Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby Belloc » Sat Nov 07, 2009 11:38 pm

Koatanga wrote:Good write up.

However, I would like to present an anomaly that we have been enjoying for the past couple weeks:

When I equip my healing sword and shield, while still in prot spec and all other prot gear the same as my normal tanking set, they stick to me like glue.

I do the pull, so I have initial aggro - I'll grant that. And I am closest to them since they are attacking me - also granted. However, other melee DPS also attack them at the exact same range, and are ignored. They have less armour than I do (by a metric ton), and proximity is equal.

But ALL of the DPS go onto me at the start of the fight, and I keep them for about a minute while the healers franticly try to keep me vertical. Then the FCs drop as if uninterested for about the same amount of time, but spontaneously all decide to attack me again.

And by this I mean all of them. I seal and judge Justice, so the constant stuns should bother the one I am hitting, but that doesn't explain the behaviour of ones I am not even touching.

Our other Pally tank gets ignored almost completely. We are each assigned to a melee target to try to... well I don't know what exactly since our taunts are meaningless, but somehow the RL gives us the task of keeping them busy.

I used to run around after the warrior trying to get his attention while he raped clothies, (which is a dismaying task leaving one feel completely useless) until I noticed some OOM issues (since no one was paying attention to me, and I wasn't sealing/judging wisdom I got little mana return).

I can swap sword and shield and remain uncrittable, and it gives me a healthy boost to my mana pool, so I did. Since then, I'm the faction champion equivalent of methamphetimine.

I don't know why it happens, and it definitely does not conform to the rules laid out here, but I am curious if any of you experience the same thing.


Sounds like the health deficit part. You're constantly getting attacked, so you're constantly at a large health deficit.
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby Koatanga » Sun Nov 08, 2009 12:39 am

Belloc wrote:Sounds like the health deficit part. You're constantly getting attacked, so you're constantly at a large health deficit.
I would agree, but they leave me alone for a bit, then all get back on me. Since I am about the healthiest person in the raid once they leave me along, they shouldn't come back.
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby jokingjimmy » Sun Nov 08, 2009 7:59 am

I wonder if stats factor in. Not so much as a hard line, reference for calculation, but as a modifier. i.e. The Champs AI looks first at Armor/Health/Distance, then applies modifiers that adjusts THOSE numbers. So maybe the devs looked at classes that use higher INT, which for the pally exception, makes it a high percentage of lower armor value classes. Or the other possibility is that INT alone is a factor to increase threat and should be included in the original three. Are there any data/testing trends you've seen that support either of these ideas?

BTW, great post. My wife healed 25 ToC as disc last night, and really didn't get focused on except for twice by the Spriest, but she stayed WELL away from the conflict (max heal range) and never got mixed up in the ugliness in the middle too much. Your assumptions would support our experiences last night, especially the distance part - the other disc priest was being chased by the rogue 80% of the fight lol, but he tends to play closer in to the action.

To close, one last possibility... maybe they just hate 'locks. Our ToC runs sure hate our locks LOL.
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby Joanadark » Tue Nov 10, 2009 1:35 am

hey cool, i got linked on stratfu.
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby Worldie » Tue Nov 10, 2009 5:34 am

lolgz
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby Dane » Tue Nov 10, 2009 7:29 am

No one has any videos of this, do they? I swear I saw one on YouTube, but now I have no clue where to find it, and my guild doesn't believe me. We abandoned this after one wipe last night.

I figured if I got naked, and requipped, that'd give me the health deficit I needed, and charged in, that'd give me proximity, so they ought to all stick to me, right? They seemed to for a second, but I wasn't watching my health closely, and I think my healers topped me off. Either that, or it just didn't work, cause they went on their normal rampage.

I really want to get this down in normal, cause I think it'll make our ToGC attempts a million times easier.
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby bzzt » Wed Nov 11, 2009 4:23 pm

Just wanted to say thanks for taking the time to do this testing/writeup. We've been killing h champs for awhile now, but it always seems to be a struggle (a few wipes, some combination of suggested "improvements" usually boiling down to "quit being bad" before limping it home). Last night it was a one-shot that was never really in doubt. As clean or cleaner than our kills on normal, without really having an easy makeup (most of our favorites were there, ret pally, warrior, hunter, rogue, lock).

It was so stable feeling that our pallies pulled out their "victory DI's" on me that they usually reserve for normal mode (My pallies have decided its hilarious amounts of fun to DI me in the middle of a fight if they get bored...I'm learning to find it endearing :)).
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby Joanadark » Thu Nov 12, 2009 8:33 am

This was linked to me today by someone who read the thread. Note the Damage Taken meter in the bottom left.

Knowledge is power.

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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby fafhrd » Thu Nov 12, 2009 8:55 am

I see a bear at full health taking most of the damage - how's he holding it? Seems like he'd still be higher HP and higher AC than the people around him.
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby Joanadark » Thu Nov 12, 2009 9:12 am

having every single champion attacking him meant he had a constant influx of damage, and due to server latency the brief instants where he was brought to higher health didnt register fast enough to cause a target switch. He geared for stam, allowing him to keep a massive health deficit, while still being difficult for them to burst down.

they were also down to finishing off the healers at that point where the ss was taken, so it was fine to start topping him off.
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby lmichels » Thu Nov 12, 2009 3:59 pm

Have you also looked at the amount of heals that are interrupted as a form of threat for the dps also?

I bring this up because we were trying to progress through faction champions on ToGC 25 and were just getting owned. One of the things that allowed us to focus the damage happened to be a warrior tank on a healer. We first had a rogue on this healer but the rogue seemed to be getting targeted a very big number of times and for long periods. When we put the warrior on we were able to see exactly how long and the dps stuck to him like glue through most of the fight. This became more so as the fight went on. We have had a warlock on the other healer and he has been targeted far less. I think this is because he is on the druid and with instants there is a far less likely chance he will interrupt a heal.

Has anybody else noticed that # of interrupts increase threat drastically?
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby Dane » Thu Nov 12, 2009 5:00 pm

Here's a thought as well...I mentioned above that I got my group to try this, but only once...where I went in at a severe health deficit (got naked, then equipped tank gear), and ran in, popping DP as I did so.

Now, my suspicion was that I got topped off too quickly, negating my health deficit threat sig, but what effects might Divine Protection have?
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby Nuurdie » Mon Nov 16, 2009 10:34 am

What I noticed last night is that a lot of the mobs were focusing on our warrior for the most part. I've recommended that we NOT dispell things from the tanks and keep healing priority on the squishy types (cept locks, they die because they deserve it). We'll see how it goes.

All in all, this post and the comments have been extremely helpful. thanks all!
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby Meyrinn » Tue Nov 17, 2009 9:41 am

Are you implying that damage, healing, dispelling, and other such actions from players do not cause threat on the faction champs?

Also, I hope testing was done on Heroic as their behaviour seems different on Heroic as opposed to normal.
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Re: Faction Champions AI Behavior: A Definitive Analysis

Postby Joanadark » Tue Nov 17, 2009 12:46 pm

I've been quietly testing this encounter since it came out with various levels of participation by both my guild and PUGs, and have been coordinating and comparing tests with a buddy of mine in another guild doing the same research.
I've tested the concepts I described in both a 10 and a 25 man environment, on both normal and heroic modes. The basic methodology to test them for yourself is laid out for you in the OP, and I can go into detail on follow-up testing to get the finer details in any of the areas if you are interested.

I've heard a lot of people say that they think they observe a threat-element resulting from using CC or interrupts on a target, but I simply don't see that behavior consistently enough to believe it holds weight.
More likely its indirect application of the same threat principles. Most interrupts are very short ranged and possessed by low armor classes, and thus them moving into counterspell range of a target simply activates their proximity threat signature.
Similarly, for using CC, again you have classes with low armor coming into short range, or particularly in the case of cyclones, shifting from a high armor form into a low armor caster form.
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