How they do that?

Polaris Sector is a sci-fi 4X game that offers exciting exploration, detailed resource management, unique research mechanics and intense tactical combat.
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RandomAttack
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How they do that?

Post by RandomAttack » Fri Apr 22, 2016 9:41 pm

I'm having an issue as Human with multiple single Urgan Corvettes covering VAST distances to blockade my systems. They appear to be just regular old Corvettes, it's early in the game, and I've actually seen one move over 10K HU-- and then back the way it came. I've also seen a couple pop through wormholes, so I guess that part is ok-- although I don't know why THEY always seem to come out in the same place but I don't. Nor are they being accompanied by a freighter/tanker. I can't even begin to cover that kind of range.

freifrei
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Re: How they do that?

Post by freifrei » Fri Apr 22, 2016 9:48 pm

The AI is known for cheating on fuel usage ...due to technical limitations.

It would be really nice if there could be simplified travel distance check, though - its annoying to see early corvettes attack via empty 40k HU-long pipe of empty systems.

bobarossa
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Re: How they do that?

Post by bobarossa » Fri Apr 22, 2016 10:54 pm

It would be nice if they would make an absolute limit from their nearest star system or something like that. I was surprised when I saw the manual say that if you try to retreat from battle, you head out to a random neighboring star! That could put you unable to return home. Looks like the AI don't have to worry about not being able to get home.

RandomAttack
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Re: How they do that?

Post by RandomAttack » Fri Apr 22, 2016 11:53 pm

freifrei wrote:The AI is known for cheating on fuel usage ...due to technical limitations.
Well THAT'S disappointing. Guess I missed the memo on that one. It also pretty much kills any strategy as far as I'm concerned. In the early (most important colonization part) years, since my freaking Corvettes only have a short range, it means many of my planets will be undefended-- since I can't get there and new planets can't build anything significant for quite awhile. Even later in the game, every single planet has to have a decent-sized force to protect from "unlimited range" enemies just cruising around pillaging every undefended planet.

So THAT'S how in my current game the quite weak Urgan's can put together 2 or 3 Corvettes and an Assault Freighter and just roam around totally unrestrained by range and take over any newly minted colony that can't yet develop a strong defense-- or any at all.

If this is true it's a game-breaker for me. Can't see why anyone even cares about tactical issues, etc., there's no strategy at all: You MUST defend every single colony with a good size force. So much for star lanes, choke points, etc. With no range limit they can just "go around".

jack54
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Re: How they do that?

Post by jack54 » Sat Apr 23, 2016 12:36 am

Please say it ain't so.... :cry: Cheating a little I'd expect ... The AI not using fuel would be a killer for me also!

RandomAttack
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Re: How they do that?

Post by RandomAttack » Sat Apr 23, 2016 5:10 am

Yeah, I started a test game with no wormholes, found a particularly good chokepoint (only some minerals though), and watched in wonder as a steady stream of Drill Corvettes came down the pike from at least 11,000 HU away (that was their NEAREST occupied planet!). :shock: Out of sheer luck, it was within *my* Corvette range of one of my bases so I could keep up. But I have no chance of ever counterattacking because of the distance they are away from me-- until I can get at least Frigates (many years yet). I think this "feature" should either be toned down or made an option, because it really skews the game. It's not just that it makes the game "harder", it's that it makes strategy kind of useless. If you are not lucky enough to find a couple of good chokepoints near your main planets you might as well rage quit and start over, because ships will be cruising in from all over the galaxy from all directions and seemingly regardless of distance. Or if there *is* some kind of limit how about sharing so we can at least know there is one. :evil:

fortress
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Re: How they do that?

Post by fortress » Sat Apr 23, 2016 11:54 pm

sure glad I read these posts. Its a game breaker for me too. You all saved me some money as I am certainly not going to buy this game. Reading the forum is the only way to find out if a game is worth getting or not. Thanks guys!! :mrgreen:

Tanaka
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Re: How they do that?

Post by Tanaka » Sun Apr 24, 2016 2:25 am

I am just now seeing this myself. Gamebreaking and cheating. A complete turn off!

jamus34
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Re: How they do that?

Post by jamus34 » Sun Apr 24, 2016 11:51 am

As I just started seeing this and as people have just recently been posting up I wonder if it is a result of the patch that dropped.

SilasOfBorg
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Re: How they do that?

Post by SilasOfBorg » Sun Apr 24, 2016 2:57 pm

I would really like to see developers state a list of all rules that the AI does not need to follow. I'm not talking about production/research/money bonuses, because we tend to expect that. I'm talking about whole game systems that AI is sometimes coded to just outright ignore.

I understand why a developer would not want to publish this list, because it would seem to many people (who do not know just how hard it is to code even competent AI) that the AI is "bad" because it gets all these "cheats".

But IMHO it is better to know up front that the AI does not follow rules X, Y, and Z. Because every time I make a strategy in a game that depends on the AI following the same rules I do, and then that strategy falls apart, I do feel cheated.

As far as Polaris Sector goes, I think it has quite acceptable AI and I believe the developer has explained at length in other forums what kinds of cheats the AI gets, though not to what extent.

RandomAttack
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Re: How they do that?

Post by RandomAttack » Sun Apr 24, 2016 4:38 pm

I must admit, this bugs the heck out of me. The last two games I have purchased, both that have had very positive receptions, have had this type of hidden mechanic. This one with the fuel "cheats", the other with a major misrepresentation of how the combat engine works. I shouldn't need to scour forums to figure out how the game works. And this game ALREADY has a gazillion options, why not one for an AI without "undocumented features"?

One other thing I noticed (not a big deal but indicative of the issue) is incomplete descriptions of the difficulty. On "easy", you get 3x bonuses on food/minerals per the tooltip, but you ALSO get at least one extra tech (Atmospheric Domes) plus the science seems to go a lot faster also. Jeesh, why can't you TELL me this stuff?

And I maintain that massive AI fuel cheats are game breaking. The tactical side is mediocre but I can live with that. "Unlimited fuel" makes any strategy on a less-than-ideal map a waste of time. It's that simple, when AI ships of all types can come looping in from all corners of the galaxy while you still can't build anything better than a short-range Corvette.

To sum up: Give me an OPTION! Let me toggle "AI unlimited fuel" on/off. All the hardcore guys can play "ironman" games where they take on the galaxy with one planet and a single Corvette with just one ion gun and a pint of Jack Daniels if they want-- but I am not one of those guys. At the very least, disclose what the RULES are (this is a "game", right?). Or tell me how to mod this component out.
Last edited by RandomAttack on Sun Apr 24, 2016 7:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

jack54
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Re: How they do that?

Post by jack54 » Sun Apr 24, 2016 5:18 pm

I really hope that people who find this issue 'game breaking' continue to follow this forum. At this point we are not totally sure how bad the situation is.... it may be a simple adjustment. Time will tell. IMHO this game does so much right I wouldn't wright it off just yet. I've stopped playing for now but hope to continue ....

fortress
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Re: How they do that?

Post by fortress » Sun Apr 24, 2016 7:17 pm

Do I ever agree with Random attack " Jeesh, why can't you tell me this stuff"!!! I hate a game where I have to try to guess at the rules as I play. The rules of play shouldn't be a puzzle but clearly laid out beforehand. That is the one thing I appreciate about board games: you know how to play before you even start. With pc games the designers so many times think that half the fun is figuring out how to play---IT ISN'T.

Ufnv
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Re: How they do that?

Post by Ufnv » Mon Apr 25, 2016 6:49 am

Is there a save before that Urgan attack or any other attack via a very long distance?

Generally, this should not happen, so I need to check what is going on there.

RandomAttack
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Re: How they do that?

Post by RandomAttack » Mon Apr 25, 2016 5:10 pm

Sorry, no. I actually had uninstalled/reinstalled the game yesterday. One game it was the Urgans that had me scratching my head, so I watched more closely the next game. Then it was the Drills. It was more apparent because I had a natural chokepoint and the nearest Drill colony was 11K HU or more away, yet a seemingly never-ending flow of Drill Corvettes kept coming down this long pipeline. I was lucky in that I had an industrial colony near enough to keep adding my own Corvettes, otherwise I would have been toast. However, there was no possibility of my counterattacking due to the distances involved. This was quite early in the game w/very little additional tech.

Finally, these games were on "Normal" difficulty. I've played a couple of games on "easy" since then and have not seen this behavior-- even later in the game when finally at war. IF this is somehow related to difficulty, I would love to see an option that just impacts bonuses (like what is in the tooltip) and not other game mechanics (like fuel?).

RandomAttack
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Re: How they do that?

Post by RandomAttack » Mon Apr 25, 2016 6:17 pm

Also, all these games have been with "no wormholes", since I wanted to eliminate that variable from the range issue.

The closest analogy I can think of is if you had a WWII strategy game where the German AI could bomb New York City from bases in France with JU-87s-- with ME-109s flying escort. Imagine the hue & cry THAT would cause. :lol:

Ufnv
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Re: How they do that?

Post by Ufnv » Mon Apr 25, 2016 7:53 pm

As I said before, AI can cheat with ranges, but usually it does this in some reasonable way. So, I need a save when it gets out of the reasonable limits to inspect what is going on and why it decided to act like this... So, if this happens in some of you game, could you please send me a saved game to ufnv (at) mail.ru ?

RandomAttack
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Re: How they do that?

Post by RandomAttack » Mon Apr 25, 2016 8:01 pm

Will do!

MrWigggles
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Re: How they do that?

Post by MrWigggles » Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:55 am

freifrei wrote:The AI is known for cheating on fuel usage ...due to technical limitations.
Its not a technical limitation. Its a legitimate hard problem in computer science.

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