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Gen_Saris

Let's talk about BOTS.

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I've played most of my battles in Co-Op mode, and as a result have spent a LOT of time getting to know the lovely bot AI. The purpose of this post is to provide information to those who may be unfamiliar with the AI and how it behaves. To understand how your enemy thinks, to get inside his head, is to enable yourself to achieve an easier victory.

So let's talk about these bots.

#1: Bots aim better than players. They aim perfectly, in fact... and my experience has led me to believe they also get better shell dispersion values than players. I've seen bots pull off some miracle shots from 15+km away that a player would have to be very good and insanely lucky to duplicate. Showing your broadside to a bot, even at long range, is ill advised. They will wreck you, plain and simple.

#2: Bots focus fire extremely well. They will fire on the least armored target they have line of sight on, even if it is much further away than another target. I've seen bots ignore a BB that is 5km away to shoot at a CA or DD that is 15km away. This makes playing Cruisers & Destroyers in Co-Op difficult, because even if you stay on the 2nd or 3rd line the bots will bypass closer targets to shoot at you. Combine this feature with their ridiculously accurate aim and exposing yourself in a lightly armored ship usually equals a quick trip to the bottom.

#3: Bots have an uncanny torpedo dodging ability. If it seems like they detect your torps the moment you launch them it's because... THEY DO. Bots have an auto-dodge script that activates if you have them targeted and have torpedoes in the water. Those who don't believe me can check for themselves. Target a bot, line up your torp shot, hit "X" to remove the targeting reticle from them, then fire. Once your torps are in the water DO NOT re-target the bot, that will activate their auto-dodge. Keep your targeting reticle off the bot and, if nothing else gets their attention, they will continue to sail on and run straight into your torps. They don't see the torps as intended for them, so they don't take any actions to evade them.

#4: At the beginning of every match bots will move from their spawn point towards the nearest cap zone. This means they often focus on the center of the map and, in the case of maps with only two cap zones, they're ALL going to the center unless something (like a spotted target) changes that behavior. The Two Brothers map provides perfect example of this. In the configuration with 4 cap zones it tends to be a 50/50 chance whether the majority of bots will go to one side or the other. In the configuration with only 2 cap zones the bulk of them will come straight up the middle. So if you get the bright idea "I'll flank them!" forget about it. You'll get out to the flank and no bots will be there, so you've just removed yourself from combat. Bots aren't smart enough to flank.

#5: Bots CAP. They not only move towards capture zones, they actually TAKE THEM. Players tend to sail through capture zones in pursuit of "Moar dmg! Moar killz!" So bots will take the zones, which can give them a hefty point lead and even win the match for them if things go south for the Player team. Play smart here! Do your part and capture those zones once you've killed the bots in them. Don't let them continue to rack up points while you sail off to hunt for more bots.

#6: Bot CVs are monumentally STUPID. They always auto-drop, so if you turn into the attacking planes most of their torps & bombs will miss. This means a bot carrier is not really a threat to the team, and should always be killed LAST. Focus your attention on other bot ships, as those are the ones that aim perfectly and will KILL you. I can't tell you the number of times I've seen matches lost b/c half the players went off to chase the CV while the remaining two or three bot ships took all the cap zones. By the time the bot CV was dead it was too late, the bots won by cap points.

#7: This is perhaps the most important thing to remember. Bots WILL prioritize hunting DDs over everything else. The ENTIRE bot team will turn to chase the first DD spotted, so a player DD has the ability to control an entire engagement. If you are in a DD try not to get spotted first, and if you do end up with multiple bots chasing you the absolute WORST thing you can do is run to open water to get away from them. In doing so you will pull the entire bot team after you and AWAY from your teammates, who could help you. Bots will continue to chase a DD even if it has gone out of spotting range. They won't fire b/c you aren't on their radar but they will chase like they know EXACTLY where you are.


The TL:DR version...
1: Bots aim perfectly
2: Bots focus fire
3: Bots dodge torps when targeted
4: Bots go straight into action
5: Bots CAP
6: Bot CVs are no threat
7: Bots prioritize DDs


So, now that you've read all this hopefully your understanding of the AI has improved and you won't be doing crazy things in Co-Op like trading broadsides with bots, ignoring cap zones or focusing on the CV.

Thanks for reading!

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3 minutes ago, Sovereigndawg said:

In my experience they sail right thru the caps and nice write up and all but they are changing the AI anyway.

https://worldofwarships.com/en/news/common/pt070/

you can read about it there.

They are changing the way AI spawns work. Up till now if there wasn't a player CV or BB on your team and your team had bots on it they wouldn't be CVs or BBs... leading to all cruiser or all DD battles. In 0.7.0 the game will use CVs and BBs to fill in team slots if there aren't any humans in those ship classes. They're not changing the way the bots behave.

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1 minute ago, Gen_Saris said:

They are changing the way AI spawns work. Up till now if there wasn't a player CV or BB on your team and your team had bots on it they wouldn't be CVs or BBs... leading to all cruiser or all DD battles. In 0.7.0 the game will use CVs and BBs to fill in team slots if there aren't any humans in those ship classes. They're not changing the way the bots behave.

I see thanks for the info, I didn't quite understand what they were saying.

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1 minute ago, Sovereigndawg said:

I see thanks for the info, I didn't quite understand what they were saying.

I do wish they would vary the bots that you face so the bot team wouldn't be a carbon copy of the player team. Match ship class and tier but randomize it so you face different enemies.

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1 minute ago, Gen_Saris said:

I do wish they would vary the bots that you face so the bot team wouldn't be a carbon copy of the player team. Match ship class and tier but randomize it so you face different enemies.

That's what I thought they were saying. I liked the idea too.

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You neglected a few things. 

They have 100% battlefield vision at all times.

They will pre-aim their guns at you before being spotted.

They know what ammo you have loaded, and when it loads.

:Smile_teethhappy:

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8 minutes ago, awiggin said:

You neglected a few things. 

They have 100% battlefield vision at all times.

They will pre-aim their guns at you before being spotted.

They know what ammo you have loaded, and when it loads.

:Smile_teethhappy:

don't forget that they see you when your sleeping....

and know when your awake...

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10 minutes ago, awiggin said:

They will pre-aim their guns at you before being spotted.

That used to be a thing... but since Scenarios came about I've not seen it in effect. Lately I've seen bots fire the first shot at you as soon as you become visible, WITHOUT waiting on their guns/tubes to swing around. A big bonus for players if bots launch their torps like that, b/c that's a LONG reload.

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  One thing to add:

 Bots also get the best odds for doing module damage or setting fires/ floods.  If they shoot HE at you and hit they WILL break things and/or set you on fire- often in multiple places.   It's very important to learn to manage your damage control party properly.  Otherwise, you'll quickly be burned to death.   It's insane how often they knock out rudders, engines, AA guns, secondaries, torpedo tubes, and turrets.   In especially flimsy ships, like Atlanta, you could end up finishing the match with one turret operational...   I've had it happen!

 

  As for flanking, it actually does work- provided they've zeroed in on something else.   I've ground out a couple of squishy cruisers by doing just that.   Let the bots charge down the middle at the more aggressive players, while you sneak partway up the flank- and blast salvos at their unprotected broadsides.   Obviously, this doesn't work well if there is no cover to hide your approach- or as in the OP's example there's a huge island in the way completely hiding them from your guns.   Eventually, they WILL respond to your presence over there!   Most often they'll turn and charge towards where you're heading when they spot you.    This creates opportunities to trick them into ambushes.

   Also, if you're in a DD or squishy light cruiser, and the bots all swarm after YOU- run TOWARDS your team!

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Bot carriers are easy to dominate if you are a carrier player. They always launch whatever planes are ready first which means you will see their bombers first, torp planes second, then fighters. As a human player always launch fighters first to intercept their attack planes and shoot them down. Focus on torp planes since they are the biggest threat. You should be able to kill them all before their fighters get to the action and then you can take them out. Their fighters are stupid too so try and engage them over friendly ships that have decent AA and lock them down. I rarely have to strafe bot planes of any sort and this allows me to keep my fighters up the entire match without having to land them unless something unexpected happens (ie bot Atlanta gets too close). Always fly the signal that gives you the 10% bonus to killing planes, it makes all the difference in the world. When I am using a CV in PvE, I have never lost a fight with the enemy CV although have lost the match for whatever other reasons. I always shut down the enemy carrier, not one exception.

Edited by Taylor3006

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It would be nice if bots stopped the yolo advance at the start of the match, nothing worse than having half the red team down 3 or 4 ships in under 3 minutes, leaving little for my guns to pick away at.

One of the reasons I play tier X most, I know at least there will be a GK, Yammy, or Montie, depending on what I'm driving, or something else meaty for me to farm, even IF the bot DD's go yolo.

I hate it when I'm all decked out with nothing to sink lol

I'm looking forward to the new changes! Good post OP!

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19 hours ago, Gen_Saris said:

I've played most of my battles in Co-Op mode, and as a result have spent a LOT of time getting to know the lovely bot AI. The purpose of this post is to provide information to those who may be unfamiliar with the AI and how it behaves. To understand how your enemy thinks, to get inside his head, is to enable yourself to achieve an easier victory.

So let's talk about these bots.

#1: Bots aim better than players. They aim perfectly, in fact... and my experience has led me to believe they also get better shell dispersion values than players. I've seen bots pull off some miracle shots from 15+km away that a player would have to be very good and insanely lucky to duplicate. Showing your broadside to a bot, even at long range, is ill advised. They will wreck you, plain and simple.

#2: Bots focus fire extremely well. They will fire on the least armored target they have line of sight on, even if it is much further away than another target. I've seen bots ignore a BB that is 5km away to shoot at a CA or DD that is 15km away. This makes playing Cruisers & Destroyers in Co-Op difficult, because even if you stay on the 2nd or 3rd line the bots will bypass closer targets to shoot at you. Combine this feature with their ridiculously accurate aim and exposing yourself in a lightly armored ship usually equals a quick trip to the bottom.

#3: Bots have an uncanny torpedo dodging ability. If it seems like they detect your torps the moment you launch them it's because... THEY DO. Bots have an auto-dodge script that activates if you have them targeted and have torpedoes in the water. Those who don't believe me can check for themselves. Target a bot, line up your torp shot, hit "X" to remove the targeting reticle from them, then fire. Once your torps are in the water DO NOT re-target the bot, that will activate their auto-dodge. Keep your targeting reticle off the bot and, if nothing else gets their attention, they will continue to sail on and run straight into your torps. They don't see the torps as intended for them, so they don't take any actions to evade them.

#4: At the beginning of every match bots will move from their spawn point towards the nearest cap zone. This means they often focus on the center of the map and, in the case of maps with only two cap zones, they're ALL going to the center unless something (like a spotted target) changes that behavior. The Two Brothers map provides perfect example of this. In the configuration with 4 cap zones it tends to be a 50/50 chance whether the majority of bots will go to one side or the other. In the configuration with only 2 cap zones the bulk of them will come straight up the middle. So if you get the bright idea "I'll flank them!" forget about it. You'll get out to the flank and no bots will be there, so you've just removed yourself from combat. Bots aren't smart enough to flank.

#5: Bots CAP. They not only move towards capture zones, they actually TAKE THEM. Players tend to sail through capture zones in pursuit of "Moar dmg! Moar killz!" So bots will take the zones, which can give them a hefty point lead and even win the match for them if things go south for the Player team. Play smart here! Do your part and capture those zones once you've killed the bots in them. Don't let them continue to rack up points while you sail off to hunt for more bots.

#6: Bot CVs are monumentally STUPID. They always auto-drop, so if you turn into the attacking planes most of their torps & bombs will miss. This means a bot carrier is not really a threat to the team, and should always be killed LAST. Focus your attention on other bot ships, as those are the ones that aim perfectly and will KILL you. I can't tell you the number of times I've seen matches lost b/c half the players went off to chase the CV while the remaining two or three bot ships took all the cap zones. By the time the bot CV was dead it was too late, the bots won by cap points.

#7: This is perhaps the most important thing to remember. Bots WILL prioritize hunting DDs over everything else. The ENTIRE bot team will turn to chase the first DD spotted, so a player DD has the ability to control an entire engagement. If you are in a DD try not to get spotted first, and if you do end up with multiple bots chasing you the absolute WORST thing you can do is run to open water to get away from them. In doing so you will pull the entire bot team after you and AWAY from your teammates, who could help you. Bots will continue to chase a DD even if it has gone out of spotting range. They won't fire b/c you aren't on their radar but they will chase like they know EXACTLY where you are.


The TL:DR version...
1: Bots aim perfectly
2: Bots focus fire
3: Bots dodge torps when targeted
4: Bots go straight into action
5: Bots CAP
6: Bot CVs are no threat
7: Bots prioritize DDs


So, now that you've read all this hopefully your understanding of the AI has improved and you won't be doing crazy things in Co-Op like trading broadsides with bots, ignoring cap zones or focusing on the CV.

Thanks for reading!

 

I think that the bots have several ranges for shooting, driving and cooperation. Seems to go from bad to near perfect.  I also think that the settings are independent of each other. I have seen bots that drive great, but can't hit the water and other bots that are sharpshooters that run into islands over and over. The 'killer bots' you run into periodically is when shooting and cooperation are at the near perfect level. The bots will travel in groups and all focus down one green ship at a time. You can still win, you just have to be on your toes. It also seems to be weighted to tier, so at low tier you rarely see near perfect bots and at high tier you rarely see bad bots.

 

Bots will dodge if you shoot at them with torps along the torp direction indicator, if you do not turn it off before launch. Or will ignore your torps if they are all going to miss anyways. You can leave it on, but you better put one set on the indicator and the other where you expect the bot to turn to as they will dodge the first set. Bots will cap, but you can get them to abandon a cap to chase you or to run back and defend their own cap.

 

Bot CVs can be dealt with as long as you pay attention to the planes. I usually get hit by bot planes when I am focused on something else. Bots will cross drop torps occasionally and it seems to happen at higher tier more than lower. It seems like most of the time bots will fly around AA ships, but some times they derp out and attack your AA ship.

 

Bots will chase a DD and you have to get pretty far behind your teammates for them to give up on you. Sometimes they will follow your DD no matter what like a conga line and you just have to dodge and shoot back when you can.

 

 

19 hours ago, Gen_Saris said:

I do wish they would vary the bots that you face so the bot team wouldn't be a carbon copy of the player team. Match ship class and tier but randomize it so you face different enemies.

 

This would be nice. If WG is worried about new players, maybe make it an event. I also suggested an event for 12-16 bots vs 8 players for say a weekend. We had a co-op test like that last year and it was fun for experienced players. Making it a weekend event means it only impacts new players a little bit.

 

18 hours ago, awiggin said:

You neglected a few things. 

They have 100% battlefield vision at all times.

They will pre-aim their guns at you before being spotted.

They know what ammo you have loaded, and when it loads.

:Smile_teethhappy:

 

Bots seem to only preemptively aim at you when their all around vision decides you should be the priority target. If a bot is focused on someone else, you can fire without return fire, but watch the guns. When they start turning your way, then you may have become the target.

 

They do use their repair right away when set on fire or flooded, so you can take advantage of that. I haven't seen anything to imply that they care what ammo you have loaded. When shooting at you they tend to set you on fire and then fire AP, only switching back to HE when your fire is out.

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8 minutes ago, Kizarvexis said:

Bots seem to only preemptively aim at you when their all around vision decides you should be the priority target. If a bot is focused on someone else, you can fire without return fire, but watch the guns. When they start turning your way, then you may have become the target.

 

They do use their repair right away when set on fire or flooded, so you can take advantage of that. I haven't seen anything to imply that they care what ammo you have loaded. When shooting at you they tend to set you on fire and then fire AP, only switching back to HE when your fire is out.

 

Try this. You have a bot cruiser sailing along showing his broadside, you fire HE at him and switch ammo. As soon as the AP is almost loaded he will turn into you, to bounce the shots. Obviously that doesn't hemp him much against most BB's but as a cruiser, I have often seen this. And it only happens when I switch ammo while the target is locked.

Edited by awiggin

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40 minutes ago, awiggin said:

 

Try this. You have a bot cruiser sailing along showing his broadside, you fire HE at him and switch ammo. As soon as the AP is almost loaded he will turn into you, to bounce the shots. Obviously that doesn't hemp him much against most BB's but as a cruiser, I have often seen this. And it only happens when I switch ammo while the target is locked.

 

I will try that as I have not noticed that. Shiny

 

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5 hours ago, awiggin said:

 

Try this. You have a bot cruiser sailing along showing his broadside, you fire HE at him and switch ammo. As soon as the AP is almost loaded he will turn into you, to bounce the shots. Obviously that doesn't hemp him much against most BB's but as a cruiser, I have often seen this. And it only happens when I switch ammo while the target is locked.

I have noticed this as well

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5 hours ago, awiggin said:

 

Try this. You have a bot cruiser sailing along showing his broadside, you fire HE at him and switch ammo. As soon as the AP is almost loaded he will turn into you, to bounce the shots. Obviously that doesn't hemp him much against most BB's but as a cruiser, I have often seen this. And it only happens when I switch ammo while the target is locked.

 

6 minutes ago, rjc3095 said:

I have noticed this as well

 

Maybe I need to pick up the ammo switch skill for Seagal. He sits on my Cleveland and I share him with the Atlanta. I haven't tried it yet as I have been in PvP for the DoY and New Year Raid Campaign. 

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Basically the bots have had RPF since the start. They do know where the closest ship is and can pre-turn their guns. This is annoying but not as annoying as having to chase down bots that sailed off into a corner because they had no idea where to find the enemy.

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Quote

1: Bots aim perfectly
2: Bots focus fire
3: Bots dodge torps when targeted
4: Bots go straight into action
5: Bots CAP
6: Bot CVs are no threat
7: Bots prioritize DDs

I really agree with all that. At low tiers is better to learn russian DDs on random as against bots...

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Don't be too quick to write off Bot CV s, at least the Boss CV in the  Defend Newport Naval Base can execute pretty mean cross drops with it's torp squadrons.

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On 12/27/2017 at 4:17 PM, Gen_Saris said:

1: Bots aim perfectly
2: Bots focus fire
3: Bots dodge torps when targeted
4: Bots go straight into action
5: Bots CAP
6: Bot CVs are no threat
7: Bots prioritize DDs

1: To this I will add; they always start fires with the first shot; they always get critical hits with the first shot against a destroyer, they will always manage to 'miraculously' take out your 'ain't gonna miss'torpedo tubes, especially if you just dodged THEIR torps.

2: Like idiots. Especially when a human team with at least a little smarts will more intelligently divide their fire against threats.

3: I make it a habit to get so close they CAN'T  dodge; and I'm pretty dang good at it. The 'hit 'x' to unlock' method also works.

4.Unless they manage to pile into each other; then they're like the old bots; locked into logic circles as they try to decide what to do...

5; Unless they see something; or there is a Green CV or destroyer in the game; then they will mindlessly pursue that like something out of 'The Sailing Dead.' Which can be used to clear caps of bots.

6: You're kidding, right? Maybe if you aren't a carrier. If bot CVs have nothing better to go bother, they cheat like a boss and fly RIGHT TO a player CV, even if it HASN'T BEEN SPOTTED.

6a: For me, bot CVs are normally not a threat because I slaughter all their planes, then go wipe out what ships my team hasn't already sunk, before going to deal with the CV. Lots of fun when the players are total spuds, or the rest of your 'player' team are also bots, (1 vs 15, CV style...) Plenty of times it's been 3, 4, 5 or even 6-1 with me as a CV in Co-op, and it was either wipe all the remaining bots out on my own or loose.

7; This can be fun; either by dragging them broadside to your allies; or when playing 'Ring-around-the-Rosie' around some rock, slowly torping and shelling them to death.

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On 12/28/2017 at 4:17 PM, Seadog_Supreme said:

Since you know the bots are stupid and predictable why do you bother playing against them? I can kite them away from the battle like beads on a string.

Because, after 10,000+ PvP battles in WoT, I'm tired of WG's particular flavor of PvP. As the saying goes... been there, done that, bought the t-shirt.

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On 1/1/2018 at 7:14 AM, Arvanna_1 said:

Don't be too quick to write off Bot CV s, at least the Boss CV in the  Defend Newport Naval Base can execute pretty mean cross drops with it's torp squadrons.

Bot in normal PvE behave far differently than the bots in the scenarios do. The AI in the operations missions is pretty good and fun to play against. 

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