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Thread: What is the AI rule for random intersection?

  1. #1

    What is the AI rule for random intersection?

    Hi all
    I'm quite new to the game, but I have played quite a while so now flying with a Cobra 3 full equipped (with max class for all options). I'm planning to go to the next level by purchasing a bigger ship such as a federal dropship.
    But before doing it, I'm wondering how the AI works when it comes to be randomly intercepted.
    So far, I'm always get intercepted by ships like Eagles, Adder or even MK3 kind of, that I can easily kill. I have never been intercepted by bigger ones. Why? Is the game AI interception algorithm linked to own ship size, or something else like Ranking? Do you believe that if I purchase a big ship I will be intercepted by bigger ones as well?
    Ps: I'm on ps4 but I don't think this does matter.

  2. #2
    IIRC it was based upon your combat rank, but I may be wrong on that. If you practice evading NPCs shouldn't be too much of a problem. Even in a T9 you can, with practice, shake them off.

  3. #3
    Yes, pirate ship size is based on your ship size. Pirate rank is based on your combat rank, or other rank - 2, whichever is higher

  4. #4
    Originally Posted by Yaffle View Post (Source)
    IIRC it was based upon your combat rank, but I may be wrong on that. If you practice evading NPCs shouldn't be too much of a problem. Even in a T9 you can, with practice, shake them off.
    I believe it's an amalgum of ship type and combat rank that determines random interdictions. In the dropship, I expect you will start facing vultures, Asps, and the occasional FAS.

  5. #5
    Originally Posted by Zyrocco View Post (Source)
    Hi all
    I'm quite new to the game, but I have played quite a while so now flying with a Cobra 3 full equipped (with max class for all options). I'm planning to go to the next level by purchasing a bigger ship such as a federal dropship.
    But before doing it, I'm wondering how the AI works when it comes to be randomly intercepted.
    So far, I'm always get intercepted by ships like Eagles, Adder or even MK3 kind of, that I can easily kill. I have never been intercepted by bigger ones. Why? Is the game AI interception algorithm linked to own ship size, or something else like Ranking? Do you believe that if I purchase a big ship I will be intercepted by bigger ones as well?
    Ps: I'm on ps4 but I don't think this does matter.
    Your ship, wanted status, notoriety, combat rank, the missions you take and the locations/signals you drop into all effect it. The best approach is to run away when it goes wrong this is known as a Sir Robin maneuver. Once you're good at that rebuy becomes an optional thing (mostly players are more dangerous) as you can control the terms of any engagement. If you control the terms of the engagement you can pick inadvisable fights and learn where your own asskicking comfort zone is.

    Escapology guide

    Do this

    Submit to the interdiction, your cool-down is faster
    As soon as you drop out of super-cruise max pips to engines 2 to shields
    Start boosting at full throttle away from the hostile (or back past it if it's a less maneuverable ship than yours)
    Spam chaff
    Select a nearby system and start your jump (high wake isn't mass locked)
    Evade whilst boosting until you jump
    Once you've jumped drop out of super-cruise select another nearby star and jump again (repeat if necessary)
    Return to desired course

    Do not

    Waste time wondering who he is or what he wants (interdiction is hostile)
    Waste time talking
    Fly without shields
    Combat log

    If you are in a fight and it goes wrong just retract weps get clear of the rocks if you need to and do the same.

  6. #6
    Originally Posted by Zyrocco View Post (Source)
    I'm wondering how the AI works when it comes to be randomly intercepted.
    There are broadly three types of NPCs that will try to intercept you

    1) NPC pirates that were in the system anyway. These depend on the security of the system - in high security it'll be a couple of desperate novice eagles, whereas in low security or Anarchy it might be a high-ranked Clipper or Python with friends. Usually if you don't wait around getting to the station you'll be safely docked before these realise you're there. They don't depend at all on your rank or ship.

    2) "Tasty cargo" pirates. These will generally be at about your rank (higher of combat and trade), never winged up, and in a similar or slightly bigger ship to you. These will send you a comms message to let you know that they're there. Half the time they'll be stuck to a planet's gravity well and you can get to the station before they get free ... the other times they'll just be near the star.

    3) Mission pirates or assassins.These will be at a rank determined by the rank of the mission - so if you accept an Elite mission you'll get a Dangerous/Deadly/Elite opponent - and with a ship to match their rank, so the Elite ones fly Anacondas, while the Competent ones manage with Vultures. (The "assassin" type that you get from e.g. data courier missions is more dangerous, since they don't waste space on cargo holds, hatchbreakers, etc. and they want you dead so you can't complete the mission, so can't be paid off with cargo) Like the 2nd type, they send comms messages and will sometimes be stuck to a planet.

    The 2nd and 3rd types are more likely to come after you in low security systems, but can attack anywhere.

  7. #7
    You'll meet two types of random pirate NPCs in supercruise who will interdict you:

    The first category belongs to the vast majority of NPCs you see when just flying around in supercruise, internally Frontier calls them ambient AI: they are generated based purely on local BGS conditions and may or may not take notice of you. They may interdict you regardless of the presence of cargo on board, but in a high security system that is unlikely as they have so many other ships to pick from, and have to deal with evading police interdictions. Depending on the security rating, they will decide to interdict you based on your respective (combat) ranks, with low security systems allowing pirates of high rank to ignore a larger rank disparity.

    The second category belongs to what I call the stalkers (others call them psychics, I believe frontier internally calls them hunters). Those can be randomly spawned by the game every time you enter supercruise and meet certain conditions. For pirates stalkers, that condition is to have any cargo on board (except limpets) within the bubble (the bubble being anywhere within a few hundred LYs of a capital afaik). Contrary to ambient NPCs, these guys are coming after you. They know what you fly, they know you have tasty cargo (or that you've been naughty as there is also a bounty hunter variant of those stalkers) and they are intent on interdicting you the moment they are spawned. From experience, their rank and loadout seems to be tailored to yours (it's quite possible their rank is randomly picked within the same rank bracket based on security status as ambient pirates), so a harmless player with cargo on board a sidewinder in a high security system will mostly be pursued by harmless and mostly harmless sidewinders and eagles, whereas an elite player in an Type 7 will be pursued by Deadly and Elite Pythons and FDLs.

    The first category will make up the majority of pirates interdicting you in low security and anarchy systems (as there are more pirates and fewer targets), whereas you will mostly notice the second category in high security systems (as they wont be distracted by all the ambient traffic). Either category can be pacified by dropping some cargo (although it wont stop other pirates from coming for your cargo afterwards).

    Edit: and ninja'd by Ian!

  8. #8
    Originally Posted by Ian Doncaster View Post (Source)
    There are broadly three types of NPCs that will try to intercept you

    1) NPC pirates that were in the system anyway. These depend on the security of the system - in high security it'll be a couple of desperate novice eagles, whereas in low security or Anarchy it might be a high-ranked Clipper or Python with friends. Usually if you don't wait around getting to the station you'll be safely docked before these realise you're there. They don't depend at all on your rank or ship.

    2) "Tasty cargo" pirates. These will generally be at about your rank (higher of combat and trade), never winged up, and in a similar or slightly bigger ship to you. These will send you a comms message to let you know that they're there. Half the time they'll be stuck to a planet's gravity well and you can get to the station before they get free ... the other times they'll just be near the star.

    3) Mission pirates or assassins.These will be at a rank determined by the rank of the mission - so if you accept an Elite mission you'll get a Dangerous/Deadly/Elite opponent - and with a ship to match their rank, so the Elite ones fly Anacondas, while the Competent ones manage with Vultures. (The "assassin" type that you get from e.g. data courier missions is more dangerous, since they don't waste space on cargo holds, hatchbreakers, etc. and they want you dead so you can't complete the mission, so can't be paid off with cargo) Like the 2nd type, they send comms messages and will sometimes be stuck to a planet.

    The 2nd and 3rd types are more likely to come after you in low security systems, but can attack anywhere.
    NIce detail, although, regarding 3) These are also down to the ship you are flying when you get the comm. I often take Elite boom gold deliveries, and they very frequently get what I call 'hunters', if I don't pick up the cargo and go pootling about in my DBX, I'll get the same random comm, but it'll be for lower values of target (instead of the 1/4 240-540k Anacondas, it'll say 1/3 120k per target, for example. Then when I come across them, they're FASes, Dropships, mediocre Vultures. If I stay in cutter/python/corvette I get 4 anacondas, as you say. Always. Perhaps a minor exploit that you can pick up a mission, NOT pick up the cargo, switch to a small ship, then follow the route of the mission to see if you get hunters, if you do, just go back and get your main ship and it'll be the same low level hunters as if you were still in the small ship. A lot of trouble for little gain, but still.

  9. #9
    Originally Posted by Aashenfox View Post (Source)
    NIce detail, although, regarding 3) These are also down to the ship you are flying when you get the comm. I often take Elite boom gold deliveries, and they very frequently get what I call 'hunters', if I don't pick up the cargo and go pootling about in my DBX, I'll get the same random comm, but it'll be for lower values of target (instead of the 1/4 240-540k Anacondas, it'll say 1/3 120k per target, for example. Then when I come across them, they're FASes, Dropships, mediocre Vultures. If I stay in cutter/python/corvette I get 4 anacondas, as you say. Always. Perhaps a minor exploit that you can pick up a mission, NOT pick up the cargo, switch to a small ship, then follow the route of the mission to see if you get hunters, if you do, just go back and get your main ship and it'll be the same low level hunters as if you were still in the small ship. A lot of trouble for little gain, but still.
    Interesting. I haven't tried with the cargo missions, but on the data courier missions I get the same Deadly Anaconda assassins whether I do them in my Cobra III or Python.

  10. #10
    Originally Posted by Ian Doncaster View Post (Source)
    Interesting. I haven't tried with the cargo missions, but on the data courier missions I get the same Deadly Anaconda assassins whether I do them in my Cobra III or Python.
    Similarly I don't do data missions, hm, let us each try the other one's shoes

  11. #11
    I will also point out that since Beyond 3.somenumber , the police in high security systems will arrive within 10 seconds of a crime being committed and they will quickly take the pirate's attention off of you, so high sec is now very safe for traders.

  12. #12
    Originally Posted by Stigbob View Post (Source)
    Your ship, wanted status, notoriety, combat rank, the missions you take and the locations/signals you drop into all effect it. The best approach is to run away when it goes wrong this is known as a Sir Robin maneuver. Once you're good at that rebuy becomes an optional thing (mostly players are more dangerous) as you can control the terms of any engagement. If you control the terms of the engagement you can pick inadvisable fights and learn where your own asskicking comfort zone is.

    Escapology guide

    Do this

    Submit to the interdiction, your cool-down is faster
    As soon as you drop out of super-cruise max pips to engines 2 to shields
    Start boosting at full throttle away from the hostile (or back past it if it's a less maneuverable ship than yours)
    Spam chaff
    Select a nearby system and start your jump (high wake isn't mass locked)
    Evade whilst boosting until you jump
    Once you've jumped drop out of super-cruise select another nearby star and jump again (repeat if necessary)
    Return to desired course

    Do not

    Waste time wondering who he is or what he wants (interdiction is hostile)
    Waste time talking
    Fly without shields
    Combat log

    If you are in a fight and it goes wrong just retract weps get clear of the rocks if you need to and do the same.
    All good advice, though I would go for 4 pips to shields instead of engines. This is because shields become hugely more powerful when four pips are in them, which is probably more useful than a bit of extra speed.

  13. #13
    Originally Posted by Novo Mundus View Post (Source)
    All good advice, though I would go for 4 pips to shields instead of engines. This is because shields become hugely more powerful when four pips are in them, which is probably more useful than a bit of extra speed.
    That's true depending on your ship build, I go for zoom before anything else so speed and chain boosting is the more important one for me. Don't need shields if you are out of range.

    I tried not to make the escapology guide too overcomplicated, as there are as many variables as there are players.

  14. #14
    Hello all
    First of all, thank you very much for all details answers.
    So far then, it seems I never been intercepted by type 2 or 3, only random ones with my level or lower, start chatting and open fire if I.hold cargo (which I don't at the moment, passenger travelers being more juicy I figured out). However, when I see that the one intercepting me is smaller, I start the fight - I'm always enjoying a space fight.
    Still some questions:
    - is it possible to know what type of ship is intercepting you before submitting to the interception?
    - why is it that sometimes, I got intercepted, flight the guy and got fined for it?

    In any case, I will wait to get more money to buy my federal assault ship AND be able to equip it correctly

  15. #15
    As soon as interdiction starts hit "target nearest hostile" and you'll see your attackers ship in the target panel (left of the radar).

    Once you've dropped down you have to make sure the target is showing "wanted" to not get a fine. Target the ship and point your nose at it for a few seconds until the details of the ship are scanned and in the target panel. As soon as you see "wanted" open fire, you have to do this even for ships already shooting at you.