Squad AI with personalities

At the heart of Demon Core is a multi-layered, hierarchical artificial intelligence. Within the AI system, character behavior is simulated on three levels: Team, Squad, and Individual.

Team level identifies and separates allies and enemies. In addition to enemy soldiers, the player can run into paramilitary groups that are formed by bodyguards and civilians. Depending on the situation, these groups can either join the player, or fight against both the player and the enemy soldiers.

Squad level simulates the squad’s objectives and co-operation, including breaking away from fighting positions, giving suppressive fire and performing flanking maneuvers.

Every squad has a leading officer. If the officer dies, it affects the squad dynamics. Inexperienced squad members result in a chaotic squad. The more experience the members have, the more coordinated the squad stays, even without a leader. The officer has a radio operator to help him, who is able to call for backup. Identifying and eliminating the officer and the radio operator may give the player great advantage when done early enough. However, some experienced squad members are able to assume the tasks of the leader or the radio operator and bring the squad back together.

Individual level simulates the behavior of a single soldier, a subordinate of the squad leader. Every soldier is able to make his own decisions regarding which individual enemy they attack and who they consider the most serious threat. They choose their weapon and manage their ammo and other resources.

The squad may have extra ammo and medical supplies that individual soldiers can make use of during the fight. The soldiers can move within the limits set by the squad. For example, a squad that is defending their position cannot have its members move freely, but they can seek more effective cover nearby, if their position is vulnerable.

Each soldier and civilian has a distinctive personality. Personality is defined by several parameters, but mostly by courage and experience. More experienced individuals are better in teamwork, they supports each other more efficiently and offer a tougher resistance overall.

The two extremes of courage are Coward and Berserker. A coward almost always makes decisions based on safety, while a Berserker is always keen to fight. Any given soldier can be anything between these extremes, which makes all squads act differently.