Anisoptera Games

Final Kickstarter Contest
Page 1 of 2

Author:  Colin [ Fri Sep 26, 2014 1:31 pm ]
Post subject:  Final Kickstarter Contest

Hey everyone, sorry for the delay in making this announcement, we were just trying to figure out what to change.

There will be no new build for this tournament. Arthur may make some small AI adjustments, mostly to fix the ships sitting there and not firing at each other problem, but everything is basically exactly the same.

There are two additional filters that will be applied to every ship that is submitted:
1) No ships with a radius over 1,000. Each small square block is 10x10, so take 100 of these blocks and you will have the maximum radius. This filter will be done automatically so you will probably want to be well within the radius to avoid any issues.

2) Ships must have adequate acceleration. There is no hard number on this as it is a function of thrust and mass, but the rule is to avoid space stations or ships that are so slow they are effectively space stations. If we figure out a way to give you an objective number we will, but for now don't make any super slow ships and you should be fine.

Here are the rest of the rules:

Submission deadline is 1:00 PM PST on Sunday (the 28th).

After the submission deadline we will run a round robin tournament for every category, this is where each ship fights each other ship once. This phase will not be streamed. At the end of this phase each ship will be assigned a win/loss ratio that it had against all the other ships in the category and these numbers will be posted so people can see how their ships did. To limit processing time these are done in pools of 40 ships.

The top 16 submissions from the round robin phase for each category are then entered into the finals.

As an additional limit, although each player may submit as many ships as they want to the tournament, we will only choose the top 2 of each player's designs per category. That means in the finals, even if you submitted 4 designs and all 4 were in the top 16 of win/loss ratios, only the top 2 would go through. This is to ensure that each final will have some variety in ship designs, but still lets people submit lots of ships.

The official submission page for the contest:

If you do not submit your design to this page it will not be used!

Standard (anything goes):
Probe - Any design of 250P or less.
Interceptor - Any design of 1000P or less.
Cruiser - Any design of 3000P or less.
Dreadnought - Any design of 6000P or less.

Specialty (Restricted Parts):
Proton - 2000P or less, only weapon modules allowed are proton swords and proton beams.
Tanks - 2000P or less, no shield modules allowed, only weapon modules allowed are the three sizes of plasma cannons.

General Restrictions:
Only blocks available by default in the game can be used. No blocks that are only available in the sandbox!
No factories.
No ships with a radius over 1,000.
Ships must have adequate thrust.

Here is how the fights will be conducted:
1) Fights are 1v1.
3) The ships are spawned in at a random range between 3000 and 4000 from each other.
4) If neither ship is destroyed within 90 seconds of being spawned, the ship that has caused more damage wins.
5) Each fight is replicated until one ship has won twice (best 2 out of 3).
6) It is a single elimination bracket in the finals.

Author:  Agent S-315 [ Fri Sep 26, 2014 6:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Final Kickstarter Contest

It's here, Agent-san... - Saki-Delta

Now I just need some inspection run with your guys... Be sure to do your best okay.

If you were building up your task force for this time, then we're prepared, master doesn't see a problem. - Shell-Core
Althrough, just watch out for the limit.

Author:  Krypt [ Fri Sep 26, 2014 11:18 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Final Kickstarter Contest

Can you update builder test with new logic improvements? I have some good (I suppose :)) designs, but it just fear to attack ships with some weapon types.

On submission page written with big red letters:
Tournament will be streamed on Sunday, Sept 21st, at 3pm PST
Submissions are closed - see class links for seeding results

Author:  Shard [ Sun Sep 28, 2014 12:32 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Final Kickstarter Contest

I submitted a handful of ships yesterday. Let us see how much fail I've managed to work into their design...

Watch out for Lobsters. Seriously.

Author:  Agent S-315 [ Sun Sep 28, 2014 2:10 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Final Kickstarter Contest

It seem to me that radius limit were actually to counter the trolls from getting in... Remember that Trollface ship in the last contest?:P

Author:  MauranKilom [ Sun Sep 28, 2014 10:05 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Final Kickstarter Contest

You can't stop me and my "AI-tailored" ships! :twisted:

Author:  Deceleration [ Sun Sep 28, 2014 10:43 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Final Kickstarter Contest

I'm sure you'll figure out a way around the radius and thurst limits. I just trust that your ships will get removed if they're too hard to beat.

Author:  MauranKilom [ Sun Sep 28, 2014 11:36 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Final Kickstarter Contest

I'm not sure where you want to draw the line.
My layer sword drone was apparently (too) hard to beat last tournament, but it's clearly not an exploit.
On the other hand, drone ships are impossible to beat (unless their AI screws up, which it could easily not do by just flying away endlessly). Is that an exploit?
And what about the lance "drones"? They were not removed because they weren't hard enough to beat in the round robin, but they won the entire finals.

I had this ship in the making before the rules went up (yes, that thing can chase down your average ship). It doesn't get 100% win rate because of its own AI flaws (one being shown here: It's "rushing" but not actually firing thrusters). I'd agree that this looks pretty exploit-y, but can you pinpoint the reason?

The argument against my culled ships was that the AI could fly around it if it was smart enough. For (some of) my designs that you will see today, that's not the case, the ship will just keep turning and never expose its back. It will always face the enemy with the armored side while keeping its weapons out of line of fire.

In other words, if my ship has a clear orientation (as in, it's not omnidirectional) and the AI can properly make it face the enemy 100% of the time, is adding armor and placing weapons not central but further away from the expected enemy line of fire already an AI exploit? I don't think so.
By placing weapons in different locations and not just one big blob, the enemy AI also has a harder time dodging. Is that an exploit? I doubt it. Drones/missiles/mines/torpedos and plain old scatter-shooting guns are inherent ways of reducing the enemy's dodge chance. Integrating this kind of behavior in your ship can't reasonably be called an exploit.

Now, at this point the knowledge that the AI always targets the core is relevant, but if it didn't, it would need some sort of priority management and then the idea of decoys would come into play. And I mean, are we obliged to put all our vulnerable stuff into the line of fire?

What's left is interacting with the enemy movement by means of using armor to push them. You could quickly call that an exploit, but (from what I can tell) it's not an impossible playstyle in the actual game (bear with me, I can't really judge as non-alpha) and it's also not something that a better enemy AI (or another player) could necessarily avoid. It's a means of physically keeping away the enemy ship from your core, but technically all armor is.
The question is again where you draw the line. <- armor and periphal guns (guns slightly protected, that shift is because of radius, not for trapping) <- did it become an exploit now?
(For reference:

In the end it's the call of the admins which ships are exploits and which aren't. I won't complain about their decisions.

Please don't take any of this personally (I promise you I won't). The engineer in me just can't stop finding those "optimized" concepts and putting them to the test (and succeeding these tests feels great). I'm not trying to troll people, and I'm not going to ask for more and more precise rules so I can slip through their cracks (not to mention this will be the last tournament for a while anyway).
In the end, the goal here is to improve the AI, and what better way is there to do that than to highlight its weaknesses?

Author:  Deceleration [ Sun Sep 28, 2014 12:07 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Final Kickstarter Contest

Your probe last tournament nearly won, yes, but it didn't use any AI weaknesses to do so. It also didn't lose from an AI weakness- mining lasers outrange proton swords and that's a fact. Any ship with massed mining lasers could have taken your probe out, though that ship would probably not have made it into the finals if it wasn't for its shape.

The reason the ship you showed is exploity is that ships don't attempt to stay out of the range of the other ship's weapons, they only try to maintain a distance from the other ship's core. Any decently built ship would stay out of the proton swords' range and dodge the railguns and punch a hole through that frontal armor. However, ships just don't know how to do that right now, and that is an AI weakness.

Placing weapons away from your core is an exploit if it lures the other AI closer to said weapons because the other AI only tries to maintain distance from the core, not the weapons.

The weaknesses being highlighted have already been made clear, there is no need to use them to gain cheap victories in this final tournament.

Author:  MauranKilom [ Sun Sep 28, 2014 12:14 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Final Kickstarter Contest

Hm, I didn't even know/realize that (AI keeping distance to core). I thought the AI closes in until it can fire and then dodges/kites as necessary...

Could you elaborate what a ship would do after "punching through the frontal armor" though? Unless it made a hole big enough to squeeze through (which would likely need a conscious effort) and could get out of proton range inside the ship, it would still get torn apart...

Page 1 of 2 All times are UTC - 8 hours [ DST ]
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group