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Thread: Development Diary #35 - 1st of July 2009

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    Studio Manager Paradox Dev Team Johan's Avatar
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    Development Diary #35 - 1st of July 2009

    Naval, Air units and the theatre AI

    One of the most consistent things we have noticed on our forum was people asking about invasions and the escorting of transports. You will have probably noticed that we tend not to answer these questions. This is mainly because it was an absolute waste of time. The AI you will see in Hearts of Iron 3, although drawing on our accumulated experience, was built from scratch. For that point of view we were never going to look to fix the Hearts of Iron 2 AI, instead we were looking to build a better one. From the first principals of design upwards.

    Our first design decision, which you all know about, is the theatre. A theatre is a singular AI entity, and the highest level in the on the map AI for the control of units. A theatre holds not just land units, but air and naval as well. Having these under the control of a single AI entity meant it would seek to coordinate all the units types. Thus when fleets go to sea the theatre AI includes these areas of operation when thinking about where fighters should be looking to intercept enemy air units. NAVs sit on standby to support naval combats and also seek to bomb enemy units in ports and at sea.

    This comes into its own with the invasion system. An invasion is no longer just simply shipping some units into an enemy province. It is a combined arms operation; it involves land units for the landing. Transports to move them. Naval units to escort the transports. Battleships to shore bombard the beaches. Air units to provide air cover and bomb enemies.

    In fact the AI goes one better when planning invasions. If it has a target in mind it moves air power within range to support the invasion. Brings transports and supporting naval units to ports close by and moves troops to these ports in preparation for the invasion.

    The AI doesn’t end there. If you are playing with theatre AI on it will kindly tell you that it needs transport to move things and ships to escort them. After all how do you expect the AI to do an invasion without them?

    This is part of the power of the theatre system of air/naval/land in a single entity. World War II very much relied on a combined arms approach to victory and for our AI to have any chance of being an interesting opponent it would have to be able to do the same. Before the first line of code was written this was planned into our approach for the AI.


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    Great!
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  4. #4
    nice!

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    Absolutely brlliant!

    So, if I create "Heeresgruppe Seelöwe" AI theatre and give London as an objective, the AI will prepare and execute the invasion?

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    Better and better

    It´s just getting better and better!

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    Studio Manager Paradox Dev Team Johan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NrmK View Post
    Absolutely brlliant!

    So, if I create "Heeresgruppe Seelöwe" AI theatre and give London as an objective, the AI will prepare and execute the invasion?
    yeah.

    Johan Andersson
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  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Johan View Post
    Naval, Air units and the theatre AI

    One of the most consistent things we have noticed on our forum was people asking about invasions and the escorting of transports. You will have probably noticed that we tend not to answer these questions. This is mainly because it was an absolute waste of time. The AI you will see in Hearts of Iron 3, although drawing on our accumulated experience, was built from scratch. For that point of view we were never going to look to fix the Hearts of Iron 2 AI, instead we were looking to build a better one. From the first principals of design upwards.

    Our first design decision, which you all know about, is the theatre. A theatre is a singular AI entity, and the highest level in the on the map AI for the control of units. A theatre holds not just land units, but air and naval as well. Having these under the control of a single AI entity meant it would seek to coordinate all the units types. Thus when fleets go to sea the theatre AI includes these areas of operation when thinking about where fighters should be looking to intercept enemy air units. NAVs sit on standby to support naval combats and also seek to bomb enemy units in ports and at sea.
    As I understand it, the theatre is country-specific. Does an alliance of AI countries decide that all other countries will be subordinate to a given leader (Britain, US), and will then provide expeditionary forces?

    If two allied countries find themselves each with a beachead, are they capable of figuring out how to cooperate? Or does each country's theatre AI only take their own forces into consideration?

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    Second Lieutenant NrmK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johan View Post
    yeah.
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    General Meagher's adjutant Leprechaun's Avatar
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    Is it possible that I can control e.g. the ground forces of a theatre but let the AI handle the air foce?
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    Looks good!

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    For manually planning an Invasion:

    Can you just ship around with your invasion fleet with troops on board and "land" or "unload" on individual provinces (like HOI2) or do you have to plan and start this invasion from a harbour in range and can not stop it landing on another province (like betapatch for Arma) ?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leprechaun View Post
    Is it possible that I can control e.g. the ground forces of a theatre but let the AI handle the air foce?
    NO you would need to detach the ground units from the theatre
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    Seems great!

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    Quote Originally Posted by King View Post
    NO you would need to detach the ground units from the theatre
    OK, good to know, thanks!
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    wohoo can't wait to see what the AI tells me what it wants for "Operation Seeloewe"
    sounds really great, cant wait until august
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  20. #20
    For the AI theatre, the naval forces will be consider as brigades, as air units integrated in a AI command structure ?

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