Soren Johnson interview at Rock Paper Shotgun

Soren, most of us knew where you were going. Unfortunately, the silly started before the discussion about your point did. The silly feeds itself whereas the discussion is hard and takes effort. Silly always triumphs when it gets an early lead in the polls.

Silly always beats discussion because discussion is dumb… er… nevermind. :(


Where are the dinosaur pictures?

For me, the best part of this interview was learning that in fact his blog had been updated since September, he just changed software, which broke the feed I was subscribed to. Damn you, Web 2.0!

It’s too bad that the real meat of the interview was taken out for publishing at a later date.

It’s too bad that the real meat of the interview was taken out for publishing at a later date.

Buy PC Gamer UK today!

EDIT: Actually, the interview doesn’t go on-sale until Valentine’s Day. BUY PC GAMER ON VALENTINE’S DAY!

Rest of the interview is up.

Man, you’re quick.

(There’s actually a third segment of the interview which was in PCG, and hopefully will eventually end up online on C& This stuff is the Civ4 section)


And another interview on Next Generation, this time about the history of cheating in Civilization…

There was some previous quote from him (I think) on a similar topic that basically said that if the game was truly even, in an 8 player game you’d expect the human to win 1/8th of the time, but that was too low to be acceptable to most people, which was something I hadn’t really thought about.

You meant to say the human could expect to lose 7/8th of the time, right?

I’ve heard that quote but it’s really rubbish when applied to Civ, or most complex strategy games for that matter. Even Civ4 BtS needs a few cheats to not lose all the time against experienced human players. Yes, it doesn’t play as dirty as human players would, but that just makes a wider variety of play styles viable.

Yep, the goal of AI design isn’t to emulate a skilled human player to the point where the AI can defeat the real human player 50% of the time. People like to win, so if you beat em 50% of the time they’ll go play something else.

The goal of AI design is to give the player the illusion that they are playing against a skilled and cunning foe so that they can feel really good about their victory.

I meant to say win 1/8th of the time, but basically, yeah. Thanks, I’ll fix it. I think it isn’t really an argument saying that hey, the Civ AI is so awesome we have to give crazy bonuses to humans, just more that the target you are aiming for is not what you might immediately consider as worthwhile.