Can we please make the AI obey the game rules?
Maybe there are some rules that I am not aware of, and if so then please let me know, but by constantly closing the game (without letting the game save anything) and restarting the same turn of a conquest, I have been able to determine that atleast from what I can see, the AI in the conquest does not appear to obey ANY of the rules of the game. The AI should always obey the same rules that the users have to obey, or atleast something reasonable close.
Currently the AI produces ships on planets where ships are not allowed to be produced, and where you cannot produce ships if you own it. There is no ship production facility there. If the user is not allowed to produce ships there, then the AI should not be allowed to produce ships there. If the AI can, then the user should be able to.
It automatically adjusts the number of ships that it has according to how many you attack it with. Example I scout a planet with a single fighter, and it has a single cruiser, 2 frigates, and 32 fighters. I immediately attack it with 2 cruisers and 32 fighters, and it has 2 cruisers, 5 frigates, and 48 fighters. I close the program before it can save anything, and attack it again with just 32 fighters, and it only has 1 cruiser and 32 fighters.
It has no income limits and no production limits. Example I scout a planet and it has 6 cruisers and 10 frigates. The following turn it attacks me with a fleet basically equal to everything it has. I win the attack. Logic state that it should be pretty much out of ships. The following turn I attack it, and it has the same 6 cruisers and 10 frigates that it had before it attacked me. So it appears to have created the ships that it attacked me with out of thin air. This characteristic requires the user to have to defend their borders with next to nothing, wait until the AI attacks them, and then take that planet back with their real fleet, and the next planet too, and then withdraw everything but a single frigate and repeat the process, in order to get around the AI constantly eliminating the user’s fleet trying to defend against these ships out of nowhere. This is exactly contrary to what is, and should normally be, done in this type of environment, namely defending your borders and not expanding until you can properly defend your new borders. In fact this characteristic will guarantee that anyone that tries to properly defend their borders will never be able to build a large enough attack force to conquer much of the world, because they will forever lose their attack force defending against these attackers that are created out of nowhere, because even if they win the attack, they will have lost some ships that will have to be rebuilt, just in time to have to defend again against more of these ships out of nowhere.
It has infinite knowledge of what I have for ships and always attacks with more power than I have. If I defend a planet with a single frigate, then it will attack with a single cruiser or something similar. If I close the program without letting it save and instead defend that planet with 6 cruisers, 4 frigates, and 160 fighters, then it attacks the same planet that turn but with a force that again has anywhere from 1.5-3 times my hit points. If I can’t know what it has for ships, then it shouldn’t know what I have for ships. Or if it does know, then I should also be able to know what it has.
It can change race instantly. I have scouted planets that are isolated from everything else, and are all alone, so I know that they are not being conquered, yet when I scouted it, it had a big fleet of federation ships, but the following turn when it attacked me, it attacked me with a big fleet of swarm ships. I can’t change race at will like that, so it shouldn’t be able to either. It should be required to attack me with the ships that it had present, including the exact ship designs. And whatever ships it attacks with should no longer be on the planet for use as defense.
These characteristics do not always exhibit themselves (I have actually seen the AI obey the rules a time or two), but they do most of the time. This game would be MUCH more fun if the AI obeyed the rules. Give it an income advantage if you need to, or start it with more planets than the user starts out with, but force it to obey the same rules everyone else has to. If the AI has no rules, then there really isn’t much difference between the conquest expansion and just fighting various scenarios from the online part of the game, except that you can guarantee that the AI will have a huge advantage in the conquest expansion.