You Know When: AI

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You know when you have an escort mission in the game and you have some useless piece of data( but you don’t think it’s useless, yet) that you have to bring from Point A to Point ‘This Is Stupid’ in a set time limit or you have defend her from zombies or other bullets or whatever. The point is that the person is now inhibiting your advancement of the story by making you protect them or guide them.  And you have to. There is no other option. This is more of a problem when their death or failure affects you or better yet, when the characters fight with you and then get killed. That’s just grand.

For example, there is a wonderful game called Ni No Kuni.  You should play it.  In this game, you have your not-so-standard party members that you can control – but not at all once – and you must defeat other monsters.  Ok.  That sounds pretty simple, right?  But defeating the monsters is a bit of a challenge when you have incompetent AI.  Now I know what you’re thinking.  “Mr. Gamer, you can just control them if you want to. They won’t be AI characters anymore and they will fight better.” The issue with that, Little Jimmy, is that switching from one character to another without the ability to just make them all obey my command and then nothing else, is hard. And in Ni No Kuni, you can only control one character at a time. Why does a simple command like ‘block the huge freaking attack that will kill you in hit’ not register? Last time I checked, AI characters are supposed to be smarter than human players. They are supposed to be. They are not always. There is no reason for a character that has a plethora of magical attacks or – to put it simply – a mage to be hitting anything with her weapon. I did not painstakingly obtain all of your magical gear for you to go up to Mr. Killyoudead and hit him with your staff that does one point of damage. It makes want to punch you. And knowing that you won’t defend my punch but instead try to hit me with your feather staff makes it all better. But then you can have that one case where the AI just likes to ream it into you and you get screwed without lube…

I just think it’s lovely how the AI likes to ‘round to screw’ at the most inopportune moments. (For those of you who don’t know what I am talking about, ‘round to screw’ is DnD-Dungeons and Dragons- term for a dice roll that must be rounded, high or low. The rounding will always be to screw, or hurt, the player.) And in almost every case where I am playing Borderlands 2 and I get knocked down into Fight For My Life mode is the exact moment for the AI to crowd around my body, blocking my view,  and killing me. Just in this new DLC alone, I have died at least twenty times from the same boss.   I totally wanted to chuck my controller at the TV. I hate AI!

Feel same way I do or do you have a soft spot for the AI? Let me know in the comments!

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0 thoughts on “You Know When: AI

  1. Mae

    You can actually control your AIs, though limited, in Ni no Kuni. Use All Out Attack (triangle button) and All Out Defense (square button), which will force ALL your parties that are NOT in your control to either attack or defend. It really makes a big difference. But when you do this, it does not include your current character that you are using. You actually have to manually click on them to Attack/Defend yourself.

    At first, I was annoyed by the AIs, until the game told me about this (a little bit later than I had wanted). It takes awhile to get used to, but once you get the hang of it, you feel like you have a lot more control over your AIs, which is great for preventing them from dying or doing something stupid.

    1. Mr. Gamer

      I was happy to receive that ability. It just would have been nice to have to avoid the ass kicking you still get earlier in tbe game with your characters. Or for them to think to block. Thats all.

  2. Missy Tannenbaum

    AI like that is horrible! I see in the comment above that in Ni no Kuni, at least, you can do something about it, but after a particularly spoiler laced bad experience with The Bouncer and that stupid Full Metal Alchemist game where you tell Alphonse (I had to use the full name because it looked like AI again) to come and help you and he goes, “Big brother!” and walks into a wall, I don’t have much nice to say about AI assistance as a game mechanic.


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