I was wondering, with all the incredible projects, also of large scale like Arcane Dimensions, is there anything about making the monsters a bit more clever?
I am aware that part of the fun is fighting hordes of dumb enemies, but I feel dying a bit inside each time I get an Ogre that standing on a step cannot hit me or each time monster cannot walk straight on irregular terrain.
Drake Ogres and Zombies aim the player for example, but still the Fiend have problems walking stairs. The Shambler in Nighmare is dumber than in Hard because he does not try to reach the player and fights become "shot, hide, repeat".
It would great of course, but I am not thinking to F.E.A.R. games level of AI where enemies flank the player and show emotions. Just it would be nice if they were a bit smarter than a brick... perhaps with a bit of pathfinding.
AD does have ogres that can aim at you. Oddly not the regular ogres, by Sock's design, but his alternate versions do. For custom maps that don't come with their own progs.dat, in Darkplaces (and maybe FTE) you can use Seven's SMC: it has ogres and zombies that can aim at you like the Drake ones, and also an optional teleporting feature for the fiends (and scrags, if you don't find them pesky enough as they are) that bypasses this climbing stairs problem and makes them trickier to fight.
In the Shadows has "smarter" enemies, in the sense that the mod uses a waypoint system which makes them get around the levels more easily. Where in vanilla Quake the monsters just blindly run towards the player's location and subsequently hit a wall or an obstacle, in ITS they're able to actually reach him in other rooms or higher floors. The downside of this system is that it has to be set up manually for each map which is a lot of work, and it easily leads to the exceeding of vanilla engine limits.
Well, if you have a basic .bsp you can also use Drake. It makes the weapons also stronger, though.
Any idea how the bots like Omegabot or Reaper manage to move in the level without adding waypoints?
I don't know for certain. I imagine something like using the traceline function to generate rudimentary routes between the items/level entities and then some prioritization which one to frequent. Probably unreliable and too expensive in SP mode. A QC person would be able to tell you more.
If I remember well the reaperbot oriëntates on ammu and items,
and uses health packs on its "chase" to the player.
I can be wrong.