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Campaings walktrough + limitations for greater realism r6720

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jebaldinho

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Joined: 05 Jul 2020, 08:18

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Post 05 Jul 2020, 08:40

Campaings walktrough + limitations for greater realism r6720

Hi everyone.
I am new user and happy to find out this forum.

I would like to share with you my videos on youtube that show how battles and building economy can look like if apply some rules, such as: primarly - don't lure out enemy units away from their positions by using bowmen or don't benefit from pre-scripted actions that enemy units rush to my base in very sloppy way -> they become easier prey for even a much smaller army.

More about these limitations you can read in the description of each videos.

Here is the link to my channel and playlist for these videos. I skipped missions where there is only fighting.
https://youtu.be/dmNZ4fbyJXA
or you can search with this phrase "Knights and Merchants No exploits"

Whould you like to replay campaings with these kind of rules? Does it look like funnier than your previous walkthroughs? Please comment. Thanks for attentions.
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cmowla

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Post 06 Jul 2020, 04:44

Re: Campaings walktrough + limitations for greater realism r

jebaldinho wrote:Whould you like to replay campaings with these kind of rules? Does it look like funnier than your previous walkthroughs? Please comment. Thanks for attentions.
First of all, welcome to the forum!

I'm pretty sure all of us have played as you do (at some point). If you're seeing people use exploitation, unless they are new to the game and are just replicating more experienced players' tactics, for experienced players, "exploits" are for the challenge of beating missions as fast as possible and/or without losing troops. (Speedruns, world record times, etc.)

In addition, you say "Play as game-developers intended" in your video description. Do you realize that in the VERY FIRST mission in the Shattered Kingdom (in the ORIGINAL) game, the yellow AI would come and fire at your towers to DRAW YOU OUT? Maybe I'm wrong, but I think that it was the developers who TRAINED US to DRAW out troops with bowmen.

So clearly this is your opinion on how things ought to be, but there is no evidence that how you play is how the original developers intended.

Lastly, I think the biggest exploit in this game is NOT how you choose to draw (or not draw) out the AI, it's reloading save restore points for any reason other than for the sole purpose of resuming where you left off from taking a break (that's what the developers said to do in the user manual -- to take breaks every 45 minutes to protect your eyes from staring at a screen for long periods of time).

So to me, if I was to compare Knights and Merchants to the game of chess, your "list of rules" is not allowing people to use their "queen" (which was given to you to use, take advantage of), but you're allowing them to undo their last move?

Maybe you didn't reload save restore points, but all I'm saying is that it's not in your "list of rules".
Last edited by cmowla on 06 Jul 2020, 18:57, edited 1 time in total.
Invasion and Lava Valley with 0 losses|Invasion (without saves)|TSK 20 in 4.47 minutes|Northern Islands I Co-op in 1.71 hours
What makes me an Expert isn't my skill in of itself but my desire to win big.
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Krom

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Knights Province Developer

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Post 06 Jul 2020, 06:13

Re: Campaings walktrough + limitations for greater realism r

This is very interesting idea!

However I must point out, that some of the maneuvers could be still considered "cheating" or "too clever", e.g. running through enemy lines with scouts and wrecking havoc behind main battle area.

Still it's a very interesting study, since it indeed reveals that some of the tactics used are there because of AI limitations, not because they are "fun" (e.g. luring out with 1 bowman). If devs had more resources they could have made a better AI (without such obvious flaws) and build the gameplay around more accurate battles.
Knights Province at: http://www.knightsprovince.com
KaM Remake at: http://www.kamremake.com
Original MBWR/WR2/AFC/FVR tools at: http://krom.reveur.de
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jebaldinho

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Post 06 Jul 2020, 08:16

Re: Campaings walktrough + limitations for greater realism r

cmowla wrote:Lastly, I think the biggest exploit in this game is NOT how you choose to draw (or not draw) out the AI, it's reloading save restore points for any reason other than for the sole purpose of resuming where you left off from taking a break (that's what the developers said to do in the user manual -- to take breaks every 45 minutes to protect your eyes from starring at a screen).

So to me, if I was to compare Knights and Merchants to the game of chess, your "list of rules" is not allowing people to use their "queen" (which was given to you to use, take advantage of), but you're allowing them to undo their last move?


The main goal of my ruleset is not to prove how a player while playing the game is skillful but to have him go deeper into the game. This shouldn't be seen as any challenge. If someone is a newbie and come to play, he has to learn many things, naturally he shall reloading. Later, if he want to prove himself as a good player or spend more time with this game, he will decide not to "cheat" by reloading.
My second goal is to prove that it is possible to beat 2 campaings in this way.
And don't you think - my walkthrough looks like more natural and real than walkthrough with "lure out tactic". Do my towns and battles look more epic? :D

cmowla wrote:In addition, you say "Play as game-developers intended" in your video description. Do you realize that in the VERY FIRST mission in the Shattered Kingdom (in the ORIGINAL) game, the yellow AI would come and fire at your towers to DRAW YOU OUT? Maybe I'm wrong, but I think that it was the developers who TRAINED US to DRAW out troops with bowmen.

So clearly this is your opinion on how things ought to be, but there is no evidence that how you play is how the original developers intended.


I am aware that "Play as game-developers intended" will raise some discussions. Nobody knows for sure what developers intended. Many old games are full of flaws. And that "a draw out lesson" may tell us this tactic is blessed by devs. But there are points and reasons why "draw out tactics" seem to be undesirable. I mean here lots of later missions where the worldmap is huge, so resources and space are in gigantic amount, and you can see in my videos, I have to deplet them in order to win. ( In some situation, as I remember mining resources went out and I had to fight with leather armored army against iron.) And this is the suggestion what developers or level designers wanted us to do in these missions.
However, if someone stated that the game was developed to beat by various tactics, I would agree. The problem there is, all walkthrough presentation I have seen in the internet had been based on "draw out tactic". Surely, many of you guys, expierenced players, have played no using "draw out". I just want show another approach to play this game that is more fun and engaging.

Krom wrote:This is very interesting idea!
However I must point out, that some of the maneuvers could be still considered "cheating" or "too clever", e.g. running through enemy lines with scouts and wrecking havoc behind main battle area.


I have been thinking about these maneuvers too. Indeed, some of them are crucial for the result of a batlle. But I would like to defend them against allegations of being "too clever" or "using future knowledge". As far as I remember, I could be able to prove that using only "present knowledge" a clever army commander may have ordered to make these maneuvers.
In some situations, as I recall, defending AI army was standing wrong and there was a empty space. I also saw a bit further than the first line of enemy units. So I had some information to make "clever" plans. Of course, "deciding what to do" is the one and "doing it" is the another one. Many maneuvers required a bit of luck and reloading (to practice) :D. But it is the same in reality, isn't it?
And above this all, first of all, even if these maneuvers can't be done for the first time succesfully or can't be invented for the first time of trying to crack defenders line, it doesn't mean that it is impossible to win campains with my rulesets. You just need to hit your head to the wall again and again. Or reload ;)

Krom wrote:Still it's a very interesting study, since it indeed reveals that some of the tactics used are there because of AI limitations, not because they are "fun" (e.g. luring out with 1 bowman). If devs had more resources they could have made a better AI (without such obvious flaws) and build the gameplay around more accurate battles.

When many years ago, I have got to know about phenomen of exploits, the definitation of exploits sounded exactly like you have written. Overusing AI limitations or using AI limitations in crucial moments, is called simply "using exploits".

And to the end. If we love this game, so why don't try play it in different ways. Many play online and skirmishes map and get much more fun and proficiency, I respect that. But perhaps, we have neglected campaings.
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cmowla

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Post 06 Jul 2020, 17:02

Re: Campaings walktrough + limitations for greater realism r

Based on what you replied, you have definitely earned my respect! :wink:

Although they are rare, there are some video tutorials on the internet which demonstrate how to play like you do (well, kind of). Probably the most obvious ones are Leeuwgie's videos, such as: Knights & Merchants "Playing singleplayer" and Master Builder Series part 1. Leeuwgie primarily plays multiplayer (which is one reason why his building skills are so good, because you can't trick another human player with lure tactics like the AI.) But I like his other videos as well. I also like Ben's channel (his podcasts showing human players fighting each other in multiplayer). I also like Ben's Double Stable video as well.

Although I didn't particularly like how me and some other members fought in this thread, you can see that (at the beginning), I was giving someone "advice" on how to beat TSK 14 by building a minimalistic (crappy) town and to beat the AI with A LOT of exploits (or what people in the KaM community call "abuse"). So other members chimed in and criticized me for saying that I was building like a noob (and that I am in no way at the "Expert" KaM skill label that I put for myself on this site) and then pointed to Leeuwigie's video, Knights & Merchants "Playing singleplayer" to contrast (make clear) my poor building skills.

BUT the thing is, in your videos, you seem to not show how much time has passed. So to me, it's only "epic" if you can build an impressive town FAST. My final TSK 14 build (which I "redeemed" myself with) was this. I built that (small) town in 54 minutes. (I DID reload saves, though.) I never watched Leeuwgie's video Knights & Merchants ''how to keep it small'' (but I probably will, because I love his videos!), but obviously it was a small (but powerful) town for a quick win of TSK 14. (I produced 53 bowmen and 53 pikemen in the first hour.) Of course the "big deal" with TSK 14 is that you start with no trees and have to produce a massive army by 1 hour to survive the green AI's attack (unless you get "lucky" with a delayed attack from them).

Since the green AI attacks at little after the first hour, as long as I put my army close to their base, I can "draw out" their army simply by defending myself (and hence, your list of rules is not violated). I could then (in theory) put my army next to the black AI's base and wait for them to attack me to "draw them out" without drawing them out without a single bowman.
Invasion and Lava Valley with 0 losses|Invasion (without saves)|TSK 20 in 4.47 minutes|Northern Islands I Co-op in 1.71 hours
What makes me an Expert isn't my skill in of itself but my desire to win big.
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jebaldinho

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Post 06 Jul 2020, 20:22

Re: Campaings walktrough + limitations for greater realism r

cmowla wrote:
Although they are rare, there are some video tutorials on the internet which demonstrate how to play like you do (well, kind of). Probably the most obvious ones are Leeuwgie's videos (...) Leeuwgie primarily plays multiplayer (which is one reason why his building skills are so good, (...) I also like Ben's Double Stable video as well.


Oh I have seen some Leeuwgie's videos. He seemed to be very skillful that can dominate most of human player. Although I have never watched them longer than several minutes. I am not native english speaker so I'd rather to spend time playing smth and trying to figure out by myself smth. Perhaps I could have improved my skills if I had watched him carefully.
In general, I will be glad for knowing about each player more who will squeeze from this game as much expierence as possible.

cmowla wrote:
Although I didn't particularly like how me and some other members fought (...) to contrast (make clear) my poor building skills.


It's pity that you guys waste sometimes for arguments. You should be playing instead :)

cmowla wrote:BUT the thing is, in your videos, you seem to not show how much time has passed. So to me, it's only "epic" if you can build an impressive town FAST.


In my later videos, showing the second campaigns, I present full gameplay. The reasons why in my first videos I haven't show full gameplay are:
1) I didn't have a proper software to recording
2) I just want to inspire people to retry beating campaigns, not to show them exactly what to do
3) I even avoided showing in videos my town but only judging by time I need to finish missions and how I fight against AI - my towns at least have to be decent good creations - so I don't need to show them. But I do show the ending statistics, from where I can prove that I haven't make "lure out tactics". And also people can see how my tows grows, at what pace, etc.

Nevertheless, you may not be impressed by my building skills, but what about only the battles... has anyone showed anything alike? (H)


cmowla wrote:
My final TSK 14 build (which I "redeemed" myself with) (...) without drawing them out without a single bowman.


Now about TSK 14. My video from this mission show pretty accurately what have I achieved so we can compare to Leeuwgie's. At 1:05 the green AI launchs an attack. You can see that Leeuwgie was able to make an army that is about 3x bigger than mine but on the minimap the size of our towns seem to be equal. So he must have done smth better than me. I won't make now any deeper analyzis about my unefficentness. May be later.
But there's 1 thing I'd like to point out. You and he haven't violated my "no lure out" rule. And it's very ok. But I did smth extra more in this mission and some other missions like TSK 20. I used future knowledge to avoid these unintentional draw out in order to save as much potential of AI army as possible. So I can be quite sure that when I try to crack down their power, they will be at their best shape. What I have got from doing this? More time spended with this beloved game and more epic battles ! :D
edit: And of course by doing this I tried to check what the developers meant while they were designing these missions. :wink:
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cmowla

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Post 06 Jul 2020, 20:35

Re: Campaings walktrough + limitations for greater realism r

jebaldinho wrote:What I have got from doing this? More time spended with this beloved game and more epic battles !
Yeah, that reminds me of my experiences with procrastinating in the original game. TSK 04 was something else. (I can't recall how many soldiers built up, but it probably was in the hundreds crossing that bridge!)

But the remake's campaign AI don't grow (accumulate) like the original game. (So the army you fight at 1 hour is equivalent to the army you fight at 3 hours.) But the AI in other (special) single player (and co-op) missions in the remake (ESPECIALLY if they are scripted -- troops are created instantly out of thin air) may build up.

I guess you've seen some of my KaM Remake videos, so I don't think I need to provide links. (But if you like fighting LARGE AI armies, then those kind of maps --- not the beginner campaigns --- are what will bring you the excitement you seek.)
Invasion and Lava Valley with 0 losses|Invasion (without saves)|TSK 20 in 4.47 minutes|Northern Islands I Co-op in 1.71 hours
What makes me an Expert isn't my skill in of itself but my desire to win big.
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jebaldinho

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Post 06 Jul 2020, 21:02

Re: Campaings walktrough + limitations for greater realism r

cmowla wrote:But the remake's campaign AI don't grow (accumulate) like the original game. (So the army you fight at 1 hour is equivalent to the army you fight at 3 hours.)

So you mean in the original KAM AI grow army like 3x slower?

I haven't played much anything than the main campaings. I saw some of missions in the new campaigns and disliked them. Level designing seems to be so different than the original missions. A lot of walls,complex of towers, I don't know, I haven't seen much from new campaings... but what I've seen somehow I found it unreal. For example. If there are a big fortifications complex, so where are all economic basis that build them. To much stoned paths/roads.

And first of all, I worry that they are designed for playing with all these exploits, abuses and cheap tricks.
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cmowla

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Post 06 Jul 2020, 21:55

Re: Campaings walktrough + limitations for greater realism r

jebaldinho wrote:So you mean in the original KAM AI grow army like 3x slower?
What I was trying to say is that the initial army of most TSK and TPR maps (maybe all of them) is close to the number of troops for the rest of the game. The only way their number will change is if you kill them (for which there will be less . . . until they regrow). So my logic with beating TSK 20 in 4.47 minutes in the remake was for this very reason. There is no "reward" (no increase in AI troops like in the original game) for waiting. So I figured, "let me level the place as fast as possible without bowmen/crossbowmen".

jebaldinho wrote:... but what I've seen somehow I found it unreal. For example. If there are a big fortifications complex, so where are all economic basis that build them. To much stoned paths/roads.
I guess Krom will chime in soon (since he and Lewin were responsible for r6720 and earlier remake versions), but from what I remember, (maybe in a discussion about the TSK and TPR campain AI in this thread?) the majority of towns are pre-built. It's rare for the AI to build in a map in the remake, and if they do, the town they build is just okay but no where near good enough to be a model for a human player to learn from.

jebaldinho wrote:I worry that they are designed for playing with all these exploits, abuses and cheap tricks.
Yes, some map makers have created maps for players like me . . . which are IMPOSSIBLE to beat playing in the manner you do. Because the more you wait, the worse it gets. And even if you destroy their buildings, their troops are STILL created from thin air. (Northern Islands I is a prime example. You may wait for a little while, but if you wait for too long, GOOD LUCK!)

I hope Ben or Sado chime in soon to recommend you go to multiplayer, because there, you won't be disappointed (playing with human players instead of the computer). In fact, the Remake (from my understanding) has always been multiplayer-focused.


There are pros and cons to both the original game and the remake. I don't know what (if any) changes have been done to the newest versions of the remake (by Rey), but as you can see in the thread I just provided a link to, it's possible (but very time-consuming) to script the AI in the remake to behave as the original game's AI. If The Dark Lord were here, he would probably also mention that some maps are better played in patched versions of the original game than in the remake.

Finally, I wouldn't put the original game's AI intelligence above the Remake's. They both have their strengths and weaknesses, but if you learn how both behave, you can ALWAYS find a weakness. I also was an Age of Empires II fan, and I was IMPRESSED with how intelligent the AI is in the Steam version compared to the original game. I was almost speechless. It was like I was playing against a human. This is (and will probably always never be) the case with KaM. But what KaM has over Age of Empires II is a VERY complicated economy which is a "puzzle" that you have to master to be one of the best in multiplayer.

It's fun (to me, at least) to learn how the AI in KaM behaves though. For my past endeavors, beating TSK 20 in 4.5 minutes and Invasion with 0 losses (both videos are linked in my signature) required a fundamental understanding of the AI's behavior in order to achieve. So rather than putting my face in the ground -- trying to ignore what the Remake is -- this is (was) my way of embracing how it was designed (for single player).
Invasion and Lava Valley with 0 losses|Invasion (without saves)|TSK 20 in 4.47 minutes|Northern Islands I Co-op in 1.71 hours
What makes me an Expert isn't my skill in of itself but my desire to win big.

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