Far Cry Instinct Interview Feature - The Next Level

Far Cry Instinct Interview

Technical Creative Director Laurent Mascherpa discusses the game's advanced AI system and how it makes the vigilant mercenaries tick.

Article by TNL Staff (Email)
July 8th 2005, 03:32AM

1. What makes Far Cry Instincts' F.A.R. AI good?

Far Cry Instinct's AI is based on the Far Cry PC version, and has been adapted for the console version. Having enemies tracking you is a major point. We kept the wide open environments we had for the PC, allowing the AI to go anywhere the player goes. This is very important because in the first part of the game, the player will be a prey.

The game has a procedural AI allowing the player to play either stealth/tactic or aggressive. The AI will react differently depending on how you choose to play. It offers more replay value and satisfaction than a scripted AI.

For FCI, we made some optimization for console needs and some game enhancements; in the AI system we added a tool to integrate the story into the experience, because in FCI all story events are interactive.

2. What feature of Engine ensures an intelligent response to the player's actions?

In FCI any AI has its own understanding of the environment - they see, they hear, and they have knowledge of what it is: an ally, an enemy, a vehicle, a grenade, a gunshot, a dead body …

Based on this information, the AI makes decisions and takes action; it allows us to have credible human behavior.

For stealth situations, the player is encouraged to use environment to his advantage. The AI detection system takes into account the vegetation (grass and bushes), the water, the ambient noise and the visibility. Since the AI hears things and see things, we can try to trick them. For example: throwing a rock will emit some sound that distracts them in order to backstab them silently, or also to attract them into a branch whip.

In firefight situations, knowing the environment permits them to have a dynamic use of covers to hide, to lean and shoot from behind and to flank the player.

In the first part of the game, the player is a prey so when he quits a combat the AI will track him down. In the second part, as the player shifts more and more to becoming a predator, the reaction of the enemies will be different and their strategy will change.

3. What will the AI in Far Cry Instincts allow the enemies to do in the game?

Enemies are acting as a group. They'll use covers in the environments to protect themselves and will adopt complementary strategies. For example, when you arrive in a fight, one will try to flank you while one will stay away throwing grenades and shooting at you from behind his cover. Enemies are also able to trigger alarms to alert the camp or call reinforcements if they see you before you kill them.

4. Will the enemies be aware of changes in environments, like birds that fly away or foliage movements, making them spot the player?

The player is encouraged to use the wilderness of the environment to be protected from the enemies, but anything that makes noise (for example: getting out of water too fast) can raise their interest in your direction.

5. Can they use weapons of their fallen teammates, or replace them behind a mounted weapon? Can they use any vehicles?

All enemies are already well equipped so they will not use fallen weapons. If some enemies are asked to protect a point, and if you kill the guy that is using the mounted weapon, another will take his position unless this is not the best choice for him (for example: A grenade has been thrown in direction of the mounted weapon). In these huge islands enemies are able to use vehicles to chase you, to block your way, or to bring reinforcements. In FCI you will see mercenaries in Humvees, on ATVs, in helicopters, on water scooters and on a variety of boats.

Finally, is there anything else you'd like to add?

In FCI, we introduced new gameplay elements affecting the AI, like the backstab, the branch whip and the feral abilities, so you can expect answers from the AIs and a lot of fun !!!

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