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Max_Caine

NPC Combatant involvement in Xenonauts 2?

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So, one of the more interesting elements of Xenonauts were the friendly NPC combatants. Not that, in general, they were much good for anything than dying quickly to plasma but they were an endless source of stories. I think my favorite was the one where a player was on a farm map, they heard the double blast of a shotgun off-screen and found a farmer standing over the dead corpse of a Sebillian. 

 

Will Xenonauts 2 have NPC combatant involvement? Will it be any more complex than Xenonauts? That is one area where Xenonauts does have a leg up on its more affluent cousins. 

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Yup, we're planning to put those guys in the game in the same way as in X1. They're mostly supported already, although there's a bug where the alien turn is before the friendly NPC turn so they're currently not as effective as they were in Xenonauts 1. We'll fix that though.

I'm open to suggestions on how they can be made more effective or interesting than they were in X1. I would prefer to avoid anything that gave you direct control over them, though - I think everyone loves it when the friendly NPCs kill an alien specifically because they're not something you can control.

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Shotgun farmers tend to be pretty good, LMG soldiers sometimes too, if they manage to suppress. The rest of the NPCs mostly is there for flair, though there might be situations where they accidentally shoot or suppress your guys, which can be really bad.

As for changes, the only one I really, really want to see is some way (other than stun or kill them) to get them out of the way. Ideally the system would not be exploitable in the form that you could shove them in front of your soldiers as meat shields. Or maybe that could be some (dark) fun, too.

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Perhaps the thing I would like to see most is better placement of NPC combatants vis. aliens. I don't expect the NPC combatants to last long (after all, the Xenonauts are the stars of the show!) but it'd be nice to give them half a chance by not placing them in view of aliens aliens who fry them in the first turn. It would also be nice to be able to be able to use Agents (if you're still using Agents) to perhaps influence the presence of NPC combatants? Perhaps "military advisors" could influence how many NPC combatants there are on a map and how well equipped they are? So you can influence the ground combat maps on a strategic level without messing with the map designs directly. Also, late game in Xenonauts 1, NPCs were upgraded from ballistic weapons to lasers. Is there something that could be done with tech research to influence NPC arms and armour? 

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1 hour ago, Max_Caine said:

Perhaps the thing I would like to see most is better placement of NPC combatants vis. aliens. I don't expect the NPC combatants to last long (after all, the Xenonauts are the stars of the show!) but it'd be nice to give them half a chance by not placing them in view of aliens aliens who fry them in the first turn.

X-Division fixes this for terror maps by placing 95% of civilian and local spawn points inside of houses, while placing 100% of the invading forces outside of buildings.

This gives them very good defense for the first turns in form of sight block and basic cover. Local Forces can use the buildings to strategically shot from and hide again in a corner. Guaranteed they wont make it alone, but aliens will have to use resource points like moving and shooting over cover in order to engage them.

Edited by Charon

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Hi all. I would really love to see 3 random characteristics of  'sensible / disoriented / gutty' in NPC's. 

Sensible : Always go and hide in the small rooms (like in the movies where janitors keep their stuff and see passing aliens from the door gaps) . Whenever they see Xcom agents they go near chopper and wait there

Disoriented : Turned frenzy from ongoing shots and view of aliens running like crazy , running like headless chickens 

Gutty : Went on alien hunt with shotguns or small arms

The military personel might be gutty kind until they are overwhelmed . 

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It would be fun to see some reporters around. And there can be an extra bonus by saving them, like extra funding from saving them in a terror attack.

Also, some riot style civilian fighting the alien would be also interesting. Using cleaver, club, machete and even fist, or maybe throwing rock, brick and bottle.

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On 3/16/2019 at 12:28 AM, ioci said:

Using cleaver, club, machete and even fist, or maybe throwing rock, brick and bottle

Congratulations, you just brought a knife to a plasma fight ;)

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In a base defending mission, a scientist wanted to prove his swordsmanship, so he charged toward a lizardman with a scalpel in hand. Then BOOM and ketchup...

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On ‎2‎/‎17‎/‎2019 at 10:24 PM, gimli said:

Hi all. I would really love to see 3 random characteristics of  'sensible / disoriented / gutty' in NPC's. 

Sensible : Always go and hide in the small rooms (like in the movies where janitors keep their stuff and see passing aliens from the door gaps) . Whenever they see Xcom agents they go near chopper and wait there

Disoriented : Turned frenzy from ongoing shots and view of aliens running like crazy , running like headless chickens 

Gutty : Went on alien hunt with shotguns or small arms

The military personel might be gutty kind until they are overwhelmed . 

Instead of separate AI's, better for the AI to have STATES.

States would be (for example) PANIC, RETREAT, ESCAPE, HIDE, REGROUP, SEEK, ATTACK. Depending on type of NPC they would be going from state to state each turn, which would inform their objectives and behavior.

Soldiers would have a high change of using smarter states (regroup, retreat) while a civilian would generally not. Also, AI being able to pick up weapons and use them (not likely)

 

RETREAT - fall back to the edge of the map or a fortified position, catiously

REGROUP - seek to link up with friendlies.

ESCAPE - run away

SEEK - cautious advance

ASSIST - heal/defend or provide suppressive fire (friendlies have to be visible for this state)

HIDE  - seek a room or a place that blocks vision.

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On 4/23/2019 at 3:47 PM, Mr. Mister said:

Let them pick up weapons on the ground, both human and alien.

Bring extra weapons to equip the NPCs!

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