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View Full Version : What is your favorite trap with which to nail the AI?



Seamus Fermanagh
12-08-2005, 00:44
My favorite is to place a batch of skirmishers (cheap) in front of a unit of spears at the flank.

From what I can tell, the AI can't resist mowing down the shooters but the follow through lands them on the hoplite's point sticks....and there was much rejoicing.

What's your favorite trick?

Mouzafphaerre
12-08-2005, 01:19
.
Put a spear/missile heavy army on a bridge and see hordes comit suicide.
.

Rilder
12-08-2005, 06:54
going on the defensive with a phalanx based faction in a war against the romans and watching infinite Romans throw themselves Willingly onto my spears, those brave stupid romans....


Rilder-Taking the Flanks outta the Phalanx

Ianofsmeg16
12-08-2005, 07:49
Encircling a foolish barbarian army as the greeks and watch them get impaled from all sides, phalanxes can be manouverable!

Mouzafphaerre
12-08-2005, 13:17
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Making phalanx ham out of stupid hoplites with my horse archers. ~D
.

Revenant69
12-08-2005, 13:57
Making hoplites chase my velites, while another unit of velites sneaks in behind the hoplites and unloads volley after volley of javelins right into their arses. If hoplites turn to face the velites #2, the the velites #1 do the same. ~:joker: This tactic works with any other skirmishing unit, as long as the unit is fast, or faster than the target. ~D

buujin
12-08-2005, 14:06
lol, i notice none of these "traps" are very complex....

a testiment to the stupidity of the enemy battlefied ai? (althought it has gotten better since the release of the expansion pack) ~:)

Rilder
12-08-2005, 14:29
i s'pose if your highly out numbered and theres alot of woods and you got some light missile calvary you could lure like a half or quarter of an enemy army into the woods were your armies hiding and "take care" of them

Tyrac
12-08-2005, 14:58
I sally. ~:joker:

Oaty
12-09-2005, 18:21
Have a few expenadable troops (barbarian mercanaries are perfect) and string them as wide as I can and put them in guard mode. After that take all my javelins behind them. Right when the A.I. is regrouping I let all those guys fall back behind the professional troops and finish up.

It was too funny the first 2 times, after that I quit doing that except in rare cases, usually a siege where the battle is already pretty much decided.

TinCow
12-09-2005, 18:43
When defending a city with stone walls that has had its gates opened by a spy, I like to abandon the main gate area. I stick archers along the walls that line the most direct route to the city square so that they can shoot down inside the city. Then I plug the street at the very end of this archer alley with whatever I have that can hold for the longest period of time. I get far more archer kills this way than I could ever hope to achieve by trying to hold the gateway and I've prevailed in a few rather dire situations this way.

Geoffrey S
12-09-2005, 19:24
Setting up skirmishers within the range of pikemen or some kind of heavy infantry. Gets them every time. Or, since I've always got unlimited time switched on, sallying forth from a siege and wasting the enemy with archers as they attempt to get near the wall without siege equipment; this is something I no longer do since it makes sieges far less threatening.

demon rob
12-10-2005, 02:24
the real answer is - start the program.
from that point on the AI is nailed!

Ragnor_Lodbrok
12-10-2005, 13:04
In my Carthage campaign I often hid my army in forest and ambushed the Romans.
Sounds stupid but it's most useful because of the moral mali.

Dutch_guy
12-10-2005, 16:28
well put some juicy archers or skirmisher units in front of my main battle line, then wait for the enemy general to charge the ''defensless'' unit all by him self ~;p

:balloon2:

Rilder
12-11-2005, 02:35
the real answer is - start the program.
from that point on the AI is nailed!

I'm Getting soo BLOODY tired of everyone saying the AI is bad in RTW, ITS NOT THAT BAD, maby you should set the Campaign Difficulty To VH then it wouldnt seem so bad...

sorry i had to vent

heres a trap i do, i play nicly and fight without giving myself any advantages, and i dont cheat!

aw89
12-11-2005, 11:41
VH doesn't improve the AI, just gives it a stat boost. (+7 attack + 3 morale?)

Red Harvest
12-11-2005, 18:35
I'm Getting soo BLOODY tired of everyone saying the AI is bad in RTW, ITS NOT THAT BAD, maby you should set the Campaign Difficulty To VH then it wouldnt seem so bad...

sorry i had to vent

heres a trap i do, i play nicly and fight without giving myself any advantages, and i dont cheat!
I always play on VH/VH and the AI is bad. Take it into custom battle 1 vs. 1 with identical units and try to run a straight forward test. You will quickly get a feel for just how bad it is. Last night I did a slinger vs. slinger test for some new funditores where I destroyed the entire identical AI unit without it ever firing back...it just stood there, in range, dying. This is something that might be addressed in 1.5 (I'm keeping my fingers crossed.)

You don't get a different AI with different difficulty levels. It just gets some various advantages (or the player is handicapped) by the different levels. On the battle map that will change some of its decisions...like producing an AI infatuation for fire arrows that becomes tiresome. On the campaign map it has the ability to support about 2x to 3x the force level that the human can support with similar territories and ugrades.

Shahed
12-11-2005, 20:44
Making hoplites chase my velites, while another unit of velites sneaks in behind the hoplites and unloads volley after volley of javelins right into their arses. If hoplites turn to face the velites #2, the the velites #1 do the same. ~:joker: This tactic works with any other skirmishing unit, as long as the unit is fast, or faster than the target. ~D

Nice :san_laugh:

C-F
12-11-2005, 21:51
....

heres a trap i do, i play nicly and fight without giving myself any advantages, and i dont cheat!

I cheat when the AI cheats: ~;p ~:wave:

https://img233.imageshack.us/img233/4964/closevictory1pl.th.jpg (https://img233.imageshack.us/my.php?image=closevictory1pl.jpg)

as in: showing up from nowhere...:san_cheesy:

Jambo
12-13-2005, 14:51
Favourite trap for the AI?

Well there are too many, but the main one when you're hard up against it is to fight the AI on the battle map as opposed to autocalc. ;)

Slicendice
12-16-2005, 23:30
I tend to use these traps more in BI than I did in RTW.

First I block a river with a fortification and put a crappy unit it. Probably an old depleted merc unit or something very expendable. When the enemy comes and seiges that fort I sally whatever is in the fort and auto-resolve the battle. Usually I lose which means the enemy is now inside my fortification. ie. trapped!

My army positions accross the river, BUT NOT ON THE BRIDGE, will now move to the bridge and siege the fortification.

Two things will happen. More forces (if a horde) will move up and attack me--therefore I get a nice bridge battle. OR I will assault the fort using my archer heavy force to deplete the units inside and then move my infantry and cavalry in for the kill. Easy battles with low casualties.

When the battle is over I move my troops out of the fort and accross the river and put another crummy unit back inside and wait for the next army/horde.


Another trap (not really a trap persay) is to use flaming arrows on bridge battles. This makes the enemy very scared and often makes them useless in battle by the time they get accross. I have found this to be very useful in the late game against the hordes and I am about to try it in the early game since Sarmatians have good foot archers and crappy foot soldiers.


Another trap is when dealing with overwhelming forces I hide my troops in the forest in a horseshoe shape and using my general I ride around and let the enemy chase me. Eventually one or two break off the main group and chase me into the woods. My archers open up and I run to them. As the enemy comes up from behind my infantry appears on both sides and in front (depending on how many I have) and they are crushed. I quickly move my general around to attract more enemy troops and either draw them away or lure them to another site for ambushing. This tactic works good if you do not have elite troops or your numbers are low. Occasionaly the enemy general will be the first to fall into my trap which is all the better.

This trap is more of a stealth bomb than anything. In BI religion is very important. If I feel that one of my cities is going to be attacked and there is no defense for it and I don't have troops for defense I will destroy the temple inside and build a temple for the opposite religion. ie. pagan/christianity etc. Since most AI cannot build the same temples as me then the city will not only be a religion it doesnt like but the AI cannot upgrade that temple. I have had cities throw out their conquerers and return to me complete with a decent army. Then if I feel I can hang onto the city I change the religion and start over.

Another variation to this is the "if I can't have it neither can you" method. Which is to say the owner destroys his own city and leaves the shell to the enemy. Problem is the city will still return to you, but instead of getting elite or semi-elite units you get peasants.

This method does not work against Rebels. Rebels always hold the city, but if any AI faction takes it then the city will rebel against them and come back to you.

I did this on accident playing Sarmatians. The city in question was Vicus Sarmatae and it first returned to me about 20 turns after I lost it to the Huns. My new homeland was Northern Italy and heading south and I couldn't afford to keep the city so I destroyed everything and disbanded the troops in it. (they were expensive and I hade several stacks of hordes -Huns, Franks, Vandals--at the river north of Ravenna and no money for new troops.

Anyway that city returned to me several times even though I did nothing to improve their loyalty. This may also occur for cities you hold for a long time and also putting your own temple in it may affect their loyalty to you instead of a previous faction.

Well that's all I got for now.

Come Together
12-17-2005, 05:03
I always play on VH/VH and the AI is bad. Take it into custom battle 1 vs. 1 with identical units and try to run a straight forward test. You will quickly get a feel for just how bad it is. Last night I did a slinger vs. slinger test for some new funditores where I destroyed the entire identical AI unit without it ever firing back...it just stood there, in range, dying. This is something that might be addressed in 1.5 (I'm keeping my fingers crossed.)

You don't get a different AI with different difficulty levels. It just gets some various advantages (or the player is handicapped) by the different levels. On the battle map that will change some of its decisions...like producing an AI infatuation for fire arrows that becomes tiresome. On the campaign map it has the ability to support about 2x to 3x the force level that the human can support with similar territories and ugrades.
Judging the AI on custom battles is rather missleading. I have the belief that the AI is considerably worse in custom battles then that of a campaign battle.

MAt
12-17-2005, 13:43
This one works best with Roman or Greek cities against armies with a lot of low level troops such as a horde army.

Abandon the walls except for one unit that stays a good long way away from where any of the enemy units are coming in. Put everything else blocking the streets that lead onto the town square, or on the town square itself.

The enemy easily gets over the walls and then march everything towards the square. Once all their units are inside including their general(s) send the one unit on the walls round and recapture any gates/towers the enemy took. You now have the entire army trapped in your city to be brutally massacred in the streets.

Red Harvest
12-17-2005, 18:20
Judging the AI on custom battles is rather missleading. I have the belief that the AI is considerably worse in custom battles then that of a campaign battle.

No, it is not misleading. In fact in some regards it is a much better test, because you can control far more of the variables. A simple precise test is a better way to examine things. And what I've seen is confirmed by the campaign battles. The reason to do the custom testing is to try to figure out why the AI is behaving that way in full battles. The main difference with 1vs1 in custom is the presence of the captain. (This makes it disengage after it takes 40% to 50% casualties--destroying melee tests. It also leads it to seek certain match ups, formations, etc.)

I keep hearing people say that custom battles are not a good test. If so, then why do the results keep confirming what I already see in campaign battles? I see the same behavior there, only it is *masked* by the presence of other units. If anything, the AI has a better chance in custom with few units, than it has in campaign battles with more. Afterall, in campaign battles on VH/VH I usually win with a casualty ratio of 4:1, 10:1, or 20:1. A close battle/Pyrrhic victory is 2:1.

There is a natural tendency for folks to reject results that they don't *want* to be true. I see this in all fields, from politics/public policy, to entertainment, business/marketing/economics and to science. People want to place the burden of proof on the side opposite of them--whether or not that is appropriate. (See NASA and the O-ring decisions on the Challenger, or NASA and the debris strikes on Columbia for the ultimate consequence of not being able to distinguish where the burden of proof should lie.) In both cases the managers wanted the engineers to PROVE it was unsafe, rather than prove it was safe--bass ackwards.) The challenge is in trying to figure out how to step back and make a more balanced look at it, rather than trying to support our particular desire. When I first started testing hypotheses in the game I often came in expecting one thing, only to find it to be incorrect. None of us want the AI to make really poor decisions.

Ludens
12-18-2005, 15:35
Judging the AI on custom battles is rather missleading. I have the belief that the AI is considerably worse in custom battles then that of a campaign battle.
IIRC someone reported the same a few months ago in the battlefield A.I. research thread, but it wasn't proven. To be honest, I think the A.I. performs better in custom battles, but this may be because I use a less skirmishing and less cavalry than during campaign-battles. I've had very little experience with either 1.3 or 1.5, though.

fallen851
01-02-2006, 09:08
Judging the AI on custom battles is rather missleading. I have the belief that the AI is considerably worse in custom battles then that of a campaign battle.

Really? I've played many custom battles, and I played relatively fair battles, usually I'd win killing like 1,000 and losing 350 or something, but as soon as I started the campaign, my armies would be whipping forces twice their size with like 50 deaths...

In fact I've really only had two challenging battles ever in the campaign, the first was a siege of a Gallic city that had 900 fiercerly determined defenders. I easily got through the walls but they kept charging, then pulling back and charging as I advanced. The road to the city squared was lined with the dead, including 571 Romans (out of 1200...). I had to bring my archers up behind my legionaries as they slowly fought their way uphill to mow down their peltasts. Every Gaul died. It was a nightmare.

The other battle I had another Roman army of 1200, engaged by two Spanish forces of 1000 each. The first force consisted about of peasants, iberian infantry and town watch and one unit of bull warriors. I saw this force off suffering only 35 deaths, kill 812 of them. The second force that arrived after I had routed the first, and had 5 units of bull warriors, 3 iberian infantry, 2 town watch, a general body guard + long shield calvary. My calvary force (two equites, and the body guard all below normal strength) lost to the Spanish calvary on the extreme right, and I had to bring up peltasts in a counter attack to hold the calvary from flanking. My principes and a few hastati matched up with the bullwarriors on the right flank, with the triarii and the rest of my hastati on the left facing the iberian infantry and the town watch. The hastati on the right flank broke (only time ever anything greater than mercs and peltasts had broken in the campaign for me) the principes nearly broke, and the left flank was a very hard fight before the low level units routed. My skirmishers + calvary saw off the enemy calvary and rescued the right flank from complete collapse, and I swung the left over onto the right and it turned quickly into a rout. I suffered 437 additional deaths to this army, killing 738 of enemy. I think fatigue was the main killer, but also those bull warriors can really put up a fight... It was a "heroic victory".

I really wish you could save campaign battle replays...

SomeNick
01-05-2006, 03:23
Playing as any hoplite unit faction I can sit in a town square and hold off vast amounts of enemy armies as long as I can retrain, and the enemy army doesn't have too many missile units.

In one campaign I held off nearly 50000+ Romans over many years with a simple armoured hoplite army in Appolonia. Lost a few Generals though when very outnumbered but never lost the town :)

Lanemerkel1
01-05-2006, 06:50
My favorite is to place a batch of skirmishers (cheap) in front of a unit of spears at the flank.

From what I can tell, the AI can't resist mowing down the shooters but the follow through lands them on the hoplite's point sticks....and there was much rejoicing.

What's your favorite trick?



my favorite is to use the Cavalry Auxilia (4 Units per each Army) to harass the enemy while I move my Urban Cohorts (10 Units per each Army) and Praetorian Cavalry (5 Units per each army, 1 being the General) into position, once that's done I tell the Cavalry Auxilia to rout (they almost always run straight to my Cohorts/Praetorians which are hidden in the forest) since their not needed any more and then I send my Cohorts charging straight into the enemy ranks (unless I'm facing a Phalanx in which case I at all costs try to charge them from the side) while my Praetorians charge straight into the enemy flank or (in the case of a phalanx when the cohorts are getting the flanks) the rear.


some times when I am short on Denarii I trade Roman/Legionary Cavalry for Praetoriand Cavalry and Early/Legionary/Praetorian/First Cohorts for my Urban Cohorts.

and before the marian reforms I use Princepes (or Hastati when I'm short on cash), Equites and Cavalry Auxilia


sure the Cohorts/Marian Cavalry are expensive, but one time 3 units of Urbans sent an entire gaul army of 500 men to flight

another time 10 units of Roman Cavalry sent an entire gaul army of almost 1500 men to flight 4 seconds after my charge hit their lines


usually this works like a charm seeing as how the Urbans/Praetorians are heavily armed AND armored so they inflict maximum damage and minimal losses and the Auxilia are quick enough that they can outrun ANYTHING so due to their status as skirmishers I hardly ever lose ANY of them

Lanemerkel1
01-05-2006, 07:13
This one works best with Roman or Greek cities against armies with a lot of low level troops such as a horde army.

Abandon the walls except for one unit that stays a good long way away from where any of the enemy units are coming in. Put everything else blocking the streets that lead onto the town square, or on the town square itself.

The enemy easily gets over the walls and then march everything towards the square. Once all their units are inside including their general(s) send the one unit on the walls round and recapture any gates/towers the enemy took. You now have the entire army trapped in your city to be brutally massacred in the streets.



sneaky


I'm gonna have to try that, even though I'm usually on the offensive in Campaign mode not the defensive

Lanemerkel1
01-05-2006, 15:38
Making hoplites chase my velites, while another unit of velites sneaks in behind the hoplites and unloads volley after volley of javelins right into their arses. If hoplites turn to face the velites #2, the the velites #1 do the same. ~:joker: This tactic works with any other skirmishing unit, as long as the unit is fast, or faster than the target. ~D



neat, would Cavalry Auxilia (Mounted Skirmishers) work?

x-dANGEr
01-08-2006, 06:08
neat, would Cavalry Auxilia (Mounted Skirmishers) work?
Propably yes.

Doug-Thompson
01-09-2006, 15:26
.
Put a spear/missile heavy army on a bridge and see hordes comit suicide.
.

Bingo.

A close second would be using HA to goad the enemy general into a charge, then flee straight back into a unit of mounted camels.

Just A Girl
01-10-2006, 11:02
My fave trick to totaly destroy the Ai army is....

To turn up on the battel feild in person and not use auto calk,

100% Victory every time.