Assault Assault Server Discussion

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Old 01-08-2011, 03:37 PM   #1
Binger
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I would play on the assault server when thereís no human players just to get my fix but when I get put on defense at the game start the attacking bots often do nothing but jump from one vehicle to the next and never go anywhere. I try to team switch to attack but always get put back on defense. The only way Iíve found to get around this is to quit, set my team pref to the attacking color and rejoin but then I have the same problem on the next round.

I loaded a couple of those maps in the editor to try to figure out what the bots were doing. One example is Yro, where you have to take a flyer to get to any objectives. There are flying paths but there are things that I think may be causing the bot issue.

There are flying paths from the vehicle spawn points. Looks OK to me.




But then the flying route from the spawn point ends with only a connection to a regular bot path. Would this cause the bots to ignore the whole path in a flyer?




There are also places like this where the flying paths end with no connection to another nearby flying path node. Is there a way to make a connection between path nodes that arenít connected?




I tried building path nodes without making any changes but did not get any errors.

I think at this point in the life of the game there is not much point in trying to fix all the bots and reloading the fixed maps to the server so this is really just for my own understanding of issues that may arise with bot pathing. Any thoughts on this?
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Old 01-08-2011, 05:53 PM   #2
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Bots might need to be told that they need a vehicle. Try using SpecialVehicleObjective (subclass of RoadPathNode) to mark where bots are supposed to fly to. That's basically a parking spot with a list of vehicle classes. Bots are supposed to get into a vehicle type listed in the SpecialVehicleObjective, drive/fly to the SpecialVehicleObjective, get out and continue the attack on foot.
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Old 01-08-2011, 06:23 PM   #3
Crusha K. Rool
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If you need to connect a PathNode with another, you can either try to move them around or specify the name (can be seen under the "Object" property group) of the destination PathNode in the source PathNode's ForcedPath-array. That will make them appear yellow in the editor after a rebuild and will also tell vehicles that the path is for sure large enough for them to move through, so it can help if you need to get a continuous white path to the objective in order to prevent bots from jumping out of vehicles. You need to connect the path in both directions manually, though.
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Old 01-08-2011, 06:41 PM   #4
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@Wormbo...

That looks OK to me. What do you think? I checked all the objectives including the last and the vehicle class in the factory and they seem to match what you said.







@Crusha... I will try it. I don't understand why those two flying path nodes in my previous post aren't connected automatically though. It doesn't look like there is anything that would block a raptor path.
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Old 01-08-2011, 09:39 PM   #5
Crusha K. Rool
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FlyingPathNodes are a bit picky when rebuilding the paths. Sometimes it works if they are very far away from each other, sometimes only if they are close to each other, sometimes if they are on the same level, sometimes if one is a bit higher than the other oneÖ
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Old 01-08-2011, 11:26 PM   #6
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I added a flying path node at the end of the route out from the spawn points and forced a path to and from the ones on that route that end with only a link to regular path nodes. I checked to make sure there was at least one flying path all the way to the first objective, forcing paths as necessary (just had to do that one), and then rebuilt the entire level but it didn't change the bot behavior. They immediately exit the Raptors. In the Cicadas they will hover for a few seconds then exit. I don't think they even get as high as the flying path nodes above the vehicles. Weird.

Browsing my mapping book makes me realize bot pathing is more complicated than I thought. I will read up on it. I'm not sure how the AssaultPath Actor works and a couple of other things. Are the flying paths always orange (unless forced)? The mapping book doesn't mention that color where it talks about path colors.

I had this problem a while back on an ONS map I was making and I resolved it somehow but I don't remember what I did.

Thanks for the help guys. This is fun stuff. I know what you mean about the flying paths being picky, Crusha. It doesn't seem to make sense why sometimes it won't automatically make links between them.

Side question... If I only change pathing in the map do I need to rebuild the entire level before a final save or can I just build paths? Rebuilding the entire level can take a lot of time.
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Old 01-09-2011, 05:00 AM   #7
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Try forcing the connection if they won't do it on their own.
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Old 01-09-2011, 01:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wormbo View Post
Try forcing the connection if they won't do it on their own.
Umm, yeah, already did that following Crusha's directions. I mentioned it a couple of times in my last post. Thanks though. I also read up on that. That doesn't seem to be the issue as I forced a path all the way to the first objective and still no change in bot behavior. I might try repositioning the nav nodes to make sure they all have good clearance. That's why I was asking about the color of the flyingpathnode links. The regular path node links are color coded related to how much clearance that they have around the path. I think bots attach a cost according to that color, prioritizing the path of least cost.
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Old 01-09-2011, 07:23 PM   #9
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I haven't seen flying paths in any color other than orange, except for forced paths (yellow).

One way to check what's going on is to use soakbots in the console. Start a game, add a bot, then put in "showdebug" and "soakbots" in the console. When the bot gets into the raptor/cicada and then gets out right away, the game will pause and center on that bot, and you'll get an error message stating exactly what went wrong. When I tested this map without any changes it said something like "cannot complete path to FlyingPathNode59" the flying path node right before the first objective. If the bot can't complete a full path from the point it gets into the vehicle to the point it has to get out of the vehicle, it won't even try to use the vehicle and just hop right back out. This is why bots go around and try every single vehicle, hoping to find one that will get them to their destination.

My experience with flying paths is that bots will use fliers on road path nodes, they'll just hover right off the ground where the nodes are. Plain old path nodes, I doubt it... Maybe if it's a white path (best clearance). However, it sounds as if you've ensured a full path from the base to the first objective with all flying path nodes, so I don't see why they're not taking the path unless there's a hangup somewhere between the two points. Check one more time, and try the soakbots thing -- if it says cannot complete path or something like that then there's something wrong with the bot pathing.

And this is just attackers... Getting defenders to use vehicles is another animal entirely, and requires subclassing the type of vehicle you want and setting bDefensive to true. Defenders don't seem to care as much about having a direct path to the objective, they'll just get in and drive around looking for something to shoot.

UPDATE
Tried editing this on my own. FlyingPathNode274 is a problem, for some reason the extra downward paths it creates causes an issue. Move it off to the side so it doesn't make extra down-paths. After you do this and add in the missing FlyingPathNodes needed to get out of the base, force paths between FlyingPathNode53 and SpecialVehicleObjective2 to create a full path to the first objective -- at this point, attacking bots SHOULD enter the Raptors and head for the objective. However, after doing this, you'll run into a new problem.



Bots love to drive at full speed. On maps with rigid road/flying paths, they'll often "overshoot" the path nodes as a result, and waste valuable time trying to fly/drive back onto the original path. That's a recipe for disaster here, where contact with the floor causes instant death.



This bot has overshot the path going down the shaft, and is about to crash into the floor and die a horrible death. It won't be an easy fix -- you might want to try sinking the "intersection" path node so that the bot will start flying downward before it overshoots the hole and hopefully crashes into the wall instead of the floor. Really, the rigid structure of this map makes bot navigation a living hell, for both the mapper and the bot. Most of the bots I spectated lost almost half their Raptor's health before getting to that point anyway, from all the banging around against the walls and such. Needless to say, it will be quite a task reworking the bot pathing, but not an impossible one.

Last edited by Kamek; 01-09-2011 at 08:42 PM..
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Old 01-09-2011, 11:48 PM   #10
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I was just reading tonight about soakbots and other debugging tools. I haven't tried it yet. It's back to work for me in the morning so I probably won't mess around with this again until next weekend. I've just gotten to the point in my learning to map where I'm getting more serious about working on bot paths so that's why I was messing around with this. I've seen this happen on other Assault maps too (probably only ones that require a vehicle to get to an objective but I'm not sure about that). I chose to troubleshoot Yro because it seems relatively small and so I assumed would not take as long to rebuild the map in the editor before saving and also because of what you said about it being difficult for bots to navigate. I figure if I can get them to work on this map I will have a pretty good understanding of pathing. I might delete all the path nodes and start from scratch.

The defenders on this map don't seem to even go to the vehicles (at least on the first round when they are on the left side). They just huddle up in the corner near the spawn point. I haven't really looked at that yet because useless defending bots are just an annoyance (you can still do a time trial sort of thing) but useless attacking bots make playing the map alone pointless.

Thanks for the info on the flying path link colors. It's weird they don't use the color coding of the other path nodes. I guess that game designers didn't expect flyers to be going through narrow passages. Good stuff and thanks for the screen shots. A picture is worth a thousand words.

I guess I should have started this thread in the Mapper's Corner.
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