 am »
I was thinking of installing this on my girlfriends laptop. Was I right in thinking previous versions needed the original game installed? Is that a requirement for this? It would mean me installing steam too, and that might annoy her even more ...

Cheers!

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Offline Meridian

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1211 on: September 29, 2022, 05:08:57 am »
Yes

Offline Charly1

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1212 on: September 29, 2022, 12:46:46 pm »
Sorry. Yes it was a requirement, or yes it is a requirement?

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Offline Meridian

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1213 on: September 29, 2022, 01:13:50 pm »
Yes, any version of Openxcom still requires the original game files.

Offline Solarius Scorch

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Re: OXCE (OpenXcom Extended) main thread
« Reply #1214 on: September 29, 2022, 02:32:17 pm »
You can just copy the files though, you don't need to install Steam.