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Zombie Apocalypse Scenario - is a mod possible?: 8/8/2019 21:56:19

M. Poireau
Level 55
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About four years ago, I put together a really exciting and unique single player scenario, thanks to a cleverly-designed map someone put together.

Here is the thread that links to the template, has some discussion and reactions, and explains how to play:

https://www.warzone.com/Forum/120566-creativity-tactics-singleplayer-challenge

At the time, there wasn't an option to create "Community" singleplayer scenarios, and so it was a pretty odd thing to do. However, the scenario was a lot of fun, a great challenge, and, I think, something pretty unique in terms of Warlight scenario design.

Nowadays, we have all kinds of great singleplayer scenarios, and people seem to enjoy them, so singleplayer play and scenario design is "in vogue"! It would be pretty great to make this scenario available for people again. It was very well received and well loved (e.g. see the comments in the thread).

So, what's the problem?

Unfortunately, the scenario is no longer playable. You see, I took advantage of the way the AI worked to set up the scenario...

The scenario is about a small group of survivors fleeing from the hospital in a city overrun by zombies. Zombies are slow and mindless, moving slowly and without great purpose, until they spot a human target, which they then attack. They stand around in groups and don't generally increase their numbers or act in an organized fashion.

This was really well represented by how the AI handles its decisions (and particularly on that map and with those settings!).

The human player, however, has access to cards and multi-attack, so s/he can outrun, outmaneuver, and out-think the zombies very easily, even though they outnumber the humans dramatically.

This worked PERFECTLY when the human player could use multi-attack, but the AIs could not. It's great to see a small group of plucky humans defeating large crowds of zombies, erecting blockades, trapping them in half-ruined buildings, and so forth.

However, now, the new AI code knows how to make multi-attacks, and that has made this scenario utterly unplayable.

It's not just a question of emulating the action or the genre (the slow-moving zombies); it also ruins the balance and gameplay to a fairly irredeemable extent. (You'll likely get wiped out on the first or second turn, for instance.)

My question to you all:

Is there some way (perhaps, probably, via a mod) which would allow someone to set up this scenario or to play this game with AIs who CANNOT use multi-attack? (It might be a question of reverting to the old AI code somehow.)

It would make it playable again, and I bet a lot of people would enjoy it. It would be a great addition to the Community Levels or the Single Player ladder. I've never seen a scenario with this kind of unique design; it would be a valuable addition to the Warlight/Warzone experience.

Edited 8/8/2019 22:08:22
Zombie Apocalypse Scenario - is a mod possible?: 8/8/2019 22:04:41

M. Poireau
Level 55
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Additional note on card use:

* The scenario has an optional setting for the inclusion of Sanction cards, to adjust the difficulty. This also cannot be used anymore, because if the AIs get Sanction cards, they will use them.

(I hear that Community Levels can preset the starting hand cards for players now, so maybe this is an easy fix!)

* Similarly, Blockades are pretty key to surviving this game, but if the "zombies" can use them, they screw up the map and end up being pretty useless - as well as possibly ruining the player's chances, if they Blockade in a key spot (on this map, that can ruin your chances altogether if it happens in certain areas).

So, ideally, the "revert to the old AI" solution would fix this, as well. If there's some other way to disable multi-attack, though, which still maintains the AI's ability to play cards, then the only solution is to remove Blockade cards from the template (replacing them with a few more Emergency Blockades, perhaps). Not ideal, but it would work. However, do not play the scenario with Blockade cards enabled and an AI that can use them! There's a high chance of failure (i.e. the scenario getting broken or just not being fun to play).

Additional note on playing "as is":

Without a fix, it might be possible to play the scenario with human players as the "zombies", simply by agreeing not to use cards or multi-attack. It's not ideal, because the separation of income between different zombie "breeds" is important to pace the scenario (*), but the zombies wandering the city are pretty useless. You could have human players portray them, but they would have to be aware that the game isn't going to be terribly interesting for them (since, among other things, they can't really increase their production/income). Those players would be "actors" more than real players. (When I played this multi-player, I'd have one player take the role of the "new breed" of zombies, and have the others represented by AIs, which worked really well.)


(*): One of the innovations or clever features of this scenario, I feel, is the "staging" of enemies. At first, when you are weak, you fight the "dumb" zombie breeds, but, later in the game, the "new breed" of zombies emerges into the City, and they are far more challenging to fight. I think that's pretty cool! You might think you're winning, but the game remains interesting well into the endgame.

Edited 8/8/2019 22:10:18
Zombie Apocalypse Scenario - is a mod possible?: 8/8/2019 22:49:11


Joi179 
Level 59
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if you have a friend with membership you can tell him to use autopilot Prod 1 (thats the AI you used to play this scenario). tho depending on how large the map is it might just lag or freeze the game for the person using autopilot
Zombie Apocalypse Scenario - is a mod possible?: 8/9/2019 03:30:51

Fizzer 
Level 60

Warzone Creator
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A mod could cancel all attacks by an ai that aren't adjacent to a territory it started the turn with. This would work for eliminating multi attacks, but the ai would still try to do multi attacks and end up only getting the first territory of its run. This would make the ai really dumb, which might end up being better for your scenario.

Note that mods can't be used in community levels but you can still link the template and let people do it themselves like before.
Zombie Apocalypse Scenario - is a mod possible?: 8/9/2019 03:45:37

unɐq ǝɔuɐɥƆ
Level 48
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I would agree with Fizzer that mods can't be used on Community Levels because mods can be a little out of hand. For example, Advance Diplo Mod doesn't let an AI declare war, so you will win slowly by attacking 1 by 1. If there is a deployment limit, the AI wouldn't know where to spawn the rest of the armies, and it further confuses the AI. For Pestilence, the AI will just lose territories every consecutive turn, especially no-split mode.
Zombie Apocalypse Scenario - is a mod possible?: 8/9/2019 05:41:48


DanWL 
Level 62
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I think there's a multi-attack limiter mod, but the mod would apply to all players.
Zombie Apocalypse Scenario - is a mod possible?: 8/10/2019 00:42:36

M. Poireau
Level 55
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Thank you for all the replies!

So, so far, it sounds like it's not really possible to do this in any easy way.

However, a savvy Warzone Member could still play the scenario, by modifying it so as to use autopilot Prod 1 for all the opponents? Well... that's at least something. Hmmmm.
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