Didn't really see a thread dealing with this directly so I thought I'd make one! This is dealing mostly with the AI as players given some basic tools and the ability to chat with each other (private chat of course, can't let those bear riding bearbarians know about your new war elephants!) can do the diplomacy thing naturally.
I did find a good thread on options they'd like to see for dealing inside an alliance. http://forums.elementalgame.com/335521
Most games have a simplified diplomacy, options to make treaties, sometimes trade things ect. I've always found these lacking as they don't really give much in the name of options. And the AI has always been very illogical to me.
What I'd like to see is a way that AI players can keep track of how trustworthy a player/AI is. If a player NEVER backstabs a friend, or engages in shady tactics I want the AI to be more likely to trust that player. They may still want to KILL them but they are an Honorable enemy or a great and trustworthy friend.
Example: I have a friend or even an ally, we're gearing up for a war on a 3rd party, If I have a low trustworthyness score my ally may keep an eye out and worry when I have a HUGE army on thier border. While if I was very trustworthy in my dealings and actions the AI wouldn't worry as much because obviously i'm gearing up for the war... and wouldn't suddely go from being an ally to "You traitor! I see you building up your army!" and declaring war on me!
Obviously to keep players from abusing this you'd have to make it so the player had to EARN the trust of the AI, lots of battles and helping them out. Like if AI yellow is being attacked by AI red! You could open a diplomacy window and ask yellow if you could come and smash some of AI red's troops on yellows territory, you promise to be good! If you then betray yellow and start raiding his supply lines then all the AI's (or maybe just the ones around as one you havn't met yet probably won't "find out") will trust you less. And if you help yellow by destroying some (or lots) of red troops then yellow will both like and trust you more. The other AI's (even red) will probably also trust you more though of course Red is probably going to be kinda angry that his troops were destroyed/attacked by you. But that's another issue
Also I'd like options in diplomacy, Besides the normal "I'll give you X if you give me Y and Z." While that can deffinatly be useful, I'd like to see other things like if the AI doesn't like the trade instead of going "That sucks!" it will give a counter offer! "Well you want to give me X and C for my Y and Z, but Z is really nice so you'd also have to give me 40k gold or 20 of your +1 swords of Awsomeness that my spy...er reports say you have!"
Of course they may not trade anything especialy if you want war tech/items and you are not trustworthy or are just not well liked by that AI.
To steal an idea of the ally thread I'd like some of those options available outside of an alliance. Say if you have at least a nonagression pack or even peace treaty.
Example: Yellow has helped me out some, We're not ready to be allies but red is a big threat, so we can try to coordinate between each other. AI telling me some of his plans, Like he's going to attack Red's troops around coords X/Y in about 15 turns, and if I could help out or be ready it would be really nice. Or I could ask for help because Red snuck some troops past my blockade of the mountain pass and i'm having trouble keeping them out. Or you need help defending the pass to keep him from getting into your near defenceless flank.
This kind of give/take is normaly the realm of players. Seeing the AI being able to effectivly do things like this would be awsome. I also have an idea how hard it would be to program but why not push the envolope? Also all this give/take could make your two sides trust each other enough that an Alliance may be formed. In RL alliances can be formed through working together for common goals. Not "you look nice, you gave me stuff, wanna be an ally?"
Wow, didn't realize my thread was going to be so long. But that's a few idea's I'd like to see in some form, It's the part that always frustrated me when playing against AI, I have wierd playing times and sometimes can only play for 10 minute's here, 30 there so multiplayer with live people is rarely an option.
Please feel free to comment! Also any other idea's people would like to see in diplomacy with the AI or behaviors you think AI's should learn?