Any news on TF2 will still have bots now that it's changed directions?
Some old info from the old, old days..
Timm: Are you guys scrapping the TF2 bots? How about hiring a 3rd party bot author. Next a quote taken from the print version of Computer Gaming World:
Robin: We haven't scrapped our bots at all. We're just not talking about them right now, due to the fact that their features are quite ambitious, and we don't want to promise things we may not deliver.
Timm: Accoring to http://www.next-generation.com/jsmid/news/6729.html, there will be only be bots in training mode. Is this true? (Or is it being debated, or whatever) Robin: The bots can be used in any game. That's not something being debated. We're not thinking of hiring a 3rd party bot developer, instead, we're planning on continuing our own investment in AI. The brains behind Half-Life's monster and squad AI are working on the TF2 bots.
Steve Bond, the AI guru behind the vicious enemies in Half-Life, will be working on bot AI for TF2. Basically, the AI will be based on a learning design, in which the artificial combatants learn from their mistakes and successes. For instance, an engineer bot will build sentry guns and then track the amount of time until each is destroyed, how many kills it achieved, where the enemy is, and so forth. After building sentry guns in a variety of locations, the bot will pick the best location for its defenses almost every time. Another quote from the same article:
While it won't provide a single-player game per se, TF2 will feature boot camp style training missions for every character class, introducing more complicated game elements gradually. For example, a traning mission for a spy might require the player to disguise himself, infiltrate the enemy base, then shoot a specific enemy in the back using the spy's silenced pistol. Interface issuse will be explained as well eventually even teaching players how to bind macros to hot-keys. For gamers hungry for more practice or lack modems, TF2 can be played with bots. For most maps, players can practice taking orders from an AI commander or, alternatively, lead a squad of bots to victory. A little commentary on TF2's AI taken from a preview of the game on PC Paradox:
Valve Software is also known for the smash-hit first-person shooter, Half-Life. Many notable features in this game caused it to succeed, but the artificial intelligence was one of the most improved areas. The artificial intelligence was noted for the amazingly human-like control of the military soldiers, they moved quickly and were always ready to kill someone. Team Fortress 2 will sport the very same artificial intellignce in the Bots for practice. The Bots supposedly learn from the tactics used against them, store up statistics on each map and react strategically. These Bots will fill up the positions for the gamer's friends and enemies while playing in the single player mode. The Half-Life AI was truly one of the better ones in the 90s, and having the AI Bots take over positions for and against the gamer will make Team Fortress 2 much more fun. Finally a quote from an excellent interview on spacewargru, with Robin Walker:
Draco: I haven't seen anything new on the TF2 bots, so I was wondering if the game will ship with them anymore ... How advanced is the AI ? Robin: We'll still be shipping with bots. We've taken what we learnt during the development of Half-Life's AI, in particular the human grunt's squad behaviour, and continued working on it. We've just kept fairly quiet with them because we've got ambitious plans for them, and good AI is something many people promise and few deliver. We'll talk more about it over the coming months.