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EverQuest Next

EverQuest Next 

General Discussion  » "Advanced AI, smart enough to make Trinity obsolete" is an outright PR lie.

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325 posts found

Elite Member

Joined: 6/11/13
Posts: 1596

8/16/13 6:30:51 PM#61

Gotta give the haters credit for starting posts like these and not even coming back to respond. Just throw statements out there and walk away.

At least it gets conversation going (not always the most constructive though).

OP already has his plans set to multi-box in FFXIV ARR.

I wouldn't want "advanced AI" either if I was planning on playing with me, myself, and I.

Wish they included a disclaimer before going on rants "I do not like and have no plans to play this game, but here are all my unfounded opinions on why it is terrible anyway." 


Apprentice Member

Joined: 8/04/13
Posts: 12

8/16/13 6:33:43 PM#62
Advanced AI is having mobs choose random targets... sounds so advanced.  Holy trinity is heals/tanks/dps not ENCHANTER some random enc probably made that up.  Its the 3 things you need to kill stuff, everything else is fluff.  EQN class system is so WACK it doesn't matter how advanced and AI is.  Theres nothing else an AI can do besides attack a healer after a while and not focus on the tank.  Which is completely annoying for a tank and makes them useless.  You want to run around knocking things back that are on ppl, sounds not fun.  I want to ENGAGE the enemy not run around knocking things back.

Advanced Member

Joined: 4/19/06
Posts: 537

8/16/13 6:35:03 PM#63
Originally posted by Aabel
Originally posted by Nadia

ANET said something similar in an old 2005 interview

ANET intentionally dumbed down the henchman in GW1 so players would seek out other players in the game, instead of relying on NPCs

I remember some of the AI in GW1 being rather frustrating. The damn mobs just wouldn't sit in the AE and die like good little lemmings, they had the audacity to move out of AE spells!

This is the type of thing that I hope we will see in EQ: N. I do not really care if some of you consider it PR hype, because ANY AI would be an improvement over what we see in most MMORPGs today.

I do not know how many here can relate to League of Legends, but I look at the bigger and most popular MMO (WoW, Rift) AI as being like the minions in LoL. GW1 had AI that were the equivalent to the enemy bots in LoL (the AI that compose the enemy team). No, the hero AI in LoL is not perfect but is a lot more damn challenging than the minions; that is what I want to see in EQ: N.

Little forum boys with their polished cyber toys: whine whine, boo-hoo, talk talk.


Advanced Member

Joined: 6/28/13
Posts: 154

8/16/13 7:03:11 PM#64
Originally posted by Dullahan

EQ1 had more advanced AI than any other mmo by a mile.  

Just a few examples of how things used to work back when games didn't cater to children and the mentally handicapped:

If you aggroed a mob, every mob within like a certain radius based on level would assist.  There was no mobs chained to other mobs, so you could use tactics to actually split them.  It was very common for someone to accidently pull dozens of mobs at a time because they would assist each other.

In EQ1, mobs would actually cast target based AE spells on you if you were standing near other party members (they'd never cast those spells otherwise). They would run up to you and point blank ae as well.  

If you were high on aggro list and you sat down, mobs would run up to you and get a free max damage round off on you, often 1 shotting you.  

If you had high aggro as say, a wizard, and went within melee range, a mob would often switch to attack you simply because of proximity.

If you were low health, regardless of anyone elses threat, the mob would go for you and attempt to finish you off and unless the mob was rooted or mezed, no amount of taunting would stop it.  Going below 20% on a boss meant you were the next to die if you weren't healed immediately.

Mobs would flee at low life if they were alone.  If they reached friendly mobs aggressive to you, they'd turn around.  If the mob was a caster and you pulled him away from his spawn area, he would teleport (gate) back at low health.

Mobs would roam around buffing each other.  They would heal each other as well.

In EQ1, there was no ability that forced aggro on a tank without substantial threat.  The taunt ability only worked permitted you already established considerable threat, and if someone else only slightly out-aggro'd you.  If, say, a caster nuked or debuffed a mob early, taunt was worthless.

The best threat tanks were hybrid tanks, but they were the weaker of the tanks.  The warrior which was the superior tank class, had to rely on weapons that procced spells or magic items with expendable charges.  There was no easy way of generating threat as a warrior in EQ.


Those are just a few things that come to mind regarding aggro in classic Everquest.  Its no wonder people hate so hard on threat management systems when all modern MMOs provide their tank classes with surefire ways of keeping aggro with very little risk involved.



Couldn't agree more. People forget or just don't know how complex the combat actually was in EQ. Sure, the bosses were usually some form of tank and spank without a lot of flashy circles or buttons/levers to push but the fights were a well-orchestrated dance of chaos trying to keep people alive, hold aggro, control adds and deal damage.

One of the previous posters mentioned the large EQ raids as being "zergy" which is laughable. Just because the raids were large didn't make the fights "zergs". 8 clerics chaining heals together to keep the tank alive with almost no margin for error is not a "zerg". Sure, you could bring way more people than the fight was designed for but that wasn't the norm and even then that didn't necessarily make the fight a lot easier..just a lot more laggy.

The reason people hate on the trinity so much has more to do with the dumbing down of MMOs in general than it does with the trinity system.


Apprentice Member

Joined: 5/31/12
Posts: 16

8/16/13 7:23:23 PM#65

One thing I think is overlooked here is I think people tend to looked at scripted as the same as AI. Take wow for example. In most encounters via dungeon or raids everything is scripted. Engage the monster. The monster has these 3 abilities uses them at different intervals. Players learn the order or sequence, learn not to stand in the fire and make sure DBM is up to date and beat the boss. Don't confuse current mmo group and raid encounters as AI they are static scripts coded to do the same thing over and over without choice.

True AI would be create a monster give them X number of abilities and let them choose to use what and when against the group of adventures. But like previous posters have said AI is far more efficient then player characters pressing keys on the keyboard. They have to dumb down the AI enough to give the players a chance. And when that happens it becomes more static script then AI. I think it is possible to find a medium between the both. But at what cost will they go to find that. The amount of tuning and balance may require more effort then they want to put in. That is what is most concerning to me as a player is I would love a group centric game like EQ again but they think roles and trinity war/cleric/chanter is outdated. I beg to differ on that one. No came since EQ has been as complex and diverse for group dynamics and immersion imo.

One more quick note about AI I remember seeing an interview when they were making the Lord of the Rings films. They were using AI for the orcs on the battle of helms deep. The AI was to smart that the first couple runs of the program the orcs scattered and ran from the flying objects rather stand there and take boulders to the face. So they had to dumb the AI down so they would hold formation. I found that rather funny.


Novice Member

Joined: 6/28/12
Posts: 137

8/16/13 7:34:44 PM#66

Creating a video game is no rocket science...

By advance AI I believe they didn't mean the best AI program in the world. It's just a better, more complex aggro system that won't allow tanks to just standing there spamming the same rotation while talking to their guildies about the weather in Chicago, you know, like in EVERY mmorpg.

The classic trinity is a system programmers used NOT TO make up for the AI's shortcomings, but actually creating a way to mimic really world battle. In my opinion, trinity can never die because that's just how military works: redirect enemy fire and hit their weak spots as hard as you can, while the support doing their thing to keep everything moving.

The problem with "dedicated" DPS/Tank/Healer is that they're just too simplified to a degree that they're just a bunch of math problems. Just because people like it doesn't mean the developers should try to mix it up in the right way to make to combat more dynamic.


Elite Member

Joined: 10/29/07
Posts: 17495

8/16/13 7:39:59 PM#67

How hard can it be creating a smarter AI then one that so easily attacks the worst possible target (from the mobs perspective)? I mean, the tank doesn't do much damage, and is really hard to kill. Get the healer or that old frail wizard instead.

But the thing is that the AI can't make the trinity obsolete, it can only make things harder/more interesting. To make the trinity obsolete you need another good group dynamics, one that award players working together and timing their skills.

The AI is not the problem at all, GW1 for example had smarter AI then most if not all other MMOs/CORPGs. The question is more if SOE can make a new group dynamics that is fun enough. 

It is however good that they try something different, unless they just copy GW2 because GW2 is already doing GW2 good, just like copying Wow is a bad idea.



Joined: 11/22/05
Posts: 16898

"what a boring life, HATING everything" -Gorilla Biscuits

8/16/13 7:41:01 PM#68
Originally posted by Dullahan
Originally posted by Distopia
Originally posted by Dullahan

The issue with AI isn't making it "smarter."  Thats just a matter of having pre-programmed instructions for all the general scenarios.  Theres really not that many variables, even if there are a hundreds.  

The problem people are overlooking is that traditional RPGs have classes, and every class has a function  When you make AI such that it circumvents a characters function or role, and only targets the physically weaker classes, the outcome will always be one of two things: a break down of the class functions where all classes are given the ability to become the de facto tank, whether its by evasion tanking (teleporting, jumping, dodging, rolling out of harms way) or changing the traditional class function to such that they are capable of physically tanking.  Thats it.  Those are the two options.  Evasion tanking = zerg combat.  Argue it all you want, but thats what guild wars 2 is.  An example of the other system is Darkfail where all classes are capable of becoming a tank by training defense and wearing heavy armor.

Its ok though, I'm sure SOE has found a way around this. 

And then there's option 3: games like Dragons Dogma...

First, it falls under option 1.  Second, its not even a multiplayer game.  Third, the kind of action combat in dragon's dogma, though cool, is created with solo gameplay in mind, and would never work in a massively multiplayer game.

Well it was originally planned as a co-op game, and the plan was scrapped. That's irrelevant though.

It's not really option one because there's really no tanking involved, instead each boss has a set of weaknesses and strengths that must be figured out to overcome. That aspect could most certainly be used.

For every minute you are angry , you lose 60 seconds of happiness."-Emerson

It is a sign of a defeated man, to attack at ones character in the face of logic and reason- Me


Novice Member

Joined: 8/28/05
Posts: 675

8/16/13 7:44:39 PM#69
How the ai reacts is based on what info you feed it.  If you give it all the correct response to problems it might face, then its going to win more times than not.  If instead you give it a couple of possible reactions some of which are wrong, it will make for a 'smarter" AI without being to frustrating. 

Elite Member

Joined: 10/29/07
Posts: 17495

8/16/13 7:48:55 PM#70
Originally posted by leoo88556

Creating a video game is no rocket science...

By advance AI I believe they didn't mean the best AI program in the world. It's just a better, more complex aggro system that won't allow tanks to just standing there spamming the same rotation while talking to their guildies about the weather in Chicago, you know, like in EVERY mmorpg.

The classic trinity is a system programmers used NOT TO make up for the AI's shortcomings, but actually creating a way to mimic really world battle. In my opinion, trinity can never die because that's just how military works: redirect enemy fire and hit their weak spots as hard as you can, while the support doing their thing to keep everything moving.

The problem with "dedicated" DPS/Tank/Healer is that they're just too simplified to a degree that they're just a bunch of math problems. Just because people like it doesn't mean the developers should try to mix it up in the right way to make to combat more dynamic.

Uhm, military strategy is far more advanced than skill rotations, there you have to outsmart your opponent (unless you severely outgun them but any moron can win a battle then). You also needs to aim better, time your attacks and coordinate a whole bunch of different units together.

And yes, I been in the military... Sunzus book on "art of trinity war" would be very short indeed.

Trinity combat do work, I give you that but there must be countless other possible group dynamics that demands co-operation as well. Trying out something new might work or not but if they don't try we have to recycle the same thing for another 16 years and there must be several more fun group dynamics then the first one anyone thought of.


Elite Member

Joined: 9/27/11
Posts: 2829

World > Quest Progression

8/16/13 8:02:02 PM#71
The first thing to consider is that NPCs have classes just like players do, assuming they also have the skills of those classes. That's different than "before" unless those NPCs had 40+ skills just like player classes did.

When you even the field between available player skills and available NPC skills you make it easier to code "smarter" encounters. When does the SK class mob use Path of Shadows to get away? How long will he take damage chasing someone before he attacks the now highest threat? With the limited skill sets of tr classes it's a lot easier to code for specific situations.

Say they left the standard trinity in. How frustrated is the tank going to be that no matter how much he shouts at the mob it keeps running off to attack a real threat?

Novice Member

Joined: 8/01/09
Posts: 415

“Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world.”

8/16/13 8:56:09 PM#72
Originally posted by BearKnight

Coming from the software development world ....

See, now why do you open like this and then proceed with a massive amount of text that just proves your opening statement is a lie?

You clearly do not know jack about software development.

As others have said, much better AI is very much a possibility in an MMO.  The question is not whether it is possible or not, the question is how well it could be implemented and have the game still be fun.

BTW, for those who think too advanced of AI is too CPU intensive for an MMO, keep in mind that Server architecture allows them to do all kinds of creative things.  AI could run on completely different CPUs than other parts of the game world, for example.  Of course, that is not actually all that important, seeing as AI could be written that is not all that CPU intensive as compared to all of the other things an MMO has to do and keep track of.

Advanced AI (as compared to other MMOs) is not an issue of whether the technology is available, or the know-how is available.  It is really just a matter of how it is implemented and whether or not the game is actually "fun" as it is implemented.   In other words, this entire thread is pointless because we will not know either way until some of us have the game in our hands and see how they did.


Novice Member

Joined: 1/08/07
Posts: 2315

8/16/13 9:30:42 PM#73
Originally posted by Zorgo


BearKnight doesn't like EQN. 




Joined: 1/31/09
Posts: 3741

8/16/13 9:42:08 PM#74

It is easy to make an AI that makes trinity obsolete.

Make them target the squishy person.  Ignore the tanks (Look at taunts and go 'so?').

Use control abilities on the players.  Stun/disrupt AoE players.

In fact, because the compute rKNOWS what you're doing, you can save a lot of money on making  an advanced AI and just have them 'cheat'.  They can have superhuman reflexes.  Player starts to do an ability that would be bad for monsters?  Immediately interrupt it.

Even the best human player takes a moment to figure out what something is from visual cues.  Compute rknows what you're doing the moment you press the button.  Perfect interrupts, perfect blocks, they never have camera glitches or accidentally target the wrong enemy.

It's easy to make a computer AI do all SORTS of things.  The hard part is making it do things in a way that feels fair and like it isn't cheating using its godlike computer powers. :P


Novice Member

Joined: 6/27/05
Posts: 636

8/16/13 10:57:44 PM#75

Even if they can't make very advanced AI due to the limitations of the game server and other reasons,

they can make the ILLUSION of advanced AI - just by using more advanced scripts for more difficult bosses. 

What I would like to see is the DIFFERENCE in behaving of very different bosses - for example, one boss would look and act very stupid, say giant Ogre, and he would react to taunts and he would go for one target, while say, giant Devil, would act devilish and go for weak and wounded targets, finishing them off.

That would make for memorable boss fights at least.


Apprentice Member

Joined: 8/07/13
Posts: 293

8/16/13 11:29:00 PM#76

It is a god damn dirty communist lie!



It's not that I think you are wrong, and I won't give SoE the benefit of the doubt, but I am willing to give them a chance to prove to me they can do it. 


Novice Member

Joined: 5/11/12
Posts: 195

Killing dragons is my shit

8/16/13 11:32:27 PM#77

All they are doing is removing the ability to taunt lock a mob, that's it. Instead of the mob being controlled by taunt / dps, he will just occasionally mem wipe to another randomly selected person, or a person who is doing the most heals, or the most damage.

They are acting like a mem wiping mob is new and trying to cover it with this AI bs.

Killing dragons is my shit


Novice Member

Joined: 1/28/04
Posts: 2143

8/16/13 11:47:02 PM#78

I have to agree with what others have said in that advanced AI has existed in games for years.


I remember back in 2001 when we used to have Perfect dark lan parties and we would dare go up against dark sims....

No body in their right mind could not tell me that wasn't 'advanced AI'...

You see, every mammal on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with their surrounding environment, but you humans do not. You spread to an area, and you multiply, and you multiply, until every natural resource is consumed. The only way you can survive is to spread to another area. There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus. Human beings are a disease, a cancer of this planet.-Mr.Smith



Joined: 9/14/05
Posts: 5002

8/16/13 11:48:06 PM#79
Originally posted by zymurgeist
The "advanced" AI exists. It has always existed. Chess programs are more complicated by far than any RPG AI.  Hobbyists used to write routines for AI in basic in the late seventies. Sony won't be using it for the same reason all the other companies who claim to have had it haven't. It's extremely CPU intensive. Great for single player games but way too slow and expensive for a MMO.

IDK about CPU intensive on end user side. Most complex calculations would take place serverside. A couple Sun microsystems/Oracle Super clusters  would do the trick.

SWG pre-cu vet, elder Jedi, elder BH -Bloodfin


AI Design on EQN

Joined: 8/16/13
Posts: 10

8/17/13 12:05:39 AM#80
Originally posted by BearKnight

Coming from the software development world I know for a FACT that SOE is not employing people from MIT's AI department for their game. This would be the only way to produce AI even close to challenging enough to make the "Trinity" system obsolete. However, even MIT hasn't created AI advanced enough to make this claim. 

I am amused by this. As were my game AI colleagues over at MIT when I mentioned it.

In other news, someone -- despite "coming from the software development world" -- doesn't know the first thing about game AI. Be that as it may...

Glad to see you all are interested! Keep up the chatter!

And that's all I can say... for now... ;-)

President & Lead Designer of Intrinsic Algorithm,
Author of Behavioral Mathematics for Game AI,
Game AI consultant, GDC AI Summit advisor, co-founder of AIGPG |

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