An actor variant specializes an actor by defining their use of weapons, grenades, their health, their color, and what equipment they drop. While the actor tag defines common behaviour of an AI type and rank, the actor variant adds additional variety in their appearance and weapon use.
A burst is a series of shots made at a target. The burst geometry controls how the shots within a burst start and move over time.
At the start of every burst, the game picks a random origin point horizontally near the target to fire at, either to the left or right. The AI will then correct their shots by returning aim back towards the target over the course of the burst.
See the burst geometry fields in the tag structure for more information.
Firing patterns modify the burst geometry and ranged combat values depending on the actor's state:
- New-target is when the actor finds a new target to shoot at.
- Moving is when the actor is moving between scenario firing positions while shooting.
- Berserk is when the actor is in a berserk state charging at the player.
The firing pattern multipliers (starting at new target burst duration) modify the default burst geometry and ranged combat values only when their value is non-zero.
The change colors block of the tag can be used to change armor color, which relies on the bipeds model's shader_
Halo randomly interpolates between the upper and lower bound colors, in either RGB space or HSV if the interpolate color in HSV flag is checked. This gives the Flood their varying skin tones, for example.
If you are looking for multiplayer armor colors, see here.
Structure and fields
Specifies which biped this variant will spawn as.
Specifies the next highest "rank" of this actor variant. This allows enemies to "upgrade" in higher difficulties, with the chance being controlled by both the per-difficulty major upgrade globals multipliers and the major upgrade squad setting in the scenario.
Used for kill scoring and achievements in MCC. Since this field was padding in pre-MCC editions, maps compiled for MCC should use MCC-native actor_
Used for kill scoring and achievements in MCC.
|initial crouch chance|
The weapon that the actor spawns with.
|maximum firing distance|
The maximum range, in world units, where the unit can fire at a target.
|rate of fire|
This lets you pick the firing rate for this actor. Which affects firing behavior in the following ways:
Adds error on top of the weapon's own error. This makes actors fire inaccurately.
|first burst delay time|
The delay in seconds before the actor starts its first burst on a new target.
|new target firing pattern time|
|surprise delay time|
|surprise fire wildly time|
|death fire wildly chance|
Sets the chance that the actor will fire their weapon while dying.
|death fire wildly time|
Controls how long the actor will continue firing after death.
|desired combat range|
The distance in world units the actor will try to be in to attack; lower bounds is the minimum range and upper is the maximum. The actor may still fire outside this range, but will move to attain it.
|custom stand gun offset|
|custom crouch gun offset|
Determines how closely the actor will follow moving targets when firing. bursts. A value of
Determines how accurately to predict lead on moving targets. A value of
|weapon damage modifier|
Allows weapon damage to be buffed or nerfed for this actor variant. A value of 0 disables this modifier.
|damage per second|
Overrides weapon damage if set and weapon damage modifier is 0.
|burst origin radius|
The starting point of the burst, randomly to the left or right of the target in world units.
|burst origin angle|
Controls the maximum angle from horizontal that the orgin can be, from the point of view of the actor. For example, a value of
|burst return length|
How far the burst point moves back towards the target. This can be negative to make the burst lead away from the target.
|burst return angle|
Controls how close to horizontal the return motion can be.
Cotrols the length of burst, during which multiple shots are fired.
Controls how long to wait between bursts.
|burst angular velocity|
Sets the maximum rotational rate that the burst can sweep. A value of
|special damage modifier|
A damage modifier for special weapon fire (e.g. overcharged shots and secondary triggers), applied in addition to the normal damage modifier. No effect if
|special projectile error|
An error angle, applied in addition to normal error, for special fire.
|new target burst duration|
Multiplier for burst duration in the new target state. No effect if
|new target burst separation|
Multiplier for burst separation in the new target state. No effect if
|new target rate of fire|
Multiplier for rate of fire in the new target state. No effect if
|new target projectile error|
Multiplier for projectile error in the new target state. No effect if
|moving burst duration|
Multiplier for burst duration in the moving state. No effect if
|moving burst separation|
Multiplier for burst separation in the moving state. No effect if
|moving rate of fire|
Multiplier for rate of fire in the moving state. No effect if
|moving projectile error|
Multiplier for projectile error in the moving state. No effect if
|berserk burst duration|
Multiplier for burst duration in the berserk state. No effect if
|berserk burst separation|
Multiplier for burst separation in the berserk state. No effect if
|berserk rate of fire|
Multiplier for rate of fire in the berserk state. No effect if
|berserk projectile error|
Multiplier for projectile error in the berserk state. No effect if
|super ballistic range|
When non-zero, causes the burst target to be offset by a random distance in this range when the enemy is not visible.
|modified vision range|
Overrides the actor's vision range. Normal if
|special fire mode|
If set, allows the actor to use their weapon in alternate ways.
|special fire situation|
Determines the situation in which the actor has a chance of using special fire.
|special fire chance|
How likely the actor will use their weapon's special fire mode. Setting this to
|special fire delay|
How long the actor must wait between uses of special fire mode.
Sets how close an enemy must get to trigger a melee charge by the actor.
|melee abort range|
The actor will stop trying to melee the enemy goes outside this range.
|berserk firing ranges|
When berserking and outside the maximum range, the actor will advance towards the target and stop at the minimum range.
|berserk melee range|
Similar to melee range, but used when the actor is berserking.
|berserk melee abort range|
Similar to melee abort range, but used when the actor is berserking.
Sets which type of grenade the actor throws, assuming grenade stimulus is not never.
What causes the actor to consider throwing a grenade. It is still dependent upon grenade chance.
|minimum enemy count|
How many enemies must be within the grenade's radius before the actor considers throwing there.
Only enemies within this radius of the actor are considered when choosing where to throw a grenade.
This is responsibile for giving the grenade it's thrown velocity, rather than the projectile initial velocity or the unit grenade velocity.
The minimum and maximum ranges that the actor will consider throwing a grenade.
|collateral damage radius|
If there are friendlies within this radius of the target, grenades will not be thrown.
How likely the actor is to throw a grenade when a grenade stimulus applies.
|grenade check time|
How often to consider throwing a grenade while a continuous grenade stimulus, like visible target, applies.
|encounter grenade timeout|
The AI will not throw a grenade if another AI in the encounter threw one within this timeout. This prevents AI from all throwing grenades at the same time.
References equipment that the actor will drop on death. Note that their weapon will already be dropped and does not need to be repeated here.
Determines how many grenades the actor spawns with, with the type determined by the grenade type field. The actor will use up these grenades unless has unlimited grenades is true. On death, the grenades are dropped.
|don't drop grenades chance|
The chance that the actor drops no grenades on death, even if they have some.
|drop weapon loaded|
A random range for how loaded the dropped weapon is, as a fraction of its magazine size or charge. Plasma weapons are dropped at 100% charge no matter this field's value under special circumstances: * If a model region was destroyed and that region's forces drop weapon flag is enabled, such as shooting the arm off a Flood actor. * If the actor has a chance of feigning death and reviving, but not if the damage exceeds the hard death threshold. ---
|drop weapon ammo|
The total number of reserve ammo rounds included with the dropped weapon. Ignored for energy weapons.
Overrides the biped's collision geometry maximum body vitality for a different amount of health.
Overrides the biped's collision geometry maximum shield vitality for a different amount of shields.
|shield sapping radius|
|forced shader permutation|
If non-zero, forces the bitmap index for any shader the biped uses. For example, the Elite major uses the value
Overrides the bipeds color change permutations.
Thanks to the following individuals for their research or contributions to this topic:
- Jakey (Providing descriptions for all tag fields, further researching Rosy's discovery)
- Kavawuvi (Invader tag definitions)
- MosesOfEgypt (Tag structure research)
- Rosy (Discovering actors drop 100% charge weapons on no-grenade deaths)