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USGamer: How StoryBricks and Voxel Farm are shaping EQN

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Comments

  • TelondarielTelondariel Ottawa, ONPosts: 1,001Member
    Originally posted by Mightyking
    Did they just reveal that guild cities can be attacked by NPC's? And possibly other guilds? Or are they basically referring to the rally call scenarios where Halas gets attacked?

    Check out 5:54 of this Q&A from Ten Ton Hammer.  Dave talks about permissions in regards to personal structures being attackable.

    image
  • TelondarielTelondariel Ottawa, ONPosts: 1,001Member
    Originally posted by SpottyGekko

    IF they can make this combo of voxels and StoryBricks work smoothly and in interesting ways, EQNext will be the new WoW.

     

    It will be a double knockout punch, the most interesting fantasy MMO on the market AND free to play. Who could resist ?

     

     

    Heh heh, well, I'm hesitant to go there regarding EQN superceding WoW.  Two entirely different game concepts.

     

    As for interesting, yes, absolutely.  the EQN team intentionally went to base zero to see where the MMO landscape currently is and how they could change it.  Although the degree of what they are proposing has rattled a lot of cages, I think their approach of setting off in a new direction is a good one.   I think if they pull this off it could be a game changer.

     

    This is why the Emergent AI really excites me.  It is a system that permeates the entire world.  Your actions will have consequences with NPC's based on who you are and what you've done.  This could include faction, race, gender and the entire history of your character's actions up until that point.  It's the degree of complexity that is intriguing.  You will have to go out into the world with a greater awareness of what you do.

    image
  • mambomemambome Brownwood, TXPosts: 16Member
    I really think that whether or not the StoryBricks AI will really change the game will depend greatly on the degree to which SOE implements it. For example, in the StoryBricks kickstarter you could watch a video where they were programming the AI of certain characters, and it was relatively simple and unimpressive. However, it was just an example of a single "trait" tag that you could give a character. Theoretically each character could have several overlapping trait tags that each have a complex interaction with other trait tags. My hope is that SOE provides dumber creatures with fewer trait tags, and smarter creatures with many more trait tags. I can even envision a system where newly spawned characters are assigned a random pool of personality trait tags, so that all NPCs have a relatively unique personality.
  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member

    voxelfarm.com has some videos and information what Voxel Farm is, and what it can do. Think Minecraft, but with Unreal Engine graphics. They don't have much more information than that.

    It generates terrain and "stuff" in the world in Real Time, either on the server or the "farm". I'm guessing that's the client. It allows for editing in the world; basically what we saw from the videos of Landmark.

    There's not really too much more to say about it. It could be adapted for those sieges mentioned so that certain materials or walls require siege engines to break, but not to build.

    The under world is generated in real time, instead of kept "on file" forever, reducing the amount of storage and the amount of bandwidth needed to play the game too. Looks cool. It should feed into the AI system nicely.

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • DrakephireDrakephire Fontana, CAPosts: 445Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Whiskey_Sam
     It is still a scripted response even if the script is more complex and has more possible outcomes than before.

    The same could be said about some humans....especially with their knee-jerk reactions to EQN.

  • r0guyr0guy ParisPosts: 115Member
    Originally posted by Whiskey_Sam
    Originally posted by Telondariel
    Originally posted by Whiskey_Sam
    Do those guys actually believe some of the crap they're saying?  "Emotional AI", guards reacting because of their "sense of justice".  It's a not a real person, it's a program.  It doesn't feel or have emotions.  It is still a scripted response even if the script is more complex and has more possible outcomes than before.

    In all the conversations and interviews that I've read, as well as presentations in panels over the weekend, no one has made any claims that this technology is approaching human AI.  A lot of descriptive words and phrases have been used to describe how the software works.  It's easier, and more comprehensive, when talking about how an NPC interacts with a player (or other NPC) in terms that we understand. 

     

    "What we were working on as a company before that is also what we call 'emotional A.I' so that you know, you can set up a character to have an emotional reaction. What this is generally portrayed through is body language or facial expression and this is one of the exciting things about the style of art for Everquest Next. It has very expressive faces so that way you can see if the character's happy or sad or worried."

     

    Green has programmed physical representations of internal scripts so that we, as players, can be entertained and more clearly see what is going on.  I am going to refer you to the video from the article which shows the internal scripting of StoryBricks, which starts at 1:11. 

     

    We are all aware (well, most of us) that this is just clever programming dealing with reactionary scripts.

     

     

     

     

    Elder Scrolls games have done this for a while.  NPCs with their own schedules and behaviors, NPCs whose demeanor, facial expressions, and responses change based on their disposition toward you.  I don't recall them ever trying to sell it as emotional responses or having their NPCs react in an unscripted way.  That is marketing nonsense.

     

    Then I'll refresh your memory, the language used in this E3 2005 dev walkthrough of TES:Oblivion is the same:

  • PlumpPlump Acushnet, MAPosts: 10Member
    MMO marketing buzzword input limit reached
  • penandpaperpenandpaper Romeoville, ILPosts: 83Member

    Been forever since I posted, but I had to at this.

    There are so many smart and logical people on this site.  It should be apparent that EQNext is trying to do something different.  Something no one has accomplished before.  So it would make sense that when they talk about it (they are people after all), they use phrases that represent their hopes and wants inside their game (it is their baby).  It's like hearing someone talk about their kid: "She is so smart!  She is so clever!"  No she isn't she's two years old.  But, they have a hope and a wish and a dream that this is how people will respond and see her.  Same is true for a game you've given yourself to.

    All that said, I do see a possible flaw with the AI.  What if, it's a little too smart?  I mean, what happens when you start getting killed by two goblins because they've gotten used to your play?  One reason people like MMO's is because there is a bit of mindlessness to them.  Exploring and running around.  That's one reason Skyrim did well.  Many opponents ran up and you just hacked them.  In fact, in the end, you could do that with almost all opponents.  Yet many rave about Skyrim's combat system.

    I think it has more to do with what you do and how you look doing it, than the response of the creatures, unless those creatures vary response slowly. (ie. Kill a hundred orcs in a tribe and they become immune to your cold spell.)

    Just a thought.

  • AmylionAmylion BerlinPosts: 38Member
    Originally posted by Whiskey_Sam

    Read the quote you posted again.  "they wouldn't just have pre-scripted actions".  "we want them to be afraid".  That is marketing BS.  They do not experience fear; they do not have a sense of justice.  They are still scripted actions.  Adding more complexity to the scripts and more outcomes is a wonderful thing.  But the moment they start overselling it with nonsense like this makes me start question why.

    I don't think they expected the players to be that stupid that latter would assume that the NPCs would actually feel human emotions.

    I question your motives to downplay the system of emergent A.I. What's the point in making looking yourself silly and grumpy?

    Others just shoot the zombies which are chasing us. Whereas I try to talk to them.

    If the brainless realized that it is dead, maybe, just maybe, it would lay itself down to rest...

  • grimjakkgrimjakk Tumwater, WAPosts: 192Member
    Originally posted by Drakephire
    Originally posted by Whiskey_Sam
     It is still a scripted response even if the script is more complex and has more possible outcomes than before.

    The same could be said about some humans....especially with their knee-jerk reactions to EQN.

     

    Ooh.  Burn.  ;)

     

    There is a wiki article on intelligent agents that might be a useful read for anyone who doesn't want to sound like they're talking out their ass about AI.  (Not that I don't understand that talking asses have a long and storied tradition on MMO forums...)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intelligent_agent

    You might recognize the standard MMO mob as a 'model-based reflex agent' in that list.

     

    What storybricks brings to the table is a system for using utility-based (finds best action-list to reach its goal) and/or learning agents (grades its performance and tries to improve it).  They could be different agents to control different layers of behavior... or something completely different. 

     

    But it isn't science fiction.  If you use OCR or voice recognition software or even Google Translate, you're already using this stuff.

     

     

  • TelondarielTelondariel Ottawa, ONPosts: 1,001Member
    Originally posted by mambome
    I really think that whether or not the StoryBricks AI will really change the game will depend greatly on the degree to which SOE implements it. For example, in the StoryBricks kickstarter you could watch a video where they were programming the AI of certain characters, and it was relatively simple and unimpressive. However, it was just an example of a single "trait" tag that you could give a character. Theoretically each character could have several overlapping trait tags that each have a complex interaction with other trait tags. My hope is that SOE provides dumber creatures with fewer trait tags, and smarter creatures with many more trait tags. I can even envision a system where newly spawned characters are assigned a random pool of personality trait tags, so that all NPCs have a relatively unique personality.

    This appears to be the case.  It was mentioned by Dave on two occasions:  in the Reveal and in a Q&A.  He gave the example of Orcs, saying they would have relatively few AI tags where more complex mobs and encounters would have more.

    image
  • Jean-Luc_PicardJean-Luc_Picard La BarrePosts: 3,544Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Caldrin
    Originally posted by Jean-Luc_Picard

    Nice article, thanks!

     

    Also, that "StarForge" game also using Voxel Farm is on Steam in alpha stage right now...

    Yup got ti already and its already pretty decent..

    Really? Various comments seems to hint that there's not much to do in that game in its current state... and it's still $20 they ask us to pay for it.

    I'm still tempted just to see the "Voxel Farm" engine in action, but I try not to give my money for unfinished products which may never be finished either...

    Playing now: WoW, Landmark, GW2, The Crew, SotA

    Top 3 MMORPGs played: UO, AC1 and WoW

    Honorable mentions: AO, LotRO, SW:TOR and GW2.

    ----------------

    "The ability to speak doesn't make you intelligent" - Qui-gon Jinn. After many years of reading Internet forums, there's no doubt that neither does the ability to write.
    So if you notice that I'm no longer answering your nonsense, stop trying... because you just joined my block list.

  • TelondarielTelondariel Ottawa, ONPosts: 1,001Member
    Originally posted by penandpaper

    Been forever since I posted, but I had to at this.

    There are so many smart and logical people on this site.  It should be apparent that EQNext is trying to do something different.  Something no one has accomplished before.  So it would make sense that when they talk about it (they are people after all), they use phrases that represent their hopes and wants inside their game (it is their baby).  It's like hearing someone talk about their kid: "She is so smart!  She is so clever!"  No she isn't she's two years old.  But, they have a hope and a wish and a dream that this is how people will respond and see her.  Same is true for a game you've given yourself to.

    All that said, I do see a possible flaw with the AI.  What if, it's a little too smart?  I mean, what happens when you start getting killed by two goblins because they've gotten used to your play?  One reason people like MMO's is because there is a bit of mindlessness to them.  Exploring and running around.  That's one reason Skyrim did well.  Many opponents ran up and you just hacked them.  In fact, in the end, you could do that with almost all opponents.  Yet many rave about Skyrim's combat system.

    I think it has more to do with what you do and how you look doing it, than the response of the creatures, unless those creatures vary response slowly. (ie. Kill a hundred orcs in a tribe and they become immune to your cold spell.)

    Just a thought.

    It has been touched on briefly a couple of times, but Dave has said mobs will be tuned.  So, for run-of-the-mill stuff like a common goblin in a lowbie area, it's not going to be a genius.  However, further into the woods and in a cave, there might be a goblin leader who is a Shaman and he has a small camp of guards, healers, scouts, etc.  The AI complexity would shift given the scenario, which, imho, is pretty awesome. 

    image
  • wizardanimwizardanim Apple Valley, CAPosts: 278Member

    Fantastic article, thanks for sharing.

    I'd like to point something out ... 

    [quote]

    • According to Green, Storybricks is currently working on assisting Sony in the development of combat A.I and ambient A.I for the upcoming MMO. 
    I've seen the available story bricks videos.  The complexity of personality profiles seems rather impressive.  This quote speaks to me to say that monsters will have very different tactical approaches, when considering how to kill them.
     
    I am very much looking forward to unique mobs, not just to the tune of skills, spells, or armor, but personality and behavior.  In an mmo setting, this will really make some waves and could be very fun.
  • Jean-Luc_PicardJean-Luc_Picard La BarrePosts: 3,544Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Telondariel

    It has been touched on briefly a couple of times, but Dave has said mobs will be tuned.  So, for run-of-the-mill stuff like a common goblin in a lowbie area, it's not going to be a genius.  However, further into the woods and in a cave, there might be a goblin leader who is a Shaman and he has a small camp of guards, healers, scouts, etc.  The AI complexity would shift given the scenario, which, imho, is pretty awesome. 

    Interesting point your raise here in my opinion. Usually, in the average MMORPG, a single player can run into a mob camp and AOE them down...

    I'd love to see team play between the various inhabitants of a same camp (camp could mean, well camp, but also village, fort, castle, etc..., aka mob community). I think that while hunting individual goblin scouts in the forest is something a player should be able to do solo, even though the goblins may want to run away if they realize they are losing to go warn their friends, taking a whole camp of mobs should require a group of players. A skilled player may be able to take 2 or even 3 goblins, but definitely not a whole camp with a "superior mind" (that shaman) leading it.

     

    Originally posted by wizardanim

    This quote speaks to me to say that monsters will have very different tactical approaches, when considering how to kill them.

    Aye.. For instance, that lone goblin scout spots you (the player) in the forest, but you didn't see him... He may very well choose to sneak in your back for a surprise attack, unlike most other MMOs where he will simply bee-line to you.

    Playing now: WoW, Landmark, GW2, The Crew, SotA

    Top 3 MMORPGs played: UO, AC1 and WoW

    Honorable mentions: AO, LotRO, SW:TOR and GW2.

    ----------------

    "The ability to speak doesn't make you intelligent" - Qui-gon Jinn. After many years of reading Internet forums, there's no doubt that neither does the ability to write.
    So if you notice that I'm no longer answering your nonsense, stop trying... because you just joined my block list.

  • wizardanimwizardanim Apple Valley, CAPosts: 278Member
    Originally posted by Jean-Luc_Picard
    Originally posted by Telondariel
    <snip> 

    <snip>

    Originally posted by wizardanim

    This quote speaks to me to say that monsters will have very different tactical approaches, when considering how to kill them.

    Aye.. For instance, that lone goblin scout spots you (the player) in the forest, but you didn't see him... He may very well choose to sneak in your back for a surprise attack, unlike most other MMOs where he will simply bee-line to you.

    Scouts! Very cool to think about.  Here is a quote from the article I failed to include - for people who don't want to read the entire thing, but want similar info:

    • Having said that, it's certainly intriguing to see how their influence might help mold Everquest Next. Green went into further detail about how combat may possibly work. " What we want to do is we want to have combat to be, you know, an encounter. Something that's interesting to the player. One of the things we're working on is basically different types of monsters. Tying into something that we were talking about, if we have a monster type that is going to be timid, they might not try to engage in direct combat. Maybe, they're going to do something like lead you through traps or maybe try flanking maneuvers or something like that. You're going to have to adjust your tactics to what kind of monster. And as you adjust your tactics, they're going to adjust their tactics. What we want is to have it so that combat doesn't just become 'I see something, I hit the right buttons, and then it dies and I take the treasure.' We want it to be an interesting part of gameplay." 
  • penandpaperpenandpaper Romeoville, ILPosts: 83Member
    Originally posted by Telondariel
    Originally posted by penandpaper

    Been forever since I posted, but I had to at this.

    There are so many smart and logical people on this site.  It should be apparent that EQNext is trying to do something different.  Something no one has accomplished before.  So it would make sense that when they talk about it (they are people after all), they use phrases that represent their hopes and wants inside their game (it is their baby).  It's like hearing someone talk about their kid: "She is so smart!  She is so clever!"  No she isn't she's two years old.  But, they have a hope and a wish and a dream that this is how people will respond and see her.  Same is true for a game you've given yourself to.

    All that said, I do see a possible flaw with the AI.  What if, it's a little too smart?  I mean, what happens when you start getting killed by two goblins because they've gotten used to your play?  One reason people like MMO's is because there is a bit of mindlessness to them.  Exploring and running around.  That's one reason Skyrim did well.  Many opponents ran up and you just hacked them.  In fact, in the end, you could do that with almost all opponents.  Yet many rave about Skyrim's combat system.

    I think it has more to do with what you do and how you look doing it, than the response of the creatures, unless those creatures vary response slowly. (ie. Kill a hundred orcs in a tribe and they become immune to your cold spell.)

    Just a thought.

    It has been touched on briefly a couple of times, but Dave has said mobs will be tuned.  So, for run-of-the-mill stuff like a common goblin in a lowbie area, it's not going to be a genius.  However, further into the woods and in a cave, there might be a goblin leader who is a Shaman and he has a small camp of guards, healers, scouts, etc.  The AI complexity would shift given the scenario, which, imho, is pretty awesome. 

    That is simply awesome...

     

  • leoo88556leoo88556 TaipeiPosts: 135Member

    Time for the "proof of the pudding" quote again XD

    As good as it sound, EVERY system has their own problems.

    Trinity is static and complicated, aggro is dumb and unrealistic, action combat suffer from latency and eventually lead to button smashing, no tanks/healers causes zerg and boring dungeons, real physic create a troll fest but the lack of it is weird and unreal...

    Though if they can manage to deliver their promises without creating something that will drive people away, it's gonna be awesome! So... glass half full here :)

  • ElRenmazuoElRenmazuo Alexandria, VAPosts: 4,546Member Uncommon

    People act like this level AI is impossible yet there are already lots of games where AI like this exist.

    Rage, F.E.A.R., Uncharted 2-3, Far Cry 3, and The Last of Us for example, just because this level of AI haven't been used in mmos doesn't mean its not possible.  The enemy in those games will always try to flank you and you wouldnt even notice, throw grenades to get you out of cover, move around a lot and change cover, dodge your attacks, even throw your grenades back, call on back up, use weapons in the environment.

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