paktsardines wrote:For instance, a quick Google of the algorithms involved in Starcraft 2 indicate groups of units traverse vastly simplified networks with some flocking and queuing algorithms thrown in to avoid collisions, speed things up a bit, and make things look pretty.
Exactly. Prison Architect is far more complex than Starcraft, so to compare it to starcraft is pointless. To clarify, starcraft units do not:
. Act under their own free will. That is, they do not have a hierarchy of needs to be constantly evaluated and acted upon.
. Need to constantly plan and evaluate escape options.
. Need to constantly evaluate contraband smuggling options.
. Have a mood than needs to be evaluated/adjusted every time events occur.
. Have to work out which direction to dig.
. Eat bacon
Every one of which adds a layer of complexity that Starcraft doesn't have.
To be fair, most of these items are linear in nature. That is, compared to the pathfinding, checking or incrementing needs and whatnot are likely trivial. Checking a need is a comparison (or perhaps a switch statement, which is a series of comparisons), and comparisons are very fast. Incrementing or decrementing a need is likewise quite fast, consisting of an addition. Working out which direction to dig is handled a priori using a flow map (watch the a13 video again).
As I am hesitant to say that Prison Architect is less complex than Starcraft 2, I am also hesitant to say that it is more complex. As I have said repeatedly, it is apples to oranges. Unless you really know what each game is doing, I don't know how you can possibly conclude that one is more complex than the other. For example, the units in SC give the appearance of behaving in a more complex manner than the units in PA, but the dynamic maps of PA seem more complicated than the static maps of SC. Without access to the source code, it is exceedingly difficult to comment.