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Will somebody please fix the Auto-Pillok !!!!
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apricotslice





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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 03:43    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Given the complexity of the problem to solve, they go ahead and make it orders of magnitude harder to do by adding millions of extra asteroids that just clutter the place up.

If it wasnt for the fact that most collision are with the object the ship is trying to go through or dock with, I'd just take the roids out and be done with it.

Its a self fulfilling nightmare. The extra roids make the auto-pillok stupider and at the same time, make it far more likely that flying manually, you will lose concentration just long enough to kill yourself on a roid anyway. having things to do while travelling is why I use the autopilot, so I dont accidently smash into a roid because I'm giving remote order to other ships and not looking where I'm going.

Reminds me of Privateer days, when using any speed in a asteroid field was fatal, simply because the hardware and software wasnt up to rendering them acurately enough to fly around. I stayed out of them, and the systems that had them, except for plot missions.

Put the issue another way. X2 1.4 had a perfect reliable auto-pilot. I want it back please !


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Nanook
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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 03:54    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

apricotslice wrote:
Given the complexity of the problem to solve, they go ahead and make it orders of magnitude harder to do by adding millions of extra asteroids that just clutter the place up.


Now this part I agree with. And I did remove most of the new 'roids. But to be honest, I've never had a collision from using the autopilot, even before I removed the new ones (which was in response to a massive FPS hit). And that was with SETA. Of course, I never turned it on where I couldn't see a clear path to my objective. And I normally only use it to quickly dock at a distant station.

Quote:
Put the issue another way. X2 1.4 had a perfect reliable auto-pilot. I want it back please !


Oooh! I want some of what you've been drinking. Razz Laughing

My memories of the X2 autopilot were actually worse than what you describe with X3. Thus I rarely used it. At least in X3, the NPC ships have less of a tendency to ram you while you're on autopilot. And it had a lot less complexity to deal with, such as fewer 'roids and gates that were in mostly regular positions. Not to mention, much smaller stations.


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apricotslice





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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 04:02    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Nanook wrote:
Quote:
Put the issue another way. X2 1.4 had a perfect reliable auto-pilot. I want it back please !


Oooh! I want some of what you've been drinking. Razz Laughing

My memories of the X2 autopilot were actually worse than what you describe with X3. Thus I rarely used it. At least in X3, the enemy ships have less of a tendency to ram you while you're on autopilot.


Errr....drinking water infused with 'love' intent. Smile

Being rammed by enemy ships while on auto-pilot ? How is such a thing possible ? no, it cant be.....you fight with the auto-pilot on ?

I never fight with the auto-pilot on, but I do auto-pilot and seta up to about 6 kms away, then disengage both and match speeds better as I close.

The X2 auto-pilot was reliable at not hitting solid immovable objects. I never hit a station or an asteroid. However, in combat, the setting were such that the auto-pilot held the ship incorrectly placed to lead the target enough to hit it properly. Ramming ships wasnt the auto-pilots fault, it was a factor of the combat itself and the results of ramming. In most other games I've had, ship ramming simply reduced shields with the bump, and only killed you if you had none or you rammed something really big.

Combat is combat, you do that yourself, but gettting to it is a nav computer thing, and I insist on a reliable one. Ego had one in X2 1.4, why or why did they abandon it for gerbils and lemmings ?


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Nanook
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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 04:06    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Slip of the fingers. Meant 'NPC' pilots. But then again, when they have a tendency to ram you a lot, they can be considered enemies. Twisted Evil


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apricotslice





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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 04:10    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

I ahve heard that some people do fly combat using the auto-pilot. Go figure Wink

I find collisions are usually my own fault, flying to fast for the ship I'm shooting at, and waiting til the last second to pull off it so I can get that last shot in that hopefully destroys or caps it. Leave it too late and bam, "jumpdrive destroyed". Usually its because I'm going to too fast. Was the same in X2, only more of a problem there.


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NeilDingley





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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 11:24    Post subject: Sucidial Gerbils ? Reply with quote Print

Nanook wrote:
There seems to be some misconceptions about the difficulty of programming a pathfinding routine. It's actually a rather difficult thing to do in reality. Part of the problem stems from having a practically infinite number of start positions, as well as an unknown number of obstacles, both stationary and moving, along the projected route.


The AI doesn't need to be that complex, and we realy only need to improve it with respect to stationary objects like Asteriods and Stations, the current system manages to avoid other ships fairly well so far. All they need to do is instead of flying in a straight line all the time, draw a line from where they are to where they need to be if this path causes a colision break the line (i.e. add a waypoint) at the colision point, and shift this point to the side of the object. then repeat on the line/path to this first waypoint until there are no colisions with fixed objects, simple Smile

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RJV





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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 12:42    Post subject: Re: Sucidial Gerbils ? Reply with quote Print

NeilDingley wrote:
Nanook wrote:
There seems to be some misconceptions about the difficulty of programming a pathfinding routine. It's actually a rather difficult thing to do in reality. Part of the problem stems from having a practically infinite number of start positions, as well as an unknown number of obstacles, both stationary and moving, along the projected route.


The AI doesn't need to be that complex, and we realy only need to improve it with respect to stationary objects like Asteriods and Stations, the current system manages to avoid other ships fairly well so far. All they need to do is instead of flying in a straight line all the time, draw a line from where they are to where they need to be if this path causes a colision break the line (i.e. add a waypoint) at the colision point, and shift this point to the side of the object. then repeat on the line/path to this first waypoint until there are no colisions with fixed objects, simple Smile


Your comment is probably a little tongue-in-cheek but I do suspect that it is a little harder than that....

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apricotslice





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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 13:15    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

I doubt it actually, the only complication is that it needs to loop a bit to check the line each time it adjusts it.

Personally, I'd rather have the auto-pilot take a half a minute to decide on a flight path and then kick in, than do what its doing at the moment, which is fly directly at the biggest asteroids and then try to get out of the way at the last second. And failing.

I dont think the 1.3.1 patch fully uninstalled. The rest of my ships are behaving better, as long as they are not given orders to go into cluttered areas, but my own ship is a different matter. I've had to disengage the auto-pillok and wrench the ship out of the way of asteroids (and the really really bigs ones mind you) in ordert not to crash into them (which it seems to do every time now if I let it). Most annoying.

The programming may be a bit complex, but thats the sort of challenge I used to get my teeth into when I was a programmer. Hopefully Ego has a programmer who likes a challenge ???


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RJV





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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 13:22    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

To be honest I've never had the auto-pilot crash me into an asteroid. Gut-wrenching turns to avoid at the last minute, yes, but no collisions. It did smash me into a station I'd just undocked from once, but that may have been in 1.2.

The way I play is I undock, set target, increase speed, steer myself out of the immediate vicinity of the station I am leaving (takes at most 10 seconds), then hit U. If it doesn't work I wait a few seconds and do it again. Doing this I have zero collisions.

Navigating through sectors I've also not had a problem. While trading in my Mercury on arrival in a sector I boost speed to max, set the target, press U then J. I've never hit anything, asteroid, station, nada. Even in Seizewell.

Admittedly not used capships though.

Cheers,

Rob.

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apricotslice





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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 13:31    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

RJV wrote:
Navigating through sectors I've also not had a problem. While trading in my Mercury on arrival in a sector I boost speed to max, set the target, press U then J. I've never hit anything, asteroid, station, nada. Even in Seizewell.

Admittedly not used capships though.


Thats pretty well what I do, and its crashing me into asteroids every time theres one in the way.

Now interesting comment though, cap ships. I'm flying a Centaur, which has the speed of M5.

Makes me wonder if the auot-pillok is not using the top speed showing for the ship, but the top speed stored for the model itself. Thus it changes course way too late, because the ship is not where it thinks it is.


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Kitch



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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 17:36    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

AHA!

The mystery and the antipodean apricot autopillok assault may now be explained...

I was wondering as I have very few issues with crashing into things, though I heartily agree it could be better.

Still hit things occasionally though, which should easily be avoided. Hitting a million ton rock just isn't on and deserves to have gerbils in front of tribunals quick sharp.

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alphalvr





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PostPosted: Thu, 19. Jan 06, 17:55    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

apricotslice wrote:
RJV wrote:
Navigating through sectors I've also not had a problem. While trading in my Mercury on arrival in a sector I boost speed to max, set the target, press U then J. I've never hit anything, asteroid, station, nada. Even in Seizewell.

Admittedly not used capships though.


Thats pretty well what I do, and its crashing me into asteroids every time theres one in the way.

Now interesting comment though, cap ships. I'm flying a Centaur, which has the speed of M5.

Makes me wonder if the auot-pillok is not using the top speed showing for the ship, but the top speed stored for the model itself. Thus it changes course way too late, because the ship is not where it thinks it is.


i never use autopilot ever but cuz i see your moaning posts everywhere Razz i thought id have a go.

test 1
sat ship next to asteroid and set a target directly behind it. whee, succesfully docked...no problems there.

test 2
went to that sector next to paranid prime (with lotsa roids) sat as far away as i could from a station and put my ship in amonst the tinys roids. 6km of roids to circumnavigate....click....wheeeee....successfully docked

seems ok to me, back to flying myself

mind you it wud be nice if when i jump in my elephant, all the traders that were heading for that gate i jumped to, didnt suddenly explode all over my ship Surprised

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apricotslice





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PostPosted: Fri, 20. Jan 06, 03:15    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

I think one of the difinitive tests of auto-pilot goes like this :

Choose the fastest freighter you have and tell it to jump to Orebelt and dock with the pirate base. Then tell a fighter of each class, with maxed speed, to protect it, ensuring they can jump with it. (If they cant jump have them waiting at the north gate in orebelt and then tell them). Then also get a Mammoth to follow the freighter as well.

If you can get the lot to the pirate base without losing any, then theres nothing wrong with your auto-pilot.

In my game, I cant even get a merc to dock at the pirate base on its own. I sat there and watched it one day. 2 major hits on asteroids and it was left with just orange peel slice of hull left, at which point I jumped it out. It was nowhere near the pirate base when I jumped it either, so had no hope of getting there.


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ttl





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PostPosted: Fri, 20. Jan 06, 03:59    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

I think the autopilot does OK with just one ship and stationary obstacles like asteroids. Sometimes it has problems with more complicated "obstacles" like stations.. Like a vivid memory I have off my wingman Nova getting into the "creaks" of a teladi trading station it was trying to dock onto, and promptly splattering itself all over the station hull.

The main problem comes with formations of ships. Way too often the autopilot, or a wingman, gets totalled in a formation as one ship of the formation (usually the lead ship) evades an asteroid. Another ship then makes a sharp turn to avoid the first one, and of course doesn't see that he's making his evasive maneuver right into the very asteroid the first guy was swerving to avoid.

Changing the speeds of ships might also wreak havoc with autopilot. Maybe some of you guys have the Blackrain rebalance running? Or maybe somebody can confirm wheter tha autopilot uses the actual ship stats to determine its maeuvers vs. being hard-coded by ship type (or smth)?

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apricotslice





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PostPosted: Fri, 20. Jan 06, 04:05    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

My guess is there is an inaccurate hardcoding causing the problem. Programmers gut think.


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