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View Full Version : Assassin's Creed III - A Complete Guide to Fort AI Mechanics



David2010549
06-09-2013, 09:59 PM
You may be aware of my ongoing series on AC3's Forts (thread here: http://forums.ubi.com/showthread.php/751076-So-I-decided-to-play-AC3-as-a-hardcore-stealth-game), but my most recent video is a compilation of things I've observed while playing the game, specific mechanics pertaining to the idea of "stealth," in the Fort environments where they are most relevant. There are mechanics that are unique to Forts as well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=POuIUCyeqa8

I wanted to draw attention to this specific video and its companion document (https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/16850050/Assassin%27s%20Creed%20III%20-%20A%20Complete%20Guide%20to%20Fort%20AI%20Mechani cs.rtf) because I believe it can clear up a great deal of confusion about the game's mechanics. If you have any questions or comments about any of my other videos, please post them in the thread linked above; this new thread is meant to address stealth mechanics in a more general sense. Of course, some of my other videos do illustrate elements that aren't in this one, so I recommend you watch them as well, but this one is foundational and the ideas in it can be applied broadly. I hope people find this enlightening.

David2010549
06-21-2013, 12:42 PM
Wow, I'm surprised no one was interested in this. I know it's rather niche, but I've seen lots of talk about stealth mechanics on this forum, and unfortunately not a whole lot of clarity. I think this could really improve the quality of discussion, and let the developers know what we want. I wonder if all these mechanics will stay the same for ACIV.

MadJC1986
06-21-2013, 12:58 PM
I wonder if all these mechanics will stay the same for ACIV.

I hope not!

shobhit7777777
06-21-2013, 01:00 PM
Thanks for sharing, wood.

roostersrule2
06-21-2013, 02:04 PM
Thanks for sharing wood.woahhhhhhhhhhhhh.

pacmanate
06-21-2013, 02:13 PM
woahhhhhhhhhhhhh.

That definitely escalated quicker than expected

shobhit7777777
06-21-2013, 02:22 PM
woahhhhhhhhhhhhh.

Thats what she said














Seriously, I thought it would be at least a couple of post before someone bit the bait

AvK KiNgKoBrA
06-21-2013, 02:56 PM
Will u be doin this for AC4?

David2010549
06-22-2013, 06:28 AM
My username is a little reference to a community from my early days on the internet and a game I hold very dear. It's the same with my YouTube username and icon. I'd love to do videos like these for AC4, but that all depends on the quality of the game. I have high hopes for it, and from what's been shown I'm very confident that it will equal AC3 at the very least.

pacmanate
06-22-2013, 01:38 PM
Will u be doin this for AC4?

Hopefully these will be fixed :|

Ureh
06-22-2013, 03:02 PM
Splendid walkthroughs!

SixKeys
06-22-2013, 03:27 PM
You obviously put a lot of effort into making these videos, Woodbeam. Much appreciated.

Unfortunately this just strengthens my feelings on the stealth in AC3 being broken and makes me not want to play these missions ever again. The AI is too unreliable and sometimes downright nonsensical, as evidenced by the sometimes-changing-sometimes-not patrol routes on high alert and the corpse detection system. It makes no sense that guards can detect a corpse behind them when their direct line of sight is facing in the opposite direction. Especially when these guards are sometimes several feet away and wouldn't hear the body flopping onto the ground. Having the patrol routes change unpredictably completely defeats the purpose of planning ahead. It's sad that even figuring out how these mechanics work is pretty much only possible via a cheat. I'm so done with AC3-style "stealth". I can only hope AC4's AI is closer to the Ezio games.

Ureh
06-22-2013, 04:32 PM
Yeah even when you do the fist assassination and Connor slowly rests the body on the ground they'll still know it's there without looking. The funny thing is if you use corner assassination the body will not be detected even when investigating guards are staring at it.

David2010549
06-24-2013, 04:00 AM
SixKeys, you might have misunderstood about guard patrol route changes. Basically there are two different Fort formations: default and high alert. Not every patrol route changes during high alert, but those that do always will, it's perfectly consistent. I'm of two minds about the corpse detection system; I think it should be limited to line of sight, but using enemies to lure others is an ability I think players should have. An obvious solution would be to make high profile kills lure enemies within a certain radius instead of alerting them outright if they don't have line of sight, that would kill two birds with one stone by removing that very frustrating mechanic while adding a new option. Special cases like double and air assassinations would need some tweaking in this case, but really they need it anyway. Regardless, neither of those things defeats the purpose of planning ahead. If they did, I wouldn't have been able to do what I have. I figured out pretty much everything without using the Ninja Animus Hack, but it did and continues to help a great deal with experimentation, and I'm fine with that. If it doesn't return in AC4 I'll be very disappointed, I'd also like it not to be tied to something that requires a connection to Ubisoft servers.

Ureh, corner assassinated corpses actually are detected when they come into an enemy's line of sight. They'll often comment on them, usually making fun of them for "sleeping on the job," but otherwise ignoring them. Whether they should ever actually investigate is a different issue. You probably knew this already, but I just wanted to clarify in case you didn't.

Wolfmeister1010
06-24-2013, 04:11 AM
SixKeys, you might have misunderstood about guard patrol route changes. Basically there are two different Fort formations: default and high alert. Not every patrol route changes during high alert, but those that do always will, it's perfectly consistent. I'm of two minds about the corpse detection system; I think it should be limited to line of sight, but using enemies to lure others is an ability I think players should have. An obvious solution would be to make high profile kills lure enemies within a certain radius instead of alerting them outright if they don't have line of sight, that would kill two birds with one stone by removing that very frustrating mechanic while adding a new option. Special cases like double and air assassinations would need some tweaking in this case, but really they need it anyway. Regardless, neither of those things defeats the purpose of planning ahead. If they did, I wouldn't have been able to do what I have. I figured out pretty much everything without using the Ninja Animus Hack, but it did and continues to help a great deal with experimentation, and I'm fine with that. If it doesn't return in AC4 I'll be very disappointed, I'd also like it not to be tied to something that requires a connection to Ubisoft servers.

Ureh, corner assassinated corpses actually are detected when they come into an enemy's line of sight. They'll often comment on them, usually making fun of them for "sleeping on the job," but otherwise ignoring them. Whether they should ever actually investigate is a different issue. You probably knew this already, but I just wanted to clarify in case you didn't.
Yeah but the guards don't respond sometimes even when they SEE their friend being yanked around a corner. They only detect you if they are literally 2 feet away when doing corner assassinations.

SixKeys
06-24-2013, 04:17 AM
SixKeys, you might have misunderstood about guard patrol route changes. Basically there are two different Fort formations: default and high alert. Not every patrol route changes during high alert, but those that do always will, it's perfectly consistent.

I understood it, I just don't like the way it's implemented. In your video you show a few situations where it would make sense for the fort to go into high alert mode and for the patrol routes to change, but they don't (or at least not for very long). Guard AI and pathfinding in AC3 is already inconsistent enough as it is; many times my cover has been blown simply because one guard got stuck twirling around in circles along his patrol route, so his line of sight catches me when it shouldn't. To implement these case-sensitive alert systems and unpredictable patrol changes on top of such unreliable mechanics is pure madness. IMO this is another example of the over-ambition of the AC3 devs. They implemented a system which in theory sounds good, but let's face it, AI has never been one of the series' strengths. They made the system needlessly complicated and the already flawed basic AI only makes the problems glaringly obvious.

About corpse detection: there's no point to stealth kills if enemies can magically detect a corpse several feet behind them. There needs to be an incentive for them to go and investigate. In previous games guards would only investigate if the body happened to be on their patrol route, or if you threw it in front of them from a rooftop. I think sound would be the most logical next step. Not the sound of a body flopping on the ground behind them (as seems to be the case right now), but being able to lure guards towards an already dead body when you choose. Throwing a pebble towards the body, for example. The player should be able to soundlessly kill a guard behind another one's back, and the living guard should only be lured towards the corpse thanks to a direct cause (sight or sound).

David2010549
06-24-2013, 05:44 AM
Yeah but the guards don't respond sometimes even when they SEE their friend being yanked around a corner. They only detect you if they are literally 2 feet away when doing corner assassinations.
That's different from what Ureh talked about. Also, you're incorrect in my experience; enemies will see you from long distances during corner assassinations. I don't know if their sight range is effectively shortened during them, but 2 feet is definitely inaccurate. I actually think making corner assassinations more subtle could be beneficial.


I understood it, I just don't like the way it's implemented. In your video you show a few situations where it would make sense for the fort to go into high alert mode and for the patrol routes to change, but they don't (or at least not for very long).

Could you be more specific? It seems that you're referring to the period right after a powder reserve explosion, when the bell rings and the Fort goes on high alert until it stops, but that's one situation, not several. The rest are perfectly consistent as far as I know. I basically agree with everything else you said.