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Tactical Behaviors

Fundamentally, strategies are composed of low-level actions, although it's more convenient to express them as tactical behaviors. Of course, behaviors are brought to life using individual actions, but abstracting out the actions simplifies the development of high-level tactics.

Tactical behaviors can be decomposed into independent actions—including movement:

  • Seek— Move toward another player.

  • Flee— Move away from a player.

  • Wander— Move around randomly.

  • Stand— Keep still.

Vision is one of the most important senses; players can look in different ways in different situations:

  • Look away— Turn the view in another direction.

  • Focus— Track a particular player.

  • Scan— Look around the world.

  • Ahead— View follows the movement.

When it comes to deathmatch games, the attack method is also important:

  • Violent fire— Cause as much damage as possible.

  • Prevent self-damage— Prevent losing health.

  • Increase probabilities— Try to hit the player more often.

  • Decrease damage— Enemy suffers little.

  • No fire— Stop shooting.

Finally, gathering behaviors are considered useful in tactical terms:

  • Weapons— Locate new arms.

  • Ammo— Pick up rounds for the weapons.

  • Armor— Find protection.

  • Health— Locate medical treatment.

  • None— Do not worry about gathering.

Specific tactical behaviors—such as hunting or escaping—can be expressed in terms of existing components providing functionality (for instance, movement or aiming). These can be created by customizing any AI techniques discussed throughout this book.

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