Anti-Surfer Targeting

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A style of targeting that focuses on hitting wave surfing (or other adaptive) movements. This is not a specific targeting algorithm - there are many different elements that can increase accuracy against wave surfers.

History of the idea

When wave surfing was first becoming widespread, many believed that it wouldn't be long before a targeting system came along that could hit a wave surfer as easily as it could hit any other movement system that wasn't randomized. After all, wave surfing follows a specific algorithm to end up at the GuessFactor that it thinks is safest, so it should be possible to simply track the same information in a gun and shoot at the safest spots.

In practice, given all the variables involved in wave surfing movement algorithms, this is simply not the case: wave surfing movements are still the most effective form of 1-vs-1 movement against nearly every targeting system. (One notable exception is that anti-pattern matching can still be far more effective against pattern matching guns.) Every wave surfer uses different attributes, distancing, wall smoothing, and data decay. While there are some very common surfing algorithms, there is still much room for variation among them.

Common elements in Anti-Surfer guns

While nobody has found a targeting method that hits a top wave surfer as well as it hits top random movements, much progress has been made towards improving aim against wave surfers. Some elements of a gun that work well against wave surfing include:

  • Rapid decay of data - Since a wave surfer changes its movement each time it is hit, data gathered gradually becomes less relevant to hitting the enemy as the match goes on.
  • Lower weighting of non-firing waves - Many guns fire waves every tick in order to gather as much information as possible. Since a wave surfer detects enemy fire and bases its entire movement system around where it will be when the wave (or bullet) hits, the data gathered by non-firing waves is much less relevant than against other movements.
  • Pattern matching - While it is not as good as specifically tailored anti-surfer guns, pattern matching has always done relatively well against wave surfers by its very nature: wave surfing inherently simulates a gun that uses waves and/or GuessFactors, so a targeting system that does not use either cannot be dodged as well.

See also