Vics Barbarossa AI Log #3 : Missing some je-ne-sais-Guderian

After improving the Soviet artificial intelligence (AI) I am now turning my attention to the German AI. In this AI log we’ll take a look at how it is doing right now.

The German AI is basically not doing so bad and in the end managed to get one of the three major objectives. It is already in quite good shape, especially considering that is facing more Soviet units than a human player would be fielding. However as discussed in the video above I feel it is missing something. I’d like to call it a certain je-ne-sais-quoi… Its a bit of that edge that made commanders like Guderian and Manstein so effective.

But what is that edge? If I drill things down I think the issue with the German AI is it needs to take calculated risks at the right spots. The spots are where their four ‘Panzergruppen’ are and the risks are that these ‘Panzergruppen’ need to advance more while leaving some Soviet units in their rear. Furthermore the german Infantry divisions need to accept that sometimes higher casualties can be acceptable if it leads to capturing essential terrain or opening up the road for those ‘Panzergruppen’.

Sounds like a tough lesson to teach :) When I have a new German AI ‘Guderian’ version running I’ll report back here if I succeeded.

Best wishes,

This entry was posted in Artificial Intelligence, DC:Barbarossa. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Vics Barbarossa AI Log #3 : Missing some je-ne-sais-Guderian

  1. JagdFlanker says:

    Great vid! 12-14 years ago i was playing a lot of War in Russia so i’l give you an idea of how i played the game just in case it gives you any ideas. of course this will only really work well in 1941 when the sov units are weak and their line is easier to break through

    i’m not 100% sure how your supply system works, but my objective in WiR was to cut off small pockets of the Sov units from supply, creating a bigger hole in their line that i could try and advance through

    basically all my inf (infantry) units formed the ‘front line’ – they were the ‘anvil’ and the ‘cleanup’ part of the advance

    all my pz/mech units were grouped into groups of 3-4 units, we’l call them Pz groups.

    each Pz group would cut a 1 hex hole in the sov line and keep advancing through that hole until they were firmly behind the sov line. i would have a line of units in the hexes following the first unit – like a snake/conga line of units following the first unit that was behind the sov lines – so that there was little chance the sov’s could in turn cut off the Pz unit(s) behind their lines

    hopefully i would be able to have 2 pz groups in relative proximity break through the sov lines so they can meet up the 2 conga lines of units and completely cut off a pocket of sov units.

    at this point i don’t want to immediately attack that isolated sov pocket since i want them to weaken from lack of supply first, so while i’m waiting a couple/few turns for that to happen i try and snake in Inf units though the pinhole to replace the pz units – this frees up the pz units to continue advancing behind the lines, and lets the inf units do the hard work of reducing the pocket so the pz units don’t need to take unnecessary casualties

    in a simple way my 1941 advance looks like this – pz groups meeting and breaking away from each other while encircling pockets


    don’t know if this is practical or helps, but thought i’d throw it out anyways for fun!

  2. vic says:

    Hi Flanker,

    Thanks for sharing that piece of advice. I am thinking along similar lines. Lets see how the next AI version will turn out :)

    Best wishes,

  3. anpd says:

    Hi Vic, really like these articles. Any chance you could do a more tech focused article? What does the decision process look like, do you do any search (if so how does that work with the large scope). How do you evaluate moves, find the frontline etc. Influence mapping is that used to some extent? There is practically no info online on war game ai so would love it if you could tell me more how you have structured yours.

    Cheers, Andreas

Leave a Reply